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The Different Kinds of Braking

The Different Kinds of Braking

One thing too many drivers learn very late is the importance of knowing when not to brake. Skilled observation of the traffic around you should guide every move you make while behind the wheel, so that you are not blindsided by dangers you should have seen coming. This also serves well in terms of fuel savings, as well as time considering you only need to accelerate fewer times.

Emergency Braking When you Have ABS

With most cars these days coming equipped with ABS, you have the simplified option of flooring the brake pedal and holding it there. This does not cause the wheels to lock, which means you get to keep going in the same straight line, and only hit what you have directly in your sights.

Emergency Braking When you Do Not Have ABS

This makes braking more complex, requiring rapidly elevated pressure on the pedal, but also relaxing it if you sense the wheel locking by even a fraction. Easy pressure and repeated reapplication is an even better way to go, provided you have the needed situation for it. Basically, your foot is filling in for the absent ABS.

Braking Before a Corner

It is safest to take a corner after slowing down enough to make negotiating the turn a lot easier. Advanced drivers, however, finish most of their braking before the corner comes up, and ease on the brakes while turning, in what is called trail braking. This is not advisable if you are lacking the needed practice.

Cadence Braking

Cadence braking is simply braking hard, and then letting go of the pedal for a short while before hitting it hard again. This restores some of the former grip in the tires, which is another one of the things ABS can do automatically. You would appreciate the benefits of this when your 4WD started sliding downhill.

Left-Foot Braking

This skill is not essential to safe driving, but if you have mastered it to the point of usefulness, then left-foot braking is definitely worth using when the situation demands it. Just make sure that it does not interfere with steering the vehicle in any way.

None of the above things is that effective after your brakes have overheated for any reason, which is why you need to periodically replenish the brake fluid supply. After the part where you brake hard, allow the brakes some time to recover.

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