Brake maintenance is an important part of your car care year-round. However, damaged or worn-out brakes can be especially dangerous during the cold month of winter. Your brakes are a critical safety feature of your vehicle. This is why it is important to make sure your brakes are in good shape before those cold winter months hit. This quick guide provides more information on winter brake care. Keep reading to learn more.
Understanding Brake Pads
If you are not familiar with how brake pads actually work, it can be helpful to educate yourself. This will give you a better idea of what is going on when you tap that brake pedal.
The brake pads essential provide friction with enough force to slow and stop a vehicle’s movement. The pads are made of a buffer material as well as steel. Each time you press your foot on the brake pedal, the brake pads will press against the turning rotor. This slows and stops the wheels.
As with any type of friction, the continually pressing will eventually wear down on the buffer material. When this starts to happen, it will be necessary to replace the brake pads. As the pads wear down thinner and thinner the metal components of the brakes will start to scrape against each other. This is what creates the scrapping and screeching noise you might hear when brake pads need replacement.
What Happens When Brake Pads Wear Down?
When the buffer material on the brake pad starts to wear down, it creates an unsafe situation. The scraping metal cannot stop the vehicle effectively.
When Should I Change Brakes?
How often you need to replace your brakes depends on a few factors. The vehicle’s usage, braking patterns, tires, and even the brand of brake pads you choose can affect the frequency.
Brakes can also be greatly affected by the climate where you live as well as road conditions and season. You should be aware that cold weather and less-than-ideal road conditions can really put a strain on your brakes.
Importance of Brake Maintenance in Winter
Icy road conditions obviously make it more important to have a reliable brake system. It is more difficult to slow your vehicle on ice or snow. Over time this will take more of a toll on your brake pads. You should check your brake pads more often in the winter.
You may notice that you need to replace brake pads more often in winter or you may need another brake replacement even though you already have had one this year.
If you are not confident about changing brakes yourself, you should reach out to a local auto shop to assist with this important car maintenance task to ensure optimal brake system performance.
Categorised in: Auto Maintenance
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