Wow! This one gets your attention real quick. We have always said ” I am not happy when my car will not start, But when it does not “STOP” it’s all bad. So what has happened. First of all, you may have been fortunate to have a red brake light come on, before your brake pedal became spongy or made its way to the floor when you attempted to stop. “Don’t count on it”. If the red brake light is on and your brake pedal is OK, the brake fluid level is most likely low and adding the correct brake fluid should turn the light out. The next step in this case, would be to have the brakes inspected for wear and a brake fluid leak.
Ok, on to the WOW factor. Most of the time, when your brake pedal goes to the floor, a steel brake line has rusted through. This allows the fluid to spew out there instead of applying the brakes.Next up, a brake component has failed causing the brake loss. A comforting fact. Today, the cars master cylinder fluid reservoir has a divided container. This reduces the odds you will lose all of your brake fluid at once, allowing you to have some brake even when your brake pedal goes to the floor. Safe to drive? NOOO! Get you home ( if no panic stops are required and you use your common sense allot ) Probably. To be smart and safe, have your car towed is best.
The other reason this light is there, is to tell you when your Parking Brake is on. Releasing the brake should turn the light off. If it does not go out, there may be a problem electrically or the parking brake is stuck part way on. An easy check, move the car forward slowly and see if the car comes to a stop fairly quickly. If so, the parking brake is most likely still on. If you still have your doubts, drive the car a few miles and place your hand near the center of the rear wheel. If you feel allot of heat, odds are the parking brake is hanging up or you have another issue on that wheel needing attention. Also this light should come on when the cars starts and go quickly.
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