Brake Pad & Shoe Replacement
Brake pad problems can usually be identified by squealing brakes. If your
brake pads deteriorate completely, you'll hear a grinding metal-on-metal
sound when braking, meaning that it's too late and you're ruining your
rotors or drums! Those with knowledge of auto repair may be able to fix
this at home, but you should always see an auto repair professional
immediately if you have brake problems.
Brake rotors are another critical component of the braking system,
responsible for bringing your vehicle to a safe and complete stop.
In a disc brake system, rotors are attached to your vehicle's wheels. When
the brake pads grip the rotor, they bring both the rotor and wheels to a
However, the friction causes grooves and cracks to appear over time.
You might be surprised to learn that the brake rotors are just as
important as the brake pads when it comes to effectively stopping the
vehicle. Resurfacing brings the rotor back to a "like-new" condition, reducing
squealing and wobbling. We will give your rotors a
thorough inspection and recommend your best course of action.
Like brake pads, brake rotors don't last forever. Because the rotors also
wear every time the brakes are applied, brake rotors should be replaced or
resurfaced when they are warped or worn out. Ask your Chanhassen service
advisor to measure the thickness of the rotors every time your brakes are
serviced as worn out rotors might not have enough metal left for safe
braking. Worn rotors lose the ability to absorb and dissipate heat which
can compromise their overall strength, increasing the risk of cracking
A warped or damaged brake rotor may contribute to premature brake pad wear
and lead to more frequent brake pad replacement and an increased cost of
repair. From a safety standpoint, worn brake rotors may dramatically
increase the distance required for you to stop, cause the vehicle to pull
to one side, or result in loss of control which could result in injury to
you and possibly others who share the road.
The brake caliper houses your brake pads and fits around the rotor like a
clamp, pressing the pads against the rotor when you brake. A brake caliber
problem could cause uneven braking, making your car slide forward when you
brake. Uneven braking can also cause your vehicle to slide out of control
in bad weather conditions, so contact us as soon as
A brake hose is a tube carrying pressurized brake fluid from the master
cylinder to the brakes. A crushed hose can cause a lagged or slow brake,
and a leak in the hose can cause the brake, or the entire brake system, to
fail. These don't need to be replaced often, but should be replaced at the
first sign of cracking or wear.
Wheel bearings are found inside of wheels, allowing the wheels to spin
freely, and are connected to the brake system. They can become worn over
time, causing a vibrating suspension and noisy rubbing as the car is
driven. If they break completely, the vehicle will become very difficult
to control and unsafe to drive. Replacement interval for wheel bearings
varies greatly, but they should be checked for leaks and wear
periodically. Ai Automotive Unlimited of Chanhassen MN can make sure that your bearings are
in good shape and let you know if they need replacement.
Anti-Lock Brake System
Anti-lock Brake Systems (ABS) ensure that the wheels don't stop rotating
during braking, preventing the car from skidding and offering greater
control. If your ABS light comes on, visit us and we
will be happy to diagnose and fix the problem.
Parking Brake uses Cables to mechanically apply the brakes (usually the
rear brake.) This is used to prevent the car from rolling when not being
Your vehicle's brake system is a culmination of over 100 years of
technological innovation, transforming crude stopping mechanisms into
dependable and efficient equipment. While brake systems vary by make and
model, the basic system consists of disc brakes in front and either disk
or drum brakes in back. Connected by a series of tubes and hoses, your
brakes link to each wheel and to the master cylinder, which supply them
with vital brake fluid (hydraulic fluid).
We can summarize all of your braking equipment into two categories,
Hydraulics and Friction Material:
The master cylinder is like a pressure converter. When you press down on
the brake pedal (physical pressure), the master cylinder converts this to
hydraulic pressure, and brake fluid moves into the wheel brakes.
Brake Lines and Hoses:
Brake lines hoses deliver pressurized brake fluid to the braking unit(s)
at each wheel.
Wheel Cylinders and Calipers:
Wheel Cylinders surrounded by two rubber-sealed pistons connect the piston
with the brake shoe. Push the brakes and the pistons stop and the shoes
pushes into the drum. Calipers squeeze brake pads onto the rotor to stop
your car. Both components apply pressure to friction materials.
