If you think you are having problems with your handbrake, read our quick guide and see if any of the most common issues is describing your handbrake. If they do, it's important that you go get your car checked by a professional.
Remember, if you have any of the following issues, your car will not pass the NCT. If you don't have a preferred mechanic or garage, get your car looked at with an AA approved service.
Handbrake Does Not Hold The Car
Your handbrake not holding your car is one of the most evident signs and probably what prompted you to think your handbrake may need to be looked at by a mechanic. The best way to test this is to go to a secluded area with a slight hill, drive your car slightly up the hill and engage the handbrake, if your car starts to roll, there is a problem with your handbrake.
Most likely, the brake pads are worn, or the cables have stretched; get it checked and don't put it off.
Handbrake Warning Sign
Another obvious one. If the handbrake warning light is showing on your dashboard, it's most likely something is the matter with the handbrake. Sometimes it can flash for a split second and be a blip, but if it continuously stays on, go get it checked.
The warning light coming on is most likely low brake fluid, a faulty handbrake switch or even an electronic fault.
Make sure to also read our most common reasons your car won't start in case you're ever wondering why your car won’t start.
Handbrake Is Too Tight
If it feels like you are pulling up a tonne of bricks every time you use the handbrake, something is wrong. A tight handbrake is usually from the cable binding and causing the mechanism to seize. This will also put a strain on the brakes itself. Get it looked at as soon as possible.
Handbrake Is Too Loose
On the opposite side, the handbrake is too loose. If you are not feeling any resistance when pulling up the handbrake, then it's too loose and is also a problem. Most likely, the cables have been stretched, which will reduce how effectively your handbrake works. It can also be a worn handbrake lever mechanism but again, go get it looked at.
Worried About Your Car's Health?
If you think you car isn't working 100%, make sure to check out AA Approved Car Servicing. Keep your car in top shape and prevents potential issues before they become major problems.