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Squeaky Brakes? Discover the Cause (And How to Fix It)
Squeaky Brakes? Discover the Cause (And How to Fix It)

Squeaky Brakes? Discover the Cause (And How to Fix It)

Have you ever felt burdened by your car regarding repair and maintenance knowledge? Do you feel as if your car might be telling you something, but you’re unsure what’s wrong? If so, you’re not alone!

According to a study, about one in four drivers feels that their vehicle isn’t in the best shape to drive. Although most issues might be minor, the study also found about 68% of cars on the road have at least one thing wrong with them!

One critical component that often gets overlooked is your car’s brakes. Unlike many other issues that may present as ‘silent,’ issues with your braking system often make a lot of noise. Keep reading to learn more about squeaky brakes and how to fix them!

Importance of Car Maintenance

Owning a car is more than just hopping in the driver’s seat and getting to your destination. They require care and regular maintenance to stay in good condition. Not only do you avoid issues by staying on top of things, but you also reap several benefits!


Taking regular care of your car helps reduce the levels of wear and tear on its parts. From oil changes and fluid flushes to rotating your tires, staying on top of preventative maintenance increases the lifespan of your vehicle’s parts.

Saving you Money

An often overlooked benefit of regular upkeep is that it saves you money in the long run. Ignoring issues or avoiding routine repair causes parts to wear out sooner. If you ignore larger issues, they can also cause irreparable damage!

Improved Safety

Have you ever seen a vehicle going down the road and wondered how it was even possible for it to drive? If you ignore regular car maintenance, you impact the safety of yourself and other drivers. Your car’s ability to operate is dependent on its condition, so don’t ignore issues!

Common Causes of Squeaky Brakes

Like all other parts of your car, the brakes require regular care to remain in good condition. However, your brakes may become squeaky even if you follow proper care routines.

Don’t panic, though! Let’s go through some common causes of squeaky brakes.

Improper Installation

Whether it’s the day after a brake service or a few weeks later, poor installation can cause your brakes to squeak. The cause could be improperly mounted pads or an issue with the calipers/drum itself.

New Brakes

New pads often need a short period to ‘break in.’ During this time, they may hiss or lightly squeak. However, if the noise is loud or constant, it’s more likely to be improper installation or another issue.

Trapped Debris

Pebbles or other solid debris can get trapped between the rotor and the brake pad. If this happens, a constant squeal or rubbing sound will be heard. This issue needs to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid lasting damage to your brake system.

Rusty Rotors

If you’ve recently driven in the rain or you live in a high-humidity area, a thin layer of rust can build up. A rubbing or hissing sound often accompanies this issue. The rust usually rubs off within a few minutes of driving and is of no concern.

If you encounter this issue often, it’s also possible some form of grease or other liquid is covering the surface of your pads or rotors. If this is the case, it will reduce your brake’s effectiveness. You’ll need to get them cleaned and clear of any coating.

Worn Pads

Modern brake pads all have a part known as a “wear indicator.” this is a thin strip of metal that becomes exposed when the pad needs to be replaced. The wear indicator will rub on the rotor and create noise, alerting you to the issue.

How to Fix Squeaky Brakes

If you’re looking to save money and have the time and know-how, fixing your brakes is possible. Here we’ll discuss some of the common causes of squeaky brakes and how to fix them.


Sometimes your pads will vibrate within their calipers, causing the squeak. You can purchase shims to fill any space between them if this is due to their fit. Shims often have rubber dampeners on them that absorb the vibrations, keeping the pads from squeaking.


You should never lubricate the surface of your rotors or the pads. However, there are parts on the pad that slide along the caliper. These areas require some minor lubrication for best performance and to prevent noise.

Sometimes the lube can dry out, or there might not have been enough of it when the brakes were installed. The remedy is as simple as applying a thin strip of brake grease along the contact points.

Replace Worn Parts

As with any mechanical part, brakes wear out over time. If the cause of the noise is due to wear and tear, the solution is as easy as replacing the worn part. Both brake pads and rotors need to be periodically replaced.

Time to See a Mechanic?

If you run across any issue with your brakes outside your skill range or if you have no knowledge at all, it’s time to see a mechanic. While some noise in your brakes is common due to regular operation, a professional should check any new or loud squeaking.

Because your brakes are critical to your car’s ability to stop safely, you should never wait to get them checked out. If you ever have any questions about your brakes or are concerned about their operation, you should see a professional as soon as possible.

Brake Service Near You!

Here at ATL Total Car Care, we’re dedicated to serving you and your car. If you ever encounter squeaky brakes or other issues with your brakes, drop on by. We offer service and repair for your brakes.

We also offer full service for your engine and other car needs! We have three locations to serve you better. If you have any questions about your car, our services, or squeaky brakes, don’t hesitate to contact us or drop on by today!