Category Archives: Brakes
Hello Boise, let’s talk about brakes. Braking, as all Idaho car owners know, is slowing or stopping your vehicle. As you can imagine, brakes are engineered to work well on a particular vehicle application. For example, you would expect more powerful brakes on a heavy-duty pickup that routinely hauls big loads and pulls trailers, than you would on a compact car. And a Corvette that can go over 180 miles per hour would have much different braking needs than the family mini-van you drive around between Boise, Boise and Meridian.
But the mechanical aspects of the brakes themselves are just one issue. There’s also the power brake pump and brake fluid. And then there are the tires, which are critical to the effectiveness of the brakes.
Let’s step back. A new sedan or truck rolls off a local Boise showroom floor. It has brand new brakes with brand new brake pads. The brake lines and pump are filled with fresh fluid and are completely clean inside. And the tires are brand new, with full tread. It is ready to go.
Naturally, braking power is at its peak performance. Now the miles start to add up on the sedan. Boise drivers tend to focus on the brake pads. In the automotive business, the pads, and shoes on drum brakes, are called the friction material. That’s because they provide the friction used to stop the vehicle. The pads are designed to be effective throughout their useful life – it’s not until they are worn so thin as to be out of auto manufacturers’ specs that they lose their ability to stop.
The mechanical parts of the brakes have pistons and springs that get quite a workout while breaking. Over many miles around Idaho, these wear and get gummed up. They start to lose effectiveness gradually and could even fail – a scary possibility That’s why a regular brake inspection at Napa AutoCare Boise is important for your sedan and your family’s safety. At Napa AutoCare Boise we can test the operation of the brakes and see if any parts need cleaning or replacing.
That leads us to brake fluid service at Napa AutoCare Boise. Some of the critical additives in the fluid that lubricate and clean the sedan fluid system are depleted over time. That and moisture building up in the system reduce the performance of the brake fluid. A brake service at Napa AutoCare Boise cleans out deposits, water and dirt. Then the system is filled up with fresh fluid.
The tires are what connect the sedan to the road. Stopping force all comes down to traction. The better the tires grip the road, the quicker you’ll stop.
This is especially important on wet Boise area freeways and surface streets. Studies have shown that wet stopping distance increases significantly as tires wear down. Idaho auto owners need to understand that they can have brakes that are operating at peak efficiency and yet still be in danger because their tires are worn out.
When it comes to preventive maintenance and car care, most Boise motorists know how important it is to check their brakes. But brakes are more than just brake pads and shoes. There are a lot of components in the brake system, and they all need to be in good working order.
The pads and shoes are known as the friction materials in the brake system. They push together, providing friction, which stops the vehicle. It’s no wonder they have to be checked regularly for wear, and that brake pads and shoes need to be replaced periodically.
Brake pads/shoes gradually wear out, but that doesn’t mean your braking gradually becomes less effective. The pads are engineered so that they maintain good braking until they wear too thin to provide adequate friction. At this point, they need to be replaced.
But your braking system also has mechanical parts. These pistons and springs can also gradually wear out or get gummed up by oil, dirt and other road spatter. A brake inspection in Boise at Napa AutoCare Boise includes a check of these parts as well as the pads and shoes. Your fr Napa AutoCare Boise technician can then advise you of any parts that need cleaning or replacement.
The fluid component to the brake system needs a regular check-up at Napa AutoCare Boise as well. The brake fluid cools and protects your brake system. Protective additives are gradually depleted by the operation of the brake system, and moisture build-up inside the fluid can diminish its effectiveness. When you have your brakes serviced at Napa AutoCare Boise in Boise, the fluid should be checked and, if needed, replaced, which will clean out water, debris and dirt.
It is essential to remember that your brake system also includes your tires. No matter how well your brake system is performing, if your sedan tires are worn, you won’t get good stopping power. Traction is the gripping power of your tires to the roadway. Traction is always better on tires with a good tread. Good traction translates to good braking.
This is particularly critical on wet Boise roads. A good tire will give you good braking on either wet Idaho roads or dry. But stopping distance increases dramatically when worn tires meet wet roads. Tread on a tire acts to channel away water as the sedan passes over the wet road, thus maintaining contact between the tire’s surface and the road, which maintains traction. But the thinner the tread, the less effective the water channels become, and water can get between the tire and the roadway, reducing friction. A loss of friction means a longer stopping distance and possibly the loss of control.
Braking depends on two things: the weight of your sedan and the speed of the vehicle. The heavier the vehicle or the faster the vehicle, the more braking power it requires. Thus, brake systems vary from vehicle to vehicle. For example, a pickup that is designed for heavy loads has a more powerful braking system than a compact car. Sports cars also have higher-grade braking systems than minivans.
Regardless of what kind of car you drive in Boise, it is always good auto advice to keep your brake system in good repair, and that means ALL of your brake system. Just one more way to keep your travels accident and worry-free.