Why Are My Brakes Squeaking?

Squeaky brakes often mean that there is an issue with the braking system. From worn brake pads, rusted brake rotors to constantly braking hard, there are many reasons as to why squeaky brakes occur. A mechanic will be able to fix the squeaks and other issues with the brakes effectively during a brake service. Here at Peninsula Auto Clinic, our reliable Northern Beaches mechanics can resolve any squeaky brake problems swiftly and cost effectively.

The main reasons for squeaky brakes are:

  • Worn Brake Pads
  • Rusted Brake Rotors
  • Braking Hard
  • Moisture
  • New Brakes
  • Cheaper Brakes

Why Are My Brakes Squeaking

What are the Main Causes of Squeaky Brakes?

When brakes squeak the problem is often from one particular part of the braking system. At times the squeaky brake noise occurs randomly and at times it is a common occurrence. Below is a guide on the different reasons why the brakes may squeaky noises when pressed.

Worn Brake Pads

The brake pads wear the more the car is driven and when the brake squeaks in older vehicles, it often indicates the brake pads are wearing out. The squealing noise occurs from the metal pads inside the brake pads that reveal more as the pads begin to wear. When the squeaking noise occurs then this is a sign to repair or replace the pads before damage to the rotor happens. 

Rusted Brake Rotors

The brake rotors’ surface will over time lose their smoothness and develop layers of rust. This rust causes the braking rotors to squeak as the parts cannot function correctly. This problem with rust and other debris on the brake rotors can be fixed through a mechanic filling them off.

Braking Hard

Driving and constantly braking hard will cause the brake pads to wear down quicker than they should. When the brakes are pressed hard, the heat created will warp the brake discs, pads and rotor and cause the squeaking noise to happen. It is advised that when possible to not slam the brakes hard to avoid this issue. 


Overnight moisture can develop over the brake rotors due to condensation, rain or dew. This moisture will cause a thin layer of rust to develop on the surface of the rotor. If this occurs then when the rotor turns the pads will scrape and the rust can become stuck on the leading edge of the brake pads creating a squealing sound. This problem will often occur in the morning and the problem will go away in a few minutes when the brakes warm up. 

New Brakes

New cars with new brakes will often experience the braking system squeaking. As the car is driven more and the parts of the braking system move more then the squeaking sound will often fade away. In fact, this is an extremely common call that we get from many new car owners!

Cheaper Brakes

Brakes that are cheaper will most times have a higher content of metal. This means that there are larger pieces of metal present on the brake pad surface. The metal pieces will drag on the brake rotor which causes the squealing noises. To fix this issue the best method to take is to purchase quality brake parts with low friction materials. Saving money on the brakes by purchasing cheaper parts will mean more repairs in the future and not as reliable brakes to work when driving. 

How Can I Stop the Brakes From Squeaking?

There are many methods to help stop the brakes from squeaking and some of these can be completed at home, however we highly recommend visiting your local mechanic. Mechanics will be able to apply these and other methods to ensure that the brakes are working correctly and the squeaking sound goes away.

Brake Grease

New brakes will squeak at first however if they continue to squeak after some time then applying grease to the different contact points of the brake can resolve the squeak. The brake pads will need to be disassembled from the brake calipers so the grease can be applied to all points. These points include behind the brake pad and any place on the caliper carrier that is a point. The brake pad friction surface and the rotor surface should not have grease applied on them though. 

Installing Shims

To help against squeaky brakes installing brake pad shims can be an option. Some vehicle models already have brake shims attached but if not then these can be placed on the opposite side of the pads. These shims function by holding up any slack which would originally cause the brake pads to move and for other parts to squeak. 

Replace Pads and Rotors

If there are no repairs possible to stop the squeaking sounds then replacing the worn out pads and rotors may be the only option. The brake pad’s surface may be worn down so there is friction and squeaking noises occur when the pads and rotor connect. Rotors that are warped, or cannot properly make friction with the pads, can also make the squealing sounds when braking. The most cost effective and safe way to resolve the problem is to simply replace the parts with new ones. 

Trusted Brake Services for the Northern Beaches

Peninsula Auto Clinic is here to resolve squeaky brakes and other types of braking system defects. Our fully qualified and passionate Mona Vale mechanics understand how to repair any problem with the brakes which includes squeaks and squeals. Each part of the brake will be properly inspected to find the problem then resolve it. We will also perform tests to make certain that the squeaks have stopped and the brakes function properly.
We offer our Car Service and Car Repair jobs, along with our brake services, to the whole Northern Beaches, including Narrabeen and Bayview. If your tyres are squeaking we encourage reading our blog to know how to resolve the issue and why it might be happening. For the best brake services in the Northern Beaches – trust Peninsula Auto Clinic located on 7 Perak Street, Mona Vale!