A vehicle’s braking system is its single most important safety feature, and cannot be taken for granted. Worn or out-of-adjustment brake parts will increase stopping distances and compromise your safety. Whether you’re driving in a Vancouver suburb or on wet, icy roads in Coquitlam or Maple Ridge, you have to trust that your brakes are up to the task! Your Minit-Tune & Brake Auto Centre mechanic will visually inspect the brakes at your regular oil and filter change and let you know of the need for brake repairs. Additionally, you should be alert to signs of brake stress such as the following:
- You sense that the car is taking longer to come to a stop
- Your car feels like it’s pulling to the left or right when you brake
- You feel vibration in the steering wheel when you apply the brakes
- You hear a high-pitched squeal (indicating worn or defective brake pads, shoes, drums or rotors)
- You hear a grinding sound when you apply the brakes (indicating severe damage to brake rotors or brake drums )
- You have to push your brake pedal to the floor when you brake (indicating a leak in the brake system or problems with the brake master cylinder)
- You are at a stop sign with your foot on the brake pedal and the pedal sinks (indicating problems with the brake master cylinder)
Bring your car in to one of our Minit-Tune Brake & Auto Centres where our Vancouver brake repair experts will diagnose and repair the problem!
Vancouver Drivers Trust Our Brake Parts
Minit-Tune & Brake Auto Centre technicians are trained to inspect, diagnose and repair all types of braking systems. Whether a simple brake adjustment or diagnosing and repairing anti-lock braking systems, our professional technicians will pinpoint the problem, and fix it right.
We use only brake parts that meet or exceed the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) specifications. Additionally, we provide our customers with a limited lifetime* defect warranty on brake pads and shoes for as long as you own the vehicle.
We take safety in braking very seriously. This is why we offer brake inspections as a primary part of our oil change maintenance package. Roll into one of our 15 Vancouver, BC, and Alberta locations today to make sure your brakes are working optimally!
Should I be concerned if I hear a grinding or squealing noise when I step on my brake pedal?
Any type of noise coming from the brake system indicates that your car needs attention. A grinding noise is a sign of completely worn out brake pads or shoes, resulting in metal to metal contact between brake rotors/brake drums and the metal backing of the brake pad/brake shoe. This is unsafe. It results in loss of braking efficiency and causes physical damage to brake rotors and brake drums. A brake squeal could also be a sign of brake pads being worn to minimum thickness. The brake warning tab rubs against the brake rotor resulting in a distinct high-pitched squealing sound. Our specialists will be able to diagnose the cause, and provide a cost-effective solution.
How often should brake fluid be changed?
The frequency of brake fluid changes depends on the model of your car, and is usually specified in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. As an average, brake fluid should be changed every 2 years or 20,000 km. Brake fluid is very hydroscopic. Over time, brake fluid absorbs moisture and becomes corrosive. Fresh and clean brake fluid is light amber in colour. As it degrades, it becomes darker in colour and, if left unchanged, it will internally corrode various brake components and eventually turn black in colour. If you’re concerned that your brake fluid may not be up to par, bring in your vehicle and we’ll be glad to take a look. We will measure the moisture content of the brake fluid and, if required, replace it with either DOT3 or DOT4 specification fluid, as required by the vehicle manufacturer. Your brake system is crucial to road safety, so don’t take any chances. Bring your car in, and we’ll make sure everything is functioning optimally.
How long should brake pads and rotors last?
Brake pads and rotors will eventually wear down with time and use. However, their specific lifespan depends on quite a few factors, such as quality of brake pads used, driving style, frequency with which you use your brakes, as well as the weight of your car/load.
I rarely use my car, and my mileage is quite low – yet my brakes have started squealing. Do I need to replace my brakes?
You generally shouldn’t have to service your brakes with such little use; however, any time your brakes emit noise, it is an indication that some sort of attention is needed. It may be something as simple as removing built-up brake dust from the brake pads or shoes.
My brakes are affecting my steering. Every time I hit the brakes, my car pulls to one side, and sometimes even shakes. I’m concerned that this may be a serious issue. What’s the problem?
The shaking may be caused by a rotor issue. The pulling may indicate a problem with a variety of components, such as the brake hydraulics, steering or chassis, or a mechanical issue. Your best bet is to bring the vehicle in for a check-up. Don’t risk putting yourself in danger, or causing any further damage.