3 Most Common Brake Noises: Causes and How to Fix Them

Updated on June 15, 2020
eddiecarrara profile image

Eddie spent 35 years in the automotive business with Honda. He is an ASE Certified Master Technician and has bruised knuckles to prove it.

Brake Noises: Annoying or Dangerous?

“My brakes squeak” is one of the most common complaints about brakes. Brake noises can be annoying, but can also alert us of an upcoming danger. It's best to play it safe and have brake noises checked by a trusted mechanic.

I will cover three of the most common brake noises I encounter on a daily basis and try to shed some light on the repair.

Some of the repair techniques I share with you here are unorthodox and you will never find them in a service manual or Technical Service Bulletin. If you decide to try them please be cautious and safe.

Let’s check out the three most common problems that cause noisy brakes.

Common Brake Noises and Their Causes

Noise
Possible Cause
Grinding
Stop driving! Usually caused by the brake pad being worn down to nothing.
Thumping from rear
Hard to diagnose, but usually the rear drums.
Squeaking
Either cheap brake pads, or the brake wear indicator is hitting the rotor.
Thumping or squealing
If car is parked outdoors, probably caused by rusted rotors.
Scraping
You may have picked up a rock.

1. Grinding Noise When You Apply Your Brakes: A Wake-Up Call

Hearing a grinding noise when you apply your brakes is really like hitting a rumble strip on the edge of the highway; if you hear this, you need to wake up and stop driving. A grinding noise on braking is usually caused by a lack of brake pad material; the pads and rotors are now metal to metal, with no braking material left.

Brake pads are like bars of soap. Eventually they get used up, and you have to replace them and spend a little money.

If you don’t, and your brakes get to the point of grinding, just imagine dollar signs rising into the air every time you step on the brake pedal, even just a little. The grinding noise is just a little voice whispering in your ear saying, ”You’re killing me!” Mechanics have an acronym for this, it’s called CPR (calipers, pads, and rotors). And when you get the bill for your brake job, you will need CPR (cardio-pulmonary rescuscitation).

If your brakes are grinding, stop driving and call a tow truck. It’s worth it in the long run.

What Happens When You Let That Grinding Noise Go on Too Long

You are supposed to replace the pads so they don’t grind your rotors down to a tissue. If you replace your pads on time you can often keep your rotors.

2. Thumping Noise From the Rear When Braking

This brake issue is one that will annoy the hell out of the driver, and suck the life out of the technician. It took me months to figure out what caused this thumping noise in the rear of a vehicle when braking. After tearing apart the rear of the vehicle, lubing every bushing, and checking the clearances of every part imaginable, I came to the conclusion that it’s the rear drums that cause the noise.

Many cars have drum brakes in back, where a shoe stops the car by pressing on the inside of a metal drum. Brake drums, like rotors, get resurfaced once in a while. The cutting bit on the brake lathe removes the old braking surface and leaves a nice new mating surface. During this procedure, the cutting bit will create a groove in the brake drum so slight that the naked eye can’t see it; it’s like a groove on a vinyl record that the needle of the record player follows.

When the brake shoes ride on the new surface, they will follow the groove like the needle of your record player follows a track. If the groove is interrupted, the shoes snap back, hitting the backing plate. This phenomenon happens very quickly, causing a thumping noise that will drive you crazy and wondering if your car is falling apart or even safe to drive.

There are several ways to fix this noise. One is to replace the rear drums. A second way, less drastic, is to remove the drums, install them on a lathe, and sand the crap out of the mating surface with coarse sandpaper. The third way I found by trial and error and pure frustration is a quick fix using the emergency brake.

You will not find this procedure in any service manual or car repair manual, not even on car repair talk radio. It can be dangerous if not performed correctly so please be careful. Nevertheless, I have done it on over 100 cars, including family members’ cars, and I would not recommend it if I thought it damaged the vehicle.

How this works is that you get your rear brakes to do 100% of the braking for a few seconds at a time, instead of their usual 30%, and this will cause the brake shoes to polish the grooves out of the drum. For safety reasons, only try this on cars that have an emergency brake handle in the center console; emergency brakes that come up out of the floor can’t be set and released quickly enough.

Drive your car in a remote area with little or no traffic at a speed of about 40 miles an hour. Lightly pull up on the emergency brake handle while holding the release button; this is so the emergency brake handle won’t lock in the braking position, and you can release it quickly. Only hold the emergency brake on for about three seconds because you don’t want to overheat the drums. Do this three to five times, while keeping a steady speed; the noise should disappear, or at least be 90% gone. Then drive the car at normal speeds and use the brakes the way you normally would.

If the noise has not changed, you may have a different thumping noise than what I have described here in this article. Give up on this remedy and try something else.

My sister came to me with this noise after she had her brakes checked at her local garage. They had adjusted her rear brakes so the emergency brake handle had less free play in it, and this is when her troubles began. I took her car out on a test drive for about 10 minutes, performed the procedure described here, and poof, the noise was gone. She was happy because the garage that had caused the noise had no idea how to fix it.

When A Car Makes A Rumbling Noise and Shakes While Driving

3. "My Brakes Squeak"

A brake squeak can be very annoying, and furthermore might mean something. It may be a sign of danger of some kind, or it may just be a sign of cheap brake pads.

