There are many things that can annoy drivers, and one of the most common is perhaps having squeaky brakes. The noise that it creates is not only irritating, but can also make you worried. You will instantly think of what is wrong with your car. The good news is that there is an easy fix to the problem, a solution that does not involve spending money by going to a licensed mechanic.
In the rest of this post, we will teach you how to stop your brakes from squeaking. From the first sign of the problem, it is important that you already act to have the issue resolved. If not, it can worsen and can even compromise your safety. As you learn in the rest of this post, fixing the problem can be pretty much straightforward, not requiring a lot on your end.
What you will Need to Follow this Tutorial
The first thing that you have to do is to gather the materials that will be needed to complete the task, which include the following:
- New brake pads or brake rotors
- Brake cleaner
- Brake hardware
- Anti-seize lubricant
- Silicone paste
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Stop your Brakes from Squeaking
To begin with, watch the short video below, which will be followed by a brief discussion of the steps that you need to follow. Don’t worry! We promise, this is going to be easy! There is no need to be an expert in cars!
Before you are able to fix the problem, you should have an understanding of it first. Brake noise simply refers to the vibration that originates from one of the brake components. When the brake is pushed, the caliper applies pressure on the rotor and this is what generates the noise. Even if you have brand new brakes, this is one problem that can be apparent.
In this section, we are going to tackle the different possible reasons why the brake is making a squeaking noise. Once the cause of the noise is determined, it will be easier to figure out what needs to be done next.
Worn Out Brakes
Over time, your brakes can suffer from wear and tear. It can deteriorate, and for this reason, it is going to make a noise. The problem can originate from the brake pads, the brake rotors, or both.
- Take the wheel off and inspect the brake pads or brake rotors. Pay attention to the signs indicative that these parts have already worn out.
- If the problem is with the rotor, all that you have to do is to sand it with your choice of newspaper.
- If the parts are severely damaged, you need to have them replaced. For brake rotors, if they are already too thin, a replacement is a must.
By performing a quick inspection of the brakes, it will also be easy for you to determine if the brake rotor or pads are contaminated. Road salt, mud, and any contaminant can cause these problems. If there is rust on the rotor, this is also a sign of contamination and is going to make the brake squeaky.
- Remove the rotor and the brake pads.
- Sand the surface to remove the contaminants. Be sure to apply enough pressure to take off dirt and grime stuck on the surface.
- If you are installing a new brake rotor, apply a brake cleaner before the installation. This is going to remove the film of oil on the top, which can speed up contamination. Wipe it off with a clean towel.
- Brake cleaner is used only on the rotor. For the brake pads, it can cause serious damage that will compromise its performance.
Damaged Brake Hardware
As shown in the video above, this is one thing that is often overlooked by many people. The rotor and the pads are the main parts of the brake, but they are not the only ones that wear out through time. The hardware can also be problematic; and hence, it can be a reason why you are hearing a squeaking noise.
- Inspect the hardware and see if they are still in a good condition.
- If they are already damaged, remove the old hardware and have them replaced with a new one.
Lack of Lubrication
Friction is another reason why your brakes are squeaking. When two components touch each other, they will create a friction that can result in noise. This can also speed up the wear of the components that are in contact.
- Apply anti-seize lubricant to the contact points between the brake pads and the brake caliper.
- Apply silicone paste to grease the pins on the caliper.
To prevent squeaking noise and to successfully carry out the steps mentioned above, here are some of the most important things that you have to keep in mind:
- If you are removing an old rotor and replacing it with a new one, be sure to scrub the hub to remove any rust on the surface. If not, the rust can spread and can cause serious damage in the long run, not just noise.
- Like a lubricant, a dampening paste can also be effective in silencing brakes. This is going to produce a thin cushion, which will dampen the vibration, and as a result, lessen the noise. When applying the paste, be sure to provide it with plenty of time to dry out before attaching the parts that you have earlier removed.
- It will also help to keep your vehicle in the garage or in an environment that is climate-controlled. Moisture can collect on the brake rotors. This leads to the formation of a thin layer of rust, which is the reason for the noise. If you keep it away from rain, snow, condensation, or dew, this problem can be prevented.
- Preventive maintenance is also a must. Make sure to have your vehicle regularly serviced by your trusted mechanic to prevent the brakes from squeaking and to address the problem before it becomes worse.
After reading this post, I hope that you are now aware of how to stop your brakes from squeaking. As discussed above, the first thing that you have to do is to determine the root cause of the problem. Once this has been identified, it will be easier for you to proceed.
In most instances, the problem could be with the brake rotor and pads. In some cases, they can be cleaned. In other instances, they are too worn out, and hence, the best thing that you can do is to just have them replaced.