The short answer is: You should replace the brakes on your BMW once the brake pad friction material reaches a thickness of 03/32 of an inch or less.

3 Warnings That Indicate Your BMW Brakes Need Replacement

Here are a couple of other factors that can lead to your BMW brakes needing replacement: Major pulsation- Your BMW will have a brake pad made of ceramic material and brake rotors made of fairly soft metal. BMW utilizes a ceramic brake pad and soft metal brake rotor for stopping performance, noise reduction, and brake dust reduction. Excessive brake material buildup on the brake rotor will cause pulsating when brakes are applied. This is fairly normal and nothing to be alarmed of, but once it becomes excessive, it is a good idea to replace your BMW brakes. Brake pad warning light- Most all BMW models utilize a brake pad wear sensor. This is a simple sensor in the brake pad that will illuminate a brake pad wear warning once it is worn to a certain point. This is typically 03/32 of an inch but can vary a little bit. Excess noise or lack of performance- Brake noise is the most common concern our customers have when bringing in their BMW for a brake inspection. Brake noises can be caused by excessive wear but your BMW brakes can also make noise before they are worn out. Excessive heat from a steep grade or excessive stress from a panic stop can cause the brake pads or rotors to get too hot and become noisy. It is important to have any abnormal noises checked out to prevent any safety issues. We can all agree that the brake system on our BMW is crucial to our families' safety. It is important that you visually inspect your brake system regularly. I have the brakes visually checked on my wife's BMW every time I have it in the repair shop for an oil service and tire rotation.