Caring for Your Vehicle's Brake System
We can all agree that brake systems on our vehicles is vitally important to our safety. These systems do require routine maintenance and care.
Brake systems work on a friction basis between two parts. Brake pads and rotors. The kinetic energy from this process creates a tremendous amount of heat.
Commonly referred to as a brake shoe or pad, applying pressure to the rotor to slow down or stop a vehicles motion is how it works in the simplest of terms brake systems run on a fluid based system. As you apply the brakes in the vehicle the master cylinder helps apply the correct fluid pressure that in turns pinches the brake pads against the rotor. All the while doing so at a pressure that you apply to your brake pedal.
So one could argue that brake pads from a safety stand point are in the top two or three things in your vehicle that protects your family.
As with any functioning part in your vehicle. Over time certain items will need your attention.
For example, brakes that squeal when stopping. This is often a telltale sign that your pads are worn out. Don’t run for extended periods of time with this occurring. Once the pad is gone then its metal on metal. This can cause brake failure! It also means that if you have rotors they will have to be what is called turned if you can salvage them for more use. This process actually takes and smooth out the rotor so when the pad is applied there is not scoring on the rotor that eats away at the pad. Thus reducing its safety and life.
We see too often in the shop customers who want cheaper pads to help them save money. We get that having families ourselves. In the long haul using a quality pad will not only extend the life but reduce maintenance costs. Paying a little more now will prevent major repairs down the road.
Changing out your brake fluid for cleaner fluid should also be part of your routine maintenance should your technician feel it’s necessary. Brake fluid is used to transfer force into pressure. So it’s an actual working part of the system. That to over extended periods of use will lose its ability to function properly.
Brake fluid also comes in cheap or more expensive mixes. When it comes to safety cheaper is not a wise choice. When you need your brake system to function perfectly in an emergency situation that could potentially save lives. The choice is clear, quality over cheap.
Routine maintenance is never an easy expense on family budgets. However, these articles are designed to help our customers understand that while yes it does cost you’re saving money over the life span of your vehicle. It’s simply much easier to pay $100 than it is to pay $1000.
Our job is to keep your vehicle running in tip top shape. Where we can save you money we will and where we can justify for you that a little more here and there for quality vs. economy is warranted, please rest assured this is not self-serving but a professional choice to add value, safety and care for your vehicle and family.