“…there’s no use going anywhere, if you can’t stop when you get there.”

When Kyle Larson’s car’s brakes failed and he slammed into Ty Dillon’s car in a NASCAR race this July, they were probably traveling at upwards of 120 MPH, which on it’s face appears to be the catalyst for a catastrophe.  Luckily NASCAR vehicles are equipped with world-class safety features, such as the game-changing HANS device (Head and Neck Support restraint).  The accident itself begs the question however- what would happen in normal city traffic if a car lost the ability to brake?

Brakes are one of the components of your automobile that need to be maintained on a regular basis.  Frequently drivers will get oil changes, fill the car up with gas, add wiper fluid, or inflate tires.  Although a process like an oil change needs to occur quite often to make sure the car can move, you shouldn’t ignore the method in which the car stops, warns Bill Taylor owner and operator of Framerite Auto Repair in Baltimore, Maryland.  There is a wide range of how often brake pads should be replaced according to Framerite.  It depends on how often the person drives, how heavy of a “braker” they are, the make and model of the vehicle, and many more factors.  Most reputable brake repair shops will service drum brakes and disc brakes, and a brake lathe is an added bonus.  Framerite Auto Repair employs an on-car lathe for precision.  

There are many ways to know when your brakes should be serviced.  It is better to have them inspected regularly to avoid further damage or wear and tear, but if you hear a squealing noise, the brake pads may be worn.  Much like going to a dentist, if you ignore the issue, it will get worse.  Once you hear a grinding noise, the rotors have most likely been compromised.  Now you are generally looking at a more expensive repair bill.  You can also sometimes tell you need brake maintenance when the brake pedal feels differently than normal.  Additionally, the car pulling to one side could also mean worn or improperly fitting pads, which will warp the rotors as well.  When the mechanic or tech services the vehicle to diagnose the brake situation, they will inspect the brake lines for small leaks or other damages.

Things have changed dramatically since the days of wooden block brakes.  Gottlieb Daimler invented the mechanical drum brake around the turn of the last century.  Louis Renault refined and developed these brakes a few years later.  Loughead changed the game further with hydraulic braking systems.  Although invented much earlier, disc brakes became widely used in the 1950’s.  Development continues, including anti-lock brakes.  Most cars made now will have disc brakes or a mixture of disc and drum brakes with a hydraulic system and brake pads or shoes.

One major pointer when shopping for brake repair or replacement services- make sure there is a warranty.  This is a part of the car that is used constantly and is an instant safety hazard if not properly working.  When looking for a full service brake and brake repair shop, Framerite Auto Repair checks all the boxes.  Located on Harford Road in Baltimore, they service all types of American and Asian makes and models.  One thing is certain in the Baltimore region.  It is wise to choose a shop that has dealt with wear and tear from city and highway driving.   

“I know when the time comes 
 To  put on the brakes- 
  Slow down, take it easy.  
  Make no more mistakes.”

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