The most common brake squeak is caused by inferior pads. A cheap brake job sounds good when you’re paying for it, but it may come with years of painfully annoying brake squeaks. Cheap brake pads have large metal flakes in the brake material, and when you press the brakes lightly and a flake drags along the rotor, it will squeak. The squeak may go away when that particular flake wears away, but usually there is another metal flake right behind it. The best way to avoid this type of noise is to choose quality brake pads.

If your brakes are squeaking or squealing while driving down the road, but the noise goes away when you press on the brakes, I have a hunch that your brake wear indicator is hitting the rotor and causing the noise. The wear indicator is a small metal tab fastened to the brake pad. When the brake pads are worn down and need replacing, this metal tab starts to drag along the rotor, warning the driver of the potential problem. Don’t ignore the noise too long; the brake pads are thin and need servicing very soon, for safety and to protect the other parts of the braking system.

Brake pad wear indicator:  Metal tab protruding next to pad
Brake pad wear indicator: Metal tab protruding next to pad | Source

Bonus Noise: Thumping or Squealing Caused by Rotors Rusting Overnight

Especially in cars parked outdoors, rust can build up overnight on the rotor around the impression of the pad, causing a thumping or squealing when you drive the car away in the morning.

Noises Caused by Rust on Rotors

A Bonus Noise From the Brake Area

I have one other noise I run into a lot that has nothing to do with the brakes themselves—technically, it has to do with rotors—but I thought it was worth mentioning here because it comes from that area, and a lot of customers assume it's their brakes causing the noise. If your vehicle makes a scraping noise, while driving or when turning a corner, that sounds like something being dragged across a tin plate, it's possible you have picked up a rock from a dirt road or from a freshly repaired pothole: the kind of place where you hear a shower of pebbles hitting the bottom of your car as you drive through. There’s a good possibility that a rock has gotten lodged between the rotor and the backing plate, making an awful noise that is causing your ears to bleed. Just have the rock removed and be on your way.

Or sometimes the backing plate behind the rotor gets bent while the car is being worked on, and it scrapes against the rotor.

There's an easier way to remove a rock stuck behind the rotor: bend the backing plate a little, as shown in the video below!

Scraping Noise From Behind Rotor

I sincerely hope that all the information here will help diagnose that noise that seems to be coming from your brakes. I know that some of my methods are a bit out of the box, but it's what we do sometimes to repair vehicles. There is always a better way, but if you don't try new ideas, you'll never discover it. A wise man once said, "If you do the same things over and over, expecting different results, you must be crazy."

For a couple of other common car noises, see the video below.

Three Common Car Noises

The video above describes three noises: squeaking from brake pad wear indicators; a clicking in the front end combined with a shaking steering wheel; and a metallic, knocking noise that happens in the front end while turning.

Car Brake Noises

What Noises Do Brakes Make: FAQs

How Do I Get My Brakes to Stop Squeaking?

The most common way to stop brakes from squeaking is to remove all the brake pads, disassemble the calipers, and lubricate all moving caliper parts with high temperature grease and all caliper-to-brake pad contact points with brake pad lube.

There are other methods out there, like sanding the brake pad surface or shaving the leading edge of the brake pads, but the repair above has the best results by far.

Why Are My Brand New Brakes Squealing?

The most likely cause for new brake pads squeaking is lack of lubrication on the caliper-to-pad contact points, most likely from an inexperienced mechanic.

Some aftermarket brake pads have a high content of "bimetal" material which can cause new brakes to squeak as well.

What Can Cause a Grinding Noise in the Braking System?

A grinding noise can be heard in a brake system when the pad's life is exhausted, that is, when it's worn out.

Another cause of grinding in a brake system is moisture on the rotor after sitting over night, but this will usually disappear after applying the brake a few times.

Another common grinding noise from brakes happens when small pebbles get caught between the rotor and rotor backing plate, or the backing plate is touching the rotor after a brake service was just done or the wheels were just removed from the vehicle.

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Brake Job?

Brake jobs can range between $150 to $650 per axle depending on what is wrong and what needs to be replaced. If your vehicle need to have the rotor and pads replaced, this is when the brake job becomes more pricey.

If you hear that the rotors need to be replaced, ask the mechanic if they can resurface them to save a few bucks. Resurfacing them, if he can do it, could actually save you about $100 - $150.

How Much Does it Cost to Fix Squeaky Brakes?

The cost to fix squeaky brakes can vary depending on the labor rate and on what the mechanic needs to do to stop the squeak. It will cost about one hour of labor per axle to disassemble the brake calipers and lube all moving parts and pads.

Why Do My Brakes Squeak First Thing in the Morning?

The main reason brakes squeak first thing in the morning, or after the car has been sitting in a humid area, is moisture on the brake rotors. Usually this type of brake squeak will disappear after applying the brakes a few times.

Can Your Brakes Squeal When Not Applied?

Your brakes can squeal when they are not applied. Usually this is because the brake pad wear indicator is touching the rotor. If the wear indicator is touching the rotor, sometimes the noise disappears when you apply the brakes, and returns when your foot comes off the pedal.

If you hear this type of noise when you're not applying the brakes, have a mechanic do a brake inspection just to be on the safe side. The wear indicator may be warning you that your brake pads are getting low and need to be replaced soon.

Do You Have to Break in New Brake Pads?

You should not have to break in new brake pads; you should be able to drive normally as soon as the brake pads are installed.

