Why Do My Brake Lights Come On While Driving? (9 Reasons Why)

Your car’s safety depends on its brakes, so it’s crucial to check that they’re in good working order. If the parking brakes are the culprit, you may simply disengage them to turn the light off.

The brake light may also flash for a variety of other reasons. First, however, a specialist must identify the root cause of the dash-mounted brake light staying on.

Discover more about why your brake lights come on when you drive!

Why Do My Brake Lights Come On While Driving?

Your brake lights may come on while driving for several reasons, including when your parking brake is engaged. In addition, a brake fluid leakage or low level of fluid can also activate the brake light. Finally, of course, damaged brake pads, faulty sensors, problems with your vehicle’s ABS System, and missing striker can all be a reason for your brake light to come while you are driving. 

Learn more about why your brake lights come on while you’re driving. Here are nine reasons why. Read on!

1. Parking Brake Is Activated

Many vehicles have a sensor to determine whether the parking brake is activated.

The sensor will force the brake light to turn on to alert the driver if the parking brake is engaged, even if it doesn’t seem to be.

By overheating, wearing away the inner surface of the brake system or pads, or jeopardising the quality of the brake fluid, running with the parking brake engaged can harm the brakes.

2. Brake Fluid Leakage

The amount of fluid in the system can be determined using a sensor installed in the vehicle’s master cylinder.

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In addition, the sensor activates the brake light when the fluid drops below the proper level. Therefore, the effective working of your brakes depends on maintaining the appropriate brake fluid level.

Also, the plastic brake fluid reservoir, frequently found under the hood, is designed to make it easier to determine the amount of fluid in the system while removing the cover.

This aids in avoiding entering moisture or dust, which could contaminate the fluid.

3. Damaged Brake Pads

Many automobiles come with a sensor that warns drivers when the brake pads need replacing by turning on the brake light or making a screaming noise.

Start replacing your brake pads right away. Metal-to-metal contact between the rotors and the worn-out friction material can seriously harm braking components and necessitate expensive repairs.

4. Faulty Sensors

The sensors that check the parking brake’s engagement and fluid level can malfunction, giving misleading readings and turning on the brake light.

A mechanic should inspect the car with experience in brake systems to identify the failing sensor and repair it correctly.

In addition, brake issues are a significant concern, so don’t wait to have your car checked out at an auto center if vibrations or brake noises also characterize the warning light.

So, do not drive at all costs and have your car towed to a repair shop right away if the braking system doesn’t feel good, doesn’t react quickly, the braking system goes to the bottom, or requires pumping to stop.

5. Problem With The ABS System

Problem With The ABS System

The brake light may illuminate due to issues with your vehicle’s ABS.

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As a result, a technician has to run a code check on your vehicle’s internal computer if the parking brake is not applied and the brake fluid is suitable.

6. Malfunctioning Brake Light Switch

A broken brake light switch is a common reason a car’s brake lights turn on. This part is attached close to the brake pedal under your dash.

In addition, your light switch may be stuck open, or the component may have failed if your lights are out.

Of course, other signs of a broken brake light switch include malfunctioning brake lights, impaired cruise control, a car that won’t shift out of the park, and brake lights that come on while driving.

7. Missing Striker

A striker is commonly seen near cars’ top of the brake pedal connection. This part releases the brake light switch when you lift your foot from the brake pedal.

That said, this striker could occasionally break, decay, or move. The control might not disengage when this occurs, keeping your brake lights on.

So, if you see fragments on your floorboard, the striker is probably shattered.

8. Brake Pedal Is Stuck

You can have a stuck brake pedal if applying pressure on it doesn’t cause it to return to its normal position.

In addition, the brake pedal assembly’s deteriorated parts or debris are typically to blame for this.

As a result, you risk damaging your car’s braking rotor and pads if this problem doesn’t get fixed immediately.

9. Circuit Issues

Sometimes, poor wiring can be the root of brake lights that suddenly turn on or off. It might be a problem if you’ve done everything to fix your brake lights, but they won’t switch on or off.

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So, to ensure a wiring problem doesn’t cause your brake lights, have your car checked by a qualified mechanic at your nearby repair shop.

To know more, you can also read our posts on why your car hesitates when you accelerate, why your car idles rough when the AC is on, and why your car insurance keeps going up.


One of your car’s most crucial safety elements is its brakes. A trained expert should examine your brakes to ensure they are in good working order if you are worried about their condition.

For frank, direct advice on maintaining your brakes, brake professionals are just who you need.

May you now have a clearer understanding of the possible causes why your brake lights are coming on while you are driving.

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