Are the brakes on your Ford not working quite as well as they used to?
If so, it may be time to repair your vehicle’s brakes or have them replaced altogether.
The average driver in America travels 13,476 miles each year. Generally speaking, brake pads are expected to last anywhere from 25,000 to 50,000 miles or more. But this depends on many factors, including the number of miles you travel and your driving style.
With these sorts of estimates, it may be hard to decide when it is time to replace your brakes.
Read on to learn brake pad replacement is the best decision for your vehicle.
Hearing Brake Noises
A common sign that your brakes need to be replaced is that you hear noises when your brakes are engaged. These noises often make a squeal or screeching sound when you engage your brakes. But what causes these noises?
Your brake pad includes a metallic shim that is small in size but designed to make these noises when it is time for a repair or replacement.
Hearing these noises though does not mean brake work is imminent on your vehicle. If you have driven through rain, snow or other wet conditions, you may hear the noise afterward. This is often caused by dust that is on your brakes but should be removed by using your vehicle.
If you hear this noise after driving through rain or snow, pay attention to how long it lasts. If you still hear the noise after you have driven the car a bit in dry conditions, it could be caused by something more than dust.
Thinning Brake Pads
Squeaks and squealing sound aside, you can look at the physical condition of your brakes to determine their remaining life.
Your brake pads are pressed up against your brake rotors and can be examined by you in your driveway. When you look at your brake pads, are they less than a quarter of an inch thick?
If they are, you should take your vehicle to a trusted mechanic to have your pads inspected. It’s also possible that you may need a full brake pad replacement. If you are short on time and want to speak to a reputable mechanic, you can ask an experienced mechanic about your issue over the internet.
Longer Braking Times
Have you noticed that it is taking your vehicle longer to come to a stop under normal conditions?
If so, it may be time for a brake pad replacement. That’s because, in order for your brakes to stop your vehicle, this takes friction between your rotor and your brake pads.
When your vehicle’s brakes are used often — like in stop and go traffic, or up and down hills or winding roads — this can cause the pads and rotors to heat up a lot. The increased amount of heat may cause your brake pads and rotors not to have the friction it needs.
In turn, this will cause your vehicle to need a longer amount of time to come to a stop. These longer braking times can be dangerous, especially when you need to make a quick and sudden stop on a road or highway.
Your Vehicle Pulls to One Side
It’s possible that your vehicle’s brakes may be wearing out at a different rate from each other. How will you know this?
When you engage your vehicle’s brakes, you will notice that it pulls to one side over another. At first, this may seem like more of a nuisance than anything. But the reality is that this can cause safety risks and expensive repairs.
Let’s take a look at the safety concerns and expenses you may be faced with if your vehicle pulls to one side when you are braking:
From a safety standpoint, you may be operating your vehicle on a narrow roadway or winding road. Under these conditions, you need to have complete control over your vehicle. This way you do not risk going off the roadway or running into something else.
When your brakes are working properly, you will have more control over your Ford vehicle. This will also help you be more confident behind the wheel as you navigate the roadway.
Expense of Repairing Other Car Parts
When your vehicle pulls to one side, this can also place lots of pressure on other parts of your vehicle. This includes your car or truck’s steering rack, which is made up of many different parts that are connected to one another. If your steering rack is damaged, it can be an expensive replacement. Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, it can range from hundreds or thousands of dollars. (This does not include labor costs.)
An Illuminated Indicator Light
Your Ford vehicle may be equipped with indicator lights to help you know when it is time for when systems are not working correctly.
These indicators are often found on your vehicle’s dashboard and light up when something isn’t performing the way it should. If you see an unusual indicator light up on your dashboard, you should not ignore it.
Review your owner’s manual to determine what this indicator means. Once you learn what the indicator is signaling, you may need to take it to a mechanic for further inspection.
Wrapping Up: Deciding to Make a Brake Pad Replacement
It is important that your vehicle’s braking system is operating smoothly and safely. This is because your brakes help you control the speed of your car or truck.
By having more control over your vehicle, you can help keep you and your family safe as you travel. This also means that you should not ignore the signs indicating when it may be time for a brake pad replacement.
Are you interested in learning more about repairs of your Ford vehicle? At Online Auto Repair, we are your source for automotive maintenance and repair information on the internet.
Check out our catalog of Ford service repair manuals to learn more about your model today!