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Fixing Squeaky Brakes

If your brakes are squeaky it could a minor issue or it could be a sign of a necessary repair. Get to the bottom of the problem sooner than later or it could become dangerous. This is a guide about fixing squeaky brakes.

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September 26, 2011 Flag
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I have just moved from living on a dirt road. My brakes are squeaking when I am driving and stopping my vehicle. Do I need to have a flush done on them? I need to get ready for winter, and I don't want to worry about my brakes. They have had a flush at the beginning of springtime. How many flushes can you have for a set of brakes?

By LJC

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September 27, 20110 found this helpful

Have those brakes checked at a reputable and trustworthy garage. Squeaky brakes can be trying to tell you all kinds of things, none of them any good. You could have worn pads, or low on brake fluid (try looking it up in your owner manual, if yours is lost, Google your make and model, you can usually download the manual for free from the manufacturer website).

Good luck, and good thinking for knowing you need to do something now rather than during the winter weather!

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September 27, 20110 found this helpful

Your brake shoes probably are worn out and need to be replaced. My car manual states that when the brakes start squealing when you apply them, they are needing to have the shoes replaced. For safety's sake, have them checked out by a reputable garage.

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September 27, 20110 found this helpful

What on earth do you mean by having your brakes "flushed"? I have been driving vehicles for 40 years, and I am sure I have never had that done.

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September 27, 20110 found this helpful

Okay, so I just googled "flushing brakes" which means replacing the brake fluid with all new fluid. The site I read this on recommended having this done every 30,000 miles. You have this done on ABS braking systems. That being said, it is not likely the fluid that is causing your brakes to squeal - far more likely to be brake pads or something inside the actual brake drum.

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June 22, 2012 Flag
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I have a 57 Pontiac with disk brakes in front and drum brakes in back. In the last 2 years I have spent over 2k trying to fix these brakes and I'm ready to take this 100k car to Mexico or burn it down. Nobody can stop the squeaky brakes. I have taken it in eight times or more now and everything has been replaced 2 or more times. I get new parts all the time. Four different guys have tried to fix this. They have put on new pads over and over, it doesn't help. What's going on? Please help or see this car on TV burn.

By George

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June 23, 20120 found this helpful

Goodness, George, please don't burn your 57 Pontiac! Those cars are wonderful. (I love old cars, too.) Perhaps you should ask your question of one of the call-in radio or TV shows that feature expert auto mechanics (unfortunately I can't remember the names of them, but maybe another ThriftyFun member can help.) If you belong to an old car club, maybe someone there can help you.

I understand your frustration, but there must be a reasonable answer. When I had brakes replaced on my 1990 Pontiac wagon, they squeaked afterward, & the mechanic told me it happens for a while when they're new, but goes away after driving a while; he was right. Maybe you haven't "driven off" the squeaking, because it's a classic car that you don't drive that much? In any case, find a pro to help you, and please don't burn the car!

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June 24, 20120 found this helpful

You might try going to google.com and typing in "why do brakes squeal." There are several answers that may help you find a solution.

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June 24, 20120 found this helpful

I read your problem to my husband and said to try softer lining. See if that works.

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June 1, 2009 Flag
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I have fairly new brake pads, about 4 months old. I checked and they are still good. Now I have a squeaking noise when I put on the brakes and also, there is a lot of brake dust all over the pads, tires, etc. What is the cause and what should I do to fix this? Thanks for any suggestion.

By mldave from San Antonio, TX

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June 1, 20090 found this helpful

Did all of the brakes get to be replaced? Or just the fronts or rears? I would check the brakes that weren't replaced first. Was a compound used between the new pads and caliper used to quiet the brakes? If not just pull the pads and spread of bit of pad quiet where the pad it is pushed by the caliper.

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June 4, 20090 found this helpful

I don't know if this helps, but I live at the beach & the road in and out is sand. My brakes get sand on them & often squeak.

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June 4, 20090 found this helpful

My husband is a retired master mechanic and he said that your back brakes are not holding and just your front ones are. He said evidently your wheel cylinders are possibly bad. He said to put on new brake shoes and new wheel cylinders. Hope that helps you.

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January 9, 20100 found this helpful

I have had this problem with high performance brakes. Shims or not they will still sometimes squeal especially when backing up. Answer, remove the pads, lube the back of the pad with brake grease, place a piece of duct tape on the back of the pad and reinstall, no more squeal. I am not sure how long it will last but I have had some very fast cars run many hard miles braking at top speed without a sound. I have done the same with my Lexus and Merc's with positive results.

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June 21, 2012 Flag
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My back brakes squeak when I start driving forward. Then it goes away; braking is okay. Everything is new; drums, springs, shoes, and emergency brakes are OK. This is a 2007 Ford Ranger.

By Yogi

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June 22, 20120 found this helpful

Brakes will sometimes squeak when applying the brakes but not when driving forward. They need to be looked at. And do not let the garage get away with applying a non squeak spray for brake pads. It will wear away very quickly.

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May 24, 2012 Flag
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New pads and discs were fitted to my Toyota recently, the noise got gradually worse over the next few weeks, I took the car back to mechanic and he applied some sort of liquid. The noise stopped, but after the next few days; it returned. Any ideas?

By Trevor

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May 25, 20120 found this helpful

There are many reason for your brakes to squeal. Go to google.com and type in "causes of squealing brakes." There will be many sites to look at for the reasons of squealing brakes. What the mechanic did was to spray the brakes with a product to reduce the squeal. It is only a temporary fix as you have found out. You have to go back and insist on a quality repair job.

