Help Your Brakes Last With These Suggestions

Automotive Blog

To be safest when you're driving on local roads or highways, the brake system inside your car needs to be in great shape. Use the advice below to be sure that you're being gentle with your brakes so that they last a long while.

Downshift When Going Down Steep Slopes

If you live in a hilly area where you encounter declines and inclines everywhere you go, your brakes will get a workout. To help them out, whenever you're doing down a steep slope, put your car into first or second gear. That simple move will allow the engine to slow the car down a bit, shifting some of the work away from your  brakes. However, you might want to avoid downshifting on days when the road is slippery or icy, as that can cause your car to break out into a skid.

Don't "Ride" Your Brakes

When you're in bumper-to-bumper traffic, the immediate temptation is to keep your foot on the brake and engage it over and over as you inch forward. This can generate a lot of heat in the braking system, which can wear down brake pads. Instead, hang back a bit and let the cars ahead of you move forward somewhat, leaving a gap in traffic before you lift your foot from the brake. Then coast until you must stop again. This will keep the system a little cooler.

Monitor Your Wheels, Pads and Rotors

When you get a chance, if you really want to know what's going on with your brakes, you'll need do an inspection of the rotors and brake pads. This can be done by removing the tires and looking at the wheel. As brake pads wear away, the friction causes the pads to break down into fine dust that settles on the wheel itself. If the wheel looks dusty, there is a chance that the pads must be replaced. However, don't get excited if you don't see any dust at all, as that could mean that the pads are completely shot.

Check out the pads themselves for more information. They look like rectangular pads held in place by what look like clamps--those are the rotors. If your pads look misshapen or worn, they should be seen by a professional. If the rotors themselves look as if they are wearing away, that could be a serious problem that also needs to be investigated.

With this information, you can help your brakes last. Ask your mechanic to do an assessment of the entire system so that they can do any brake repair needed.


18 November 2016

Buying Automotive Repair Tools

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