Brake pads are one of the most important parts of your car, and if you don’t check them regularly it can be hard to see early warning signs. It’s a good idea to check the thickness of the pads every six months.
The biggest sign that your pads are wearing down is a grinding noise when you hit the brakes. They’re designed to make this noise to warn you in advance so you can change the pads, but it’s nice to know before they start grinding.
When brakes are worn, you may start to see less brake dust on the wheels. This is kind of hard to spot, especially if you don’t know how much dust is usually on your wheels, so try keeping an eye on the amount of dust that’s normal and then see how much it increases or decreases.
Finally, you can look at the pad itself, which can usually be seen through the wheel. The pad should be at least a quarter of an inch thick—if it seems thinner than that, it’s time to have the pads replaced.
Remember, routine brake maintenance and part replacements could save your life! If you notice any signs that your brake pads are worn, get them changed.