Why Are My Brakes Making a Grinding Noise?

auto shop brake repair

A well-oiled machine should not make any noises at all, especially not a grinding noise. If you hear strange sounds coming from your vehicle, you may have a brake issue that puts yourself and others on the road at risk. Don’t ignore it. Before irreversible damage is done, bring your car to Big Chief Tire for a brake repair in Jacksonville, FL.


Why Your Brakes Are Rattling, Grinding, or Squeaking

Unusual sounds such as rattling, grinding, or squeaking indicate an issue with one of your vehicle’s most important safety features, your brakes. Constant noises like these may simply mean that your brakes need more lubricant. These noises may also indicate worn-out brake system components. The key sounds and common causes are listed below.


If you notice a rattling noise as you press or release the brake pedal, you likely have defective mounting hardware on your brakes. The rattle sound is usually caused by loose or worn parts like brake anti-rattle clips, caliper slide pins, or shims. Another result of worn-down hardware is increased pressure on your pads. This leads to greater pressure on your rotors, overheating, vibrating, and accelerated, uneven wear and tear.


Several different factors can cause grinding noises. For one, it is common for rotors to form a layer of rust overnight. This buildup causes a temporary grinding noise that stops when your car starts to heat up. 

However, don’t let the rusty layer go unnoticed. Excess buildup of rust, mud, or road salt may cause grinding when you brake, indicating rotor runout and vibration on the brake caliper and pads. This not only leads to the unusual sounds but also may cause your car to pull to one side, a safety concern for you and anyone else on the road.

When you lay on the brakes, a grinding sound may also indicate battered brake pad friction material to the extent that the pad’s metal backing is digging into the rotor. If you notice constant grinding, bring your vehicle in for servicing at Big Chief Tire in Jacksonville, FL, to keep yourself, your passengers, and other drivers safe on the road.


Brake squeaking is probably the most common dreadful noise you will hear from your car. Squeaking happens when your brake pads or rotors have worn down below manufacturer specs for your vehicle make or have tarnished or warped, no longer able to expend heat. These factors cause your vehicle to shake, vibrate, and overheat, leading to squeaking.

Many of today’s vehicles come with a wear indicator on the brakes. This device is meant to squeak loudly when the brake friction material wears down, so you know when to take your car to a local mechanic. When you hear this warning sound, don’t wait. Avoid costly repairs while you can, and trust your vehicle to the professionals at Big Chief Tire in Jacksonville, FL, to get you safely back on the road.

Don’t Wait to Fix Grinding Brakes

Squeaking and grinding your way to a stop at a busy intersection is more than just embarrassing. It signals other drivers to stay away. You are not only putting your safety at risk but theirs too. 

When driving with tired brakes, your brake pads and rotor will wear down. Excessive wear and tear to these parts make it harder for you to come to a safe stop. You may notice longer stopping distances, brake slipping, or your car pulling to one side. Additionally, worn-out brake pads or damaged rotors can lead to aggressive shaking or steering wheel vibrations. 

Increased heat from the metal-on-metal contact can lead to a broken rotor. To avoid this, listen to the warning signs and bring your car in for brake pad maintenance and replacement. Ignoring your brake pads will lead to accelerated issues with your rotor and, in turn, make for a very bumpy ride.

Extend the Lifetime of Your Brakes 

Bringing in your car for servicing when you notice the symptoms of worn-out brakes is step number one. But there are more smart driving habits that can lengthen the life of your vehicle’s brakes

For example, when you drive within the speed limit, you are less likely to have to make sudden stops. That is good news for your brakes because slamming down on them can put more stress on your pads, causing them to wear down faster and making your rotor more vulnerable to cracking.

Another tip: Stop riding your brakes. The more pressure you apply to your brake system, the greater wear and tear for your brake pads. Try releasing the accelerator when traveling down a steep hill or applying the brakes in short spurts to slow the vehicle down.

Overall, don’t wait to get your brakes checked out. When you hear squeaking, rattling, or grinding, take that as your warning sign for potential danger while out on the road. At Big Chief Tire, we want to provide you with the best vehicle services to keep you and your passengers safe. Schedule an appointment with us for brake repairs in Jacksonville, FL.


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