Brake pads change: how often & signs that it’s time

The most crucial component of your car might just be the brakes. They are the parts that make it possible for you to stop quickly, keeping you safe. Driving for an extended period of time while using worn brake pads will harm the brake rotors and is risky because it will impair brake effectiveness. Now the question is how often should you change brake pads? Well, the recommended interval to change your brake pads is every 10,000 to 20,000 miles, while the ideal interval to replace your rotors is every 50,000 to 70,000 miles.

Brake pads change: how often & signs that it's time

In this article, we’ll be discussing the answers to the following questions:

  • How often should you change your brake pads?
  • What are the signs that it’s time to replace brake pads?
  • Can you drive with worn brake pads?
  • How much does brake pads change cost?

Read more: Whats the ideal brake pad thickness and how to check it

Ok then, let’s get down to business.


How often should you change your brake pads?

Your car brakes is what’s keeping you from getting into a collision. It might not be able to stop in time to avoid colliding with anything in front of it if the brake pads aren’t up to standard. So, it’s crucial to be aware of when to replace your brake pads.

To keep wear to a minimum, you should typically change your brake pads every 10,000 to 20,000 miles. To maintain the best possible condition of your brakes, you should replace your rotors every 50,000 to 70,000 miles.

Read more: Brake pad and rotor replacement cost

What are some signs that it’s time to change brake pads?

Here are 6 most common signs you’ll notice when it time to change your brake pads:

Squeaking or Squealing Coming From the Brakes

The first sign that your brake pads are getting close to the end of their usable life is a squealing or squeaking noise emanating from the brakes. Brake pads that are too heavily worn down frequently produce squealing noises. When your pads are sufficiently worn down, a grinding sound will start to occur, and you will also start to damage your rotors, raising the expense of repair.

Read more: New brakes squeaking: possible causes & what to do

Grinding Sound When Braking

Your brake pads need to be replaced right away if you hear grinding noises when you press the brake pedal. When it’s time to replace the brake pads, some brake pads include built-in metal wear indicators that produce a loud noise. You risk much greater damage and more expensive repairs if you allow the brake pads to continue grinding.

Read more: Most common reasons why your brakes are grinding

Brake Pad Indicator Light Comes On

Most modern cars come equipped with brake warning lights that are located on the dashboard. One is the brake system warning light, while the other is the Antilock Braking System (ABS) light. Your brake light will not always illuminate when there is a problem; it is also the light that turns on when the parking brake is engaged. But, if your parking brake isn’t engaged and you’re seeing a brake warning light, it’s time to have a brake expert examine your system to identify the problems.

Read more: What does the & brake system warning light mean? How to fix

Vibration When Braking

Another sign that the braking system in your car needs professional attention is vibration when you press the brakes. It’s likely that your rotors are deformed, which has caused uneven brake pad wear.

Why does my car shake when i brake

Longer Stopping Time

Loss of performance when applying the brakes is yet another major sign that your brakes need to be examined. If you’re having trouble stopping when you press the brakes, your brake pads may be entirely worn out or your brake fluid may be low. You should visit a brake repair as soon as you can to acquire a true comprehension of what’s happening with your brakes so that you don’t lose all braking capability.

Read more: The most common and possible causes of brake noise

Brake Pads Appear To Be Thin

Visually examining your brake pads for wear is one simple approach to check on their condition. To accomplish this, locate your brake pad by looking between the spokes on your wheels. You should generally replace your brake pads if they appear to be less than 14 inch thick, or 6.4 mm.

Read more: Ceramic vs. Organic Brake Pads: Advantages, Disadvantages, and Differences

Can you drive with worn brake pads?

Brake pads change: how often & signs that it's time

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Is it possible for you to still drive if your brake pads are worn? Yes, technically. Should you? In particular, if they are severely or unevenly worn, no. Regular brake system maintenance and pad replacement can help extend the life of individual brake system parts, support brake safety, and even enhance your driving experience.

The harder it may be for your brakes to slow down and stop your car, the more worn out they are (depending on how the pad wears). It’s critical to pay attention to the response time of your brakes if you suspect they are worn. It could feel like you need to press the brake pedal down more to stop if you have glazed, worn brakes while driving.

Longer stopping distances, brake slippage, and your automobile pulling to one side as you brake are other negative impacts of using glazed brakes. The latter can happen when the brake pads fail to engage or disengage the rotor as intended and are unable to grip both sides consistently, leading to drifting or slippage when you brake.

Read more: Everything you need to know about a car ABS light  

How much do brake pads replacement cost?

Drivers should budget between $115 and $270 on average for a set of brake pads, which covers either the front or back wheels. The cost to replace the brake pads on your car would be between $230 and 540. The overall price can exceed the typical estimate depending on the needs of your specific car. Although changing brake pads isn’t always an annual task, it is still important to budget for them because they increase the cost of owning a car.

Read more: Brake rotor replacement cost


Should you replace all 4 brake pads at once?

So should you replace all four brake pads at once? First things first, you should replace either the front or the rear brake pads simultaneously. One ought to be degrading roughly at the same rate as the other, unless something is seriously wrong.

How do I know when my brake pads need changing?

Squeaking or squealing sounds coming from the brakes; indicator light turning on; deep metal grinding sound; vibrating brake pedal; brake pads appearing to be less than a quarter inch thick.

How long do car brake pads last on average?

In urban use, brake pads and shoes are typically estimated to last between 30,000 and 35,000 miles. Brakes may endure 80,000 miles or more under less taxing circumstances, such as highway travel in light traffic.

Can brake pads last 3 years?

The lifespan of brake pads can range from 30,000 to 70,000 miles. Your driving habits and everyday driving conditions affect how long they last. According to figures from the Federal Highway Administration on annual mileage, typical brake pads will last between three and seven years.

Why do front brakes wear faster?

Moreover, the front brake pads will degrade more quickly than the back brake pads. As you brake, a lot more weight is transferred to the front of your car, which increases wear. Wear on brake pads is also caused over time by heat and friction. How much wear and tear your brake pads endure will also depend on which axle your brakes are on.

Which car brakes wear out first?

Given specific driving circumstances, the rear brakes of some vehicles will occasionally wear out before the fronts since they are much smaller. There are several possible causes for one rear brake pad that has worn to metal contact.

Should I replace front or rear brakes first?

We advise replacing your brakes in pairs for repairs—the front at one time, the back at a later time—because your front brakes wear out considerably more quickly. Your front brake pads will probably need to be replaced more frequently than your back brake pads.

Does braking suddenly damage car?

The car may also sustain damage as a result of abrupt braking. Hard braking can severely damage a car, jeopardizing its safety and putting passengers at danger. The entire braking system, which is a crucial safety feature in all driving circumstances, can be strained by inappropriate braking.

How can I extend the life of my brakes?

Plan Ahead. Slow down far in front of the stop, light, or turn rather than slamming on the brakes abruptly.
Adopt the proper braking technique when you’re in the mountains.
Follow the “Three Second Rule.”

That is all for this article where we discussed the answers to the following questions:

  • How often should you change your brake pads?
  • What are the signs that it’s time to replace brake pads?
  • Can you drive with worn brake pads?
  • How much does brake pads change cost?

I hope you learn a lot from the reading. If you do, kindly share it with others. Thanks for reading; see you around!