What is the Grinding Noise When I Drive?

If you're hearing a grinding noise when you drive, and you're not applying the brakes, it could be that the brake pads are worn metal to metal. They should be inspected ASAP! Your brakes may be worn away to nothing.

How Do You Check Your Rotors?

Rotors are inspected visually and with measuring tools like a micrometer or a Verner caliper. The visual inspection checks for flaking rust on the braking surface, score marks on the braking surface, heat cracks, and hot spots.

Measuring the rotor thickness is important when doing the brake inspection. If the rotor is too thin, the rotor could crack or fall apart when braking under severe conditions. Another reason to measure rotor thickness is to verify there is enough material to resurface the rotors.

How Long Do Brakes on a Car Last?

It all depends on driving habits and conditions. If you drive on the highway all the time, your brakes could last up to 100,000 miles. But if you use your vehicle to make deliveries in the city, you could find yourself replacing brakes every 15,000 miles.

How Long Does it Take to Get a Brake Job?

A typical brake job takes about one to two hours. If they are replacing rotors and pads, it will take about an hour per axle. If they are machining or resurfacing the rotors, it will take a bit longer.

How Often Do You Need to Change Brake Pads?

It all depends on driving habits and conditions. If you drive on the highway all the time, your brakes could last up to 100,000 miles; but if you use your vehicle to make deliveries in the city, you could find yourself replacing brakes every 15,000 miles

Another thing to consider is the type of brake pad you're installing. Some aftermarket pads are very cheap and will not last long. Cheap pads also tend to be very squeaky.

What Causes Brake Noise

More on Brakes by Eddie Carrara

Noise from Wheel After Removing the Brake Drum

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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

  • I hear a loud scraping noise when I am slowing down. When I am going fast and apply the brakes, I hear no noise at all, but the slower I get, the louder the noise gets. It sounds like it is coming from the front driver side tire. It is not a very tinny noise like the above video states, but more of a loud grinding sound. Any ideas?

    I recommend checking that rotor backing plate on the side by just sticking a screwdriver through the wheel and bending the backing plate away from the rotor. Has anyone handled the wheels as of late? Have you gone through any large snowbanks where snow could have been pushed up inside the wheels to bend the plate?

  • I hear a thumping noise when I brake. What could it be?

    Did your car sit for a while without being driven? The thumping noise is most likely pad impressions on the rotor surface.

  • My car sounds like it’s running over plastic whenever I brake. What could that be?

    If the calipers have not been serviced in a while, it's possible that what you are hearing is the caliper creaking from lack of lubrication, but without hearing myself the noise, I can't be completely sure.

  • How do you get the rust off brakes?

    If the rust doesn't come off after one day of normal driving, then you'll either have to have the rotors resurfaced or replaced to remedy the problem.

  • There's a brake noise that sounds like a pump running for a few seconds as I come to a complete stop in my vehicle. What is wrong?

    It sounds to me like maybe the ABS pump is running because one of your wheel speed sensors is not reading correctly, and thinks one of the wheels is locking up. I recommend having the ABS checked for any codes.

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    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Dave,

      Sorry for the late reply. Do you hear the noise only when you're braking or do you hear it while driving without applying the brakes?

    • profile image

      Dave Mole 

      10 days ago

      Just had new brakes put on and the car runs great then after about 20 minutes the screeching noise comes from back wheel driver side been back to garage and was told its the type of material thats used on brakes and it will go away eventually.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 weeks ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Nona.

      Do you know if the vehicle has rear drum brakes or disk brakes? Has the car sat for a while without moving? Does it matter how much pressure you're appling to the brakes?

    • profile image

      Nona Freeman 

      6 weeks ago

      I have a 2007 Toyota Corolla, 155K miles. Recently, I heard a thumping noise/feeling when braking. Mechanic couldn't duplicate noise. I drove it yesterday, went through 2 stop lights, no sound but when stopping at 3rd light there was the sound. There is about 2 miles between lights. Please advise. Thanks

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      2 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi NZViking,

      It all depends on what the mechanic finds, you may need to replace the caliper, pads and or rotors but it's possible just the pads are seized in the caliper and the caliper needs to be cleaned and lubed. So you'll need to wait for the mechanic's diagnosis, and ask to see the parts so you know what the mechanic is talking about :) Keep me posted on what they find or if you have more questions.

    • profile image

      NZViking 

      2 months ago

      Hi Eddie. I have a 2010 Mazda Verisa, very similar to Mazda 2 or Demio. This morning as I was about to back out of my driveway, I released the handbrake, put the car in reverse and as it was just starting back out, I heard almost like a loud clunking sound a couple of times along with slight grinding in the rear right tyre. Thankfully there is a mechanic only a 2 minute driveaway, who took a quick peek at it, and told me that without taking the car half to pieces, he thinks its the brakes binding. If they are binding, should I replace the brake pads? What are your thoughts? Thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Charne,

      There is a link next to no photo at the top of the page that says contact the author, send me the pics there.

    • profile image

      Charne Steyn 

      4 months ago

      Hi Eddie. The 3 brake replacements were Carried out by mechanics. I know the second last time they did clean and service the pins.

