Brake Repair 101

There are few components on a vehicle that are as important as the brakes. If the brakes on your car do not function correctly, whether from excessive pad wear or a mechanical failure, the result can be catastrophic. Issues with the braking system on your vehicle should be addressed immediately.

Understanding Brake Systems

If you have never repaired a vehicle, inspecting or repairing your brakes may seem overwhelming at first. However, once you have familiarized yourself with the components of the system and their functions, you will be more comfortable assessing your brakes.

One of the best ways to become acquainted with your vehicle's braking system is by listing the components and then going through each part to learn how it functions. Some of the main components to consider will be the brake pads, whether they be disc or drum style, calipers, rotors and the brake lines.

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Inspecting Your Brakes

Create a checklist of the brake system parts, as well, as this will make the inspection process easier. Check for the deterioration of the brake lines. If the lines are compromised by wear, they can leak brake fluid, and if the fluid level gets too low, the brakes will not function.

Also, check the condition of the brake pads. There are two popular styles of brakes, disc and drum, and your vehicle may have one or the other, or a combination.

To assess the pads, check the manufacturer’s specifications so that you will know when the pads need changing. If you notice a grinding sound when applying the brakes, this is an indication of worn pads.

You can also inspect your rotors to ensure they are in good working condition and you should refer to your manufacturer's specifications to understand when they may need to be replaced.

Check Brake Fluid

Adequate brake fluid in the system is vital for the operation of the brakes. If you have replaced the brake lines, the brake fluid will need to be refilled. It is wise to change the brake fluid when you change the pads or rotors. At the very least, pop the hood and check the brake fluid level to make sure it is not low.

There is usually a maximum and minimum line on the brake fluid reservoir. Make sure the fluid level falls somewhere in-between.

Brake Summary

When checking your brakes, it is important to make sure the pads and rotors are in working condition and the brake lines are not leaking.

If you have questions about your brakes, or if you need service on your brakes, visit your local experts at Mavis Tires and Brakes.