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How Long Should F150 Brakes Last? Mechanic weighs in

Each day millions of people rely on vehicles to get them where they need to go and every day those same people rely on the vehicle’s braking system to ensure they get to their destination safely. This is especially true when towing or carrying heavy loads, which F150 owners often find themselves doing. If you own an F150, you might be wondering, how long should F150 brakes last?

Brake wear depends on many factors, how a vehicle is driven, how it is used, and even the climate in which it’s driven. Typically Ford F150 owners can expect their brakes to last about 30,000 miles.

Brake parts

Continue reading to learn more about your vehicle’s brake system, including how long you can expect your brakes to last, the signs and symptoms that indicate when your brakes are worn, and how much it will cost you to replace the brakes on your F150.

Check out the brake troubleshooting and step by step DIY repairs page here.

How Long Do Ford F150 Brake Pads Last?

Although this depends largely on the type of brake pad you are using, drivers can typically expect anywhere from 30,000 to 40,000 miles of use from their brake pads before having to have them replaced, with some brands boasting up to 70,000 miles of use. In addition to the brand, this also depends on how and where the vehicle is driven. Drivers who often carry heavy loads, or do a lot of driving in town, may have to change their brakes more often.

How Do I Know If My Brake Pads Need to Be Replaced?

Ideally, drivers would take their vehicle in for regular maintenance and inspections, but sometimes your brakes will wear in-between service intervals.

In such cases, there are a few telltale signs that you can look for to alert you that your brakes need to be replaced.

Some signs to look for are:

  • Burning smell, which is the result of rubbing when your brake pads become worn.
  • Squealing, screeching, squeaking, or grinding noises when braking.
  • The steering wheel or pedals vibrating.
  • Strong pulling to one side or the other when braking.
  • Warning lights illuminating your dashboard.

While these are the most common signs that your brakes need attention ASAP, you should check your owner’s manual to learn more about the signs that are specific to your vehicle.

Check out a step by step pad check guide here.

Can I Drive with Bad Brakes?

The most obvious answer to this question is NO. Your vehicle’s braking system is what allows you to slow down and come to a stop. When you lose the ability to do either one of these things, you risk serious injury to yourself, your passengers, and other drivers on the road.

That being said, your vehicle’s brakes will wear continuously through regular use, and it is normal for your brake pedal to get closer to the floor as your brakes wear. You do not need to replace your brakes at every sign of wear, but as soon as you start to notice any of the symptoms listed above, the only place you should be driving to is a service station.

How Much Does It Cost to Replace Brake Pads on An F150?

While the final cost to replace your brake pads will vary depending on the type of vehicle you own, your location, and the parts that you choose to complete the repair with, we have compiled some estimates from various sources.

You may find the brake resources page useful; it’s a fluff-free guide to DIY brake repairs.

Brake pad replacement cost – According to RepairPal, the cost to replace brake pads on an F150 will cost drivers between $174 – $197, with labor costing between $87 – $110 and parts priced at $87. However, when we checked the estimated price for a brake pad replacement on a 2020 Ford F150 in Maine, that price became $205 – $226. And when we checked that same repair in California, the price jumped to $291.

Brake rotor replacement cost – Another popular repair site, YourMechanic, estimated the repair price for a brake rotor/disc replacement service to be around $289. However, when we used their location estimation feature, we found that the price for a brake disc replacement service for a 2020 model F150 in Maine was $523, and when we checked that same repair in California, the price became $555.

Can I Change Brake Pads Myself?

Replacing pads is one of the easiest DIY repairs.

Fortunately, if you want to save yourself money on labor costs, brake pad replacements are one of the easiest DIY repairs that drivers can do on a vehicle. It typically will not require drivers to own any specialized tools, and drivers can find a slew of DIY videos online to help them through the process.

Still, it is important to note that particular care should be taken around a vehicle that is jacked up. Additionally, since you are working on your brakes, it is important to make sure that you have done everything right before driving long distances.

It is usually a clever idea to have someone with some experience help you the first time you try a DIY repair on your brake system.

Check out the step by step pad replacement guide here.

How Long Do F150 Brake Rotors Last?

Brake rotors are just as important as brake pads when it comes to stopping your vehicle. Rotors are the part of the brake system that the pads clamp onto to stop your wheel from spinning, which slows down and stops your vehicle. There are several types of rotors that can be installed on an F150, and each one will wear differently.

The lifespan of your rotors will depend on how and where you drive your vehicle as well as the type of rotors that you are using. However, drivers can typically expect to replace their F150 rotors every 30,000—80,000 miles.

How Do I Know If My Brake Rotors Need to Be Replaced?

Most good shops will check tires and brakes as a standard free inspection every time your vehicle goes to the shop. Rotors should be inspected with every scheduled maintenance visit. Checking rotors is easy on most vehicles, wide-open spoked alloy wheels allow for pad and rotor inspection without removing the wheels.

But there are some signs you can look for to determine if your rotors are wearing in between services.

Some of the symptoms to look for include:

  • Poor braking response―it is taking the vehicle longer than normal to stop once you apply the brakes.
  • High pitched screeching noises radiating from the tire area of the vehicle when you apply the brakes.
  • You can see visible lip or gouges or wear patterns on your rotors.
  • Vibrating feeling in the brake pedal when brakes are applied. This may be a sign that your rotors are warped.

Check out step by step rotor replacement guide here.

Can I Drive with Bad Rotors?

If you notice any of the signs above or suspect that your rotors are starting to fail, you should not drive your vehicle. Doing so could cause further damage to your vehicle and the vehicle’s braking system, and in some extreme cases, the rotor may fall apart or even explode. Driving a vehicle that you suspect has bad rotors could put yourself, your passengers, and the other drivers on the road at risk of serious injury.

Additionally, you must change your pads every time you replace your rotors, even if the pads are not showing signs of wear.

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