Noisy brakes



The brakes on my 2000 Lexus RX300 started groaning about two years ago. Brake fluid and pads were replaced (not by dealer mechanic), no change in noise. Lexus shop advised new rotors (they were rusty).

In late 2007 had the rotors replaced by non-dealer mechanic, along with brake pads again. No change, mechanic stated that this is typical for ABS brakes. Took it back to Lexus and their diagnosis is that two of the computer sensor need replacement.

The noise and feel is getting to be unbearable. I am not sure I trust the dealer mechanic (they were apparently wrong about the rotors causing the problem).

Could this be a sensor problem (related to the ABS)? Or something else?

Car has about 68K miles on it.

Thanks for your feedback.


as long as you DO have good brakes, rotors and pads:

i have found most brake noise, groaning, grunting, and squealing is a result of brake dust accumulating on the pads, rails slides and rotors.

occasionally a can of spray brake parts cleaner and liberally dousing the entire brake caliper, pads and rotors helps get rid of some of this.

even on a set of brakes that are making noise you need to ensure they are mechanically sound, once thats done, keeping them clean is helpful.

it sounds like the dealer is going on a fishing expedition (or at least trying to pay for his fishing boat) with the abs sensor and the rusty rotors and the computer sensor diagnosis.

the next brake job make sure you specify the BEST quality rotors, and pads. don’t skimp on no name parts. made in USA rotors (NOT china) are far superior in steel quality (and IMHO) braking quality and will last longer.


What is the noise like?? High pitch?? Grinding???

Never heard of a sensor causing any noise. Also…Rotors will rust…Their steel. but the second you press the brake pedal the rust is gone.

ABS brakes have NOTHING to do with this.

Find another mechanic. Maybe someone who specializes in brakes…NOT MIDAS OR SOME OTHER CHAIN. Find a good local mechanic.


Lexus said my sensors that control ABS were failing.
This is not a squealing noise…it’s a loud grinding with grabbing effect…even at the slowest of speed.
new rotors and pads did not change this at all


Are you familiar with the sound of the ABS system when it engages under slippery conditions? Does it sound like what you’re experiencing now? Is the brake pedal pulsing when the noise occurs? If the answer is “yes” to all three questions, faulty ABS sensors might very well be the cause.

Did they scan the ABS controller for error codes?




I am not familiar with the (ABS) sound described. The effect happens when the brake is almost and fully engaged. There is some pulsing/pedal grabbing. Sound is metallic and groaning. The response is louder and physically stronger when coming to a quick stop, also when stopping downhill and applying more pressure.

The dealer did not give me specific information about error codes.


Tester does it again! Right on.