Brake pads are one of the main life-supporting elements of the braking system of a modern car. However, most drivers do not think about it every time they get into the car. And even more so they do not pay due attention to the pads, guided by the argument: “they slow down, all right.” And this is a gross mistake that can cost their lives not only to themselves, but also to other participants in the movement.
We found out what most drivers forget about and what they don’t do in relation to the invisible guardian angels of any car – brake pads.
Brake pads, working in conjunction with brake calipers and discs, play a leading role in the survivability of any vehicle on the road. They have to operate in the most aggressive environment at high temperatures. And at the same time, they must retain all the properties and characteristics inherent in them, providing the car with effective deceleration in any situation. Needless to say, the condition of the brake pads must be monitored with great care and high frequency.
However, many motorists don’t do even the smallest part of what they should.
The interval between replacing brake pads, under normal conditions of use, is from 30 to 60 thousand kilometers. However, the interval can be shorter if the car is driven by a temperamental driver who loves to drive and, therefore, to brake sharply. Weather conditions and mountainous terrain also increase the wear rate of the friction material of the pads.
If the rest of the pads have only 3-4 mm of the thickness of the working surface, then this is already considered critical wear. And therefore they urgently need to be replaced.
However, checking the condition of the brake pads even under normal conditions of use should be much more frequent than most motorists do. The Bosch experts told a visual inspection of the pads should be performed at each arrival at the service center. And it is imperative to monitor their wear during seasonal tire changes. And before going on vacation by car, checking the condition of the brakes and pads is absolutely mandatory.
Moreover, if the master noticed that the brake disc needs to be replaced, then the pads should be changed along with it. And not on one wheel, but on both wheels of the same axle. Otherwise, the braking performance can vary significantly.
But just pulling out some pads and inserting others is only half the battle. Many drivers, when replacing the pads on their own, often neglect to clean the brake system with a steel brush. Do not lubricate the moving parts of the brakes (it is worth remembering that different lubricants are used for different elements). Install the old assembly elements back during assembly.
Meanwhile, when changing the pads, it is necessary to conduct a comprehensive inspection of all elements of the brake system, including fluid. And as they wear out, the hoses, cables, calipers and brake fluid should be changed, if that has not been changed for a couple of years.