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Q: High-pitched noise

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My brakes occasionally make high-pitched noise. Also, I recently had a new high-pressure power steering hose installed and filled my power steering fluid, but when I turn left, it makes a noise that sounds as though I'm missing power steering fluid. So I don't know if it's my power steering or my rack and pinion.

High pitch brake noises are usually caused by the wear indicator on the brake pads. This is a thin piece of metal that makes contact with the rotor with the brake pad lining gets to about 20%. The noise is designed to make you take the vehicle in for inspection before any damage is done to the brake components. Usually if no other damage is found, replacing the pads is all that is necessary. The noise from the power steering could very well be your rack and pinion. An internal leak in the rack will cause the pump to generate more pressure when turning to one side. This will cause the pump to whine as if it were low on fluid. In severe cases, the belt can start slipping making a very high pitch noise. If you would like to have the source of the noise verified by a professional, a certified mechanic from YourMechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose the brake noise and make the correct repairs.

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