2016 GMC Sierra Brakes Creaking When Pressed

If you own a 2016 GMC Sierra, you may have experienced an annoying creaking noise coming from the brakes when pressing the pedal. I know I certainly dealt with the frustration of 2016 GMC Sierra brakes creaking during normal driving.

For months, it seemed to get louder and was impossible to ignore. Between the sound and worrying what it could mean for the truck’s stopping ability, I was eager to figure out the cause. Thankfully, a visit to my trusty mechanic revealed it was merely a case of surface rust building up on the caliper slides. A quick cleaning fixed the issue.

The Start of the 2016 GMC Sierra Brakes Creaking Problem

2016 GMC Sierra Brakes

I had owned my 2016 GMC Sierra for about two years when I first noticed the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes creaking when I pressed on the pedal. It started out quiet but gradually got louder over time. At first, I didn’t think much of it since brakes will make some noise as they wear down. But this seemed a little excessive even for normal wear and tear.

The truck only had around 30,000 miles on it so I didn’t expect to be having brake issues already. The 2016 GMC Sierra brakes had been functioning fine up until that point with no problems stopping or anything. It was just that annoying creaking sound that happened each time I stepped on the brake pedal.

After a while, it started to really bug me whenever I was driving. The noise was loud enough that passengers would comment on it. That’s when I knew it was time to take it into the shop and have someone take a look at the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes to see what was going on.

Taking it to the Mechanic

2016 GMC Sierra Brakes

I took it to my trusted mechanic who I always use for maintenance and repairs. I told him about the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes creaking issue I was having. He took it for a test drive and said he heard the noise right away.

He checked out the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes and didn’t see any obvious issues like wear or damage on the pads or rotors that would cause the noise. Everything looked normal for the mileage. So he started removing more parts to get a better look.

That’s when he discovered the problem – there was some rust and corrosion buildup on the brake caliper slides. These are the parts that allow the caliper to slide back and forth as the brakes are pressed and released. With the rust present, it was causing the caliper to bind and stick a bit as it moved.

This sticking is what was creating the creaking, grinding noise coming from the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes whenever the brakes were applied. Even though nothing looked externally wrong, the inner workings were getting hung up due to the rust.

Fixing the Rusty Caliper Slides

2016 GMC Sierra Brakes

To fix it, my mechanic had to remove each caliper one by one to get access to the slides. Then he used a wire brush to scrub away all the surface rust that had accumulated. Some penetrating lubricant was applied to protect the bare metal and prevent future corrosion.

Once all the rust was removed and the slides were lubricated smoothly again, the calipers could slide freely like they were designed to. This took care of the creaking coming from the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes. No need for any part replacements – just a good cleaning was all that was required in this case.

The total repair only took a couple hours but it solved the annoying noise issue. I was happy I didn’t have to replace expensive brake components like rotors or pads already at only 30k miles. Sometimes simple maintenance like removing surface rust is all that’s needed to fix a problem.

Preventing Future Rust Buildup

2016 GMC Sierra Brakes

Now that the issue was resolved, I wanted to learn how to prevent it from happening again to the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes down the road. My mechanic explained that rust is a common culprit in making brakes creak.

Moisture easily gets trapped inside the caliper assembly where it can’t fully dry out. Over time, this leads to corrosion building up on the slides. Driving in wet or winter conditions exacerbates the rust formation.

The best way to protect against future rust is using a corrosion-inhibiting lubricant on the slides during regular brake inspections. Caliper grease is ideal as it repels water but also lubricates the moving parts. Another option is using a rust-removing spray on the slides every 6 months or so as a preventative treatment.

Proper maintenance like this can significantly extend the life of brake components. With a little extra care taken to keep the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes rust-free inside, hopefully this issue won’t repeat itself for many more miles. Fingers crossed it stays creak-free from here on out!

Final Thought

In the end, I’m glad I had my mechanic thoroughly inspect the cause of the 2016 GMC Sierra brakes creaking rather than just dismissing it as normal wear. While it seemed like a small problem on the surface, finding and addressing the root cause of the rusty slides avoided potential bigger brake problems down the road.

The repair also gave me valuable knowledge on how to properly maintain brakes going forward. Just because you can’t see any obvious brake wear on the outside, doesn’t mean internal issues aren’t developing. Rust can silently cause problems.

Regular brake inspections, lubricating sliding surfaces, and using anti-corrosion products are important. A little preventative maintenance goes a long way in maximizing brake and vehicle performance. I hope this experience helps any other GMC owners dealing with creaky 2016 GMC Sierra brakes to resolve the issue.


How can you tell if it’s just surface rust or a bigger problem?

If the noise is the only symptom and the brakes are still stopping the truck fine, it’s likely surface rust. Have a mechanic inspect for wear on pads/rotors which would point to a deeper issue. Rust buildup is common and removal usually fixes it.

Will this happen on all GMC models or just the 2016 Sierra?

Creaky brakes due to rust are possible on many vehicles, but reports seem more common for the 2016 GMC Sierra. Its brake assembly design may be more prone to trapping moisture. Other GM trucks could also be affected. Always maintain your brakes to prevent rust wherever possible.

Is there a recall or technical service bulletin for this issue?

GM has not issued an official recall for creaky brakes on the 2016 Sierra. However, there is a technical service bulletin (TSB 18-NA-014) acknowledging complaints of noise and providing lubrication/cleaning procedures as a remedy. While not a defect, it recognizes preventative maintenance can help.

What’s the best lubricant to use on the slides?

Caliper grease is ideal as it’s thick enough to stay put but still allows smooth movement. It repels water too. Other options include lithium or molybdenum grease. Avoid wax-based lubes as they attract debris. When in doubt, consult your owner’s manual or mechanic.

Is there anything I can do myself or should fixes only be dealer repairs?

Most of the time, surface rust removal can be done as a DIY project if you have basic mechanic skills. Just be careful not to damage components. Deeper issues may require a pro. Refer to service info for guidance on what’s involved in your specific situation.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

We use cookies in order to give you the best possible experience on our website. By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies.