When it comes to preventive maintenance and car care, most Gig Harbor drivers know how vital 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 Gig Harbor at Mackert Automotive includes a check of these parts as well as the pads and shoes. Your friendly and courteous Mackert Automotive 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 Mackert Automotive 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 Mackert Automotive in Gig Harbor, the fluid should be checked and, if needed, replaced, which will clean out water, debris and dirt.
It is vital to remember that your brake system also includes your tires. No matter how well your brake system is performing, if your car, truck, SUV 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 tractiontranslates to good braking.
This is particularly vital on wet Gig Harbor roads. A good tire will give you good braking on either wet Washington 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 car, truck, SUV 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 car, truck, SUV 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 Gig Harbor, 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.