1996 Nissan Maxima Brake Light Switch in Tualatin, OR

 

When should I start looking at my brake lights in order to get them repaired? Is there a certain time frame or a magic number that I can start thinking about getting the job done?

Unfortunately, there is no real time frame where this is more likely than other time periods. A lot has to do with usage and other factors such as where the switches are located. A lot of vehicles have this part under the driver’s feet where a lot of dirt tends to collect. The collected dirt tends to get into any parts close to that area and they cause problems including problems for your brake light switch. You also have to factor in the usage rate of brake lights. If you live in the city then this is a far more frequent occurrence. You will likely wear down your brake light faster than people who do not have to use their brake lights as much.

What is a brake pedal switch? I’ve always just thought that pressing on my brake pedal activates my brake lights. I haven’t thought about it much at all outside of that fact.

A brake light switch is an electrical component that works in concert with the brake pedal. It does act how you think, however, it might not be the straight pedal to a light or lights configuration that you have in your mind. The switch has what some people would call a button. If the button gets pushed then the brake lights turn off. What you need to know is that when the brake pedal is not pushed then the button is being pushed down. If you push the brake pedal then the button is released and your brake lights turn on. This is the reason we said that the brake pedal and brake switch may not work the way you think of them in your mind. Remember that the switch also has the job of sending a signal to the ignition switch and gear selector in newer models of vehicles that tells them when to do their jobs. The reason that this was done is to make sure that your brakes, as a whole system, are activated before you start your vehicle or move into gear out of park.

Why does my brake light turn on when I push down the brake pedal?

Basically, pushing down the brake pedal allows the switch to complete an electric circuit and that turns on the brake lights

Do they have any other functions I should know about?

A lot of the newer machines on the marketplace use the brake light switch to tell the vehicle when to start the vehicle or when it should shift your transmission out of a parked position. Remember this is only true if the vehicle is a newer model and may not be the case with your particular vehicle.

What should I be looking for if I think that I actually have a brake switch problem?

One of the things you might notice is that the brake lights are draining the battery because they are active when you are not using the brakes. Inversely, you could press the brakes and have nothing happen as far as your brakes lights illuminating. If you have a newer vehicle then you may not be able to start your vehicle or to get your vehicle out of park at all.

Well, I’ve got to drive this in to get fixed, right? So, can I drive this thing into the shop with this type of problem happening to my Nissan?

Honestly, it should be avoided if possible because your brake lights will be unreliable. They may not activate when you need them to warn other drivers of your relative speed or intentions as far as slowing down or speeding up since they will be on in either case. They, the brake lights, may not work at all which means that other drivers may hit you because they do not know that you are slowing down.

How do I contact you to get you to look at my 1996 Nissan Maxima’s brake light switch?

You can visit us at 19460 SW 89th Ave. Tualatin, OR 97062. You can also call us. Just dial 503-692-0846 during business hours and we would be happy to speak with you about your vehicle.