As we approach the colder autumn and winter months, it’s not uncommon for drivers to notice differences in their vehicle’s braking and seek a mechanic’s help to replace worn or damaged brake pads. One of the top factors that cause brake pads to wear quickly in autumn and winter is rust due to the rainy, wet weather and cold temperatures. As the rain is unable to evaporate quickly, it can linger – causing rust to form as quickly as overnight!
As a distributor or wholesaler, it’s important to understand how brake pad performance can vary in cold weather to ensure the suppliers within your network are capable of producing high-quality products that are suitable for wintery driving conditions, as well as being on-hand to answer any queries.
As brake pads suppliers and manufacturers ourselves, here are the top queries we receive relating to rusty brake pads in autumn and winter:
Is it normal for brake pads to rust?
Unfortunately, it is very common for brake pads to rust and it’s a normal side effect of being exposed to water. In winter, the use of salt on the roads can also accelerate the rusting process and cause more visible (and audible) damage. Little surface-layer rust isn’t an immediate problem as normal driving can remove the fine layer that has formed, however, neglecting to address rust formation can cause uneven surface texture on the brake pads and make it harder to brake smoothly or quickly.
How long does it take for rust to form on brakes?
Many people might not even be aware of the surface-level rust on their brake pads as it can appear as quickly as overnight! Don’t worry, though, as we mentioned before, this rust will scrape off under normal driving conditions when the brakes are used.
How to tell if your brakes are rusty?
The first tell-tale sign of rusty brakes or brake pads is a squeaky or high-pitched squealing noise when the brakes are applied. You may additionally hear or feel more grinding than usual, but it shouldn’t prevent you from braking normally and should go away after you’ve used your brakes a few times. (If you notice a drastic difference in braking pressure, it’s best to seek the help of a mechanic.)
How do I stop my brakes from rusting?
Where possible, try to park somewhere where your car is sheltered and away from other passing vehicles to avoid getting splashed. This will reduce the amount of excess moisture lingering in the braking system. We also recommend limiting trips in snow or just after the roads have been salted to avoid getting salty water in the braking system and on the brake pads (and this is also important for the whole underside of the vehicle as well!). A great tip in winter is to try to get your car cleaned more often, especially at automatic car washes that offer drying as part of the service as this will help to remove salty water and other gritty elements that can cause increased rates of rust and corrosion.
When In Doubt, Contact The Frontech Team!
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