A vehicle’s braking system is essential for the security of its occupants and must always be in top shape. We shall describe its operation, quirks, and upkeep in the following lines.
Nearly every mechanical component in a car is necessary, but the brake system stands out because it is vital for active safety. Its significance goes beyond performance or essential operation.
Brakes have substantially improved over the years, becoming a reliable device with exceptional effectiveness and smooth operation. What is the cause of everything? In the lines that follow, we address it.
The mechanism of a car’s braking system
Before we get into the mechanics of action, we should be aware of the following critical components of a braking system:
- Brake drums vs. discs
- Bands or calipers
- Mechanical pump
- Braking liquid
- Foot pedal
A hydraulic pump that circulates brake fluid to the calipers is activated by pushing the brake pedal, regardless of whether the braking system uses disc brakes or drum brakes.
Since the wheels are fastened to the axle to which bolts also fix these components, the pressure of the fluid passing through the pistons causes the calipers to press the pads or bands against the brake disc or drum, generating friction between both parts and braking the vehicle.
Various brake types
The friction between two components—the brake pad and the disc or drum—causes braking, but each system’s capabilities and attributes are unique.
An explanation of the operation of drum and disc brakes.
They are also referred to as bell brakes, and they are made up of two bands that create friction inside the drum when the pedal is depressed and a cylinder that revolves around the wheel. These bands are two plates wrapped in ferrules or brake linings.
As they are less expensive and more lasting, drum brakes are currently only used on the rear axle of low or middle-range cars that are not very large.
Additionally, because the entire assembly, including within the drum, is shielded, it is a very suitable choice for vehicles that drive on roads in rain or snow.
Naturally, this has the drawback of reduced airflow, which might cause the drum or bell to distort after frequent usage.
These are the most advanced and effective and have increased in popularity over time. Since the front axle often carries more weight, they are the norm.
Vehicles with larger sizes, performance, or sophistication are also the norm on the back axle.
Each wheel has a disc and a set of pads that serve as the wheel’s brakes. These do so on both sides of the disc, providing adequate heat dissipation and aggressive braking. However, they cost more and don’t last as long as drum brakes.
Additionally, there are many types of brake pads, which are crucial since they are the component that makes contact with the disc to provide braking:
Semi-metallic materials contain a combination of metals in an approximate proportion of between 30 60% and are often made with steel wool and copper or iron powder.
They are typically installed in high-performance automobiles because they are the most resilient and enable effective heat transfer.
Organic: These are very adaptable and ideal for challenging driving. They are constructed of carbon, fiberglass, rubber, Kevlar, and Kevlar. They are quiet and smooth but also wear out more quickly and produce more brake dust.
Ceramics: In producing ceramics, non-ferrous materials, bonding agents, and ceramic fibers are all used. They cost more but are adequate, quiet, and clean.
Low metal: they are comparable to organic versions but contain 10 to 30% more metal in the recipe. They are, therefore, louder but also offer improved braking and heat dissipation.
The disc has a longer lifespan than the pads. However, the disc’s integrity is greatly influenced by the state of the places, which must be changed if they are not replaced promptly.
Grey nodular cast iron in lamellar graphite and carbon matrix is typically used to make brake discs, with the latter material being mainly employed for racing cars. Materials like titanium and aluminum, as well as light metals like stainless steel, can be used. Here are the several types of brake discs now available:
Solid discs are the most typical and have a smooth surface.
Ventilated: Curves or vanes are positioned between the two faces to distribute air for cooling, effectively dissipating heat.
Perforated: They have numerous holes that serve a similar purpose to ventilated ones, effectively dissipating heat and lowering the weight of the component. However, they feature a lower friction surface.
Scratched: By cleaning the debris that has accumulated between the pad and the disc, they prevent screeching and a decrease in braking effectiveness.
Mixed: They incorporate the systems outlined above, attempting to blend the various aspects of each as much as possible.