Basics on Brakes PDF Print E-mail

The security of your car is vital, whether it is a Mercedes or a Mazda – even the safest vehicle on earth can have brake failure. If your car’s brakes don’t work properly, the consequences could be fatal. Thus, the brakes are probably the most important part of your vehicle. Car brake repair knowledge is always good to have because you never know if or when your car’s brake system will let you down. If this happens while you’re driving let’s say in the desert, miles away from the nearest garage, you should be able to

  • Perform a brake inspection and troubleshoot the problem
  • Know what it takes to do a car brakes repair
  • Be able to describe the problem to someone who is able to repair your automobile brakes

To become able to perform the work listed above, the first thing you need to know is how a car’s brake system works.

A drum system is utilizing hydraulic pressure to press a pad against a brake drum to slow down the speed of the vehicle. Here is how it works:

  • press the brake pedal
  • the piston in the master cylinder sends pressure via the brake lines held by the brake shoe to the wheel cylinders inside the brake drum
  • the friction caused by the shoe pressed against the drum is stopping the wheel from turning

A brake drum is a flat-topped and heavy cylinder, that you normally find somewhere between the wheel rim and the drive wheel. When you press the brake pedal, the friction material held by the brake shoes is pressed against the brake drum. This will slow the rotation of the wheels. A wheel cylinder contains pistons utilizing hydraulic power from the master cylinder to force the brake pads against the brake drum.

Another brake system, called disk brake system is using hydraulic pressure to press a pad against the rotor. This way it slows down the vehicle. Here is how it works:

  • press the brake pedal
  • the piston in the master cylinder is activated and sends pressure via the brake lines to the calliper
  • when the pad makes contact with the rotor, friction is created and this stops the wheel from turning

A rotor is nothing but a circular plate that is gripped by the brake pads for slowing down the vehicle. A brake pad is a pad made of friction material. When pressed against the rotor it stops the wheel from turning. This pad is held by the calliper, which straddles the rotor by using hydraulic pressure from the brake lines. With help from internal pistons it forces the brake pads against the rotors.

Performing this process, the breaking system needs brake fluid. The master cylinder provides this by distributing the brake fluid under pressure, to the entire breaking system of your vehicle.

The description above gives you the knowledge of how two different car brake systems work. These are the first things you need to know when troubleshooting any problems regarding your vehicle’s brakes. Brake problems can occur in a Cadillac, a VW or even in the safest vehicle brand.

 

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