      I removed the caliper myself the other day and the pads came out, and went back in very easily. I did sand the brake pads down on the edges. I took photos of them and the rotor once removed which I could send to you.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Asyrf,

      When do you hear the noise? When you're getting in and out of the car? While driving? While. driving and braking? Give me as much detail as possible so I can help solve your issue, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Charne,

      It sounds like you did the brake work yourself? Did you service the slide pins, clean and lube them? Did you remove all the pad shims, clean under them and verify the pads slide into caliper easily without hammering them in? If you have completed these to services you could try removing the brake pads and sanding both leading edges to a 45deg angle, sometimes this helps so it's worth a shot. Let me know how you make out, thanks.

    • profile image

      Asyrf 

      4 months ago

      Hi..my car create squeking sound both rear..during Im going in and out the car..already went to repair shop..change brake pad and disc..already tighten the handbracke cable also..kindly need ur advice on the issue. im driving honda city 2003

    • profile image

      Charne Steyn 

      4 months ago

      Hi Eddie

      I have had my brakes replaced 3 times (all 3 times were different pads) and they still squeeck. It is only the front right hand side. It squeecks at different brake pressure applications and very softly when I take a corner to the left (RH drive vehicle).

      Furthermore it sometimes makes a ‘tick’ sound on the front brake as well as on the emergency brake when I use either for the first time again after I have driven for a while.

      I removed the brake pads a while ago and sanded them, it was quiet for the first 2/3 applications then started again. Its worse when I reverse and then apply the brakes.

      I have a 2011 Kia Cerato Forte

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Robert,

      Did you replace the rubber flex brake line as well at the caliper? If you did and it's still doing it the problem has to be either in the master cylinder or the ABS modulator. The only other thing It could possibly be is maybe the brake light switch is out of adjustment, but that's a long shot because only one caliper is sticking. Make sure you have free-play at the top of the brake pedal, so make sure you can step on the brake pedal and have it sink about 1-2 inches before the brakes start to engage if there is no free-play the brake light switch may be putting pressure on the brakes while driving but check the free-play before we get too deep here. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Robert cummings 

      4 months ago

      I have a 2010 hyundai accent gls. The right front break caliper is locking up. New pads tried 3 new calipers. And rails. New rotor new break line. I can be driving without even using the break it starts locking up. And making grinding sound . some times i can stomp the break and it clears up. I flushed the entire system. The break gets hot. And its just the right front side.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Kashawn,

      I think you're hearing a damaged wheel bearing from your description, check out my article and video's on this subject and let me know if that is what you're hearing https://axleaddict.com/auto-repair/What-is-a-wheel...

    • profile image

      Kashawn 

      4 months ago

      vibrating type noise coming from my front passenger wheel when i make any type of right turn going over 40mph

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi JMichael,

      I don't think the tire pressure has anything to do with the noise, I think it's a coincidence, but I could be wrong, my opinion is based on my experience and I haven't experienced everything... Yet. LOL

    • profile image

      Jmichael2525 

      5 months ago

      I had a loud scraping noise in my front passenger wheel & my tire pressure sensor was on. My driver side rear had 6 psi too much air & my rear passenger side was 6 psi low.

      After correcting the psi in both, the sound went completely away.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Chris,

      Most likely the mechanic who replaced the wheel bearing bent the rotor backing plate during the procedure and now it's rubbing against the rotor intermittently. I recommend you locate where the noise is coming from and try bending the backing plate away from the rotor using a long screwdriver or pry bar between the opening in the wheel if you are unsuccessful I recommend you bring it back so the mechanic can fix the issue at no charge. Keep me posted on what you find and if you figured it out, thanks.

    • profile image

      chris stevenson 

      5 months ago

      so I recently had my wheel bearing done and new pads all the way around now when you turn it squeaks and is grinding I am at a complete loss

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Pip,

      It's very common for this to happen especially under the conditions you have described. I recommend you drive the vehicle like you normally would and see if the thumping noise subsides. The noise is caused by brake pad impressions on the rotor surface, the rotor will rust on the surface because of the rain but not where the brake pads were sitting, this causes the thumping noise. This problem can happen with Honda or aftermarket parts, if the problem doesn't subside you can all back the shop and see if they can help with the issue. Keep me posted on what happens, thanks.

    • profile image

      Pip 

      5 months ago

      Hi Eddie!

      I had all my brakes & rotors replaced on a Honda Civic 2013 a few weeks ago costing $1200 (AUD).

      Now in the morning, especially after not driving for a day or two, there is a thumping noise from the front when I brake, like the whole front of the car is going to fall out!! I park outdoors & the worst morning it had been heavy rain overnight.

      Do I need to take the car back to the people who did the brakes? First time I haven’t used HONDA :-(

      I’m concerned they’ve charged for proper Honda parts but used something cheap??

      Thankyou for any advice, Pip.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Ricky,

      Are the rotors rusted on the edge? Are the anti-rattle clips centered and seated properly in the calipers? The noise has something to do with the rotor/caliper because the noise disappears when applying the brakes. Let me know, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Coshae,

      Do you know if you have drum brakes in the rear? Do you hear the squeak when the car isn't moving and just stepping on the brake pedal? Let me know, thanks.

    • profile image

      Ricky 

      6 months ago

      2003 Tundra has a ticking noise (increases with speed, so noise frequency is rotational related) on front brakes passenger side. New pads, but with slight press of brakes noise goes away until you remove foot from brake pedal then noise starts again.

