How Disc Brakes Work in a car

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A vehicle is not complete without the brakes. It is impossible to think of a vehicle that does not have them. They are not meant for moving all the time, but the real purpose of a vehicle is to transport people from one place to another and of course we cannot stop them if there are no brakes. Brakes are very helpful for us in many ways like in turning our car, stopping the car etc. It may be confusing for many people to understand how they are able to stop giant vehicles because they are unaware of the working of the brakes. Let me tell you how they work and how we can maintain a good braking system.

The braking system is very technical but it is very easy to understand once you know the concept. Two types of braking systems are the disc braking system and the disc/drum braking system. The combination of the disc and drum braking system is found in older vehicles and the new vehicles usually have disc brake system installed in all the four wheels. The description of disc braking system is as follows:

The braking system is made up of following components; pedal, a master sized cylinder, hard and soft brake lines, brake calipers, pads and rotors. Apart from these components, there may be slave or secondary cylinders and (ABS) Anti-Lock Braking but these two will not be discussed. The location of the pedal is in your vehicle and the cylinder is placed under the hood. Pushing the brake pedal leverages the master cylinder which pushes the brake fluid through brake lines. The brake line then runs to brake calipers which are located at all the four wheels. These calipers may contain up to 8 pistons. The brake pads are then compressed by the fluid on the brake disc. The brake rotor is joined with the hub, further attached with the axle. This forces the brake pads to compress on the rotors and creates friction that slows the vehicle.

Do you feel difference in the performance of your braking system? Want to stop as fast as you travel or want to make your braking system more efficient? Some useful tips are as follows:

The feedback a driver gets from the braking system is termed as brake feel and is delivered by the pedal. A good brake fluid and the stainless brake lines can help a lot in getting a better feedback from the braking system.

In the US DOT 3 brake, fluid is used and is considered as the standard. The best thing about these fluids is that they need a threshold temperature to boil. The brakes stop working if the fluid is boiling. That is the reason why it is considered to be safe and is advised to be used in the braking system. DOT 4 is recommended for those vehicles that take part in racing. It is suggested for better performance but needs the vehicle owner to change it more often than the DOT 3. Apart from this another option is installing the stainless steel brake line. This would also improve the efficiency of the braking system. You can also brace the master cylinder that decreases the brake lines flex which means improved brake feel.

Brake rotors and pads also affect the response of the brake. The pads that have more bites work more efficiently and their response is also faster. New brake rotors are also another good option. They are best when you are coming down from a mountain. They are not as efficient as the pads but this is one place where you will feel its importance. If both of them are replaced then they both support each other hence a better performance is seen.

People think that the distance matters instead of brake feel but opposite is true.  If a brake system is maintained then it stops more safely but no one guarantees that it will stop faster. For stopping faster, new big brake kit is the solution to this. The main thing in this is the rotor which is of larger diameter. They are expensive and they work better with the large diameter tires. The reason behind is that their grip on road is much better than the ordinary diameter tires.

So choose your braking system according to your needs and it is hoped that you’ll like the information in this article.


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