the red dashboard break light comes on when driving. Fluid and pads all gd.why? on 1999 Toyota Camry

As soon as you drive and touch the brakes, light on dash stays on. All brake pads good. Fluid correct. What is the problem? How do I turn off the light?

by in Tacoma, WA on November 21, 2012
2 answers 7 comments
ANSWER by on November 22, 2012
possibly brake fluid sensor sticking
COMMENT by on November 22, 2012
Thanks. I'll look at it.
ANSWER by on November 22, 2012
Is it the same light that comes on for your parking brake? If not -check your brake lights , a bulb is out. Simple check--------- With car off and in park , foot OFF brake pedal, start car-----wait a couple seconds then push brake pedal just enough to hear 'click' for shift interlock , if a bulb is out the 'lamp out' indicator should be on within a few seconds. Once that light comes on , then apply the parking brake to see the difference , should be a second red light that comes on. Have someone watch the brake lights (may be 2 on each side- one on corner and one in trunk).
COMMENT by on November 22, 2012
Yes it is the same light for hand brake etc but it is aManual car. I'll check the rear bulbs, as I have not actually done that- Thinking it was more serious a problem. Regards,
COMMENT by on November 22, 2012
With the hand brake off, start the car when that light comes on, pull hand brake up while watching the red light, does it get brighter? try it a few times. If so it is most likely low fluid indicator problem. Be sure fluid is FULL. That is one guess! Does the light only come on when car is moving as you stated when start to drive?
COMMENT by on November 22, 2012
You have ruled out the bulbs , assuming there is no debris in parking brake switch causing it to mess up , then you are back to fluid level switch or internal leak in master cylinder (we are all guessing that the brake pedal does not sink and is at the same height as before problem started , I think). Look for coins dropped down in the E-brake handle area- I had a civic recently that had the brake light coming on intermittently and found a quarter dropped down by the switch. When the car moved it would let the coin shift and connect the switch contacts.
COMMENT by on November 23, 2012
thanks for this. I will really cheak to see if master cylinder is leaking but the fluid level is tip top. I will see if i can fiddle with the brake light sensor- (on top of the fluid resevoir?) Thanks, otherwise car in perfext order.
COMMENT by on November 24, 2012
May be an INTERNAL leak , in that case the fluid level would not necessarily change. Pedal may sink.
COMMENT by on November 24, 2012
Thanks for your time. I must be getting old! It was a faulty bulb! I thought it was something more serious! Why didn't Toyota put another bulb shaped warning-not in red- on the dashboard. Thanks to all. A really great and very helpful website. Toyota response was, take it to one of our many ..... Etc. we have the necessary equipment to find any fault......at a charge of £500+!?? Take care.