Things a Newbie Should Know About Brake Service and Maintenance

Whether you are a newbie to auto maintenance or an old hand, you should know a few things about brake service and maintenance. These things will help you avoid any hiccups when it comes to brakes and help you keep your car running smoothly.

Check Brake Fluid

Keeping your brake fluid topped off is vital to prevent damage to your brakes and prevent corrosion from the old fluid. The best way to determine how much fluid is in your vehicle is to check your owner’s manual. You should replace your brake fluid every two or three years to help keep your brake system in good shape. Using an electronic brake fluid tester can help you determine the moisture content in your brake fluid. You should change it if it has less than a certain amount of moisture. You can also check the boiling point of your brake fluid with a test strip. The boiling point is the point at which the fluid starts to lose its effectiveness. The brake fluid is less effective if the boiling point is too high. When checking your brake fluid, most expert mechanics in brake service Bloomington, IL, keep the reservoir open. This can dilute the fluid or contaminate it. If your brakes feel spongy, you might have air in the system. If the fluid feels clear, it is clean. If it feels dark or murky, it may be contaminated.

Check Brake Pads

Performing a brake pad check is essential to any vehicle maintenance plan. It can help you to avoid a scary situation if you know what to look for. A brake pad is a small metal piece that fits into a brake caliper. The caliper squeezes together to exert pressure on the pad. The pad is typically held together with binding resin. The resin gets hot as it wears. Ideally, the adhesive distributes evenly over the disc surface. A worn brake pad may squeal when applied. This is a good sign that the pad needs to be replaced. A brake pedal vibration is another telltale sign of a worn pad. Brake pads also thin out on one side faster than the other. This can also cause a pulsating brake pedal and a lockout sign. A brake pad wear indicator is useful to help you determine when it is time to replace your aging pads. Some cars have wear sensors that tell you when the brake pads are worn down to the steel backing.

Bleed The Brake Line

You may need to bleed the brake line during brake service and maintenance. This is done to remove trapped air in the system. The process involves applying pressure to the reservoir and making the fluid flow more quickly.

The brake line can become very hot, so it’s important to wear appropriate protective gear. You can use a vacuum gun or hand-operated vacuum hose. If unsure of the procedure, you should have an assistant do the job. You can also buy a brake bleed kit, which includes all the necessary tools to perform the job. When bleeding your brakes, start with the rear passenger brake and work your way to the front driver’s brake. After you have completed this step, close the bleeder valves and fill the reservoir with fresh brake fluid.

Air Brake Systems

Whether you are an experienced mechanic or a newbie in the automotive world, there are some things you should know about the service and maintenance of air brake systems. Although air brakes are not as complicated as hydraulic ones, they require more attention to maintain and repair. Air brake systems are different from hydraulic brakes because they work with compressed air. Compressed air is applied to the brake pad, and the pressure is released when you step on the brake pedal. Air brakes are typically used on heavy trucks. When too much brake pressure is applied, trucks can jackknife. Air brakes also need to be inspected regularly. If a truck’s brakes are not working properly, it may be due to water in the air brake system. During the winter, water in the air system can freeze and form ice blocks that prevent the air from reaching the brake mechanism. Air brake systems are also more expensive than hydraulic systems. They require frequent maintenance and must be cleaned out at least once a month.