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How Often Should Car Brakes Be Tested

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  • 02-09-2022
How Often Should Car Brakes Be Tested

Do you want to know how often  car brakes should be tested? We look at when it time to check your brakes and the causes of stress on your brakes.

How Often Should Brakes be Checked?

The brakes on your vehicle are arguably its most important safety feature. They are designed in order to keep you and everyone else driving on the road safe.

The whole braking system is extremely complex; it involves dozens of different moving parts that need to be checked and replaced often in order to ensure that everything in the vehicle is working correctly. It is rare for people to know with complete certainty that their systems are failing or whether they need to have their vehicle inspected.

Try following the guidelines below to know exactly when your car should be brought in for a brake check:

All vehicle technicians would recommend that you should have your brakes inspected at least once every six months. The majority of people will have this done at the same time that they have their car's tires rotated; it is easier this way as you are killing two birds with one stone.

If you can't remember the last time you had your braking system examined by a professional, then you need to arrange an appointment as soon as you can. 

Depending on your specific style of driving and the types of traffic that you come up against, you might need to have inspections more regularly.

This is why it is recommended that you pay close attention to the warning signs that indicate a brake system failure. 

One of the first signs that can indicate that your brakes may be failing is if their responsiveness is reduced. This means you will be required when braking to apply more pressure than usual to the pedal in order to achieve the same level of braking.

In some other situations, you may find that your vehicle pulls slightly to one side whenever you are applying the brakes. If you notice either of these signs, then it is absolutely vital that you take your car for a brake inspection as soon as possible.

These signs will only become more severe with time which will eventually lead to incredibly dangerous driving for you and everyone else on the road.

If your steering wheel vibrates when going down a hill or when braking at a high speed, then this is another sign that your brakes need to be examined. These kinds of pulsations and vibrations are caused by rotors which have been damaged or warped in some way.

If you are a driver who commonly drives in what would be considered to be brake-heavy conditions, such as going down very steep hills, then it is recommended that you have your brakes regularly examined.

When using your car's brake, if you notice the sound of any growling or grinding, then this could mean that your brake pads have either worn down or are failing. These sounds are common when metal from a worn-down break starts to grind up against some of the other components in the case.

This will then damage the rotors. You should never drive with your brakes in this condition for a long period of time; it is a very serious safety concern. If you notice this sign, then make sure your car is examined by a professional.

How long will my brakes last?

Brake Discs

The amount of time that a brake disc will last is also dependent on the factors that have been described above. The difference is that brake discs commonly last a lot longer than brake pads, so they do not need to be replaced as regularly.

Brake Pads

The amount of time that your car's brake pads will last is dependent on a wide variety of factors.

These factors include your particular driving style, the weight of the vehicle, the material of the brake pads, and the location or terrain of where you have been driving.

Frequent and short journeys, as well as city driving, will wear brakes much quicker than driving on the motorway.

This is because brakes are used more often in the former situation. You may find that your car's front brake pads begin to wear out a lot quicker than rear brake pads.

This is because the front brake pads are the set that handles the majority of the braking load. If you are a user of an electric or hybrid vehicle, then your brake pads are likely to last a lot longer than other vehicles.

How Long Will My Brakes Last?

Brake Fluids

Brake fluid needs to be replaced at least once every two years. This will be checked when your car is going through a diagnostic test.

When do my brakes need replacing?

The MOT requirement when it comes to brake pad thickness is 1.5mm. There is no wiggle room here; that is the requirement. Once your pads get to this level, they need to be replaced as soon as possible.

During your car's MOT process, the garage will assess the overall condition of your car's braking system and offer some advice on whether any other components in the system need to be replaced.

How to make brake pads last longer

Although this may sound glaringly obvious, many people do not realise that driving responsibly at slower speeds is the most effective way of ensuring that your brake pads last as long as possible. The key to this is to read the road that is ahead of you, anticipate any traffic, and decelerate gradually in order to slow your vehicle down steadily.

This puts much less stress on the car's brakes. If you drive at high speeds and brake very suddenly, then you are likely to wear down the brake pads much quicker. Carrying a heavy load within a car will also lead to the brakes wearing down at a much quicker rate. We recommend removing any unnecessary weight from your vehicle.

When should a professional take a look at my brakes?

The majority of modern vehicles are installed with what are known as brake pad wear sensors.

These sensors are designed in order to notify the driver when the brake pad's thickness level is getting to a dangerously low level. The brake pad wear sensors notify the driver through a warning light on the dashboard.

Some cars instead have wear indicators that are installed to the brakes. These indicators will emit a screech when it is time to have the brake pads changed.

The issue with brake pad wear sensors is that they are unable to detect when there are issues with other components of the brake system.

There will be no indication when issues such as low fluid levels, rusty brakes, and disc wear start to appear. They are only capable of alerting the drier when the pad thickness is getting low.

How To Make Brake Pads Last Longer

We would always recommend ensuring that you have an annual car service that includes a full and proper brake inspection and cleaning. When these services are carried out, they are likely to find any small issues with the braking system that can then be fixed before they turn into something more dangerous.

The brakes of your vehicle need to be checked as part of your MOT.  Unfortunately, during an MOT check, a garage is likely only to test the brake's basic performance, as well as check the brake pad thickness to make sure it is at least 1.5mm.

Are you looking for Jaguar servicing in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire?  Contact our Jaguar specialist today.

We offer a complete range of Jaguar servicing for Peterborough and the surrounding areas including: Huntingdon, Stamford, Kettering, Northampton, Crowland, Market Deeping and Grantham.