    • profile image

      Coshae 

      6 months ago

      So i have a 2014 kia Optima and I have went to multiple mechanics but they my rotors and breaks are good but there is a squeak everytime i push down on the break pedal and when I am backing up the squeak is even louder what can that be with the 2 different squeaks?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Marcus,

      It sounds like the brake pad wear indicator is touching the rotor warning you that the brake pads are getting low and need to be replaced. I recommend you have all 8 brake pads inspected closely or you could start at the wheel that is making the noise and inspect those pads first to determine if this is the problem. Keep me posted on what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Marcus 

      6 months ago

      Hi.. My 2008 Toyota Yaris sounds whenever i release the brake.. i usually hear a sharp noise when i release the brake.. Can somebody help me out?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Hcsak72,

      No reason to be embarrassed, we all need help with something:) I doubt the brake lines are leaking because the brake pedal would be soft and the master cylinder would be empty, but it is something he should consider replacing in the future, the car is 20 years old lol.

      Changing a tire is part of the driver's education program here in NH so my kids were saved the embarrassment of me teaching them :) Let me know if I can help answer any other questions. BTW, good for you as a single mom teaching your kid about cars, one day he will realize how awesome his mom is :)

    • Hcsak72 profile image

      Hcsak72 

      6 months ago

      Thanks so much for your advice... I personally believe something was leaking from something that the first mechanic had said but I wouldn’t even know if there were actually even a way to check so I guess it’s just a wait and see and hope for the best. I don’t use this particular mechanic but he does have a very good reputation so hopefully I can get some piece of mind from that. My son is like an old miser and has saved and invested considerably and can afford to purchase a much newer car but refuses.. I guess that’s why he has me beat in many financial aspects at 21. He doesn’t like to ask his mother for advice but I’ve thought him basic maintenance on a car since he got his license.. I guess it’s embarrassing for your mom to teach you to change a tire or where to add the brake fluid lol your explanation did help to make some sense out of it. Thanks again!

      Still an embarrassing over concerned mom

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Hcsak,

      Yes, that estimate is not enough for all brake lines and labor. The time it takes to replace all brake lines is between 8 - 12 hours depending on if factory lines are used or if the mechanic fabricates them. A lot of the time involved is because of how they need to be routed, there are a lot of twists and bends to get them to fit correctly. Brake lines can appear corroded and still have a lot of life. There is no way of looking at a brake line and determining the amount of life left in the line unless it's leaking. I'm sure the lines look corroded because they are 20 years old and will probably need to replaced at some point, the question is when? Let me know if this helps :)

    • profile image

      Hcsak 

      6 months ago

      Hi Eddie

      I’m a concerned single mom. My son has a 2000Honda Accord and was told by a mechanic that his whole brake system including lines were completely corroded as well and it would all cost over a grand to fix. He ended up taking it to one of his buddies mechanic and he just came home with a detailed receipt which doesn’t mention brake lines/hoses at all and instead just calipers which has both he and I concerned. Any thoughts or ideas if this seems right or not? The bill was a little over $800 which to me seems too low for the lines to have been changed as well. I worked many years in an auto body shop and can give a decent idea of an estimate on body works but I know nothing about brakes so hoping you can offer some insight?

      Thanks

      A Concerned Single Mom

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Josef,

      If the noise is only heard when the vehicle is moving then it has something to do with whatever parts are moving. Usually, it has something to do with either the brakes, axles or drive shaft. With your situation, it sounds like the brake pads are touching the rotor and once you apply the brakes the noise stops. I recommend you remove each wheel and inspect all 8 brake pads closely, one may be stuck in the caliper and prematurely worn.

      Keep in mind that ball joints are stationary and only move when you turn the steering wheel, they don't rotate so I doubt the noise is coming from the ball joint. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Josef Kurzmann 

      6 months ago

      Hello. My problem is that when i start my 2005 ford explorer and accelerate i hear a scrapping/grinding noise for a second. If i apply the breaks the noise will not be there. I checked it isnt the engine or the transmission. It is always there (only the first time) when i accelerate to 12 mph when i start the car, it also will be there if the engine is warm. I also could hear it when i removed the fan belt (so it shouldn't be the steering pump or ?rack and pinion?). The noise is always there at 12 mph no matter if the engine is at 1000 rpm or 2500 rpm. The onlu bad thing with the vehicle ist a bad front wheel bearing so maybe that could cause the problem or the brakes i assume?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Shawn,

      Yes, most likely the emergency brake isn't used a lot and either the cables are binding or the e-brake itself is frozen from lack of use. You may need to bring it in for service to release the e-brake completely and have the system freed up and lubed or replace the component that is causing the problem. Let me know if this helps, and keep me posted on what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Shawn 

      6 months ago

      Breaks sounded great all day. I put the emergency breaks on when I parked and took it off when I was leaving. Once I did that I started to hear the back breaks grinding. What could be the problem and is it caused by me putting on the emergency breaks?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Richard,

      I get the snow thing living in NH lol. Glad I could put your mind at ease. Thanks for sharing your story :)

    • profile image

      Richard Thomas 

      6 months ago

      Get up this morning and drove about a mile. All of a sudden I hear this high pitched screeching. Of course went into panic mode but thanks to your information I've calmed down. Forgot about the simple rock and rrust on the rotors. Gotta love living in Pennsylvania after it snows. Lol

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      7 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Unni,

      If you only feel this shake at low speeds I recommend you check your tires first, make sure there is ample amount of tread, the pressures are set to about 32 psi. If the tires check out good I recommend you have the front suspension checked for any loose or worn parts, make sure you inspect the front struts for leakage. Keep me posted on what you find Unni, thanks.

