It’s been an odd summer for San Diego, and we’re supposed to have a wet winter. Are you ready for the slick roads and unexpected occurrences while driving? When the roads are wet, stopping times are increased because of a loss of friction on the roadway, and sometimes because of water on your brake rotors. Have you inspected your rotors and brake pads for signs of excessive wear?
What you should look for:
Brake pad wear
Most brake pads have “wear detectors,” but sometimes those can be inaccurate or your pads might not have them. In a full brake system inspection, techs will take a look at the material left on your brake pads using a micrometer and making sure your pads will stop you in an emergency.
Brake rotor wear
Brake rotors not only wear down over time, but they can also warp. If you have had a serious emergency stop recently or forgot to take your parking brake off, you might want to have your rotors checked for warpage. If rotors are allowed to get too hot or the pressure from the brake pads is applied unevenly, your rotors could have a wavy surface, reducing the friction that the pads put on them and increasing your stopping time and distance.
Over time brake fluid breaks down or gets contaminants. When your fluid isn’t in good shape, neither is your full brake system. If you apply pressure to the brake pedal and the fluid has broken down, you have to put even more pressure on it to activate the brakes, another little thing that can add up to longer braking distances in emergency situations. Small part wear: Your brake system is composed of many parts. Inspect the hoses, pistons, and springs for signs of wear and failure. With an increase in wet roadways, you’re going to want to make sure your brake system is in tip-top shape for winter. El Nino is likely to wreck havoc on San Diego commutes; the last thing you need is a brake failure. If your brakes are due for an inspection, drop us a line and we’ll make sure you’re ready for the rain! Image: Flickr