SOLVED: How Long Should Brakes Last and When To Replace Them

Brake pads are important for stopping your car. When you step on the brake, friction is created between your foot and the brake pads. This is why it’s critical to understand how long should brakes last and when they need to be replaced. In fact, Brake failure causes 300,000 crashes in the United States each year.

How long should brakes last before replacement?

There are three main factors in determining how often you should replace your brakes:

  • how much do you drive?
  • how hard is the terrain where you drive?
  • how well do the brakes respond after being serviced?

If you neglect to replace them when needed, then your brakes will wear out faster than normal and lead to other expensive repairs like brake failure.

So how long should brakes last? Somewhere between 40,000 – 105,000 km (or 25,000 – 65,000 miles). There are two symptoms that indicate when it’s time to change your brakes:

  • If your car starts shaking after less than 1 second of breaking, then you need to change the brake pads.
  • More force is needed in order for the car to stop, and this can take up to two seconds or more compared with how fast you usually stop at normal speed while braking.
woman driving feeling anxious

How to know when you should replace your brakes.

Brakes are important as they ensure that you stop. When your brakes wear down, it’s time to replace them before something terrible happens on the road. If you see these signs then it could mean it’s time for a replacement! 

tire pressure warning light in dashboard

The brake Light Will Come On

If your car’s dashboard service light goes on, it’s an indication that you need brake maintenance.

Make sure the indicator is not indicating that your parking brakes are on. This signal might be a false alarm if you notice it, and there may not be anything wrong with your brake pads.

2021 RAV Prime XSE Blueprint steering wheel

A Vibrating or Shaking Steering Wheel

When your brake pads are worn down or your rotor is unbalanced, the steering wheel may shake or vibrate. If you notice that your car is pulling to one side, then it might be because of something wrong with the steering or suspension system. It could also be because your brakes need repair or service.

The rotor wears down with time, and the unevenness of its rotation generates friction between it and your brake pad, which may scratch the pad or produce ridges on the rotor. When your wheels don’t rotate at exactly the same rate, irregularities develop in your rotors.

Change in Brake Pressure

When you push down on your brake pedal, you should feel some resistance. If there is too much or no resistance when you press the brakes, your car may require immediate repair work.

This problem may be caused by moisture trapped in the braking system or a lack of brake fluid. It might also be a problem with the master cylinder, which necessitates an auto repair technician’s attention right away.

How much will it cost to replace your brakes?

The cost of replacing your car’s brake pads is typically straightforward, but it can vary. Most shops can do it in a matter of minutes, so the cost ranges from $100 to $150 in labour, depending on whether you’re doing all the pads or just a couple of them.

You can easily replace your vehicle’s brake pads by doing it yourself. It not only saves money, but it’s also a fantastic way to learn more about your car. There are several step-by-step instructions on how to change your automobile’s brake pads yourself.

TIPS: Brake pads come in a variety of costs and qualities. Higher-cost, higher-quality brake pads can save you money in the long run by not requiring replacement for a longer time.


Brake pads come in a variety of costs and qualities. Higher-cost, higher-quality brake pads can save you money in the long run by not requiring replacement for a longer time.

repairman working on car

Should You Replace All 4 Brake Pads At Once?

It is important to know that brakes and rotors come in pairs. So, if you need to replace your brake pads, you can do it separately or together. Brake pads wear at different rates. The front brake pads do most of the work and so they wear out faster than the back.

When you replace all four brake pads at once, you’ll save money because the procedure will be completed during one appointment; whereas replacing them one set at a time might take up all day since each pair must be removed before another set can go on.


Brake repair is a serious matter, similar to changing timing belt or transmission fluid. There’s no room for error if your automobile has worn brake pads, rotors, or other brake-related issues. Now you know how long should brakes last, be sure to bring it to a specialist as soon as possible if you are seeing any of the signs we listed above.

Brakes that function effectively will keep you, your passengers, and other drivers safe. Regular repairs by a professional can help prevent any problems before they develop. How often do you get your brakes done? Tell us in the comments!

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