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June 1, 2009 Flag
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My brakes squeak when I am backing up. The ones that are squeaking are the front pads, how can I fix this?

Freddie from Luquillo, Puerto Rico

Answers:

Squeaky Brakes

Get some Squeal Medic (or a similar product) and spray it on rotors and pads. I did and haven't had a "peep" out of mine since. (12/10/2008)

By Michael

Squeaky Brakes

(Submitted via email)

I usually go to the car wash and spray my wheels off after getting new brakes if they start squeaking. It sometimes gathers dust.

Ethan (01/17/2009)

By Sally_Admin

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October 23, 2008 Flag
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I picked up my 2007 Caliber this morning and as soon as I got home the brakes started squeaking quite loud. This really makes no sense to me because they were okay during my test drive and on my way home.

They started squeaking later in the day after driving through a patch of snow. Is that normal? Does than mean the brakes are bad? Please help.

Beata

Answers:

Squeaky Brakes

If, by chance, they are the original brake pads, it is probably a normal sound. GM uses semi-metallic brake pads in their cars. Which means, the pads have a very high metal content. The pro is the pads wear very well, the con is they are very noisy. If the pads were wet/damp/moist, they will make noise then also. As others have said, have them checked to be sure. I worked for a GM dealer and this is something I saw several times a week. (04/01/2008)

By youngster8

Squeaky Brakes

The brakes come with a protective varnish on them to stop them from rusting while they sit on the shelf. It takes a few weeks for this to rub off from use. Once it does, it won't squeak anymore. It was most likely from the brakes getting moisture on them from the snow. (04/02/2008)

By denise w

Squeaky Brakes

Almost all brake squeals in disc brakes comes from brake pad vibration against the caliper. To stop this, the friction clips and the areas of the pad that make contact with the caliper need to be thoroughly cleaned and degreased with brake parts cleaner and lubricated with dielectric grease, caliper lube, or anti seize compound (Any of them will work). Brakes don't squeal because of the pad coming in contact with the rotor unless the rotor is just totally shot and wore out with lots of glaze on it. (07/27/2008)

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March 30, 2008 Flag
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I got new brakes on my car but now they are starting to squeak when I come to a stop. Has anyone else had this problem? If so, what did you do?

D from michigan

Answers:

Squeaky Brakes

Take it right back to the mechanic for adjustment!
They should fix it for free.
Peach (08/26/2005)

By Peachhead

Squeaky Brakes

I heard something like this on a radio call in show the other day and my husband, who is a mechanic, also said it isn't' unusual for new brakes to squeal. It has something to do with the material they use to make the replacement pads. Talk to your mechanic for sure, but I don't think it's an unusual happening. (08/26/2005)

By Mary

Squeaky Brakes

It could just be brake dust. It could be the shape of the brakes conforming to the shape of the drum/whatever. You could try "burnishing" the brakes as follows:
Find a place somewhere isolated (highway, perhaps) to get up to at least 50 mph. Now that you are at 50, step hard on the brakes until you stop. Do this five times over and the squeakage should be better.

My mechanic told me to do this after my new brakes began to squeak. He also told me to NOT do this when my kids were in the car! LOL!

Good luck. (08/26/2005)

By smcarney

Squeaky Brakes

Use carbon metallic pads. You get a lube to put on the outside of pad for them not to squeak. (03/29/2006)

By Ryan

Squeaky Brakes

Pressure wash your wheels to remove the brake dust from the calipers might work. From my experience the Squeak happens in new or old pads when the dust accumulates or poor material makes the friction surface shiny gloss. Sanding the pads to make them rough again might also work. (09/20/2006)

By kabatza

Squeaky Brakes

There's a few things that can cause squeaky brakes and several things to do and not do to get the best from your stock brakes.
DON'T: lube or grease any braking surfaces or use a pressure washer to clean the crud from brakes because this crud can and will be forced into seals and can result in failure and greater problems and expense in the future.
DO: Carefully put your car on axle stands, remove wheels and dismantle brakes. Thoroughly clean and check all parts and on reassembly, grease slide pins well so caliper is free to move. Apply copper grease to back of brake pad to stop any high frequency vibration resulting in squeal and bleed the entire brake lines. Be prepared to use a minimum of 500ml on a standard car. Brake fluid absorbs moisture and moisture is compressible due to gas molecules. Hydraulic fluid is not. Bleeding will replace contaminated fluid and relieve the spongy feeling on tired brakes. Dot 4 or 5 is best as this has the greatest resistance to moisture absorption. Rotors should be replaced if they are poorly worn or badly grooved. Both sides should be done simultaneously.
Finally, once you are familiar with procedures and the theory behind hydraulic disc brakes, read your specific manual carefully. It is also advisable to torque load all brake fasteners but the majority of mechanics will not do this to save time and effort.
IF YOUR GOING TO DO IT, DO IT ONCE AND DO IT RIGHT! (02/07/2007)

By freebird

Squeaky Brakes

If you had low end breaks put in the pad on the new breaks might be harder (made of a cheaper material). This will cause more friction with the rotor. If they are working, I would put up this noise for a little while. It will get better as your new pads get worn in. I have had the same problem with the cheaper pads I put on my car. I would also suggest slamming on your breaks at bout 30 to 40 mph to help speed up the process. This will not hurt your car at all, but try to do it in a safe area. (08/11/2007)

By Frieds

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