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Mechanic working on the brakes of a truck

Brake pads are important – you don’t need them to go, but you do need them to stop. At KG Truck & Auto in Glen Burnie, MD, we like to keep your vehicle stopping exactly as it should – it’s less dangerous, and it keeps insurance premiums low. So, how do you know if your brake pads are going bad? How do they work? What even are they? We’ve got the answers!

What are they? Brake pads are pretty simple. If you think about the brakes on an old ten-speed bicycle, the idea is about the same. The pad itself is made of hard friction material, capable of withstanding immense pressure and heat without wearing out too quickly. Essentially they clamp onto the rotor when you hit the brakes, slowing the vehicle down.

What goes wrong? Brake pads are extremely durable – even still, they are under a lot of stress, and eventually, they will wear out. They either come apart or wear all the way down to the metal base plate – both of which will leave your braking capabilities in a sad state. Brake pads are easy to change – it becomes a problem when they are neglected for so long they damage rotors, calipers, wheel bearings, and bolts as a result of extreme heat and wear. Our technicians can fix it either way, but it’s a lot cheaper and faster to take care of it before the problem worsens.

How do you know? There are a few indicators that your brake pads are going bad. If they’ve come loose, you might hear them dragging while the car is in motion, when you aren’t pressing the brakes. If they’re just beginning to wear out, you’ll hear a sort of rushing metal on metal sound – that’s actually just the wear indicator, and you’re okay for now – just get them replaced soon. After the friction material wears out, that’s when you start getting brakes that don’t work well, loud grinding and metal-on-metal screeching sounds, and rough braking you can feel in the pedal. That means other components are being damaged, and every time you hit the brakes it gets a little worse.

A professional technician can inspect and diagnose the issue, and have you stopping smoothly again in no time. No matter your repair or maintenance needs, we’ve got you covered. For the best diesel truck service shop in Glen Burnie, MD, call or stop by KG Truck & Auto today.