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Everything You Need To Know About Brake Maintenance

Everything You Need To Know About Brake Maintenance

General maintenance for vehicle is carried out regularly which includes oil filters, tire pressures, coolant level etc. All of these activities are important because it may cost to the owner. But the maintenance of braking system is very important because it may cost to both owner and other vehicles. It is advisable to inspect other components of vehicle before examining the brakes directly because other systems affect performance of brakes, for instance, let the tires of front side are worn out then in this case braking effect will not be balanced similarly looseness of U-bolts will decrease or increase braking effect, in this case axle will try to roll in directions of braking pull and also worn out bearings will affect the performance. So it can be concluded that all the defects must be rectified before the maintenance of braking system.



Inspection of brakes

Jack up the vehicle and place the screw jacks under the axles only. It should be emphasized that screw jack should be under the axles because only in this condition the axles will be in some position as in case of road. Screw jack position other than this will not allow you to inspect brake correctly. After jacking open the brake drum and look for any broken springs, loose anchorages and worn out cams that should be replaced or tightened as required. Inspect the brake lining for wear. If the lining is worn out to within about 1 mm of rivet heads then it should be replaced. In modern vehicles lining are often attached with adhesives. The total thickness including that of lining and the shoe is measured. Similarly in case of disc brakes the brake pad should be checked for wear. When wear exceeds limit, the pad has to be replaced.


Brake drum should also be checked for wear. If brake drum is found in wear condition then it should be turned to correct oversize provided the drum has not worn out beyond the service limit. The checking of brake drum should be done with inside caliper. If the fine cracks are developed in the drum the same has to be discarded. Similarly in case of disc brakes check disc surfaces for scratches. However when only one side is scratched, polish and correct that side. To measure disc thickness use a micrometer and replace the disc if the wear is worn out is more than 2 mm. 



After these activities clean and lubricate all linkages and anchorages so that no component is sticking, then press brake pedal and feel for free play and the effective pedal travel. If the free play exceeds the value in the manual, the brake needs adjustment. The brake adjustment is further divided into two type’s namely major and minor adjustment. Minor adjustment mainly includes adjustment of brake hoe to compensate lining wear and is done without removing wheel. On the other hand major adjustment has to be done after installation of new shoes or relining old shoes where minor adjustment fails to provide satisfactory brake performance. 


Brakes maintenance

Maintenance of brakes involves only periodic (up to 5000 kms) checking and topping up the level of brake fluid in master cylinder in case of hydraulic brakes and the adjustment of the brake to compensate the wear of brake lining. Brake fluid should be only of correct specification. Lubrication of various linkages should be done at intervals after every interval say 500 Kms. All the rubber cups and seals should be changed after every 60000 kms.  


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