Brake pads grinding can be caused by a few different things. Even new ones if not installed properly or something is stuck inside cause a grinding sound. With a few inspections, it can easily be fixed. But if you are using an old pad then you may need to change it.
Reasons for Brake Grinding
The main reason for a brake to start grinding noise is if the pads are worn out. You know there is a wear limit on brake pads. They decay gradually as you use them. So the metal hits the rotor when you push the pedal and thus making the grinding noise. But if your new brake is making noise then that is another story.
New Brakes Grinding Reasons
So you have bought and set up a new brake and then suddenly it started grinding again. It can often be annoying if that happens but that doesn’t mean you need to change it again. There are some reasons for new brakes can grind too.
Tightly Fitted Caliper
If the caliper is fitted too tightly on the rotor then the brake pads when not pushing the pedal will keep touching the rotor. Thus it will make the grinding sound. It can be harmful to both the brake pad and rotor.
Since both pads and rotor are touching it can wear them out very quickly causing you to make a very early replacement on the brake pads and even damaging the rotor.
Poor quality pads sometimes cause grinding use pushing on the pedal. This is mostly seen in semi-metallic brake pads. So if you are changing your brake pads then it is better to go for a good quality one rather than the cheap option.
Debris Stuck on the Rotor/Pad
Sometimes some small stones or debris can get stuck inside the rotor and brake pads. This in term can cause a grinding noise. This is not too much of a problem compared to the others.
Doing a checkup on the caliper, pads, and rotor and removing any unwanted or foreign debris from it should fix the problem.
Rust and Lubrication
Rust is the common enemy of any metal part. So the same can be said for the caliper, pads, and rotor. If you have any of these rusting then it can cause the grinding sound while pressing the pad. So getting rid of the rust will be good enough to stop the grinding.
If the nuts are not lubricated then it can also cause grinding when braking. You have to make sure that all the moving parts especially the bolt that holds the brake pads together are lubricated enough.
Other than that, an old rotor or brake pad can cause grinding. If you have not changed your rotor in a long time then it could be the reason for the grinding and you need to change it to get rid of the sound.
Damaged rotors can also cause grinding sound. Usually, worn-out brakes lead to damage to the rotor. But rust can also cause a problem. So check the rotor to find out it is fine or not. You have to change it if it is broken.
Sometimes grinding sound can be caused by the dust that gathers over time. So sometimes just cleaning the brake system will do the trick.
New Ceramic Brake Pads Make Grinding Noise
If the new ceramic pad is making grinding noise then there are a few steps you can take to check and that you fix the problem. If not then you may need to replace the rotor.
Check If Installed Properly
First, check if the brake pads are installed properly. We found a few people didn’t install it properly and even sometimes installed it backward which caused the grinding.
Installing improperly can even cause irreparable damage to the pads by bending them. That means you have to buy a new pad again to reinstall it properly.
Check If It Fits
Now check if the pad fits properly on the rotor. If it has been tightened more than necessary then that could be the reason for the grinding since it is touching the rotor because of extra pressure.
Loosening the bolt a little will be enough to fix this problem.
Rotor May Need Changing
If everything else looks okay then it may not be a problem with the pads. Rather than that, you may need to change the rotor. If you haven’t changed the rotor then a rotor lasts about 30,000 to 70,000 miles before it needs to change.
So changing the rotor should be able to get rid of the grinding that your new pads are making if everything else is fine and working.
Brakes Grinding When Not Applied
There are two reasons why the brake is grinding even though it is not applied. First, the pads and caliper are touching the rotor. Since it is already touching the rotor, it is always making the noise. Sometimes, if they are not installed properly can contribute to it too.
And the second one is dust or debris. Sometimes, small stones can get stuck inside the pad, or rotor or dust can build up over time inside the whole brake system. It can lead to the grinding sound when the brake is not applied.
New Brakes Grinding at Low Speed
If your brake is grinding at low speed then it may have the same reason as to when it grinds when the brake is not applied. Sometimes loose bolt or wiggly rotor can be the cause of this problem too.
So check and make sure everything is fitted properly and clean up the whole brake system to get rid of any dust and rust.
Brakes Grinding When Stopping
The main reason for grinding when stopping is a decayed brake pad. If the pad is decayed and doesn’t have meat left on them, it will make a grinding noise when stopping.
Other than that old rotor can also be responsible for this. If your rotor is damaged then it will make a grinding noise when stopping. Also, rust and lack of lubricant is a possible suspect for it.
Grinding Noise When Braking but Pads Are Fine
Pads are not the only thing that causes grinding noise. If your pads are fine then check if it is installed and aligned properly and that it doesn’t touch the rotor. If that is also fine, then you can be pretty sure that the problem is not in the pads rather in the rotor of the car.
Why Are My Brakes Grinding After New Pads and Rotors?
This is a common problem in many cars. Even after changing the pads and rotor it is grinding. Often the pads are a bit stiff. They will take a bit of time before setting in properly. This is called bedding in.
After bedding is done, the sound will disappear. But you have to make sure that any other part is not causing the grinding like a loose bolt or a tight screw.
Q: Is grinding noise bad for the car?
Ans: Yes, it can harm the rotor which can cost up to 700$ to replace and can be dangerous if the grinding causes the brake to fail.
Q: Are getting new pads will fix the grinding?
Ans: It depends on what is causing it. If the grinding is caused by the pads then yes it will fix it.
Grinding can be very harmful to your car and if ignored, can cause damage that will become expensive to fix. So finding out what is causing the grinding and fix it should always the on top of your priority if you are facing this problem.