Q: The brakes in my car are acting weird. All of a sudden, they feel like they have no power.

asked by on October 31, 2017

All of a sudden, the brakes in my car feel powerless. I had to step all the way to the floor to come to a complete stop. It feels very weird to drive and made me feel on edge just to go a very short distance. I just got my car used last week. My dad is really into cars and did an inspection and did not find anything wrong, so I bought the car. The dealership was also supposed to have done an inspection, but I'm not sure how thorough it was. I am taking it to the dealership to get checked out in a few days, but I'm a bit worried. My car was completely fine this morning and now the brakes make me feel like I am unable to drive my car. Don't want to have a bunch of money on my new car go down the drain. Is this fixable? Is it going to cost me a lot of money? Even if it does get fixed, it is something I have to be worried about again in the future? Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

My car has 46920 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

It sounds like you may have a problem with the brakes developing the proper hydraulic pressure. One of the most common causes of the brake pedal going to the floor is a loss of brake fluid. Generally, this is easy to detect due to the fact that there is usually brake fluid leaking on the ground underneath the vehicle. The brake booster is a mechanism that uses vacuum pressure to take the force being applied to the brake pedal and amplify it. If the booster is bad, then the full amount of force needed to activate the master cylinder and pressurize the brake fluid isn’t going to be there.

Another possible cause for this may be a failing master cylinder. The master cylinder is where the brake fluid is compressed creating the necessary hydraulic pressure the braking system needs in order for it to stop your vehicle. When the master cylinder fails, this may cause a loss of hydraulic pressure which will usually also cause the brake pedal to go to the floor. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose your braking system.

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