The modern car brake system has evolved greatly. From the older, mechanically-functioning brake shoes and drum system to our modern computer-controlled ABS system, all brake parts eventually wear out and need new ones. The components that take the most abuse or wear and tear are the brake pads. While it is usually best to stick with Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) braking system parts, choosing the right brake pads is getting increasingly hard due to the multiple options, brands, and styles.
Car brake pads should be changed before they get completely worn out and as recommended by your car manufacturer to preserve optimal stopping power. Doing so will lower damage to other critical braking parts like brake calipers and rotors. If your brake pads are getting thin and you need to get the right brake pads, be sure to answer these 3 detailed questions:
1. When Should Brake Pads Be Changed?
Most car manufacturers recommend changing your brake pads every 30,000 to 40,000 miles — essentially each time you change the tires on your car. Tires and brakes go in conjunction to help stop your car, so it makes sense to change brake pads and your vehicles “shoes” at the same time. By changing the brake pads before they get completely worn out, you’ll avoid having to change your brake rotor — the component brake pads touch to stop the car wheel from spinning. Car brake rotors should be changed every two or three tire replacements or every 100,000 to 120,000 miles. There are a few common signs motorists can pay attention to and feel for to alert them of brake pads require replacement sooner than later.
- A squealing BRAKE:If when you press the brake pedal and you hear a loud squealing sound, it is produced by brake pads that have worn too thin. Particularly, a wear bar indicator will touch the brake rotor when the pads wear beyond the 80% mark. If the brake pads are not changed soon after observing this noise, the wear indicator will then dig into the rotor, that will require change itself in most situations.
- Brake pedal pulses:If you press the brake pedal and you feel it pulse, it’s another normal indicator of worn out
- brake pads. However, this could also be a sign of a warped brake rotor or problems with the ABS system, so an inspection from a professional mechanic is a good idea.
2. What are the Features to Look for in Brake Pads?
When checking for the new brake pads, you will want to consider 7 points to discover the best brake pads for your vehicle. The type of brake pad you require depends on your driving style and conditions. For example, brake pads meant for commuting should rarely have to deal with high temperatures, while those for high-performance cars, on the other hand, will have to handle some hot bite.
- Weather Performance:Best brake pads should be able to function in all climates, irrespective of whether it’s dry, wet, muddy, warm, or cold.
- The cold Bite and Hot Bite:Your brake pad should function as intended and offer ideal friction whether it is hot or cold.
- Maximum Operating Temperature (MOT):This refers to the highest temperature the brake pad can read before getting unsafe through disintegration.
- Friction Response to Temperature:This is often measured in a friction profile, checking how much force you require to apply to the pedal to get the same response in emergency braking compared to regular braking.
- Pad and Rotor Lifetime:Both the rotor and brake pad are prone to wear. You have to consider how long the pads are meant to last as well as the rotor when engaging the brake pads.
- Noise and Vibration:You should consider how much noise, vibration, and even pedal feel pressing down on the brake pad will create.
- Dust Levels:Brake pads may gather dust that then clings to your wheel.