Understanding Brakes And Brake Repairs
Most people don’t really think about the brakes on their cars until they prepare to stop and hear that telltale squeak or squeal that tells them something’s wrong. Most of these drivers realize that the brakes are vital and need to be maintained in order to function at their optimal level.
How Often Should I check My Brakes?
Technically speaking, you’re checking your brakes every time you use them. However, to avoid any mishaps, it’s wise to have your brakes inspected at least every six months. A good way to do this is to have your tires rotated every six months and at that time have the mechanic take the time to inspect the brakes.
A good mechanic will know to check and see how thick the brake pads are and to check the calipers on the brakes when they rotate the tires. They’ll also check the fluid levels and if there is anything wrong they should notify the driver immediately. As an average rule of thumb, the brake pads should be changed every 20,000 to 60,000 miles depending on the particular type of brake pads that they are.
Different Types Of Brakes
There are two basic types of brakes that are used on cars. There are ABS brakes which are an anti-lock braking system. These have been mandatory on cars since the early 2000s and are very common.
ABS brakes allow the vehicle to maintain traction with the road surface while the driver is applying the brakes. This can prevent the wheels from locking up which would make the tires cease to rotate thus causing skidding which could result in a deadly accident.
ABS brakes keep the driver from having to manually pump the brakes in the event of the need to stop suddenly. If there are no ABS brakes the driver will have to pump the brakes to avoid a skid and potential collision.
Various Parts Of The Brakes
Brake Backing Plates: These keep the braking system functioning together.
Brake Lines: These are a part of the hydraulic system. They link the brake components to the car or truck.
Brake Pads: There is a lever that pushes a piston into the cylinder that is filled with the hydraulic fluid. As the brake pad touches upon the disc there is a friction that is created between the two and this generates heat. The friction is what slows the outer wheel down and then the tire and eventually stops the car.
Rotors: These work together with the brake pads in an effort to stop your car. As you step on the brake pedal, the brake pads are pressed down against the rotor to create the friction that eventually stops the car.
There are many common problems with brakes. Many people don’t keep an eye on their brake fluid nor do they pay attention to their brakes until it’s too late (if you’re hearing a squealing or squeak when you slow your car, it may be too late). Take the time to check your fluid levels and pay attention to how your brakes sound and feel. If anything seems off, have your brakes checked immediately.