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Top 5 Causes of Brake Pads Wearing Unevenly

When you take your car in for brake pad repair, you want the new brake pads to last just as long as the old ones. However, sometimes you may find that your new pads wear unevenly, necessitating replacement sooner than expected.


There are a few potential causes for this problem, which we will discuss in this post. By understanding the causes, you can help to prevent uneven brake pad wear and extend the life of your new pads. Here are the top 5 causes of brake pads wearing unevenly.


Have you ever noticed that your brake pads seem to be wearing unevenly? Well, there is a good chance that your car is out of alignment. Misalignment is the most common cause of uneven brake pad wear. Misalignment can cause all sorts of problems, and uneven brake pad wear is just one of them.


Misalignment makes the front wheels pull to one side or the other when braking and can result in uneven wear on the pads. This is because if one tire wears faster than the other, your vehicle will not turn properly, which causes more friction on that side of your brakes. The result is a squealing noise and an unbalanced feel while driving.

Slide Pins

The slide pins that keep your brakes and wheels connected can become corroded, preventing the caliper from moving back and forth with each revolution of tires on rims. You will notice a decrease in stopping power as this happens; if it lasts long enough for pads to wear down too much, there could be a problem! We suggest using a wire brush (or rag) to clean the issue before applying grease. After cleaning, make sure not to overspray any important areas where rust may begin to build again.

Sticky Caliper Pistons

Debris or rust on one or more pistons can cause sticky brake calipers. To put it another way, if the piston does not slide smoothly, the brake pad will become stuck to the rotor. It is common for a caliper that is jammed to wear down the brake pads more quickly.


One of the most common reasons for uneven brake pad wear is a problem with the caliper. Pressure to the piston is either not being applied or isn't being released properly when a caliper fails to engage.


Another issue that can come up is when the piston is being ejected, but it refuses to return. A damaged seal or piston, or corrosion on the piston that has caused it to bind against the internal cylinder, is the cause of either of these symptoms. If this is the case, you can hone the cylinder; clean or replace the piston; and replace the seal to fix it. It's called rebuilding the caliper, and it's an easy and inexpensive way to fix uneven brake wear on a car. However, if you don't have the right equipment or knowledge, this can take a long time.


The simplest solution is to replace the caliper, which can be more expensive. If you bring your old caliper back to the store for a core charge, you can usually save some money on your new brake caliper.

Caliper Failure

If you have ever noticed your car's brake pads wearing unevenly, it could be because of a caliper failure. Brake pads are designed to wear down evenly so they can provide even braking pressure for the driver.


Uneven pad wear may develop if there is any metal-on-metal contact in the brake system, resulting in a costly repair bill. Luckily, with proper maintenance, it is possible to avoid this problem!


Regular inspections at a reputable repair provider, who will check your brakes for faults or warning indications before they become significant problems, are one approach to avoiding potential caliper failures. Another option would be inspecting them yourself if you feel comfortable doing so, but make sure you know what you are looking for.

Rotor Thickness Variation

Did you know that the thicknesses of your brake rotors can have a significant impact on how fast your brake pads wear out? Brake pad manufacturers design their products to last up to about 20,000 miles. However, if the rotor thickness is uneven, it will be more difficult for them to wear evenly and will wear out much sooner. This means that you could end up replacing your brake pads every 10,000 to 15,000 miles if you're unlucky enough to have uneven rotors.

If this sounds like something that might happen to you, make sure you get a professional inspection of your brakes before buying new ones.


If you want to know why your brake pads are wearing unevenly, visit our website. We have a guide that will tell you everything - from the most common causes of uneven braking to how to prevent it in the future. You can also find which brake pads are appropriate for your vehicle and whether there is anything else that could be causing problems with your brakes.

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