    • profile image

      Unni 

      7 months ago

      Hello Eddie,

      I have Hyundai Santafe, its running smooth while drive in City. But it's steering get shake with noice when I drive in freeways above 60 miles per hr speed, or when I apply break to turn or stop. The same noice is coming when i slowly drive over speed breaker or any bad road. What could be the reason ?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      7 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Yoshitatsu,

      I think what you're hearing is the brake pads vibrating against the rotors which is very common with every car and even heard more when the brakes have moisture on them like from rain or dew. I don't think you have anything to worry about but if you feel like there may be a problem I recommend you have it inspected for peace of mind. Keep me posted on what you decide to do and if you have more questions I'll be right here :)

    • profile image

      Yoshitatsu 

      7 months ago

      Hi Eddie.

      I have a 2016 Lexus IS300 AWD F sport and when I releasing the brake extremely lightly I hear a creaking noise. No noise when put in Park or neutral. When I put it in drive and come to a deadstop and release it, there is a slight creak noise. What could be causing this?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      7 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Pat,

      Do you know if the vehicle has drum brakes? If it does, the most common cause of a squeak or whistle noise is the contact point between the rear brake shoe to backing plate has no lubrication and needs to be serviced, the noise I'm describing can be heard when the car is parked and the brakes pedal is pumped. Let me know if this helps.

    • profile image

      Pat 

      7 months ago

      What would cause a whistling noise when I take my foot off the brake? Had it into the dealership they can not find anything.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      7 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Nwanne,

      What type of vehicle is this?

    • profile image

      NWANNE OKEREKE 

      7 months ago

      Hello, Any idea what could cause intermittent clicking sound, like there is something rubbing against the wheel when driving and when brakes are applied this noise stops? This only happens sometimes not always and sometimes it is even difficult to replicate to the local mechanic. PS: the rotors at the back and their pads were recently changed...

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      8 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Sarah,

      Some times the brake pads shift in the caliper and click once when either going in reverse or forward but usually it's only one click and it not very loud, most people don't even hear it. This is only one possibility if the suspension has any loose or damage parts this also could make a click or clunk noise so you may want to have the suspension checked just to be sure everything is tight.

    • profile image

      Sarah 

      8 months ago

      Just curious what could be causing one, singular "clink" type noise when I apply my brakes (just in the beginning, then there is no other noise, but it happens EVERY type I hit the brakes). I know the valve for my tires are broken and slowly leaking because I brought the car in to be looked at by some tire specialists when I noticed they wouldn't keep air for longer than a week, but ever since they took at look at them I've been having this strange sound (so I'm not even sure its the brakes per sey, it just always happens when I brake). Thanks much!

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      8 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Josh,

      A quick check is to bend the rotor backing plate away from the rotor, a small piece of rust may have got caught between the rotor and plate. If that doesn't fix it, you'll need to remove the wheel on the side the noise is coming from and inspect the pad shims, it's possible one is not centered and is touching the rotor. Keep me posted on what you find, thanks :)

    • profile image

      Josh 

      8 months ago

      Hey I recently changed the front pads on my 2013 Smart fortwo and now I have a chirping coming from them while driving. I have the set pins in place and all and am stumped to what this could be. It is not as bad when the brakes are applied but unless I slam on them good you can still hear it. I have noticed that when I turn my wheel to the left it gets worse but to the right it seems to go away. Weird...any suggestion would be so helpful. Thanks

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      10 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi CC,

      If you sprayed any chemical on the wheels to clean them, it may be the culprit but other then that I don't have an answer. I recommend driving it for a few more days to see if it subsides, cleaning and lubing the brakes may help but not all the time. let me know what you decide to do.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      10 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Lisa,

      If hitting your brakes makes the noise go away I recommend you start with having the brakes checked to be sure you're not hearing the brake pad wear indicator warning you that the brakes pad need to be changed soon. Let me know what you find, thanks

    • profile image

      CC 

      10 months ago

      I recently bought a 2017 Jaguar XE. Everything seemed fine until I washed the car. The very next day, the brakes started squeaking. The weird thing is..the squeaking doesn't start right away. It only starts after I've been driving & stopping for about 10 mins. I took it to get checked and was told that they were rusty and they need to be cleaned and lubricated for $500! Any ideas of what's really going on? Is there a cheaper fix? I was also wondering if brake cleaner would work? Thank you!

    • profile image

      Lisa 

      10 months ago

      I have a 2008 Honda crv. I have a loud "hooo" sound mainly when pulling off after car been sat for a while or when I'm travelling at higher speeds it can be heard but not as loud. When I press the brakes at high speed it stops the noise momentarily. Any ideas?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      10 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi John,

      I don't know the year, make, model, mileage, or type of brakes your vehicle has but maybe a broken spring in the drum?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      10 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Amy,

      Hows the front brakes? Do the rotors have brake pad impressions on the braking surface? That's where I recommend you look first. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      10 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Desiree,

      if the brake pads are getting low on material it's possible the heat from braking can cause different noises. I recommend you have your brakes checked closely, inner and outer pads. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      John 

      10 months ago

      The sound came from a brake like a shaking an empty can of a paint. Any Idea and what is the solutions?

