Brake Safety Awareness Week August 21 – August 29, 2010
Lets talk a little bit about Brakes • •
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At 30 mph it takes 80 feet for a properly operating brake system to stop an automobile. People should especially consider their stopping ability when driving. Drivers who “tailgate” are putting themselves and others in danger if they do not have properly working brake systems. Especially if it takes 80 feet for a properly operating brake system to stop a vehicle traveling at 30 mph! Many drivers do not use their turn signals to indicate lane changes and exits. The absence of such signals may cause you to rely on your brake system to avoid an accident. You cannot always predict other vehicle’s driving. Taking care of your brakes is a critical part of keeping your vehicle safe and running smoothly. Keeping your brakes in good working order can prevent more costly repairs down the line. Braking systems on all vehicles are complicated and contain many parts, all of which need periodic inspections and attention to ensure proper operation and performance. Many parts of the brake system are high-wear items that need replacing or maintenance every few years. When you step on the brake, your car transmits a force from your foot to the brakes through a fluid that commands a stopping force ten times as powerful as the force that puts the car in motion. The braking system can exert as much as 1,000 pounds of hydraulic pressure on each of the four brakes.
How do you know your brakes need to be checked or replaced? •
You can look at your brake pads for any visible wear. Look through the spaces between the wheel’s spokes. The outside pad will be pressed against a metal rotor. Generally, there should be at least 2/32 inch of pad. If there is less than 3/32 inch of a pad, you may want to have your pads inspected or replaced.