Do your breaks ever make a squealing sound? You’re not alone—one of the most common complaints about brakes are the squealing, squeaking, or otherwise high-pitched sounds they sometimes make.
In many cases, brake squealing is normal and nothing to worry about, especially if there’s a good bit of humidity in the air. After a rainy day, the moisture and surface rust can accumulate on the rotors. When you apply the brake pedal for the first handful of times while driving, the brake pads will scrape it off, causing a squeaking or squealing sound. Sometimes dirt can collect on the rotors as well, such as after driving in muddy conditions, and this can cause the sound as well.
In those scenarios, brake squeal isn’t anything to worry about. It’s only a problem when the squeals continuously happen as you drive—more than just the first few times. If you’re experiencing consistent brake squealing, it’s a problem you should have examined by your local BG certified automotive professional as soon as possible. Left unattended, these problems can ultimately become more and more expensive.
In today’s post, we’ll look at the possible causes for these problems and the best way to resolve them with a little help from BG. Let’s begin:
Causes for Continuous Brake Squealing
As mentioned previously, brake squealing in humid conditions during the first few applications as you begin driving is normal. However, continuous squealing during braking or while driving in general usually indicates a more serious problem.
A high pitched squealing sound that doesn’t seem to go away—that is to say, it’s occurring the entire time you’re driving, not just when you apply the brakes—is almost always a sign that you need new brake pads. This is actually by design in many vehicles, and isn’t immediately a cause for concern.
Brake pads often have small metal tabs built into them, which after the brake pad gets worn down makes contact with the rotor to purposefully make that sound. This is so that drivers can use it as an indicator that the brake pads are wearing down. In some cases, this squealing sound is only heard while braking. It just depends on the kind of wear indicator your brake pads have.
Regardless of when you hear it, it’s very important to get your brake pads exchanged for new ones as soon as possible. Not only could it cause more expensive problems such as caliper replacement and so on, it presents a serious potential for danger on the road (nobody wants to drive without brakes!).
Sometimes the problem is the rotor itself. In some cases, the rotor can be unevenly worn down by the brake pads—your auto technician will probably say that it’s warped—which disallows the brake pads from pressing against it in a flush manner. In addition to your brakes not functioning at their full capacity, you’re also likely experience a chirping or squeaking sound, since vibrations of the brake pad against the rotor are generated. This can also cause the brake pad to wear down unevenly, compounding the problem and occasionally becoming very loud indeed.
Finally, and while this is less common it’s certainly possible, it’s also worth investigating whether or not your brake pads were improperly installed. Loose pads that haven’t been mounted properly will vibrate and fail to make proper contact with the rotor. The shims that hold them in place may also be improperly tightened or even corroded, and that will cause noise and reduction in performance as well.
The bottom line is that there’s a number of causes for brake squealing, most of which would be difficult for the average driver to inspect and diagnose on their own. The most important thing to remember is that if the brake squealing is continuous, you need to visit a professional. When you bring your vehicle to a BG certified shop with this problem, your auto service technician will likely recommend the BG Stop Squeal Service. Let’s talk about that in a bit more detail:
What is the BG Stop Squeal Service?
As the name implies, the purpose of the BG Stop Squeal Service is to prevent brake squealing. After your technician confirms the cause of your brake squealing, the BG Stop Seal product will be applied to the brake pad (whether it’s a replacement or the original pad was simply found to be loose or some other common problem). This product infuses the brke pad with ingredients that reduce sticking between the brake pads and the rotor. Therefore, when you apply the brakes, the amount of vibrations—and thus noise—are eliminated.