    • profile image

      Amy 

      10 months ago

      We have a 2016 RDX with new rear rotors and brakes, yet is still making a thumping noise when braking. It is more noticeable when braking above 40 mph.

    • profile image

      desiree 

      10 months ago

      I am hearing noise when I start braking but I only hear it after i have driven for a while? it does not do it first thing in the morning

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Debbie,

      When a vehicle sits for a few days a light coat of rust will build up on the surface of the rotors, the pads will scrape the rust and will make a grinding noise until the rust is gone, usually, just a few taps of the brake pedal will do the job. Let me know if this helps.

    • profile image

      Debbie 

      11 months ago

      my car sit in driveway for a few days started this morning while backing up heard grinding niise when backing up, what could be the problem?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Bobby,

      It sounds like brake dust which is normal as longs as it's happening to either the two front-wheels or two back wheels and not just one stray wheel. You could try ceramic pads, they may not be as bad as the ones you're using as far as brake dust goes.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Nella,

      Can you describe the noise? Is it a scraping, thumping, rubbing, helicopter noise, dragging, squealing, etc?

    • profile image

      Bobbie 

      11 months ago

      I have black stuff on my rims & i wash them but it comes back, now my brakes or something is makung a squekinh sound. I have a 98 jeep grand cherokee, limited edition...what could this be ? Is it just my brakes or could it be something different since the black stuff is on my rims ?

    • profile image

      Nella 

      11 months ago

      Ford Escape 2005. While driving high speed over 30 mph doesn't hear anything, but vehicle coming to a slow drive without pressing on my brake to a complete stop I hear this noise from both my front tire. When braking doesn't it. Foot off brake and slow driving hear it. On the highway going over 40/50/60/70 mph don't hear it. What do you think the problem is.

      1st shop said it my transmission. 2nd shop said wheel bearing. So, i took it to a tarnsmision and they said nothing wrong with transmision. So, what is it. https://axleaddict.com/auto-repair/Brake-Noises-Wh...

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Kendal,

      Usually, it's the inner brake pad that has the wear indicator on it. I recommend you check them closely because what you're describing sounds like low brake pads. Keep me posted on what you find, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Abrahim,

      Sounds to me like you're talking about a brake pulsation. If your car vibrates or steering shakes when braking at highway speeds, most likely the rotors are warped. The ABS light is most likely a defective wheel speed sensor and the hand brak light may be warning you that the brake fluid is low or the switch for the hand brake is faulty. Hope this helps.

    • profile image

      kendal sant 

      11 months ago

      Hi Eddie, thanks for the article I’ve got a squeal and I hope you can help me shine some light on the cause. Its never straight away. It’s after about 2hrs of driving. It’s consistent and loud. When I apply the brakes it stops. It’s worse when I turn left. Any ideas? I visually checked the brake pads and it seems like there is still a lot on them. Thanks

    • profile image

      Ebrahim meyer 

      11 months ago

      Hi ...... i got a toyota yaris 2008 which i replaced rear wheel bearings ,after changing aheel bearings i have pressure noise when i break which hold s pressure then releases then holds again till i stop .... when i bought the car the abs and handbrake light was on 3 years down the line , changed bearings , while on my way home i hit a man hole and both abs and handbrake lights went off , it does come on and off @ times but the breaking issue worries me more please assist

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      11 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Yanet,

      what is the year, make, model, and mileage? It could be a brake pad wear indicator just starting to touch the rotor or it could be moisture on the rotors.

    • profile image

      Yanet 

      12 months ago

      Why are my brakes making a loud screeching sound in the morning when I first drive reversing out of my driveway? Or anytime when I let the car sit out for too long and then try to reverse

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      12 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Sas,

      The brake pads should be touching the rotor but with no pressure or drag, Hopefully you lubed all brake pad contact points during the procedure. The movement will be very slight but it should stop the rotor from turning. The noise may be the rotor backing plate touching the rotor and needs to be adjusted. It's not a bad idea to drive it a few miles and see if you still have the problems. Let me know if you have more questions, thanks.

    • profile image

      Sas 

      12 months ago

      Hello Eddie,

      I did a break job myself and replace the rear rotors and pads for my Nissan Altima. Pads are abkimono ceramic and rotors are coated. After installation when I drove the car I could hear a noise like scratching noise from the back wheels. I took off the rear wheels again and I saw that brake pads are completely on the rotors too tight and are touching the rotors ( I checked both sides and they were the same). I could see black stain on my coated rotor and when I turn the rotors by hand it was a bit of resistance and a medium scratching noise. My first concern is should the pads completely touch the rotors when I don’t push the brake pedal?

      My second concern is why when I apply pressure on the brake pedal I could not see any movement on the brake pads?

      My last concern is do you think when I drive the car more the new pads will be wearing off and solve the problem?

      Thank you so very much I read all the website and watched the videos and they were truly useful.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      12 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Gino,

      It great to hear some of my crazy solutions work lol. I had used that technique many times and has always served me well so I'm glad it worked for you. Thanks for taking the time to leave me feedback, it really helps the readers a lot who have similar problems :)

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      12 months ago from New Hampshire

      When you’re in the drive-through you tend to hear car noises much better because the noises bounce off the wall, and I think some of your noises may be normal.

