An Illuminated Brake Light Is a Sign of Brake Trouble

When you first start your car, truck, or utility vehicle, your Brake and ABS lights will turn on briefly. The Brake light will also turn on if you have your parking brake set. Del Hatt Automotive advises that this is the only time you should see these dashboard warning lights. If they turn on at any other time, this is a sign that your vehicle is having brake trouble. Let’s review the other signs of brake trouble below.

Burning/Hot Smells

Burning or hot odors when you apply the brakes is an indication that your brake system is overheating. If the brake system gets too hot, it will fail. Consequently, you shouldn’t drive your automobile if you smell burning odors when you apply the brakes.

Leaking Fluid

Another thing that will cause the brakes to fail is low brake fluid. If you have a brake fluid leak, it is likely coming from the master cylinder or brake hoses. It’s important to have the leak fixed right away to avoid brake failure. Brake fluid leaks generally leave spots on your garage floor behind your tires.

Pulling to the Side

If your vehicle pulls to the side while you are driving, your alignment is off. If your vehicle pulls to the side when you apply the brakes, you likely have a problem with a stuck caliper. The vehicle will continue to pull until you have the caliper fixed.

Spongy Brakes

Resistance is the name of the game when it comes to your brake pedal. If the pedal feels spongy or sinks to the floor, you have air in the brake lines. Another common problem that causes the symptom is a faulty master cylinder. Either way, the problem needs to be fixed ASAP.

Strange Noises

Strange noises such as grinding or scraping indicate a problem with your brake pads. Squealing sounds can indicate that your brakes are overheating or that the brake pads are getting too low and need to be replaced. You shouldn’t hear your brakes. They should be silent.


Finally, when you apply the brakes, your vehicle should not wobble or vibrate. If it does, you may have a tiny rock stuck in one of the calipers. It’s also possible that you need to have the rotor surface recut. When the surfaces are warped, your vehicle will vibrate.

Del Hatt Automotive in Poughkeepsie, NY, is happy to inspect your brakes if you are experiencing any of the problems listed above. Give us a call today.

Photo by vchal from Getty Images via Canva Pro

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