Defective brakes are one of the most common causes of road traffic accidents in the UK. Between 2013 and 2018, malfunctioning brake parts contributed to a total of 3,894 reported accidents, according to the Department for Transport. And the sad thing is that greater awareness of vehicle performance could have helped prevent many of these accidents from happening.

So, what do you need to look out for to ensure that your brakes are always in good working order?

Five Common Warning Signs That Your Brakes May Need Replacing

1. Squealing

One of the first and most obvious signs that your brakes may need replacing is a squealing noise when applied. This is an intentional part of the design to let you know when your brake pads are wearing thin.

2. Vibration

If your car unexpectedly vibrates when you apply the brake, you may find that your rotors have warped or your calipers have been damaged. Your rotors and callipers grip together to slow the motion of your wheel. If your rotors or calipers are damaged, the effectiveness of your braking system will be dramatically reduced.

3. Pulling to the side

If your vehicle pulls to one side when braking, it’s a good indication that one of your brakes is beginning to fail. There are various reasons why this might happen. It could be as simple as an issue with the brake pads, impurities in the brake fluid, or damage to the brake hose. So, unless you ‘re confident that you can identify the problem yourself, it’s really important that you see a mechanic as soon as possible.

4. Low resistance on your brake pedal

Your brake pedal should be easy to use. But it shouldn’t just press flat with zero pressure. So, if you notice that there is very little resistance when you apply your break, you should get your car checked out. The most common cause of this is worn brake pads. But it could also be caused by air in the brake lines or low brake fluid.

5. Grinding

So many car problems carry auditory clues, and the brakes are no exception. Unfortunately, if you hear a grinding sound when you brake, you probably should have been listening harder earlier. If your brake pads have disintegrated, the metal of the brakes will be grinding on the metal of the wheels, and you’ll need more than new brake pads to repair the damage. In fact, in most cases, you’ll also need new rotors and/or drums.

You don’t need us to tell you that your car’s brakes are an integral part of staying safe on the road. And if you suspect that any part of your braking system is failing, you need to get it checked out and replaced as soon as possible. The good news is that if you know where to look, many brake parts are fairly inexpensive. A new brake hose for a Citroen can cost less than £20. Brake pads are usually less than £30. So, if you’re having problems with your brakes, don’t risk delaying. Find out what the issue is, source low-cost, high-quality car parts online, and put yourself safely back in the driving seat.

If you’re looking for high quality car parts in the UK, get in touch to find out how Online Automotive can help.