Brake light switch information about the need for replacement

The car's brake light switch is an electromechanical device, part of the brake pedal assembly, which turns the brake lights on and off when the driver presses or releases the brake pedal. The brake light switch plays a critical role in ensuring safety while driving, as the brake lights notify other drivers that you intend to slow down or stop.

Types of car brake light switches:

  • With terminals featuring a screw clamp;
  • With swivel mount;
  • With pin contacts;
  • With flat contacts.

Moreover, the switches themselves are categorized into mechanical, pneumatic, and hydraulic types. Each of the mentioned types has specific characteristics that also determine the nuances of their installation.

Mechanical switches, being the simplest, are widely used. Due to their mechanical connection to the pedal, they respond accurately to the driver's actions. Specifically, these, despite their simplicity in design, tend to malfunction the most. The shortcomings of such devices largely stem from the properties of the materials from which they are made. For example, the metal of a spring can ages, and the contacts oxidize over time. Mechanical brake light switches are mounted on a specific bracket using screws, nuts, and sometimes plastic latches. The latter often don't have a long lifespan and can break, which can pose a problem. Typically, access to the mechanical switch is limited, and its removal can be challenging.

Pneumatic Brake Light Switches

Switches supplemented with pneumatics are typically installed on specialized vehicles with a pneumatic braking system, and also on trailers. In some cases, the device not only controls the brake lights but also acts as a sensor, responding to changes in air pressure in the pneumatic system and activating certain electrical equipment.

Hydraulic Brake Light Switches

Among the most reliable switches are the hydraulic ones. These devices are almost identical to their pneumatic counterparts with pin terminals but feature a more durable casing. This is because such switches are highly resistant to various liquids, including chemically aggressive ones. Due to their high reliability, hydraulic brake light switches are equipped on heavy vehicles with a hydraulic brake system.

Hydraulic stop-light switches are mounted within the wheel brake system. It connects to the braking system using a threaded nozzle, integrated with a high-strength casing. The body of such a switch is entirely metallic. As practice shows, these switches tend to last longer than others.

Signs of a malfunction that require you to contact a repair shop:

Many car enthusiasts have faced situations where their vehicle's brake light works intermittently or stops functioning altogether. In the vast majority of cases, the root cause of these malfunctions is a faulty switch. Despite its simple design, the switch often malfunctions and requires either maintenance or complete replacement. Here, one should pay attention to such problems:

  • The brake light activation becomes inconsistent or doesn't work at all;
  • The lights don't go off even after the driver releases the brake pedal.

Of course, it is impossible to ignore the failure of the brake light switch, since a car without normally working brake lights can create an emergency situation. In addition, non-working lights will attract the attention of police officers and traffic police. As a rule, switch malfunction is caused by contact oxidation, corrosion or carbon deposits. It is quite easy to solve this problem by contacting a car repair shop, where professional workers will quickly diagnose the fault and repair it, as well as replace the car’s brake light switch.

Work in a car service center to repair the brake light switch:

  • The connector is disconnected from the brake light switch
  • Lightly press the brake pedal;
  • The switch is removed from the mount;
  • A new switch is installed with the bushing completely pulled out into the pedal support;
  • Check the operation of the brake lights when the ignition is on;
  • The lower cladding is installed.

Also, after installing a brake light switch on the car, check the operation of the brake lights in real conditions. In rare cases, it may be necessary to check and replace individual on-board electrical fuses. And in some cases, it may be necessary to adjust the pedal height. It makes sense to periodically dismantle and clean the brake light switch - this ensures that the device will work for a long time and without interruption.

"Brake light switch replacement" fixes "Failed brake light switch"

The AutoTechIQ ranking for Safety, Cost Avoidance, and Environmental Impact is

env level
env level
Cost Avoidancei
env level
env level
Environmental Impacti
env level
env level
Four common causes for a no noise/no start from the vehicle and their related parts.
This fix will help eliminating

No Noise/No Start

The cause for no noise when starting the engine is usually a dead battery. However, it can also be a faulty starter, which is related to the electrical system that actually initializes the car. Alternatively, it might even be a problem with the key fob.

If your car makes no noise and fails to start, you must keep track of all evident symptoms. In this sense, note how the car behaves when you turn the key; does it make a click? Does it go completely silent? Any piece of information is vital at this stage. Remember that every detail helps the technician diagnose your car.

We'll share everything you need to know about communicating with the mechanic if your car won't start. We'll also discuss what specific issues your car might have according to its symptoms.

Learn More about the Symptom
Four common causes for the vehicle stuck on “Park” mode and their related parts.
This fix will help eliminating

Can't Shift Out Of "Park"

It won’t shift because the shift interlock is damaged, the shifter release is broken, or the shift cable is faulty. Alternatively, if it changes out of place but is not working, it could be a faulty brake switch or shift wiring issue.

Failure to shift gears from "Park" can worsen while driving, potentially causing further damage to the transmission system. Therefore, prompt action is essential to avoid further damage to the transmission system and prevent strain on the engine.

Consider sharing the problem with a car service specialist so they can provide expert analyses and recommendations; restore your safety and comfort on the road.

Learn More about the Symptom
Is Brake light switch replacement
Your Issue?