6 Possible Causes of Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction

Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction points to an issue in your vehicle’s braking system. When you encounter a parking brake malfunction, the brake and parking lights become illuminated. 

Most Mazda owners are perhaps not new to braking defects seeing how Mazda manufacturers had to recall different models due to faults in their braking system.

Nonetheless, a parking brake malfunction may result from several causes and would require a high level of mechanical knowledge and expertise to fix it. In other words, the repair process may not be DIY friendly.

This article details what Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction means, its causes, and how you can fix it.

What is Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction

Mazda Parking Brake malfunction indicates that there is a problem with the braking system of your car. Once you start the engine, you’ll notice a red flashing brake light and the yellow parking brake turned on. This sign applies to both electronic and non-electronic parking brakes. 

In addition to the illuminated brake light, other signs of a malfunctioning parking brake include: 

1. Disengagement 

Here, your parking brake may disengage and become unable to hold the vehicle in place. The car will continue to move even after braking.  This issue is visible when you pull the parking brake lever (non-electronic) or you press down the parking brake pedal.

2. Unusual Sounds

The Mazda Parking Brake malfunction is often followed by grinding and squealing noises as you apply or release the parking brake. 

With an electronic parking brake, there should be an actuator sound when you use the brake. If there is no noise, then there is an issue with the brake.

3. Burning Smell

This is usually a sign of dragging in your brake. You will often notice a burning smell after applying your parking brakes.

Furthermore, you may also notice that your brake travels before engaging, uneven braking if the brake pad is faulty, Loosened parking brake lever,  etc.

Many of these signs are caused by different brake problems. So, each sign may require a distinct solution. An authorized technician can help with this.

Causes of Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction

A Mazda parking brake malfunction is caused by problems in the braking system. Therefore, one would need to focus on any issue affecting the braking system as a potential cause of your parking brake malfunction.

Below are some causes of your Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction:

1. Issues with the Cable

Cables connecting to the parking brake can develop issues over time. They can become worn, stretched, and misadjusted. This would affect its effectiveness and reduce its ability to engage your vehicle properly.

2. Corrosion of Brake Components

Your brake components may corrode from iron dust, oxidation (coating exposed to air and water), or harsh acid-based cleaner. This corrosion will cause brake components (brake pad, caliper, pedal, etc) to become defective and damaged.

3. Software Problems 

In Modern Mazdas with electronic assisted braking, a brake control system controls automatic or semi-automatic functions. Any electronic or software-related problem would cause parking brake malfunction.

4. Defective Brake Components

The braking system comprises several braking components coming together to operate.  Some of these components include the brake shoe, the brake caliper, the brake pad, the booster, wheel speed sensors (ABS), and so on. 

Damage or wear to the brake components would affect braking performance and lead to parking brake malfunction.

5. Brake Interlock System Failure

The brake interlock system is a safety feature in your Mazda that disengages the parking brake in certain situations. It ensures that your car does not shift out of park until the brakes are depressed. This helps to prevent roll-away accidents. 

A failure in the brake interlock system would affect the parking brake and cause it to malfunction.

6. Lack of maintenance

Your Mazda parking brake would also malfunction due to a lack of proper maintenance. In addition, if you fail to handle or use the parking brake carefully, a malfunction will occur.

Not all parking brake malfunction cases are caused by a single problem. Sometimes, a malfunction may be due to multiple causes and require diverse fixes. 

You can drive into a Mazda dealership or speak with a professional to be safe.

Fixes of Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction

Here are some fixes for the Mazda Parking Brake Malfunction:

1. Cleaning and Lubrication

Cleaning and lubricating your brake components would help to free the components of specks of dirt and other slime buildup. 

Furthermore, cleaning brake components may also help remove corrosion from affected parts.  This would, in turn, increase their effectiveness and restore proper braking performance. 

2. Replacement of worn components

Where brake components have worn out beyond repair, you will have to replace such parts. 

You should get your new parts from an authorized Mazda dealership to ensure compatibility and optimum functionality.

3. Diagnose and Repair the electronic parking brake

This fix may require the assistance of a professional technician who has the necessary knowledge and expertise. A good technician should, after diagnosis, know whether the issue affecting the electronic parking brake is electrical or software-related. 

The Diagnosis and Repair of your electronic parking brake could also be carried out during the routine maintenance schedule.

4. Inspect and fix any issue with the Hydraulic system 

If the parking brake malfunction is caused by a fault in the Hydraulic system, you need to inspect the Hydraulic system for leaks, defects, or damage to the system.  

Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need to replace the brake fluids or the master cylinder.


Driving your Mazda with a parking brake malfunction is not an advisable thing to do. You put yourself and other road occupants at risk due to the less control you have over your car. Repairing this issue requires a bit of mechanical knowledge of the braking system.  

Driving to an authorized Mazda dealership is always the right thing to do should you lack the knowledge and expertise to repair the brake issue yourself. In addition, an experienced technician guarantees a clean work is done, and any other hidden brake issue is uncovered and fixed.

  • Edmond Davis

    I'm Edmond Davis, an automotive expert with years of experience in vehicle repair, performance, and safety. I graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Automotive Engineering and have worked with major companies like Ford, GM, and Chrysler. I'm a trusted source of information for anyone looking to learn more about cars or improve their driving experience.

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