Front brake pad replacement
How do front brake pads work?
Brake pads are a key component of any vehicle’s braking system. They’re flat parts made of semi-metallic, organic or ceramic materials, with a metal backing. When you use your brakes, the pads hydraulically squeeze the brake discs, slowing your car down through friction and pressure. The pads absorb some of the biggest forces involved in daily driving.
Most cars have two pads per brake disc, although some high-performance models can have more.
How often should front brake pads need replacing?
As a rough guide, your brake pads should last for 50,000 miles, but there are a number of variables, including driver behaviour, the weight you carry, speed and the type of pads used. Not to mention that nearly 20% of MOT failures are caused by faulty brakes.
The law, vehicle regulations and your MOT
Incorrect brake operation, damaged or excessively worn discs or pads are considered unsafe for your vehicle performance and will cause your car to fail an MOT.
The cost of replacing front brake pads
The typical cost of replacing front brake pads is around £100.
For example, a BMW 116d M Sport would have a dealer price of £133.13, yet Fixter will carry out the same work for only £107.10—a 20% saving!
Changing the rear brake pads on a Fiat 500 C Lounge will cost you £120.59 with your dealer, but only £99.17 with Fixter—a superb saving of 18%!
When you choose Fixter to find you a great deal and a premium mechanic to carry out your rear brake pad replacement, you can expect to save around £20–£25 from an average dealer price. That’s a typical saving in the region of 15–20%.
What causes your brake pads to stop working correctly?
While your brake pads will keep you safe over thousands of miles, they won’t last forever. Eventually, the abrasive surface on them wears down, and they will need to be replaced, ideally while you still have around 25% capacity of the pads left.
Given that they take most of the load, front brake pads will probably need replacing first. They also have a bigger surface area to increase friction.
To make your brake pads last longer:
- Try avoiding driving at high speeds so that you’re less likely to need to brake quickly and heavily, which puts extra pressure on the pads.
- Anticipate traffic and hazards ahead so you can brake steadily and gradually.
- Heavy loads also put stress on brake pads – don’t carry unnecessary weight.
Symptoms of malfunctioning brakes
Your brake callipers make unusual noises
A loud screeching or grinding noise when you apply the brakes is a clear indicator that new pads are required.
When your car pulls to one side under braking
If only one brake is working correctly, it can cause your car to pull in the direction of the functioning brake.
The car vibrates under braking
Your brake pads could be warped if the pedal vibrates when you press down on it.
The brake pad is worn down
Look through the wheel’s spokes for a visual check—the outside pad is pressed against a metal rotor, and you should be able to see at least 3mm of the pad.
Your brake warning light on the dashboard is illuminated
If any of your dashboard warning lights are illuminated, the sensor that detects problems or worn out parts and components has detected an issue and activated the system.
Lexus is the luxury division of the Japanese automotive manufacturer Toyota.
The Lexus brand was launched in 1989, is marketed in more than 70 countries worldwide, and has become Japan’s largest-selling make of premium cars.
How popular is Lexus in the United Kingdom?
For such a high-flying global leader, Lexus has a seemingly modest 156k cars on the road in the UK today.
Luxury executive vehicles for the discerning driver
In the UK, the Lexus brand focuses heavily on the NX and RX SUV models, it’s the fastest growing market for family cars after all; but each of the hatchbacks, saloons and coupés in its range come with the same high-level of luxury and sophistication for their £25–£76k price tags.
Lexus design and technology
Lexus was born to present itself as a luxury brand, something Toyota wasn’t in a position to market to their typical customer given their existing brand perception. To achieve a true luxury standard, they have targeted both vehicle development as well as their lavish presentation.
Each vehicle has to achieve 500 specific must have standards known as ‘Lexus Musts’, all of which are to attain the high-end presentation and performance of a ‘true’ luxury marque.
Although they might not all be ‘Lexus Musts’ you can expect to find criteria such as leather seat stitching, smart key entry, remote touch control systems, surround sound and reduced cabin noise that utilises acoustic glass, in your Lexus vehicle. And the driving technology is just as impressive: Lexus introduced continuously variable transmissions, regenerative brakes, hybrid and electric fuel options, as well as vehicle stability and integrated dynamic handling management systems.
Lexus’ reliability and reputation
Lexus ranked 2nd place out of 30 car brands in the What Car? Reliability Survey in 2018. Their high standards and typical Japanese reliability set them above every marque except Suzuki, and they only missed out on the top spot by 0.2%.
Recent Lexus recalls and reliability issues
Various recalls have been made on Lexus models throughout their motoring history. The following are a list of the most recent in the UK and Europe.
04/05/2019 – Lexus ES and Lexus UX (2018–2019)
The emergency calling system may not be correctly installed
18/03/2019 – Lexus LS 500h (2017–2018)
Due to an incorrect tyre to the wheel assembly process, the sidewall reinforcement layer may become damaged
23/11/2018 – Lexus SC 430 (2001–2006)
The ammonium nitrate propellant used in the airbag inflator may degrade over time due to heat cycles
02/11/2018 – Lexus IS350, Lexus GS450h and Lexus GS350 (2005–2014)
A crack in the fuel pulsation damper may lead to a fuel leak
21/09/2018 – Lexus LC500h (2016–2018)
The vehicles’ electronic control unit has been improperly programmed
04/03/2018 – Lexus RCF (2014–2017)
The pulsation damper in one of the high-pressure fuel pumps could be defective
18/02/2018 – Lexus RX450h and Lexus NX300h (2015)
There could be a fault with the pressure sensors for the airbag system
03/02/2018 – Lexus CT200h (2016–2017)
The tank may develop a leak as a result of defective welding
All recall information sourced from gov.co.uk data.