How To Depress Brake Pedal To Start Engine

How to depress brake pedal to start engine? We will instruct you in this post. Still, you have to use such a function all the time, so you might find it malfunctioning over time.

It’s when the brakes become stiff and makes it harder to slow your car down and you might have to practically stand on it to stop your car.

If you encounter this problem, you should get it fixed as soon as possible so that you can run your vehicle again.

It’s quite a serious safety problem, but why is it hard to depress the brake pedal to start the engine in the first place? 

If you want to know the answer to fixing your car yourself, don’t miss our post below!

What Does Depressing The Brake Pedal To Start The Engine Mean?

depress the brake pedal

What Does Depressing The Brakes Do?

It means when you put your foot on the brake unit and push it down, mostly your right foot!

Doing this can help your vehicle slow down while driving, and if you push it down for too long and persistently, your automobile will gradually stop until it is completely idle!

Unlike pressing the brake to stop the car, when you mention brake pedal depression to start the engine, you have to press it down to crank up your engine.

If your car is equipped with an automatic transmission, you have to press the pedal first, then push the start/stop button so that you can start the motor properly.

To depress a pedal can be a solution for your stiff brakes. Typically, this problem can result in a bad brake booster which is supposed to enhance the force applied to your brake pedals.

As such, your force will decrease, and it takes a longer distance to stop a car.

Why do you have to do it?

When you depress the brake pedal, it will have the starting circuit completed and make it function properly. This circuit is a built-in safety feature in your engine.

To make it easy for you to do this, there’s an adjustment on the switch so that you can adjust it without pressing the clutch pedal down too hard.

This way, it will not be pushed down so far or down to the floor. If it happens, there might be a loss in the fluid, or something might go wrong.

How To Depress Brake Pedal To Start Engine?

How To Depress Brake Pedal To Start Engine

Put your right foot (it’s still all right if you use the left foot) on the pedal and press down.

It doesn’t need to be pushed really hard if you don’t need to stop at once! Actually, slamming it too forcefully might be dangerous.

Once you are accustomed to it, you can feel how hard you need to slow down your car smoothly or even immediately, and you can apply it to different situations.

It, of course,  needs some practice to form your muscle memory.

To practice this, you can sit on the sofa and pretend you are now driving. You should imagine the feel and its strength and how much you need to press.

Once you master this technique, you might as well stop it completely without any problem.

It’s really important that you restart your car with the brakes on always. Also, you have to check your car before you move or drive.

Some modern vehicles will allow you to start your engine without pushing down your brakes but hit the Start/Stop button.

All in all, make sure to depress the brakes or push the button before driving to ensure safety.

In some cases, you might feel your brakes are a bit spongy, which can lead to many issues. It’s because they need to engage the braking system steadily when you give force to the pedal.

Though you try to fix it, there are chances that the brakes are still spongy after bleeding.

The spongy one can make it pull down to the floor; then, you probably have a leak that causes the problem. That issue will make room for air in the system.

If you find this malfunction, you should have a mechanic examine and fix it right away!

Why The Brake Pedals Are Hard To Press

Brake Pedal

The common issue for the braking system is it being too firm. This problem requires more strength to push down the pedals, or you can’t even press it down at all.

Depress Brake To Start Engine warning comes up often because the driver is not pressing the brake pedal hard enough or the brake light switch is defective.

If you encounter this issue on your way, and you feel your braking is locked, just calm down. You now have to downshift the gears and use the engine braking to slow down your automobile.

When you eventually drive really slowly, find a safe location like a compact parking spot to stop it eventually.

Then you can check for some causes for this below:

Brake Booster Failure

As mentioned, a booster multiplies the force in a braking system, which assists you in stopping the vehicle.

A failed one can dramatically make your car stop in a longer distance and put you on the verge of collision when you need an urgent halt.

It will function by using the engine as a vacuum reserve to manifest the force to apply to the brake pedals, helping the braking process be safer and smoother.

For a malfunctioned booster, the cause may lie in a bad front booster seal. Once it occurs to your vehicle, the reduction in your vacuum air pressure leads to stiff pedals, and finally, the whole braking system loses its engagement.

A front booster seal failure also results in an unstable master cylinder, and it will gradually fail.

