I have a 2007 RAV4 that I bought last July. The brakes felt a little soft on the test drive; I asked them to look into that and make adjustments, and after that it seemed fine.
Two weeks ago I started getting a grinding sound when I pushed the brakes hard enough (I’m generally really easy on brakes), and brought it in to a foreign car specialist. My front brake pads were worn, on one side especially. The rotors were bad, too. The back brakes were OK for a few more months, he said - I said I’d like to have all four brakes done for a fresh start.
When I picked up the car, he was bleeding the brakes a second time, saying that they felt to squishy to him when he took it for a test drive. I took it out, and to me it felt as good as it did before. He said it was probably a characteristic of the car.
The brakes seem fine to me, but I started reading about brakes and problems, and one thing caught my eye - that when waiting at a red light, if the brakes start to drop after about 20 seconds, that’s a sign of a bad master cylinder. My car was doing that in the past month. Now, after the repairs, it does not to that anymore. But the mechanic did not replace the master cylinder (I didn’t think to tell him about that).
If it doesn’t do that anymore, is it fixed, and the problem was related to the pads, or to low brake fluid as that drops when the pads wear? Or should I change out the master cylinder just to be sure?