Brakes

A:

According to HowStuffWorks, a hydraulic braking system works by applying force at one point and transmitting it to another point via an incompressible fluid. In a hydraulic braking system for a car, for instance, the force is applied by the driver's foot on the brake pedal. This force is then transmitted to the brakes via the brake fluid.

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  • What causes squeaking brakes?

    Q: What causes squeaking brakes?

    A: When the brake pads come in contact with the brake rotor to slow and stop a vehicle, the pressure and friction occasionally cause a vibration that produces a squeaking sound. These squeaks are often normal, but they may also mean that the brakes are starting to wear out.
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  • What is the average life of brake pads?

    Q: What is the average life of brake pads?

    A: The average life of brake pads is 30,000 to 70,000 miles. A number of factors affect the point at which brake pads wear out. Pads are made of various materials for different types of braking systems.
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  • Why is my brake pedal hard to push?

    Q: Why is my brake pedal hard to push?

    A: A brake pedal can be hard to push because of several factors, including a brake pedal getting caught on something, failure of the power brake booster or a sticking shoe, which causes the brake fluid to boil. Additionally, a brake can be hard to push if water builds up in the brake line or as a result of a restriction in the brake line.
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  • How do you release a stuck parking brake?

    Q: How do you release a stuck parking brake?

    A: If an emergency brake is stuck, it may help to pump the regular brake a few times, lubricate the emergency brake cable or release button, or locate a repair manual for vehicle-specific instructions. If the car changes gears, shifting the gear from drive to reverse a few times may also loosen the emergency brake.
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  • Why do my brakes grind when I come to a stop?

    Q: Why do my brakes grind when I come to a stop?

    A: If a car's brakes grind when the car comes to a stop, worn out or defective brake pads could be damaging the rotors of the brakes. Brake problems of any kind should be inspected and taken care of as soon as possible to avoid further damage and reduce the chances of the brakes failing entirely.
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  • What could cause a car to shake when braking at high speed?

    Q: What could cause a car to shake when braking at high speed?

    A: A problem with the brake disk rotors is the most common cause of vibration when braking at high speeds. Rotors are circular metal parts found behind the wheel of the vehicle that the brake pads press against to create friction and stop the vehicle. Small irregularities in the rotors transfer to the steering wheel when applying the brakes. Another cause of vibration is improperly tightened lug nuts.
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  • What causes the brake pedal to go all the way in?

    Q: What causes the brake pedal to go all the way in?

    A: Some reasons why a brake pedal may depress all the way to the floor include loss of brake fluid, a faulty master cylinder or a bad brake booster. Drivers who "ride the brakes," or constantly depress the brake pedal while driving, can cause this condition.
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  • What happens when you drive with the emergency brake on?

    Q: What happens when you drive with the emergency brake on?

    A: Most of the time, driving with the emergency brake engaged does little harm, but the driver should have a professional inspect the brakes for damage. In many instances, the driver notes the smell of hot brakes and disengages the brake, but prolonged driving with the brake engaged potentially ruins the rear brake shoe linings or drums.
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  • How is a brake chamber measured?

    Q: How is a brake chamber measured?

    A: An air brake chamber is measured by locating size markings on the brake chamber or by measuring the diameter of the clamp holding the chamber together. Measuring the diameter requires a special tool, whereas locating the size markings may require the removal of dirt, corrosion or paint. Brake chamber sizes can be found in the vehicle owner's manual.
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  • What happens if the brake fluid is low in a car?

    Q: What happens if the brake fluid is low in a car?

    A: Motor vehicles with low brake fluid require a mechanical inspection to avoid experiencing a brake system failure. Low brake fluid typically means that a vehicle's brake pads are wearing thin or that there is a leak in the brake line system. Neglecting to address low brake fluid is bound to lead to potentially unsafe and expensive problems.
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  • What causes uneven brake pad wear?

    Q: What causes uneven brake pad wear?

    A: Common causes of uneven brake pad wear include driving with warped rotors, a clogged brake line or leaky calipers. Vehicles that are heavier in the front than in the rear can wear brake pads unevenly due to an uneven distribution of weight. Debris in the breaking system, such as rocks or other foreign objects, wears brake pads down unevenly as well.
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  • What are the signs of bad rotors?

    Q: What are the signs of bad rotors?

    A: Signs of bad rotors include vibration when the brake petal is depressed, and a visual inspection that reveals wear and tear. Rotors can be replaced or resurfaced unless they are under a certain thickness. A rotor that is too thin does not absorb the immense heat of the braking process and may crack or break while in use, causing brake failure.
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  • Q: How do you change brake pads?

    A: To change a vehicle's brake pads, first remove the wheel and the brake assembly. Next, remove the old pads and install the new brake pads. It is of utmost importance that you place every object back exactly the way it was before removal.
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  • Q: What is an ABS module?

    A: An ABS module, or ABS control module, refers to a car's anti-lock brake system, which controls the ABS system. The controls are directed in response to data that is gathered from the sensors placed around the car. The ABS module is usually found near the engine.
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  • Q: What causes a bad brake booster?

    A: There are several things that can cause a bad brake booster including a bad vacuum. A brake booster needs vacuum pressure to work effectively so a lack of pressure can cause failures. Other causes of booster failure include broken springs and ruptured diaphragms.
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  • Q: What's the average cost of brakes and rotors?

    A: As of 2015, the nationwide average cost of replacing brake pads and rotors ranges between $296 and $404. This includes the cost of parts and labor. The actual cost varies depending on the make and model of the vehicle and the location.
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  • Is there a specific type of brake that is the best?

    Q: Is there a specific type of brake that is the best?

    A: For most passenger cars, the use of disc brakes on all four wheels is generally considered the optimum configuration according to the automotive website Edmunds. However, drum brakes are still commonly used on many cars on one or both axles due to manufacturing and pricing concerns.
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  • Q: What parts are included in brake line kits?

    A: Parts included in brake line kits for disc/drum brakes are braided stainless flex lines, two rolls of 3/16-inch stainless steel brake line 20 feet long, two thru-frame fittings 3 inches long, two residual pressure valves, and assorted hardware and fittings. Mechanics must purchase fittings separately to connect the braided hose to the caliper because of the wide caliper assortment. To purchase the proper fittings, mechanics must have the correct caliper inlet size. Mechanics must purchase the appropriate brake hoses.
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  • Q: How do you use a brake repair diagram?

    A: Using a brake repair diagram to fix a problem in the braking system involves getting the right tools and following the necessary steps for dismantling the brake system. This task requires a little bit knowledge of the braking system parts, such as calipers, pads, lug, lug wrench and axle.
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  • Where can the brake light switch be found on a Toyota Corolla?

    Q: Where can the brake light switch be found on a Toyota Corolla?

    A: The exact positioning may vary somewhat by model year, but the brake light switch in Toyota Corollas is usually in the immediate vicinity of the brake pedal. In many models, it is be mounted just above or just behind the brake pedal.
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  • Q: Where can you go to get brake pads replaced?

    A: Brake pad replacement services are available at a local Meineke or Pep Boys service center. A search function for local Meineke service centers is available at Meineke.com. PepBoys.com offers the Find a Pep Boys search feature, as well as a link to schedule a service appointment online.
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