What is a standard brake service?
Your brakes may be the most critical safety system in your entire vehicle. Vehicle braking systems use a complex network of mechanical and hydraulic parts to slow and stop your car. You need to slow down gradually in some situations but will require hard braking in others. Your brakes must function properly to keep you and your passengers safe. To ensure your brakes perform, we recommend you have them serviced regularly. So, we had our brake system experts dig into this topic to explain what services your brakes need and how often they need them.
What is a standard brake service?
At Meadowland of Carmel, our service center technicians receive ongoing training to remain updated on all braking systems’ latest parts and repair practices. They will inspect your entire brake system when you bring your vehicle in for a brake service and can quickly diagnose and fix any issues you might have with your brakes.
Your technician will inspect the brake lines for cracks or leaks and review your brake pads to ensure they have the appropriate thickness remaining. The inspection includes a structural integrity check of your discs, rotors, or drums. The technician will check your brake pedal by measuring the distance it travels, which helps to determine system pressure. They’ll test your calipers, too, to make sure they clamp your pads onto the discs, rotors, or drums in the correct position and with proper pressure.
In addition, our technicians will examine your master cylinder to ensure it operates to vehicle specifications and has no leaks. Finally, they’ll check your brake fluid level and test it for moisture and metal content, such as copper.
Your brake service might include replacing your brake pads or topping off the brake fluid, as these parts wear the fastest. However, if our technicians find an issue with any part of your car’s brake system, they will provide you with a detailed explanation and a cost breakdown of the necessary repairs. You can take advantage of our Express Lane for quick service.
Benefits of Regular Brake Service
As a critical safety system, your brakes require regular servicing to ensure proper operation. You need to stop, sometimes in emergencies, and you rely on your brakes to do so safely. Brake pads wear out from the friction created during the braking process, eventually exposing metal pins. When these pins contact the discs, rotors, or drums, they start to squeak or squeal. That’s the signal you need to change your brake pads. If you ignore this sign, those metal pins eventually score grooves in your discs, rotors, or drums and compromise their integrity.
Regular brake system service helps prolong the system’s life, avoids more costly repairs, and improves your driving safety. To encourage regular service, we offer a rotating list of service specials. Servicing your brake system regularly also helps spot other potential issues, such as leaks. Your brake system uses fluid pressure to operate. Too little brake fluid reduces the amount of available pressure and compromises the system’s ability to stop the car.
Old brake fluid can also damage your vehicle’s brake system. Even though the fluid operates in a sealed system, moisture can still seep in over time. Water alone can lead to the corrosion of critical parts, but it is even more damaging if it contains harmful minerals, such as copper. Testing your brake fluid and exchanging it when it gets old helps prolong the other mechanical parts of the system.
What are the Different Parts of a Brake?
Your brake system uses a complex series of mechanical and hydraulic parts to stop your vehicle. The mechanical element begins when you press down on the brake pedal. This action engages the hydraulic portion, pressurizing the brake fluid in the brake lines. The pressure from the brake fluid then triggers the calipers, which clamp the brake pads onto the rotors, discs, or drums attached to your car’s wheels. Gentle pressure allows the wheels to stop spinning slowly. Hard pressure causes the wheels to stop more quickly.
Modern vehicles employ an anti-lock braking system known as ABS. With ABS, the pressure on the calipers pulsates rapidly. This rapid action keeps the brakes from locking against the wheels and sending the car into a skid. Your tires’ tread provides traction or grip on the road, but when your car skids, you lose that traction. ABS allows your tires to continue to rotate and maintain traction on the road.
Common Brake Problems
Our technicians have seen it all when it comes to brake issues. The most common is worn-out brake pads. These pads cost very little to replace, and we can do so quickly. Another common problem is low brake fluid. Most drivers don’t check their brake fluid regularly, so having a brake inspection by a professional helps prevent the issue. Older vehicles often have cracked or corroded brake lines, which will eventually leak and compromise your stopping ability.
Occasionally, a master cylinder failure occurs in older vehicles. The master cylinder provides the pressure required to stop your car. As a result, a failing master cylinder creates a very unsafe situation. Corrosion can compromise your brake system’s metal discs, rotors, and drums. In particular, salt on the roads in the winter can have a corrosive impact. Salt works wonders to melt the snow, but it also corrodes the metal parts of your entire vehicle, including your brakes.
Other Problems That Stem From Brake Issues
One significant problem that stems from brake issues is premature tire wear. For example, if a caliper on one tire clamps down harder than the other, that tire will wear faster. This uneven pressure also creates a pull to one side as you brake. You can manage a safe stop in gentle braking situations, but it can cause an unsafe loss of control in an emergency.
Schedule Standard Brake Service Today
We hope you found this information helpful. At Meadowland of Carmel, we want your vehicle to operate safely in all aspects, including your brakes. If you have a problem with your vehicle’s brakes or can’t remember the last time you had them serviced, we recommend you schedule a brake inspection today. In less than an hour, we’ll inspect your entire brake system and make the necessary recommendations to return your brakes to the proper specifications.