Why are brakes so important?
The brakes are one of the most essential part in ensuring car safety. Despite all technological advancements, we still need to count on our brakes to swiftly respond when required.
You should not underestimate the role of brakes in your safety behind the wheel, which is why good maintenance and regular check ups are vital.
How often should I have my brakes checked?
Brakes are paramount to vehicle and public safety and should be checked once a year or every 20,000km / 12,000miles. Especially the parts that are subject to continual wear and tear: the brake pads, discs and drums. Brake fluids also should be checked every two years as they absorb water from the air over time.
However, if you drive a lot of short distances or have an automatic gearbox more regular check-ups are required. Ask your First Stop specialist for advice.
Tell tell signs your brakes need looking at:
- If brakes are grinding, squeaking or squealing
- The brake pedal feels harder or softer than usual
- The steering wheel shakes or vibrates when you brake
- You get a warning light on your dash
- If your brakes ever take longer to respond or fail to respond at all
When should I replace the brake fluid in my car?
Brake fluid should be replaced every time brake pads are changed, whenever brake disks and pads are changed, every 2 years or when the boiling point of the brake fluid is under 165ºC (DOT 4)
Can I top up the brake fluid?
The brake fluid should never be topped up as its properties are reduced if new is mixed with old. Many vehicles also measure wear on the pads or disks by the level of the brake fluid, and if it is topped up, the vehicle will not report this wear.