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Why is My Parking Brake Stuck?

It's smart to put that parking brake on when you are situated on a hill for any length of time. You can protect your transmission from wear and tear by doing so. But when you come back from wherever you were and you try to head out, what if your parking brake is stuck and you can't get it to turn back off?

Driving with it on is sometimes possible, but you can cause a lot of damage to your braking system. Avoid this issue and solve it before you take the vehicle on the road. Here are some causes of the parking brake sticking:

Cold Weather

If it's really cold out, ice can cause the brake to freeze into place. To help it thaw out, turn the car on and the engine can help to melt the ice away. You can gently rev the engine to heat things up as well and then after the car has warmed a bit, try to disengage the brake.


Brakes can become rusted or corroded over time and if that happens, the parking brake can definitely get stuck. It's hard to diagnose that if you aren't with a mechanic and you may end up calling a tow truck to take your vehicle into the shop. Try shifting from drive to reverse a few times to see if the brake will dislodge. You don't want to get too much motion or you could damage other things.

Too Long On

Usually, the parking brake is something you have on for a small length of time, but if you leave it on for too long, it can become frozen into place. IF you know you're going to have it on for a long time, try to park in a temperature-controlled location.

Hard Engagement

If you really tugged on that brake hard when you engaged it, you might have jammed it. You will likely need professional help to get it off so you can drive on.

If you need help with your parking brake, give our professionals a call at our auto repair shop for advice and repairs.