Who doesn’t want to enjoy quiet, trouble-free driving and have a splendid car ownership experience? Being a complex machine, a car can undergo different problems and malfunctions, mostly due to wear and tear and atrocities of the road.
If your car makes squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied, there’s something wrong with the brakes. Although it could be something wrong with the suspension or underbody area, brake assembly is usually the culprit in the cases where the car makes squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied.
Let’s go through some of the common reasons behind this issue, how you can fix them as a car owner, and what other problems you should be careful about when such malfunctions appear. This detailed article has everything to set things straight for you, so keep reading and be prepared for any challenge.
Why Does My Car Make Squeaking Noise While Driving but not Brakes Applied?
There could be a plethora of reasons behind your car making a squeaking noise while driving but not when the brakes are applied. Remember to keep a close eye on the brakes, and you might quickly diagnose the problem.
1- Rough Brake Pads
The primary reason your car makes a squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied is due to worn or rough brake pads. Over time, brake pads get rough due to usage and delay in replacement.
If the brake pads get older and are not replaced during the maintenance routine, they come in continuous contact with the rotors and create a squeaking noise, even if the brakes are not applied.
2- Brake Pad Material
Modern brake pads use the ceramic compound in manufacturing and companies prefer a material that wears less and offers better stopping efficiency.
Although it might be good for safety purposes and gives you more confidence on the road, at the same time, it is prone to creating squeaking noises and crackling sounds while driving. This problem occurs after a few thousand miles of usage, but it does create a headache for car owners.
3- Humidity and Cold Weather
If you’re hearing a squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied, there could be nothing wrong with your car and it might be the weather acting up. When the atmosphere is humid, water builds up on the different metal parts, and when the car moves, it makes different noises and squeaking sounds, especially at high speeds.
If everything is fine with your brake assembly, try drying it with a blower and check if the problem still persists or not.
4- Stones and Debris
The strange squeaking noise while driving might be due to some stone or a piece of stick. When you drive on uneven surfaces or damaged roads, different debris on the road can get stuck in the brakes or wheels and create squeaking or scratching noise.
If your usual route involves a rough patch of road or damaged terrain, some debris has likely got stuck in the brake assembly and it creates a squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied.
Get your brake assembly and wheel hubs checked and cleaned properly if there are any stone remnants or pieces of stick tangled up there.
Lastly, it might be due to the negligence of the technician who looked after your car during the previous maintenance schedule. If the parts are not properly put back together after servicing or if the mechanic forgets to clean the calliper pins or rotors properly, your car might make a squeaking noise while driving.
It is crucial that you keep a keen eye on your car when it is being serviced and take it back to the workshop immediately if such strange noises appear after a maintenance routine.
How to fix squeaking Noise?
- If you’ve come across the problem of squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied, it could not be a fatal issue and you could easily get rid of it yourself. Here’s how you can fix this issue by following a few simple steps;
- Check the brake pads for wear or damage and replace them every 20,000 miles. Most of the time, it is the bad brake pads that create this squeaking noise, and replacing them permanently solves the issue.
- Check for any stones or small wood pieces stuck in the brake assembly and get them cleaned.
- If the problem still persists, check the brake rotors for the development of any grooves or cracks. Replacing the rotors might sometimes be required as repairs are usually not possible.
- Try applying an anti-squeal fluid or a layer of lubricant coating to get rid of squeaking noise while driving but not brakes applied.
- Sometimes, simply tightening the bolts or screws can get rid of this issue and there’s no underlying fatal problem.
Q1- Why does it sound like my axle is squeaking?
The squeaking noise that you’re hearing might be due to a bent or damaged axle with loose parts. Get your car’s suspension setup and axles checked for any damages, and have them repaired. This type of sound usually comes from under the car’s body and not the wheels, unlike when the brakes are at fault.
Q2- Squeaking noise from the rear wheel while driving?
The squeaking sound from the rear of your car might be due to worn-out axles or wheel bearings. It is due to the generation of friction when these parts rub together and create squeaking or scratching noises.
Q3- Can I drive with a squeaking wheel?
Although you could still drive with a squeaking wheel and technically, it wouldn’t stop you, it is highly not advisable to do so. You could run into serious trouble if your brake pads give up or rotors get damaged.
Changing the brake pads on hearing a squeaking noise while driving but not when the brakes are applied is the right thing to do. Although it could be due to some debris, bad brake rotors, or ill-fitting parts, brake pads are the usual culprits behind this issue. Over time, the pads deteriorate, resulting in the indicator scraping against the rotor. Squeaking is the effect of this activity. Don’t drive for a prolonged time without changing the brake pads, even though this may not be a serious issue.
You still need to check your brakes once or twice a year to make sure they are in the appropriate spot, even if you hardly ever encounter this problem. Keeping your brakes fit guarantees a safe ride and must be your top priority.