Why are my brakes squeaking and grinding?

Tiny
ANONYMOUS
  • MEMBER
  • 2006 FORD TAURUS
  • 101,000 MILES
My car was making a grinding and thumping noise. We had it looked at. The brakes had fallen apart. We had new brake shoes and drums put on it. Twice. From same garage. From a second person. I had 1 drum turned and adjusted brakes. Also a tire was replaced. All 3 times, we heard a thump, thump, thump, every time you apply brakes. Does anyone have any idea what my problem could be?
Saturday, November 3rd, 2012 AT 1:39 PM

18 Replies

Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
Are you sure the noise is not coming from the front? could be the rotors. This video shows the job being done on a similar car but the process is the same.

https://youtu.be/dlIUJOYnYQc

if not then you still have issues with the rear. no one has done anything with the rear wheel cylinders. check them to make sure they are not seized.

Roy
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Saturday, November 3rd, 2012 AT 2:51 PM
Tiny
KILERTHOMP
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 FORD TAURUS
  • 86,000 MILES
2002 Taurus shakes very bad when I press brakes and if I let off the brake it stops and then jerks when I take off but when I get passed first gear its okay and if I kick it down it will jerk back hard, whats wrong with my car?'

It jerks bad when I take off and if I gun it and when I press the brake the car vibrates and shakes crazy but goes away when I let off the brake.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Your description can be due to a couple of different things. The most common on any car is warped brake rotors. Those can be machined as long as they are still above the legal minimum thickness. If they're worn too far, new rotors aren't very expensive. Machining is a standard part of any brake job.

If there's some other kind of shaking or vibration when you're not applying the brakes, it can still be due to the rotors but more commonly steering or suspension parts are worn allowing a wheel to bounce around instead of holding in proper alignment. You'll see uneven tire wear too. Ford has had more steering component problems over the years than any other manufacturer so it is time for an inspection at a tire and alignment shop. Never ignore these warning signs of trouble because if a ball joint or tie rod end separates, you don't know which way the car will go; into a tree or into a oncoming traffic.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KILERTHOMP
  • MEMBER
Ok I will see whats going on with it and let u know what I find out, thanks for getting back to me so soon.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JBAZAN
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD TAURUS
My brakes periodically cause vibrations when braking at all speeds and all applied pressures, usually resolved with a rotation of warped rotors. However, even with new rotors, the vibrations are starting earlier and earlier after rotations. Since 99% of my driving is high-speed, rural, open interstate driving at 60 mph or higher, I find this to be troublesome. It took only 5000 miles between replacement of rotors with original equipment and renewed braking vibrations.

And recently, my car has been vibrating, sometimes severely, sometimes gently, sometimes not at all, when I am driving at all speeds, even slowly, and not applying brakes. I find this to be even more troublesome. When doing very slow driving, say in a parking lot, I can feel the pull of the tires in my steering wheel. My dealer repeatedly says, "Everything is fine." I gotta get this fixed before Xmas driving. Any help? And thanks!
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARUNDELL
  • MEMBER
Hey jb,
Premature rotor warpage is a concern, especially wtih OEM parts installed. And this has occurred to a few of my customers. I've had very good luck with the high quality ceramic pads when confronted with this issue (though ceramics are not recommended if you tow with the vehicle) The only downside to these is that they tend to "wear" out the rotors quicker(not warp them, but the rotor thickness is reduced at a quicker rate than a metallic pad) Second, and I'm not saying you do this, highway speeds and fast "exit ramp braking" don't mix. It creates a ton of heat very fast thus warping out the rotor and faster pad wear! If this is your driving style I recommend a more "gradual slow down". Third, as to the vibration. It sounds like you may have a tire balance issue, or even a tire that may be failing internally (steel bands) I recommend you get this checked out asap. Let us know!

Chris
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
Great response Chris! Good information on the ceramics.

I would go to an independant tire dealer and have the issue looked into on the tire problem Chris mentioned.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARUNDELL
  • MEMBER
Thanks Bruce! If you hadn't noticed yet I'm kind of a "testing nazi" (lol) I've put them on anything from Super Duty's to Corolla's and have AWESOME results! Some other huge benefits are:

1. Ya don't need to burnish them!

2. Brake squeak is a thing of the past! (I've had only 2 issues and I chalked those up to the mon/fri analogy. If it was made on a mon or fri. You know the rest!)

3. No need to "cross hatch" or prep the rotors, new or resurfaced!

4. The costs have come way down, so its finally getting cost effective!

I've heard of other issues, but its only been with the lower cost pads, so I recommend the top of the line ones!

Chris
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SANDYLOUWHOO
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 FORD TAURUS
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 150,000 MILES
My brakes sound horrible - the brake light is on too. The front brakes are brand new, and there's nothing wrong with the back brakes either. What would cause them to make this awful racket if it's not the brakes themselves?
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Could be brake dust build-up or the sliders on the calipers need to be lubed. Also check the bridges where the pads meet and lube that as well. Keep in mind that metallic pads make more noise so even though they are new they may still squeal. As for the brake light illuminating, check the brake fluid level.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CMZANNN
  • MEMBER
  • 1992 FORD TAURUS
  • 140 MILES
My rear brakes are sounding like begining metal. Can I just replace shoes or paads.I believe it has 1st generation abs. Does that hinder a easy swap"
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Brake repairs are no different with or without ABS. You just have to watch that you don't damage the wheel speed sensor and tone ring.

Replacing parts is hardly a brake job though. Be sure to have the drums or rotors machined, and replace them if they are beyond the published legal dimension. Use high-temperature brake grease on the appropriate points. Be careful to not get any grease on the linings and friction surfaces.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CMZANNN
  • MEMBER
Car proz. Once again you have given this novice a quick concise answer. Thanx. You guyz are the undisputed best on the web.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Yes indeed. I have a lot of people fooled.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JULIEM123
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 FORD TAURUS
My husband and I just replaced the brakes and rotors on our Ford Taurus 3 weeks ago. Today as I was driving out of the driveway I heard a screeching sound while driving forward, I hit the brakes and then heard grinding. I checked the Emergency brake to make sure that it wasn't on, and it wasn't. The only thing that I can think that might be the problem is that the brakes froze? I am currently towing it back to the place that "fixed" the brakes, and they are going to see if this may have anything to do with what they "fixed".

Please advise.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BLACKOP555
  • EXPERT
They probably didnt torque up the caliper slide rails properly, sometimes if they are rusted they will go to the proper torque due to the rust but still be loose, easy to overlook.
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+1
Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
FRANCESKYLE6
  • MEMBER
  • 1989 FORD TAURUS
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 55,000 MILES
When I apply brakes I heared a dragging noise or like a grinding noise in the left front wheel. So what is this? Thanks!
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)
Tiny
ZUE
  • MEMBER
The most common reason you would hear a dragging or grinding noise it tha the brake pads have worn down to complete metal and the noise you hear is the metal of the worn brake pad grinding against the rotor. If this is the case you should be able to look a the rotor through the wheel and see some serious wear on the rotor itself. Have this checked right away.
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Monday, April 5th, 2021 AT 12:17 PM (Merged)

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