      The noise when taking your foot off the brake may be normal because all parts are new, the squeak noise is most likely caused by the aftermarket brake pads, ( I assume all parts are aftermarket ). Depending on the quality of the pads and the type of brake pad material will determine how quiet they will be. I always recommend original equipment for the pads and aftermarket for calipers and rotors because the pad is what creates a noise, not the rotors or calipers.

      Your mechanic could have bent the backing plate on the backside of the rotors or could have left some debris between the rotor and the backing plates so I would definitely bring it back just so they can inspect their work.

      Let me know if you have any more questions and keep me posted on what your mechanic finds.

    • profile image

      gino 

      13 months ago

      hi eddie, i want to thank you so much for your imfo. i did the emergency brake fix and the noise disappeared. thank you so much and all the best to you.

    • profile image

      Linda Knight1 

      13 months ago

      Hi Eddie,

      I just had new calipers, rotors, and brake pads put on the front of my car. Now I hear squeaking when I'm doing short stops, like when going through a drive-thru. I don't hear it on other stops, like when I'm stopping after driving up to a stop sign or light. I also am getting a groaning noise when I take my foot off the brake. Should I be concerned?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Ali,

      It's possible the noise is caused by the type of brake pads the mechanic installed, if they are not original equipment pads, the material used in the pad could contain a high percentage of metal flakes which would be the cause of your noise. Let me know if this helps.

    • profile image

      Ali jaunbaccus 

      13 months ago

      Hi Eddie, I'm a student from Malaysia. There's this really annoying noise that comes from the front wheels (i think it's only on the right side, not sure). It's a squeaky noise that appears when i brake lightly but it disappears when i brake harder. Recently my mechanic changed brake disk and pads (due to a grinding noise) and it was all ok for the first few days, now the squeaky noise is back (it was there for the whole of last year, i didn't say anything because i was fed up of my car going to the mechanic again and again and i need it daily). Any ideas what may be the problem? Pls help

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi John,

      Did you look at the inner pads (closely?) or did you just peak at the outer pads without removing the wheels?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Brandon,

      Not sure what I did but I'm glad you figured it out lol :)

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Robert,

      Thanks for the feedback, if you ever need any automotive advice, you know where to find me :)

    • Scenicrider profile image

      Robert Molek 

      13 months ago from Manitou Springs, CO

      Hi Eddie,

      Thank you for the great data, I do need refreshed quite often at times. Thanks

    • profile image

      john 

      13 months ago

      what would make my 02 gmc envoy make agrinding and loud clicking noise when I apply my brakes the noise is coming from my left rear wheel I checked the brake pads still have a lot of wear left on them,

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Chris,

      It sounds to me like the rotor is not sitting flat on the hub, like you have some rust built up under that needed to be cleaned before installing the rotors. I recommend you check this out first and keep me posted on what you find, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      13 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi B. Washington,

      Thank you for taking the time to leave feedback, I really appreciate it :)

    • profile image

      Christopher botts 

      13 months ago

      Question just did a full break job rotors calipers pads lines and the back driver side is making a scrubbing sound and even dug into the top back side of the rotor but not the hole rotor and not all the way a round the rotor

    • profile image

      B. Washington 

      14 months ago

      you are sooo helpful; you got straight to my car problem. i mean you nailed it. thx so much!!

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      14 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Theo,

      If you think the front brakes are inferior parts I recommend replacing them with upgraded brakes. The brakes are very important and spending a little extra to get quality parts is not a bad idea, even if it only a test. Keep me posted on what you decide to do, thanks.

    • profile image

      Theo 

      14 months ago

      Hello,

      My car makes a deep groaning/creaking noise as I come to a complete stop and only then. It occurs for a fraction of a second when stopping normally at the exact moment I reach a complete stop. If I brake harder, it'll be louder and start slightly before the complete stop is reached. The rotors are very cheap and uncoated (about $40 CAD each for 312x25/272x10 rotors). The pads likely aren't that great either. The car gets driven every day and this noise recently got more prominent after replacing a blown front strut and installing stiffer strut mounts and sway bar end links. Please let me know what you think, I tried to include as much relevant info as possible.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      14 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Tamara,

      I highly recommend you have the brakes checked ASAP!

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      14 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Derrick,

      Can you describe what it sounds like?

    • profile image

      Derrick 

      14 months ago

      My car is making strange noises when stopped. It isnt a metal to metal sound

    • profile image

      Tamara 

      14 months ago

      Im having grinding noise on the passenger fronte tire it only dose it when im going really slow while breaking

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      14 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Christine,

      Do you know if you have rear drum brakes? What is the year make and model of the vehicle?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      14 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Donovan,

      Sounds like you may have some rust build up on the drums/rotor. I recommend you remove the wheel and look for any type of rub marks on the brake components.

    • profile image

      Donovan 

      14 months ago

      Hi im having a problem with my Trailblaizer wen i reverse and swing to the left i get a noise coming from tha back left wheel but wen i just reverse staight or drive forward theres no noise what could be the problem

    • profile image

      Christine 

      14 months ago

      When I release my brake pedal it squeaks. I do have new front brakes

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      15 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Mary,

      It sounds like you may have brake pad impressions on the rotor surface causing your noise. Has the car sat without moving for a few days? If so, was it raining? Do you park inside a garage or outside?

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