Find. Buy. Drive
CAR FROM JAPAN - Find best deals of used cars from reliable Japanese sellers

What To Do When Your Brakes Lock Up?

What to do when your brakes lock up? First of all, it’s a scary situation if you are driving. Having no control of the car that is speeding down the road is downright dangerous. It still could be an expensive repair work even if you are not driving when brakes locked up on car.

Learn why do brakes lock up and what you can do when this happens. Remember that if you have no mechanical skills, tow the vehicle to an auto repair shop to get the best service.

What Causes Brakes To Lock Up?

There are several reasons that can trigger this unfortunate event. Things that can cause brakes locked up while driving or not are:

  • Overheated braking system
  • Using incorrect brake fluid
  • Misalignment of the power brake booster rod
  • Damaged or broken calipers, rotors, or drum brake backing plates
  • Defective ABS component, proportioning valve, or parking brake mechanism
  • Worn off caliper pistons or brake wheel cylinders
what causes brakes to lock up
A damaged brake caliper could be a reason.

SEE MORE

What To Do When Your Brakes Lock Up?

What you should do will depend on how many wheels are locked up. Lift the car with a jack and rotate the wheels by hand.

It could be a mechanical issue if only one wheel is rigid. Look for a clogged fluid pipe or a broken spring. A jammed pipe transfers the fluid to the wheel cylinders but blocks it to return when you release the brake pedal. For this reason, the brakes stay ‘ON’ and appear to be locked.

A jammed handbrake could cause the locking of both wheels on the same axle. It mostly happens to the rear wheels because the handbrake works on the rear axle.

How to unlock brakes when all wheels are locked? In that case, a defective or misaligned master cylinder is likely to be the reason.

What To Do When Front Brakes Locking Up While Driving?

What causes brakes to lock up while driving? It happens when you lose control while driving on a slippery surface and slam on the brakes in a desperate attempt to stop the car. Doing so will only jam the braking system and leave you helpless barreling down the street.

What to do when your brakes lock up?

If the car does not have ABS brakes, release the brake pressure when you realize that it starts locking. Keep pushing and releasing the brake pedal in quick succession until the vehicle stops.

brakes locked up while driving
Take professional help for brake problems.

A vehicle with ABS brakes is unlikely to lock up unless a component in the system is kaput. Damaged disc brakes, calipers, rotors, wheel bearings, and a handful of other parts can cause the lock up. An ABS-equipped car will prevent locking automatically when you start losing grip on rough tracks. It will pump the brakes so you don’t need to do anything. All you will feel is a beating sensation in the brake pedal at the time of hard braking. Just ignore it and keep the pressure on the pedal to bring the car to a safe stop.