Brakes are one of the 3 fundamentals for driving a vehicle. Brakes do exactly what they sound like; they decelerate the vehicle to bring it to a stop. Whether you are trying to repair your brakes or trying to upgrade them, you need to know their basic principles and working. So, here’s everything you need to know about brakes.
How do brakes work?
For brakes to work, they need to reduce the kinetic energy that is the speed of the vehicle. Various parts of a brake work together to stop a vehicle safely.
You must be wondering how just a press of a pedal is enough to stop a car with so much momentum. The reason is, the amount of force you apply on the pedal is amplified, which makes the system so efficient. Brake kits are also used to modify brakes to boost their performance.
Initially, when you press the brake pedal, A piston pushes into a cylinder. This cylinder, also known as the master cylinder, then delivers brake fluid to the calipers. Calipers react with brake pads. Brake pads then apply pressure to the rotors, which create the frictional force needed to stop the vehicle.
Various parts of brakes
Brakes consist of 5 parts that work in harmony to give the best results. Even if one of the parts is facing any problem, it can result in a faulty experience:
1. Brake hose
The Brake hose is like a tube that is responsible for transmitting brake fluid from the master cylinder to calipers. Always make sure these are of the utmost quality. A faulty brake hose can result in weakened stopping power or even brake failure.
Calipers are found on every wheel and consist of pistons. The pistons present in calipers need brake fluid to work. When the pedal is pressed, pistons present in calipers put hydraulic pressure on brake pads to press them against the rotors.
3. Brake fluid
Brake fluid is a type of hydraulic liquid. It is used to put hydraulic pressure on other parts of the break so that they can perform their task. Brake fluid is the reason that a low force action like pushing the pedal can stop a car.
4. Brake pads
Brake pads are made of steel plates. They help in converting the kinetic energy into thermal energy, that is, heat. One side of these steel plates is made with frictional material. This side faces the rotors so they can be decelerated.
Rotors are circular disks that are connected to both the front and back wheels. When Brake pads are squeezed upon the rotors, it creates friction. This friction resists the spin of the wheels, slowing and eventually stopping the car.
Getting your brakes checked by a professional on a yearly basis is advised. Brakes are a complicated part and require a thorough and careful inspection. It can be easy to miss out on a potential problem. All 5 parts mentioned above, with parking brake cables, fluid conditions, wheel bearings, and fluid exchange, are to be checked in order to be sure about the brake’s conditions.