The common reason for a bad booster is age or wear and tear. Yet, if you drive and use them suddenly, especially when driving fast very often, you can make it get worse after a period of time.

Vacuum Leaks 

You might understand that the function of a vacuum hose is to spread its power to the booster. Sometimes, the vacuum hose is leaking (you might not notice) and triggers booster failure.

Eventually, it can not help the whole braking system engage properly and make it hard to push.

Fluid Contamination

A hygroscopic fluid is used as brake fluid and absorbs water. Some sludge will take place in the braking system and make you feel like it is failing.

If you find your car stuck in this issue, you should take it to a mechanic and, if necessary, get it replaced.


Do You Have To Push The Brake Pedals To Start The Engine?

Yes, you do.

Pushing the pedals relates to safety reasons, so pressing them when you start your engine is important.

If your car doesn’t have an automatic transmission like other new models, you have to depress it before driving.

Why Is It Important To Keep Your Right Foot on The Brakes While Starting The Engine?

There are two explanations for this. First, some engine load will not function properly unless it is pushed.

Secondly, it is due to your safety concerns, again. Without pushing it down, your car in gear will move crankily and more likely to cause an accident while driving.

What Should You Do When Your Brake Pedals Are Locked?

Keep your feet on it because sometimes the anti-lock braking system – ABS control unit, might affect the system and cause it hard to push.

You can try to hit the pedal so that it can make room for more engine oil pressure. And use the electric parking brakes to slow your car.

When You Fully Depress Brake Pedals, What Will You Feel?

Once you completely depress the brakes, you get the feeling of a pulse. The answer is claimed to be correct by many drivers.

Why Are Brake Pedals Making Noise When Depressing?

This can be due to a leak in the vacuum line, a master cylinder, and a booster diaphragm. With a leak, it can cause a bit of noise like a hissing sound when you try to depress the pedals.

When it is caused by a booster, you can sense a foam silencer that will cover up the noise of normal function.

Can Brakes Make Your Car Not Start?

Yes, it can. In some cases, bad brakes can block your vehicle from starting. It is confirmed that the braking system has affected the car and caused it not to start.

Some models will demand depressed brakes to restart the vehicle, so the brake performance sure has its say in this case.

Can You Start A Car Without Pressing The Brake?

It is determined by the type of vehicle and its age. Many modern vehicles include an ABS or anti-lock braking system.

It allows you to ignite the vehicle in gear without the need to hit the brakes. If you switch on the ignition, the anti-lock braking system instantly engages and then quickly disengages when it detects no acceleration.

When your vehicle lacks ABS, you must engage the brakes when initiating it. It reduces the possibility of sliding as you speed up.

However, regardless of the ABS, braking while starting the engine is still advisable for your safety.

Which Vehicles Depress Brake Pedal To Start Engine?

As previously mentioned, many cars require you to hit the brake when you want to start it.

Even though the vehicle has ABS systems, some manufacturers still make it compulsory to hit the brake. Otherwise, the brake pedal has been bypassed by a car technician.

You must hit the brakes to begin the engine in many models, including Acura, BMW, Audi, Ford, and Chevrolet.

Besides, Dodge, Lexus, Chrysler, Toyota, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, and Honda are also required to perform the step.

What Does Depress Brake Pedal Touch Engine Switch With Key Mean?

As you know, when you get in your vehicle and put your foot on the brake, the light of the engine start/stop will go green. 

However, sometimes, you hold the key on the car and your foot on the brake, but the light does not turn on. It could be because the keyfob battery is dead. It could not transmit the signal to the engine. 

In this case, you need to put your foot on the brake and hold the key on the start/stop button. The engine will recognize the key, and the light may go on. 

If it does not work, it would be because of the faulty keyfob. It is time to take your car to a technician for a thorough inspection. 


The brake pedal is a familiar part of your engine that drivers use every ride. That metal is what you have to press down on to make your car come to a halt.

Now you know how to depress it and can find yourself the answer to why you have to depress the brake pedal to start the engine. There are also some reasons why sometimes it’s hard to depress a pedal.

That you depress the brake before driving is necessary and safe, so don’t forget to do it when starting your engine!

We hope this guide can help you to fix your problem with your vehicle and have a smooth ride, as always!

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