Friday, July 1, 2016

How Your Car Brakes Work

It's common knowledge that the brakes are what stop our cars. We trust those brakes to bring our vehicle to a halt when we need them to. But, what most of us don't know is how our disk brakes or brake pads actually work. When you obtain regular auto service in Delaware County, you may find it beneficial to not only have them take care of your brakes, but also teach you the mechanics of how your car brakes work.

There are two typical types of brakes: disk brakes and drum brakes. Disk brakes are usually found on the front of your car, with drum brakes usually found in the back. Depending on the make and year of your car, you may also find disk brakes on the rear brakes. The mechanics providing your auto service in Delaware County will be able to tell you which type that you have.

In order to put your brakes into action, you have to compress the brake pedal on the driver's side of the car. Once the brake pedal has been pushed down, it will signal the master cylinder to push fluid out to the calipers. The calipers will then squeeze both brake pads against the disk or rotor to stop the car. When you consider this process, liken it to the rubber pads on a bicycle rubbing against the wheel rim to create friction and to stop the bike.

For those vehicles with drum brakes, fluid is forced into what is known as the wheel cylinder. When the fluid is forced into the cylinder, the pressure from the fluid then pushes the brake shoes out so that friction is created against the drum to stop the car. The brake shoes are on the inside of the drum, rather than on the outside like a disk brake.

Of course slowing down causes friction, which creates heat. This process eventually wears out the brakes on your car, leading them to need replacing.

Knowing not only the proper maintenance your brakes require, but also how they work, can help you and your auto mechanic take care of this vital car equipment.

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