Auto Brake Service & Repairs in Louisville, KY

A well-maintained vehicle is a safer vehicle. At Oxmoor Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, we focus not only on providing you with your next favorite vehicle but also on your safety. Brakes are a massively important part of how your vehicle keeps you and others safe on the road, which is why it is essential to have them serviced regularly. Here are a few pointers to remember to keep your braking system healthy.

When Should I Have My Brakes Checked?

Car Brakes

A good rule of thumb is to have your brakes checked whenever you have your tires rotated. It’s suggested that you have your tires rotated at least every six months, and especially before rainy and wintry seasons. While the technician is changing out your vehicle’s tires, they can also take a look at your brakes to ensure they’re still healthy and ready to keep you safe.

However, if you notice any irregularities in your brakes, you should schedule an appointment sooner rather than later. Letting brake problems wait until the next time you have your vehicle serviced can lead to bigger repairs and even dangerous situations while you’re driving.

What Parts Need to Be Replaced?

As you drive and brake your vehicle, certain parts will wear down more quickly than others. In brakes, these are often the pads, rotors, and calipers. The calipers hold the pads that press up against the rotors, which slows and stops your car. Since these parts experience much more friction than other components of your vehicle, they need to be replaced regularly.

How often those parts need to be replaced depends on multiple factors, such as the quality of the parts, how often you drive, your driving habits, and more. However, there is one constant: continuing to drive your vehicle after these components need replacing will only cause more damage and can put you into a bad situation when you’re on the road.

It’s generally recommended you have your brake pads replaced every 50,000 miles, though this number can be significantly higher or lower depending on the factors mentioned above. For brake calipers, the common suggestion is every 75,000 miles or 10 years. You might consider changing your brake rotors every 70,000 miles. Talk to your trusted dealership mechanic to see what is recommended for your particular make and model. You should also have these parts checked occasionally to see if you need to move the timeline a little closer.

Though these are the common culprits when it comes to faulty brakes, they’re not the only ones.

Signs to Watch Out For

Look out for these signs that your brake system is underperforming or damaged:

Strange Sounds

It’s never a good sign if your car is making interesting new sounds, and that goes doubly for brakes. If when you apply your vehicle’s brakes it makes a squealing, squeaking, or grinding sound, your brake pads might be worn down. Worn brake pads may allow metal components of your brakes to rub against each other, which can prove disastrous in the long run.

Soft Resistance

When you purchase a new car, you often get a feel for its brakes pretty quickly. If you begin noticing changes in the way your brakes feel when you apply them, you should get them checked out immediately. This often feels like a soft or mushy feeling instead of the normal resistance your brake pedal gives you. 

Soft resistance may be a sign that there is air in your brake lines blocking brake fluid from flowing properly. It could also be caused by worn master cylinders, leaking disc brake fluid, or a few other reasons.

If your brakes slide all the way to the floor when you step on the pedal, stop driving now and have your car towed to a trustworthy service center.

Vibrating Brakes

Brakes that vibrate or wobble as you push the brake pedal down can be a sign that your brake rotors are uneven. Brake rotors are the discs inside the wheels that the brake calipers grab onto when you push down on the brake pedal. Through wear and tear, these rotors can develop rust or be worn down, creating an uneven surface on their faces. When the calipers slide over these uneven spots, it can cause vibrations throughout the vehicle.

Though this may not be an immediate problem, you should take your vehicle in for a checkup when you can. Left unchecked, vibrating brakes can cause further damage to your rotors, calipers, or overall system.

Visual Deterioration

You can also get under your vehicle and take a look at your brakes. Though we do not suggest trying to DIY a brake system repair, you can make a visual assessment of how healthy your brakes are. If you locate the calipers, you can measure your brake pads. If you find that they have been worn down to less than a quarter of an inch, it may be time to take them into a dealership service center to get them replaced or at least checked out.

Why Should I Go To a Dealership for Brake Service?

There are plenty of well-qualified automotive repair shops, but there are also plenty of bad ones. By taking your vehicle to a dealership that sells the same brand as your vehicle, you know you’re taking it to technicians who have been trained to assess, maintain, and repair your make and model. Private shops, though often competent, have to be jacks-of-all-trades in order to be able to work on as many different kinds of cars as they can.

Our licensed technicians are trained to work on Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram vehicles. They have the same base-level knowledge as private auto repair shops, as well as an in-depth understanding of how these brands’ brakes work.

If you’re ready to give your vehicle the healthiest set of brakes available to it, come visit our team of licensed technicians at Oxmoor Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Louisville, Kentucky. Be sure to take care of your vehicle so that it can continue to take care of you.