Although, this may not be a hot discussion topic for you but if you are one of those who value safety over everything then this article is only for you. By the end of this article you will know your car Brakes much better and will know when to replace them.
How do Car Brakes Work?
A moving car has a lot of kinetic energy- the energy of motion. Brakes use the force of friction by converting this energy into heat that ultimately stops the car.
Different kinds of Braking Systems
There are usually two types of Brakes: Disc Brakes & Drum Brakes.
Disc Brakes: Most modern cars come equipped with Disc Brakes on all four wheels. They are made up of 3 major parts namely Brake Disc/ Disc Rotors, a Brake Caliper, and Brake Pads. When you hit the Brake pedal, the hydraulic fluid causes the Brake caliper to press the Brake Pad against the Brake Disc. When the Brake Pad and the Brake Disc come in contact while the car is moving, it generate friction, which slows down the car and ultimately makes it stop.
Drum Brakes: Drum Brakes, usually found in older cars are made up of a Brake Drum and Brake shoes. The hollow Drum moves with the wheel. Drum Brakes peforms the same process when the Brake pedal is hit. It causes the hydraulic cylinder to push the Brake shoes with friction linings against the inner surface of the Brake Drum, creating friction and thereby slowing the wheel.
Emergency Braking Systems: Hand Braking Systems/ Parking Brakes
All cars are equipped with an Emergency Braking System known as the Hand-Brake. This is useful if the primary Braking systems fails.
All Brakes have a finite life, however the lifespan of the Brakes varies based on the driving habits, the type of roads and quality of the material used in the Brake Pads. Most good Brakes are made up of composites, metallic and ceramics. Typically, good quality Brake Pads under normal driving conditions should last for at least 20,000-30,000 kms.
4 Signs that your Car needs a Brake Replacement
1. Warning lights on your dashboard
Most modern cars are equipped with sensors that notify the driver about the Brake Pad wear. Whenever you see a light on your car’s dashboard that looks like any of the below lights then it is a sign that your Brakes are worn out and needs a replacement.
2. Squeaking Sounds
Sometimes you might hear a squeaking sound when you apply the Brakes. This sound is the Brake Pad rubbing against the metallic surface of the Discs which can not only damage/ scratch the Disc Rotors but also be a serious Safety hazard.
3. Car is NOT stopping
Does you car take longer to stop than it did before? Or does it take a lot of time to come to a stop even after pushing the Brakes hard? This happens when there is no Brake Pad thickness left and your Brake Pads need an extra push to come in contact with the Disc in order to stop the car. This is an extremely dangerous scenario and we suggest taking all precautions to not get into this situation.
4. Brake Dust on the wheel
You may have noticed dust on your wheels as shown in the image below. This is usually mistaken for the dust picked up by the wheel on the road but this is actually the dust coming out of your Brake Pads. This is an alarming sign that your Brakes are going bad and you should get their conditions checked as soon as possible.
4 ways to ensure that your Brake Pads lasts longer.
1. Reduce constant Braking: A good driver should anticipate traffic conditions ahead and Brake accordingly.
2. Always use only recommended brand of Brakes: Do not compromise on the quality of Brake to save a few bucks. Good Brakes can be the difference between life and death.
3. Make sure your Disc Rotors are not scratched: Polish/ Buff or replace them if you notice any scratches. Worn out Brakes and debris from the roads can scratch your Disc Rotors and prevent proper braking.
4. No Hard Braking: Many drivers love to drive fast and Brake hard. This greatly reduces the life of the Brakes. If you notice a Red-light, there is no point in driving fast and braking hard.
With the right knowledge and good Brakes, you can safeguard yourself and your family from unexpected breakdowns and a potentially dangerous situation. Share this with your friends and family so they can better be prepared in the future.
If you see any of the above signs and are unsure about what to do, speak with the experts on 8010 696969 or log onto @Automen to know which Brakes are best suited for your car.