Of all the components in your vehicle that you rely on each and every day, your brakes are near the top of the list in importance. Without your brakes your vehicle would simply be an unstoppable object, heralding down the road until it collides with something, causing you grave injury and tons of dollars in auto repair in Madison, TN!
And while brakes are simple enough in and of themselves to understand, there’s a lot left to the imagination when it comes to just how they work, from your stepping on a pedal to the actual stopping of your vehicle.
From the pedal to the tire
When you press your brake pedal down, your car responds by slowing down, but it’s hardly the result of a simple pedal press. In reality, your brakes are operated by a series of hydraulic systems that work together to turn your action into a reaction. Here’s a quick breakdown of this surprisingly complex system:
- You press your foot down on the brake, which forces a piston down into a hydraulic cylinder filled with fluid.
- Fluid is pushed by the piston and forced towards the other end of the cylinder, which is connected to a line, which eventually connects to another cylinder.
- When fluid is forced into the other cylinder, it pushes a piston outward, which in turn causes your brake pads to clamp inward.
- When your brake pads clamp inward, they come into contact with your tire, causing friction and thus slowing your vehicle down.
The above is just a simplified version of the process, but the concept remains the same: hydraulic pressure is quite literally what’s putting the brakes on your moving vehicle!
Brake maintenance and repairs
Because there are a few complex components to your vehicle’s braking system, it behooves any good driver to keep an eye out for potential problems or signs that maintenance is needed.
For starters, brake pads need to be changed when they become worn and are no longer able to generate enough friction to adequately slow your tires. If you notice your brakes aren’t responding as readily when you push down on the brake pedal or you hear a squealing noise when you apply the brake, it’s time to seek auto repair in Madison, TN in the form of brake replacements.
Another essential component to check up on from time to time is your brake fluid. As mentioned above, fluids are what make the system function smoothly—if your fluid is low, has lost viscosity or is leaking, it’s going to spell bad news for your brakes.
Make sure brakes are always on your list of routine vehicle maintenance and that you’re investing in quality auto repair in Madison, TN when it comes to the needs of this all-important system. To most drivers, the brakes might be as simple as a pedal, but to anyone who has had to rely on their brakes in a dramatic situation, they’re one of the most important aspects of your safety.