Fairfax, Virginia - IIHS top safety pick, crashworthiness, crash avoidance, you sometimes hear many of these terms in vehicle safety commercials.  Functioning brakes are what enable your car to do the most important safety feature, stop.
 
You don’t need a 6th sense, a superior safety rating, or any advanced car knowledge to know when you need your brakes checked.  There are five simple signs that you can see, feel or hear to know if it’s time to get your brakes services.
 
Brake Inspection: You don’t even have to pop the hood to do this check, simply look between the spokes of your wheel. What you are looking for is the brake pad.  
 
  • The brake pad is located between a shiny metal rotor and another metal caliper.  
  • The brake pad should be at least 1/4th of an inch think.  
  • If you see that your brake pad is less than 1/4th inch thick, it's time to have your  pads changed. 
 
Listen Carefully:  To begin this inspection, you just have to turn down the radio and drive as you normally would while listening for any out of the ordinary sounds when you hit your brakes. 
 
  • Listen for sounds that are audible with the windows up, but could be easily missed with the radio blasting.  
  • If you hear a distinctive high-pitched screech your probably brakes need servicing soon.  
  • If you hear a grinding sound, that means you have completely run through your brake pads; this requires immediate attention. Procrastination can be costly. 
  • If you hear nothing, your brakes have passed this one test.  
Feel for Vibrations:  Your brake pedal should not vibrate or pulse unless your anti-lock brake system is engaging.  
If your brake pedal vibrates like you are engaging your anti-lock brakes on a regular basis you could have warped rotors.  
If you frequently drive on steep terrain or use your car or truck for towing, the friction created by these activities can stress your rotors and cause your brakes to malfunction. 
 
From WiFi to entertainment systems, cars offer a huge amount of high-tech features; however, the most important feature is still the ability to stop and go.   Don’t wait to learn that your car can’t stop until you are in an emergency situation.  Getting your brakes checked is one of the best ways to ensure your safety while driving. 
 
You Just Made Need Brake Repair
While you may be able to perform a novice brake inspection on your own, we recommend letting the professionals take a look, and if need be, replace or repair your brakes. Contact Hogan & Sons Tire and Auto for brake inspection and to fix your braking system if need be. Hogan & Sons Tire and Auto is a quality full-service auto repair shop that has served the Northern Virginia Community for over 30 years.  With eight convenient locations, Hogan & Sons Tire and Auto is your one-stop shop for your auto repair and maintenance needs. 
 

 

*Always check your owner’s manual for your vehicle model’s specific instructions before attempting any type of repair.  
 Copyright 2017 - Hogan & Sons Tire and Auto - January 10th, 2017