There are few emergencies worse than losing your brakes. Sometimes circumstances and great presence of mind allow some drivers to safely bring their car to a stop without brakes. However, many traffic situations make this impossible even for the most skilled motorist. It’s far better to never have this emergency happen in the first place by keeping your braking system in good repair. While brakes sometimes fail without warning, usually the car owner has plenty of warning signs that he or she chose to ignore until it was too late. Here are five of them:
Rusty Brake Lines
Very old cars driven through several winter seasons on roads treated with salt, can have severely corroded brake lines. If you have a used car or if you’ve driven on treated roads perhaps in the mountains during the winter, you should inspect your brake lines. If they’re covered in rust, any of these lines can rupture at any moment while driving. This will immediately drain your brake fluid and cause loss of braking.
Slow Braking Causes the Pedal to Go to the Floor
This usually means your master cylinder requires replacing. The cylinder normally creates hydraulic pressure in the brake lines. However, brake fluid is leaking past the cylinder when you press the brake pedal. Rapid application of the brake pedal does create temporary braking action but this effect will diminish as the leak gets worse.
Brake Warning Light
When your brake warning light turns on, don’t waste any time getting your car checked. A drawback of the simple warning light is that it gives you no indication of the severity of your problem. Your brakes could fail immediately or could take days. Don’t shrug it off just because your brakes are still working.
Your Brakes Make a Loud Screeching Noise
Your brakes are designed to make this noise when the pads get too thin. The sound occurs when a metal plate rubs against the brake disk after the pad wears down to a certain thickness. When you hear this disturbing sound, replace your pads.
Your Car Pulls to One Side
A number of problems may cause this such as uneven tire pressures, warped brake rotors, a stuck brake caliper, worn brake pads, a collapsed brake hose, or a suspension problem. Get your car checked immediately because all of these problems compromise your safety.
Failing to heed these warnings not only endangers yourself and passengers in your car but also others on the road. You can be found at fault because of negligence if this causes a car crash that injures people or damages property. On the other hand, if you were injured in an accident because of another driver’s negligence, you have a right to demand compensation. For legal advice regarding your case, contact us.