Your brakes are one of the most important parts of your car and you will not be able to operate your vehicle safely without brakes that are functional. If your brakes are not working properly, it might make sense to learn about how brakes work before you go about having them repaired.
Pressing the Brakes
When you press down on a brake pedal, you are manipulating a metal rod. The rod controls a master cylinder. Connected to the master cylinder are brake lines. These are tubes through which hydraulic fluid flows.
Once you press down on the brake pedal, the rod attached to the pedal compresses the hydraulic fluid. The fluid then delivers pressure to the brake system and allows the brakes to bring your car to a stop. Then, once you take your foot off the brakes, you relive the pressure. This is accomplished in part with the help of a spring.
Bringing Your Car to a Stop
What actually brings your car to a stop is the clamping action of your caliper. Your brake pads press against the rotor and generate friction. This slows down your car. The harder you press down on your brakes, the more friction and the faster your car stops. However, braking like this can be hard on your brakes especially if you are traveling at a high speed.
Your brakes will not necessarily use a caliper. Some older brakes use brake drums. However, it serves the same purpose. If any of these components of your braking system fail, however, you might not be able to stop your car.
If the brake pads wear out, you won't be able to generate the friction necessary. If the brake lines have a leak, you might not have enough hydraulic fluid to generate power when pressing down on your brakes.
Repairing Your Brakes
If you notice anything is wrong with your brakes, make sure to contact a brake repair technician as soon as possible. They will perform an inspection, look for any problems, and make repairs if necessary. It's much cheaper to have your brakes inspected than it is to repair a car after you are unable to stop and crack into a building or another vehicle.
In most cases, the technician will simply replace your brake pads. However, there might be more serious problems that must be fixed before your car is safe to drive.
For more information about brakes, contact a local auto shop.