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Understanding the Fundamentals of Brake Rotors, Pads and Fluid

Understanding the Fundamentals of Brake Rotors, Pads and Fluid

Have you recently felt that there is something wrong with the brake of your car? There might be some scraping or grinding noise while applying brakes or the vehicle might be pulling to one side when you try to slow it down. There can be many signs to let you know that the brake system of your car is failing. Whatever be the problem, the first requirement to accurate diagnosis is understanding the main components of a braking system, and how these work together to provide braking power. The various components of a typical car braking system are explained below.

Brake Pads and Shims

When you apply your brakes, the calipers push the brake pads against to the brake rotors, reducing the speed of the car in order to bring it to a stop. It is true that the brake pads are the main components of a braking system. However, the rotors are equally important here. Brake pad shims are used to cut down the noise and vibration caused while applying brakes. The shims are usually made of rubber or metal, and would be placed in between the calipers and pads. In addition to cutting down vibration and noise, titanium shims also protect brake calipers and fluid from excessive heat damage.

Troubleshooting Brake Pads

For the braking system of your car to function properly, the brake pads should absorb enough heat and energy. The efficiency of the brake pad would be reduced when there is too much wear. This can adversely affect the stopping power of any car. When the brake pads are worn out, respective indicators emit a scraping sound to let you know that these need replacing. Always make sure that the brake pads are replaced in pairs, or you will definitely have another can of worms to deal with later on.

Brake Rotors

Brake rotors are also called brake discs. Rotors spin with the wheel, and when the brake pads clamp down on them, they stop the wheel from spinning. This means that brake rotors are just as important as brake pads, if not more. Most rotors are made from cast iron, as this material can disperse heat very effectively, which is vital to avoiding brake fade and overheating. In high-performance vehicles, ceramic rotors are preferred for their lightness and stability at high speeds and temperatures. These rotors are more expensive when compared to the typical cast iron rotor.

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