Why Car Brakes Squeak in Reverse? — Reasons and Easy Fix Guide

Squeaky brakes, when reversing, are the most frequent issue that many car drivers deal with daily. And, since the brake sound is extremely high-pitched and annoying, you’ll be desperate to eliminate it.

However, the secret to fixing it lies in finding the right cause. And when you find yourself wondering, “Why do my car brakes squeal in reverse?” know that many different things, including worn brake pads, can contribute to squeaking car brakes.

Therefore, if you’re looking for a solution to the issue of squeaky car brakes when reversing, you’ve come to the right place. Because in this article, we’ve covered the causes and effective techniques to fix it. So, let’s unfold why car brakes squeak in reverse and how to fix it.

Reasons: What Causes Brakes to Squeak in Reverse

So, what really causes your car brakes to make that unbearable, irksome noise? Well, several factors may contribute to the problem of squeaking car brakes when reversing. Let’s look them up.

  1. Worn Brake Pads 

The most common cause? Worn brake pads. When you apply the brakes, even when you are in reverse, your car may make a noise if your brake pads are worn out.

  1. Brake Pad Material

Some types of brake pad material are more likely to squeak than others. You might hear squeaking when you reverse if the brake pads on your car are made of a material that tends to make more noise, such as ceramic brake pads. 

  1. Moisture
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The brake pads on a car sitting for a while may make noise when starting the engine. This is because rust that has formed on the brake rotors due to moisture exposure may make a noise when the brake pads come into contact with it.

  1. Lack of Lubrication

The lack of lubrication at the contact points where the shoes and drum come into contact may cause squealing from your car’s drum brakes. A squeaking sound is produced when there is no lubrication, and the shoes begin to rub against the backing plate. 

  1. Dust Between the Rotor and Brake Pad

Another frequent reason for brake squealing is dirt, dust, or other debris on the surface of your brake pads or rotors. This can happen in various driving situations or if your car is left parked for a long time and collects dust, which is the main reason behind the squeaking of brakes while reversing. 

How to Fix Squeaky Car Brakes When Reversing

That was all for the causes. But how would you get rid of this annoying noise? 

The first thing that typically comes to mind when you hear a squeaking sound coming from your car’s brakes is typically worn brake pads. However, if your brake pads are still in good shape, you can fix squeaky brakes using the techniques below.

Method 1: Greasing Brake Pads

The solution may be as simple as lubricating the touchpoints if the brakes on your car are brand new but are still making a squeaking noise.

After removing the brake pads from the calipers, apply the brake lubricant to the back of the brake pad.

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Make sure there is no grease or lubricant on the friction surfaces of the brake pad or rotor to maximize braking efficiency.

Method 2: Replacing Pads and Rotors 

If the rotors and pads are damaged, the brakes on your car might eventually reach the end of their lifespan. If the brake pad friction cover wears out, the brake caliper and rotor will eventually start touching, producing a squealing sound. 

Additionally, if your rotors are bent, you might hear noises from uneven contact between the brake pads and the rotors. Replace the rotor and pad to stop the brakes from squeaking so loudly.  

Method 3: Putting the Set of Shims

Consider using brake pad shims for additional protection against noisy brakes. Your brake pads might come with attached shims, depending on your car’s model. 

If not, you can add brake pad shims to the brake pads to stop noise from occurring.

These shims fill in any gaps that would allow the brake pads to slide around and frequently have a thin layer of rubber coating to absorb any shocks that might cause a squeaking sound. 


Squeaky brakes when backing up, can be troublesome, but routine brake system maintenance and inspection can help to avoid the issues and guarantee safe driving. 

Try cleaning, replacing worn brake pads, lubricating brake components, and visually inspecting the brake hardware if your brakes squeak when going in reverse. 

Any brake issues need to be fixed right away because putting them off can lower braking effectiveness, which might be risky for you while driving your car. 

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