Disc Brake Pads and Drum Brake Shoes:
A disc brake uses fluid (released by the master cylinder) to force
pressure into a caliper, where it presses against a piston. The piston
then squeezes two brake pads against the rotor, forcing it to stop. Brake
shoes consist of a steel shoe with friction material bonded to it.
Brake pads are a key component in your vehicle's braking system. As the
brakes are applied their contact with the brake rotors are what allow you
to stop. Over time, this interaction causes the brake pads to gradually
wear down, reducing your braking ability. We recommend replacing your
brake pads after they have worn less than 1/8th of an inch, often signaled
by a squealing wear indicator embedded in the brake pad. Brake pad wear
beyond this point will dramatically increase stopping distance.
Further neglect will lead to severe damage and replacement of the brake
rotors as metal components of the brake come in contact. Having your brake
pads serviced as soon as they reach minimal thickness will extend the life
of your braking system, and prevent the need for costly rotor replacement.
From a safety standpoint, deteriorated brake pads will dramatically
increase the distance required for you to stop, possibly causing an
accident, endangering your life and others who share the road.
How It Comes Together:
When you first step on the brake pedal, you are triggering the release of
brake fluid into the system of tubes and hoses, which travel to the
braking unit at each wheel. You actually push against a plunger in the
master cylinder, releasing fluid. Brake fluid can't be compressed. It
moves through the network of tubes and hoses in the exact same motion and
pressure that initiated it. When it comes to stopping a heavy steel
machine at high speed, this consistency is a good thing. The performance
of your brakes can be affected when air gets into the fluid; since air can
compress, it creates sponginess in the pedal, which disrupts consistency,
and results in bad braking efficiency. "Bleeder screws" (located at each
wheel cylinder) remove unwanted air in your system.
A car without functioning brakes is dangerous. In many cases, warning
signs will tell you if your car's brakes may need service.
Warning signs include:
Squealing or grinding noises when
using brakes. This could mean your brakes need to be adjusted or that your
brake pads are worn and need replacement.
Your dashboard's Anti-lock Braking
System (ABS) light turns on. This indicates that your brake fluid is low.
You may have a leak in your brake line. Get it inspected.
While braking, your car pulls to one
side. This means that your brakes need adjustment, there is brake fluid
leakage, or your brakes are worn out and need replacement.
Your brakes are hard to press down or
feel "spongy." Usually this means air has gotten into your brake lines or
you may have low brake fluid.
When applying your brakes, your
steering wheel, brake pedal, or entire vehicle begins to shake. If this
happens, your brake rotors could be warped and need replacement.
you notice any brake warning signs, contact our professional staff by
phone, or email, immediately and we'll take care of it.
OF BRAKE REPAIR
Bad brakes display warning signs for impending brake maintenance. For
example, if your brakes squeal or grind when in use, then your brake pads
may be worn and require replacements. If your vehicle pulls to one side
when braking, then this may point to worn brakes, a malfunctioning
caliper, or low brake fluid in the brake lines. If your brake pedal
presses down too easily—also known as “spongy” brakes—then this may be an
indication of too much air in the hydraulic brake lines. Sometimes, your
vehicle’s electronic diagnostic system will alert you to a potential brake
issue by a service indicator light (see below) on the dashboard. While
these are only some of the most common signs of potential problems with
your vehicle’s brake system, noticing these signs of faulty brakes and
seeking out a brake service can save you money down the line. Our staff in
Chanhassen Minnesota is trained in maintaining and servicing front and rear
brake systems and all accompanying brake system components like brake
pads, brake shoes, parking brakes, rotors, drums, and hydraulic systems.
If you experience any of the above signs or symptoms of bad brakes, like
unusual squealing or grinding noises, then contact us online or call us
today to have your brakes inspected immediately.
- Dashboard Warning Light
The Brake Light can be activated for a number of reasons. The
simplest cause is that the parking brake is engaged. If the brake
light is still illuminated after the parking brake has been fully
disengaged, there could be a more serious issue. Lack of hydraulic
pressure or a low fluid level due to leaking will both generate your
Brake Light – and both issues indicate an immediate need for
service. Brake fluid leaks are particularly dangerous as they can
cause your brakes to fail and contaminate different components of
your brake system. Make sure your brakes are still stopping your
vehicle if you are attempting to drive. If there is no brake
pressure at all, it is safest to stop driving and call for a tow.
Brake Repair Service for Chanhassen, Eden Prairie
and surrounding Minnesota communities