Checking the brakes

Article updated on 11/15/2021

How does it work?

There are two types of braking systems: disk brakes and drum brakes. The disk brakes are more widely used, but the drum systems can still be found on older and smaller cars. The brake system has several elements to monitor: the brake pad and the disk brake. The brake system gradually wears down with use, so it is important to have them checked frequently.

When to change brake pads?

  • Check the brake pads approximately every 30,000 km.
  • When the brake pad image lights up on the dashboard (see images below), this indicates that your brake pad has been over used. For the vehicles that are not equipped with warning lights, it is necessary to frequently inspect the thickness of the brake pads. When it is less than 3mm, it is essential to replace the pads.

When to change brake disks?

  • Check the brake disks approximately every 40,000km
  • If the brake disk is damaged (broken, cracked, or scratched), or if it has reached the minimum level of thickness, it needs to be changed immediately (This information can be found in the manual for your vehicle).

When to change the brake fluid?

  • On average every 2 years
  • If the brake fluid light appears on your dashboard (see the image below), you must change the fluid.

Additional indicators related to the brake system:

  • The steering wheel vibrates when braking
  • The brakes squeak and/or whistle
  • The distance needed to brake increases
  • The brake pedal is hard or too mushy
  • The car pulls left or right

This article was written with the help of the Bosch Car Service garage network.

Bosh Service

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