Brakes are one of the most critical safety features on your car, especially when driving on city streets or highways. They keep you from racing into the oncoming traffic or swerving into the lane adjacent to you. The only problem is that brakes deteriorate over time. And that’s why it’s mandatory to change them every now and then.  


Here are some clear signs you need to replace your car brakes.


  1. You Notice Visual Wear And Tear


Visible wear and tear happen to all the parts of your car, not just the brakes. So if your brake pads look faded, your brake calipers are showing rust, or your rotors are slightly warped, chances are your brakes need to be replaced. 


However, brake wear is a particular problem with disc brakes. Disc brakes are a modern invention that improves braking performance significantly. But just like any other part of your car, brakes have their own lifespan. After a certain period, they get damaged beyond repair.


  1. You Feel Resistance When Turning


Brake pads are made of friction material, and they should make it easy to brake. But if you feel resistance while turning, you need to replace your brake pads. 


Most people don’t know that brake pads lose some friction material when they get too old. This usually happens because the rubber has become brittle and overly dry. When brake pads are excessively dry, they don’t have the friction required to stop the car.


  1. You Hear A Noise When You Brake


On the other hand, a loud noise when you brake is also a sign of an imminent brake failure. The noise comes from the friction material, which means that you need to replace your brakes. However, there are a few things that can cause this noise. 


The first thing you should check is your air pressure. Air pressure can cause the brake pads to contact the wheel too forcefully. The pads could also be damaged, which means they can’t function properly. So, if you hear a noise when you brake, take a look at your brake pads and make sure nothing is wrong first. 


  1. Your Brakes Are Hot


Hot brakes are a sign that your brake pads are excessively dry. The only thing you can do is to change them. But also check your air pressure, because it can make the brakes too hot. Even if your brakes aren’t too hot, they could still be getting too much friction because of the air pressure. 


The excess friction will be removed if you clean your brakes with a soft rag and brake cleaner.


  1. Your Car Shudders Or Pulls to One Side


Shuddering and swaying to one side are other symptoms of a faulty brake system. Shuddering is when the engine and brakes are working correctly, but the tires and road aren’t aligned perfectly. 


Shuddering is especially common on the highway, where cars constantly align with the shoulders and median. Pulling to one side is a sign that the brake calipers are damaged and need to be replaced.


  1. You Can’t Stop In Emergency Conditions


If you can’t stop in emergency situations, like when there’s no time to slow down, you need to change your brakes right away. Brake failure is the most dangerous type of failure because it can lead to severe accidents. If you find yourself in a situation where you have to stop quickly, you’ll want your brakes working correctly.


  1. Your Brakes Feel Spongy


Spongy brakes are a sign that your friction material is worn out. So, if your brakes feel spongy, you might need to replace them. This happens when the brake pads are excessively dry. 


Spongy brakes will increase the risk of a crash, but they’ll also create a high level of noise. Besides that, spongy brakes are also a sign that your brake pads are too old. Because all modern brake pads have a shelf life.


  1. You Have To Push Hard To Stop


When you press your brake pedal, you want it to slow down and stop your car with minimal effort. But if that’s not happening, your brake pads could be excessively dry. It can also occur when the brake calipers are damaged. So if you have to apply a lot of pressure to stop your car, it’s a sign that you need to change your brakes.


  1. You Feel Vibrations When You Brake


Braking too hard can cause vibrations in the steering wheel, brake pedal, and tires. Vibrations are a sign that something could be wrong with your brake system. This is especially true if your brake pedal shakes when you press on it. Braking too hard can also damage your rotors and brake pads. Unfortunately, you can’t change these parts, so your only option is to change your brakes.


  1. Your Car Feels “Off”


This is the worst sign of all. When you drive your car, you want it to feel like part of you. But if your vehicle feels “off,” it means something is seriously wrong with your brakes. Another thing that can feel “off” is the steering wheel. Another sign is a lot of noise and vibration. You need to get your brakes checked right away because your peace of mind is more important than anything in a vehicle.


Is It Time to Replace Your Car Brakes?


As you can see, there are many signs that your brakes are wearing down. However, there’s no need to panic. All you need to do is replace your brakes every now and then. You can also call a reputable brake shop that can help you change your brakes. Make sure they’re certified and employ only the best-trained workers.