Why Brake Pedal Vibration Happens: And How to Fix

brake pedal vibration

Last updated: June 15, 2023 at 11:19 am

When a car is running smoothly, the idea is that it shouldn’t be noticeably wobbly, squeaky, or vibrate more than just the necessary engine vibration. When a part of the car does become wobbly, squeaky, or starts to vibrate, then it is often a sign that something, somewhere is faulty.

For example:

When your brake pedal has been noticeably vibrating, it usually means there’s an issue somewhere within your vehicle. If you’ve noticed that your brake pedal is vibrating when you brake, here’s what might be going on within the car, and how to stop it.

4 Reasons for Break Pedal Vibration

1. Worn Out Components

When brake pads wear out, they can become thin. They scar and crack, and this can cause the brake pedal to vibrate. In addition, the brake pads themselves, other elements within the braking system can wear out over time. This includes ball joints, wheel bearings, and tie rods.

Also read: Car noise articles

Usually, you can tell if this is the cause of your vibrating brake pedals when it doesn’t seem to be being caused by anything else. If you think that there’s a chance your vibrating brake pedal is caused by elements being worn down, then the easiest solution is to take your vehicle to get serviced regularly. Since there are so many elements that could potentially cause your issue, it’s easiest to get a garage to test each of the elements individually.

2. Damaged Brake Disc

car brake disc

The brake disc, or rotor, is an essential part of the braking system. It is crucial to the safety of a vehicle, and it works to slow and stop the vehicle alongside the brake pads. When the brake disc is faulty or in poor condition, the brake pedals are likely to vibrate when they meet the rotor.

You might also notice that your brakes squeak or pulsate as you use them. But, even more importantly, if the brake disc is damaged there is a chance it won’t work as well as it should, putting the vehicle in danger.

Damaged brake rotors need to be fixed as soon as possible. Otherwise, you risk yours and your vehicle’s safety. You should resurface or replace your brake rotors as soon as you can. You may also want to replace your brake pads as worn pads won’t reach smooth rotors.

3. Brake Pad Issues

Brake pads are also an essential element of the braking system. But when your brake pads are contaminated with substances like dirt or oil, it causes the brake pedal to vibrate when the brake pads clamp onto the rotor.

If the brake pads are warped or damaged, this can also cause vibration. More seriously however, can cause the brake pads not to work as well as they should.

To clear the brake pads of any unwanted dirt and grime, you should carefully dismantle the brake and give it a good clean to remove pollutants. If the brake pad is warped or damaged in any way, you should replace it immediately. Faulty brake pads are a risk when driving and should be avoided wherever possible.

4. Alignment or Suspension Problems

wheel alignment

It is easy for a vehicle to fall out of alignment, and when that happens, the brake pedal can begin to shudder. Poor wheel alignment is a common culprit, as it can cause premature wear and tear to tires and suspension elements.

You can usually tell if it is an alignment or suspension issue if the brake pedal vibrates as you turn. In that case, you should consider heading to a garage to assess which elements are within your suspension and alignment to discover what needs to be solved.

How Can You Avoid Damaging Your Brakes?

It’s all well and good knowing how to fix vibrating brake pedals. But, it’s also important to know how to best maintain the brakes once they’re fixed. To help you to prevent vibrating brake pedals, you should:

Avoid Overusing the Brakes

Of course, you must use your brakes to drive, but it is important not to overuse them.


Using them unnecessarily or too frequently without letting the brake pads cool down will often lead to premature damage.

Use High Quality Components

As with anything, if you have lower-quality elements, you will have less longevity. Lower-quality components will trigger vibrations, and they will not be tolerant to heat like higher-quality brake pads and elements.

Ensure Your Vehicle Is Serviced Regularly

It is usually easier – and cheaper – to solve a problem when you find it early on. If you leave it too late, you’ll often find that the problem has worsened, and this will usually make it more expensive or more difficult to fix.

Getting your car checked out regularly by a garage (or learning what to look for and doing it yourself) can be paramount in keeping your brake pads from vibrating. It can also help to prevent larger issues and keep your vehicle in good condition.

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About the Author: Claire

Hailing from the North-East, Claire has been writing for Quiet Living since 2020 and has built a wealth of knowledge in home improvement, with a keen interest in knowledge based articles.

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