Brake Service Advice

Discover signs of brake wear and the importance of a brake inspection.

Your brakes are one of the most important safety features on your vehicle. Helena Ford Lincoln is here to help you make sure they're in optimum condition. Brakes are designed to slowly wear as you use them. That's why it's so important to visit your Ford Dealership where an expert technician can perform a thorough inspection and complete any needed maintenance or repairs.

Can you spot the signs?

Have you ever wondered what's stopping you? Do your brakes feel squishy or squeak? These are signs you shouldn't ignore. Even if you don't see any signs, a routine inspection at your Ford Dealership can save you money on costly repairs. To discover more about how brakes work, how to spot warning signs and why it's so important to have regular brake inspections, please view the video above.

Lifetime Brake Pad Guarantee*

At Ford, we'll stop at nothing to make sure you can stop for anything. That's why we provide a Lifetime Brake Pad Guarantee. Our brake pads are specifically designed and engineered for your Ford. For optimum stopping power, schedule a brake inspection at your Helena Ford Lincoln

*Eligible Motorcraft brake pads purchased after July 1, 2014. Nontransferable. Requires completion of any other necessary brake service such as brake rotor service. Replacement Motorcraft brake pads must be installed by a Ford Dealership or Quick Lane® technician to be eligible. Labor costs not included. Restrictions and exclusions apply. See Service Advisor for details. Motorcraft® is a registered trademark of Ford Motor Company.

Car Service 101 | Brake Service Advice

Helpful Information About Keeping Your Brakes Safe & Healthy From the Service Team at Helena Ford

When it comes to the various systems on your car, your brakes are at least as important as your engine; think about it, what good are all those horses in there if you can't bring yourself to a stop safely and efficiently? Exactly. Here at Helena Ford, we wanted to let our Service Experts impart a little wisdom about brake maintenance, signs of wear, and when it's time to come in for a repair. You remember the old saying, 'Knowledge is Power', right? Well, we think that's true. The better you know your car and your brake system, the better you'll be able to assess a problem early and get it taken care of before it becomes more than just a maintenance issue.

We encourage drivers from Helena, Butte, Townsend, Deer Lodge, and Clancy, MT to read through the different sections below to glean some useful info about brakes, how to care for them, and how to recognize signs of wear and tear. If you notice something on your own vehicle that could use a look or use some work, then schedule an appointment with our Service Center and let our professionally trained technicians take care of it for you.

Why is Proper Brake Care So Important?

If someone asked you what the single most important safety system in your vehicle is, you might not think to answer, "Brakes," first—some people may say "Seatbelts," or perhaps, "Airbags,", but we think it's the brake system. The ability to stop on a dime or slow your vehicle when you need to is crucial, and it's something you need to protect. Knowing more about your brakes can help you assess issues when they start, rather than letting them become dangerous or expensive to correct. Read on the learn more about wear and tear, how to check your brakes, and when you'll need to replace them.

What's the Difference Between Standard Brakes & Ceramic Brakes?

Ceramic brake pads were developed as an answer to the standard, metallic or semi-metallic brake pad, and while they are sometimes a bit more expensive, they have the advantage of being quieter and having a longer lifespan than both semi-metallic and organic brake pads. They're also suitable for a wide range of temps, and they tend to create less brake dust, too.

How to Check Your Brakes for Wear & Tear

The first way to check for wear is simply by looking at the brake pads. You can do this by peering through the space between your wheel spokes. You should see at least 1/4th an inch of pad pressed against the metal rotor. If there's less than that, it may be time to have the pads replaced.

What Are Obvious Signs of Wear & Tear?

Aside from simply seeing that your brakes need replaced, there are some signs you might experience along the way as well. If you hear squeaking, grinding, or clicking sounds coming from your brakes consistently, that could indicate an issue. Additionally, if your brakes feel soft or spongey, or there's a "pulsing" feeling when you press the brake pedal, your brakes might need some work. Then there is the most obvious: if your "check brake" or ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) light is illuminated on your dashboard, then that's a good sign to have them checked!

When Is it Time to Replace Your Brake Pads or Disc?

As we mentioned above, if you check your pads and there is less than 1/4th an inch left, as a general rule, it's time to replace them. As for your brake discs, sometimes an uneven brake pad or a piece of debris will cause the disc to become warped, grooved, or otherwise unfit; in these cases, it's a good idea to have the brake disc looked at and likely replaced.


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    Expires: 12/31/19

    *Available for Motorcraft® brake pads purchased after 7/1/14 and Omnicraft™ brake pads purchased after 7/1/17. Nontransferable. Replacement requires copy of original repair order and completion of any other necessary brake service, such as brake rotor service. Motorcraft or Omnicraft brake pads must be installed by U.S. Ford or Lincoln Dealership or Quick Lane® technician to be covered. Pads only; labor costs not included. Restrictions and exclusions apply. Offer valid with coupon. See Service Advisor for details. Expires 12/31/19.


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    Expires: 09/30/19

    *Subject to credit approval. Rebate valid on qualifying purchase of $250 or more before tax; not valid on prior purchases. Complete purchase must be made on the Ford Service Credit Card. Offer valid 7/01/19 to 9/30/19. Submit rebate by 10/31/19 by mail-in rebate form or online at Limit one $25 mail-in rebate per visit. Rebate by prepaid debit card. Cannot be combined with any other Ford Service Credit Card rebate/offer. Ford Service Credit Card is issued by Citibank, N.A. See Service Advisor for vehicle applications and rebate details. Offer valid with coupon. Expires 9/30/19.

  1. Helena Ford Lincoln

    3365 Hwy 12 E
    PO Box 4489
    Helena, MT 59604

    • Sales: (406) 495-2790
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Helena Ford Lincoln

3365 Hwy 12 E
Directions PO Box 4489
Helena, MT 59604

  • Sales: (406) 495-2790
  • Service: (406) 495-2780
  • Parts: (406) 495-2780


  • Monday 7:30AM - 6:00PM
  • Tuesday 7:30AM - 6:00PM
  • Wednesday 7:30AM - 6:00PM
  • Thursday 7:30AM - 6:00PM
  • Friday 7:30AM - 6:00PM
  • Saturday 8:00AM - 3:00PM
  • Sunday Closed
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