When a little brakes screeching becomes your best friend

Brake pads come with a built in alarm system that literally tell you when you are down to your last 10% or less of usable brake pads.

Ignoring the screeching noises when you hit the brakes can affect not only safety — but also your purse or pocketbook.



It is the returning screeching or squealing noise that goes away when you release the brake pedal that is your friend and tells you it is time to get in and let the team at Gary’s Automotive service in Chico, Ca. get you safe before damage is done and costs sky rocket.  If the noise doesn’t stop after you let off the brakes OR if you hear a grumbling or grinding sound while braking then it’s time to replace your brake pads and possibly your rotors, too.”  So acting sooner saves a lot of money. Those of us that have had brake failure and struggled to get a car to stop can tell you it is frightening and dangerous. So, the early light squawking and squealing is really your buddy saying. “Hey lets plan soon to get me fixed”.


Here is what is going on behind the noise… when the pads wear thin, it causes a metal-on-metal scraping as the caliper rubs against the rotor. Worn rotors may cause the steering wheel to vibrate or there may be a pulsing sensation while braking, David Sherrill the owner of Gary’s Automotive Services says, “Failure to deal with the issue can cause either or both of the rotors or caliper to get damaged.” Rotors can be turned (having a lathe smooth the surface) in some cases and reduces some costs. However, a bad caliper or rotor replacement can be tricky and expensive. However, Brake failure is nothing to mess with. So David says, ” Get “r” done early and save your money.  We want your business and we want you safe. But, most importantly we want your business for years and years to come. So, our seasoned expert staff want to do everything that we can to help hold down costly repairs through well thought out and proper service, maintenance and routine repairs like brake pads. See you soon!

Brake Fluid Flush

Brake Fluid Flush

Its time to do what???

Flush my brake fluid! Are you nuts! That sounds as nuts as changing out the stale air in my tires. Why in the world would anyone change out their brake fluid flush?
1) Because your car owners manual tells you to.
2) Because if your car has old brake fluid it most likely has absorbed in a lot of moisture. What it is designed to do in order to prevent your brake system from rusting inside out. Ever have to replace the components in your ABS system. Trust us you don’t want to either… it is pretty expensive and if cared for properly they should last a very long time. Brake fluid absorbs any moisture that gets into your system after about 2 years or about 30,000 miles it is bloated with water. That water is now bad for your brake system and needs to be removed.
3) Safety! You don’t want your brakes to fail due to rusty internal parts when you most need them to perform perfectly.
Here at Gary’s Automotive Service here in Chico, California we strongly advise that you do routine brake fluid replacement as recommended by your automotive manufacturer in order to keep you and your family safe and to decrease future costly repairs.
Feel free to reach out to me David Sherrill the owner of Gary’s Automotive Service and I will personally answer any questions or concerns regarding this or any other repair or routine maintenance service that you might be thinking about. I don’t use unpaid staff to answer our phones. I answer 90% of all calls myself. Our top Master Technicians have been working here at my shop for more than 20 years each. That is service you can trust!


This Tech Tip came from Bendix Brakes about Brake Dust, the logic is sound, but I wish there was a test to determine the health of the caliper seal besides observing the symptoms…

Caliper Retraction Critical Component

Troy, Mich., July 23, 2008 – As technicians service brake systems on more vehicles with alloy wheels, the Bendix® Brakes Answerman team recommends paying special attention to the brake calipers.

“More and more vehicles leave the factory with alloy wheels and while they greatly enhance the appearance of a vehicle, they also generate more complaints from consumers due to brake dust,” said Jay Buckley, Honeywell CPG technical training manager and Bendix® Brakes Answerman. “A number of factors go into reducing the amount of brake dust that ends up on a vehicle’s wheels – like the use of ceramic brake pads, for instance – but a properly functioning caliper also plays a key role in preventing the unsightly grime on today’s wheels.”

So beyond removing all rust and corrosion from a caliper’s sliding area, inspecting the caliper for proper retraction is important, especially on old calipers that haven’t been changed. Even though the piston gets pushed in and everything seems to be working normally, on older calipers, retraction can take longer than it should.

“The square cut seal inside the caliper does more than keep fluid inside. It actually winds up like a rubber band when the brakes are applied so it acts as a spring, retracting the caliper pistons and getting the pads back off the rotor,” said Buckley. “Like any spring that expands and retracts thousands of times, it will eventually become fatigued.”


It may then do a poor job of retracting the pads back off the rotor. This slow retraction allows the pads to remain in contact with the rotor longer than needed, resulting in more brake dust generation and premature brake wear.
“If you are servicing a high mileage vehicle that has chronic ‘brake dust’ and it has not had regular brake fluid flushes, it may be time for a pair of fresh calipers.”
The Bendix® brand has two caliper options for technicians to choose from, all of which include the necessary hardware and components for quick installation, as well as pre-lubed and pre-assembled bushings and guide bolts if the OE design calls for it.
•    Bendix® Loaded Calipers are assembled using genuine Bendix® premium disc brake pads to provide quality and performance that professional technicians have come to expect.
•    Bendix® Select Loaded Calipers allow technicians to select which Bendix brand friction they want included. All calipers are individually wrapped in vapor corrosion inhibitor paper for maximum shelf life.