When driving, braking is a fundamental and vital part of our control of the car. We rely on our braking system so often but do we actually know how it works? Let us share with you...
Braking to every driver is simple, just step on the brake and we are able to slow the car down or to a complete stop. However, how does a gentle stepping of a pedal bring a heavy and big machinery to a complete halt? It is through hydraulic fluid within a hydraulic system.
When we step on our brakes it depresses a piston inside a master cylinder which is filled with hydraulic fluid. The hydraulic fluid is then pushed through pipes to slave cylinders at each wheel and fills them. It the pushes against another piston which is connected to the brake pads. The total area of all the slave pistons is much greater than that of the piston in the master cylinder. Therefore, the master piston travels a longer distance in order to move the slave pistons slightly but enough to apply the brakes. This allows a greater force to be exerted by the brakes with minimal energy.
In most modern cars, the brake pads are pressed onto a disc rotor that is attached to the wheel. The friction caused by the brake pads pressing onto the disc rotor slows down the car or as we call it, braking!
As braking is a vital part of controlling our car, it is imperative that we know how to maintain it. Most of the elements of our braking system are hardy, however there are items that are subject to increase wear like our brake pads and disc rotor.
Signs of a worn out brake pad:
- Brake pad indicator light is on (this means your brake pads are down to about 20%!)
- Squeaking or grinding noise when braking
- Slow response when pressing brake pedal
Example of a worn out brake pad
You should also check with us or your workshop if you need to skim/change your disc rotor. As brake pads depress onto different areas of the rotor, after time the disc rotor might be uneven and in need of skimming. A disc rotor can be skimmed at least once, until the minimum thickness is reached.
Ensure that you have your braking system checked by your car workshop during your routine car servicing to ensure that it is in order as a faulty brake system could lead to dire consequences.
At AutoSprint, we ensure that your braking systems are always in optimum condition for your driving comfort and safety. Our experienced staff are able to ascertain the condition of your brake system components in order to give the best advice.
Call us now or book an appointment to check your braking system today!