2003 Chevy Cavalier 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 63000 miles
Greetings. About six months ago I took in the vehicle to get a break job at Pep Boys, and we paid for Bronze Front Brake Service Platinum Package, including R& R Brake Pads/Shoes, PB/PROSTOP Front Prostop Platinum Pads, and Bronze Rear Brake Service Prostop Package, including R& R Brake Pades/Shoes, PB/PROSTOP Rear Prostop Brake Shoes. The vehicle was taken in in the first place because of time elapsed since the last brake job, and primarily because of a grinding sound when we hit the brakes. The repair certainly made the " feel" of the brakes better when pressing the brake pedal, but the sound returned shortly thereafter. I took the vehicle back to Pep Boys a couple of months later, and addressing the sound, the staff inspected the work and found that the job was done fine, and though the brakes made a slight sound, there was no safety issue.
The problem is that when the car is idle for a night and then when it is driven to work in the morning, the sound of the brakes when backing out of the parking spot, and then driving forward and hitting the streets, is disconcerting, high-pitched, and kicks in not when the brakes are quickly activated for a full stop, but when the brake pedal is slowly pressed to slow the vehicle. The sound reverberates and lasts for a while, but as life would have it, seems to dissipate as the car is driven. By the time I get to the Pep Boys, the sound is not as severe as for the first fifteen minutes of the half-hour drive.
This sound < only> manifests when the brakes are engaged, and at no other time. Further, the sound we heard prior to the brake job was more metal-on-metal, and this sound is as if one were swinging open a giant door which needed to have its hinges greased. The service manager informed me the last time I took it in that they cleared some dust from the brakes, but that was all that was needed, and again, we had no safety issue. This sound is not just annoying but stressful, as it is so loud and prominent that one tends to fear engaging the brakes.
I am not prepared with all the questions to ask the service manager when I go back, and I will be returning this weekend. Is it possible some lubrication process was not done, or could it be that this is not related to the brakes at all? Any advice or follow-up would be greatly appreciated.
OK this brake noise you are talking about is normal with semi metalic pads on newer cars. You car was originally equiped with ceramic brake pads all around. They produce low dust and almost no noise. Now what I would ask is what type of pads were installed were they ceramic as would be OEM or are they metalic. Did they put anti squeel compond on the metal backing of the pads? Where the rotors turned or replaced? You turn (resurface) rotors if they are still thick enough otherwise you replace them. Get back to me with what you can and we will see what we can figure out.
September, 18, 2009 AT 8:59 PM
Greetings. Of the information you provided, the only thing I am sure of is that the rotors were not replaced. In my first post I wrote the contents of my invoice word-for-word, so I am assuming the shop did not resurface the rotors or use anti-squeel compound. Is it safe to assume that if they did use anti-squeel compound they would have listed it on the itemized invoice?
I hope the above helps. Thanks!
September, 19, 2009 AT 9:02 AM
Ok from what I read it only say's what level of brake job they did as what they call it. It don't say what level of pads that they use or if they resurfaced or replaced the rotors. I do not do brakes unless I resurface the rotors if they are still in spec, if they are not in spec the I replace them. As for the anti squeel it probably won't be list this is something you need to look for. Here is a pic of a set of pads and how I prep them before I put them in. Ask them what type of pads they put in, I don't know what is their platinum pads or bronze, when I list it on an invoice it will say ceramic or met etc. I did go to Pep boys online and looked over there brake packages and I will guarentee that they didn't put ceramic pads on. Get back to me with what you find on the anti squeel compound.