Your car's brake system is made up of various components that aid it to come to a halt. Therefore, for obvious reasons, it is always imperative to have a properly functioning brake system. One great way to do this is to be extra keen to identify any signs that your brake system could be failing. Brake pads are an essential part of the system. Having worn out or damaged brake pads can be disastrous. Identifying early signs and symptoms of faulty brake pads is thus important. For this reason, you need to know these two key issues that point to a potential brake pad problem.
If you have worn out or warped brake pads, pulsations are vibrations you will experience when you step on the brakes. The vibrations are typically triggered by the contact between the worn out brake pad and the rotor. Glazing may also be the cause of the vibrations. This is often the case when the resin or adhesive that holds the brake pads together fails to spread uniformly over the surface of the brake disc when the pads overheat, resulting in the vibrations you feel on the brake pedal. Depending on the degree of the pulsations, your brake pads could be re-machined. Otherwise, you will have to get new brake pads.
Strange sounds and noises when driving are never a good sign. Listen for clicking, screeching and grinding sounds when you apply your brakes. During manufacture, most brake pads are fitted with a device that prevents your brakes from rattling upon depression (when you apply the brakes). When the pads are faulty, especially when warped due to heat, the device won't function properly, and this can lead to a clicking or rattling sound when you depress the brake pedal.
Screeching or squealing sounds are also other signs you should watch out for. These high-pitched noises are often caused by the pads coming into contact with the metal shim around them. You may notice these sounds more often when your brake pedal is fully depressed.
If at this point you don't replace the faulty brake pads, you will end up with grinding or growling noises. This is usually the last stage of the brake pads wearing out. With the pads now completely worn out, the brake calliper and the brake disc will rub together, producing the growling sound. This means the brake pads may not be the only thing you will have to replace.