I have a 2003 Subaru Forester, manual transmission, 205,000 miles. A few weeks ago I started hearing a grinding noise when braking-it sounds like it’s coming specifically from the rear passenger side. The brakes never squealed, just a grinding noise when braking that continues once I start driving again until I get up to about 40mph or so. The brakes were still responding fine, though, so I let it go because car repairs are expensive and I wanted to wait until I had the money to take care of it. A friend of mine said he could replace the pads and rotors this weekend, so I bought parts and thought I was in the clear!
Fast forward to today: I was driving home and the pedal became essentially unresponsive. Sinks all the way to the floor and the car still doesn’t really stop completely. The brake light on the dash is on also. Luckily I have a manual and the handbrake still works, so I was able to get myself home by driving slowly and downshifting when I needed to stop. I did check the brake fluid level and it was low, so I added brake fluid, which made the light go off momentarily but pressure didn’t return to the brake pedal and the light came back on shortly after.
Is it possible that I damaged the caliper from waiting to replace the pads and rotors too long? Or is something else going on?