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Why Does My Car Shake When Braking?

Foot in Blue Shoe Pressing on Brake Pedal

When you come to a stop, and your car, van, or SUV shakes, several issues might be at play — and you should be planning a visit to a service center. It’s not uncommon to feel this issue in the steering wheel or brake pedal if your car trembles when braking, and it may be due to a number of different factors. Here, the auto experts at Sam Leman Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram FIAT Morton near East Peoria take a look at three of the most common reasons why your car shakes while braking.

Brake Rotors

The most-common reason for a shaking car is warped or damaged brake rotors, which work in tandem with brake pads to stop your car. When rotors get old, they thin out more and more with use, which makes them prone to damage. This wear and tear causes excessive heat, which in turn causes brake pads to slip. This makes your brake pads slip, and results in a quivering in the brake pedal.

Brake rotors should usually be replaced once they reach 70,000 miles of use, but may need work earlier for our Pekin and Washington drivers, depending on your driving style.

Exposed Brake Rotor


You may also find the shaking you’re feeling is the result of tires being out of alignment, or just being a bit old. When either of those two happen after you hit a pothole or a curb especially hard, among other events, your suspension has to work extra-hard to keep everything balanced, and you can feel this struggle in your steering wheel.

Check your tire alignment every 5,000 miles during a routine tire rotation, or your owner’s manual for more optimal tire service intervals.

Steering and Suspension Components

Real issues with your steering or suspension systems create shaking not only when braking, but during commutes and regular drives too. There are also cases when a damaged component like an axle shaft can cause issues specifically when coming to a stop.

These components in your suspension system are typically checked during routine tire rotations, just like your alignment.

How to Fix a Wobbling Car

Because so many different factors can create wobbling during your daily drives, having your vehicle checked by a professional mechanic is important to find the exact problem, and make sure your Gladiator engine specs are being used to the best of your ability. Don’t mess with your brakes unless you’re a trained professional. If you notice anything is off when using them, it’s likely time to schedule service near Washington right away. Learn more at the Sam Leman Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram FIAT Morton service department, and if you have questions, like how often to change your oil, be sure to contact us.

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