What You Need to Know.
Even when your vehicle doesn’t have a problem moving in the right direction, does it stop urgently when needed? How does you brake pedal feel? Do you feel pulsations in the steering column when you brake? These are just some of the questions you should ask yourself when deciding if your vehicle needs a brake service!
Are Your Brakes Up to the Challenge?
No matter how well your vehicle is driving, if it can’t stop when you need it to, then there’s a major safety issue. Good brakes are required even in the most ideal driving condition, but especially so in the hazardous ones. Down in Southeastern North Carolina, we know the weather can be unpredictable. So, you should make sure your vehicle can avoid any unexpected hazards at any time. Brakes are one of the singular most important safety features in any vehicle.
Depending on your vehicle, you can either have disk brakes or drum brakes. Disk brakes are the most modern set-up for brakes, and consist of a brake rotor, brake caliper and a brake pad. Hydraulic brake fluid is pumped into the system during a braking action. This causes the brake caliper to clamp the brake pad down onto the rotor, causing friction which then slows the vehicle down. Because of the massive amounts of heat generated during the braking process, you’ll often see pads and rotors made of durable material like ceramics or composites. This makes them resistant to melting from the high heat.
Drum brakes are a bit of an older set up, but still perform the action of braking admirably. Like disk brakes, drum brakes also use friction to slow a vehicle, just in a different fashion. Drum brakes consist of brake shoes and the brake drum itself. Here, when the brake pedal is pushed, a hydraulic cylinder will push against the inner lining of the drum. The friction from doing so slows the car down.
Anti-Lock Brakes and Anti-Lock Sensors.
Modern vehicles will also be equipped with anti-lock brakes as well as anti-lock brake sensors to ensure sudden stops are performed safely. Brakes that lock the wheels up make the vehicle prone to skidding and losing control. Anti-lock sensors ensure that the anti-lock brakes on your vehicle are preforming as needed. All these components need to be working together for you to have optimal braking performance. Problems here will throw up the “ABS” warning light on your dashboard.
When your brakes begin to have problems, you’ll know it right away. You can often feel or hear that something isn’t right. Here’s a few of the problems you might encounter.
- Warped Rotors: This is where wear on your brake rotors has become uneven due to over-torqued wheels, bad driving habits or pre-existing brake issues. Normally a brake rotor should be smooth, but any of the above problems can cause excessive strain that leads to warping. If your brake rotors are warped, you will feel vibrations through the steering column every time you hit the brakes. Sometimes warped rotors can be made smooth by machining them, but often they need to be replaced.
- Metal to Metal: This is basically where the brake pads have become so worn, there is bare metal rubbing against your rotors every time you brake. This can cause an audible grinding noise during braking. Leaving this metal to metal contact is not only dangerous, but it can seriously damage your braking system and lead to extensive repairs.
Our Brake Products.
With brakes from AC Delco, Carquest, and other respected brands, Pat’s has what you need to ensure your vehicle brakes properly under any circumstance. For great brakes with heroic stopping power, Pat’s has the parts that you need to keep on rolling safely.
The Bottom Line.
Whether your vehicle has disk brakes or brake drums, let Pat’s Auto Service Center’s certified technicians make sure the brakes on your vehicle are reliable enough for its very important job. Do you have brake squeal problems, metal to metal scraping, faded brake pads or brake fluid that needs to be changed? Let the pros at Pat’s put your worries of an unsafe drive, to rest! We’ll take your vehicle on a test drive to replicate any concerns you describe to our excellent service advisers, followed by both visual and detailed inspections.