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Grinding noise when Braking

Hi everyone, so my 1999 Kia Sephia with about 130,000 miles has a grinding noise that in addition to hearing I can feel in my brake pedal. I have noticed that when the brakes and rotors get hot (after lets say a lot of stop and go traffic where the brakes are used a lot) this grinding begins to happen.

Otherwise when I start off I don’t hear this grinding/groaning noise. I often can drive for about 2-3 hours if not more without this sound coming up when I brake since my driving style is easy on the brakes. However, my girlfriend’s style is very hard on the brakes and after an hour or two of driving you will hear that noise towards the last few feet of stopping.

The brakes are 50% worn, so its not because they are down to last centimeter of pad. Also it seems to be coming from the front left disk brakes, not sure if its also coming from the right disk brakes.

I tried googling this, and it seemed to indicate the problems were warped rotors but it didn’t make sense to me that this would only happen when the brakes were hot.

Thanks for your input!

Grinding noises that you can hear and feel means you’ve got serious brake wear somewhere. You don’t have any pads completely worn away on the front, you say. Did you remove the front wheels and inspect both pads on each wheel? Any chance the problem is with the rear brakes?

Warped rotors would be felt as pulsation through the pedal when braking. Are you having this happen?

Is this grinding noise the same noise as when the ABS kicks in? Or is it something different?

Yup there is about 50% life on the front, and about 35% on the back. I replaced my front brakes about a year ago and hadn’t changed my back shoes since they are rear drum brakes which would explain why the back brakes are worn more than the front.

I do feel a little pulsating sometimes when I don’t hear the grinding come to think about it but its not very noticible. Its a gridning noise mostly a groaning noise.

I do not think it is warped brakes because it only happens when its hot. I know there are some rusting springs in the rear drums but I don’t know for certain if its coming from back there, I am rather sure its coming from the front.


Well its more of a groaning noise. I suppose it is similar to the noise that ABS makes but more consistent instead of pulsating (please note I have limited experience with ABS, only driven it once, since my vehicle doesn’t have abs).

I might have some free time tomorrow so I’ll pull off the wheels and take a look at the rotors, make sure there isn’t too much brake dust there and look carefully at the calipers.

If you’ve got plenty of pad left, then its either the type of pad or its vibrating. Next pad change, try a little softer pad and use anti squeel compound on the backs of the pad. I had some from NAPA that did the same thing from day one and switched to the mid priced pad and it went away.

Thanks, I’ll give that a try next time.