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What are Disc Brakes?
A disc brake is a type of brake that uses callipers to squeeze pairs of pads against a disc in order to create friction that retards the rotation of a shaft, such as a vehicle axle, either to reduce its rotational speed or to hold it stationary.
Hydraulic disc brakes are the most commonly used form of brake for motor vehicles but the principles of a disc brake are applicable to almost any rotating shaft.
Compared to drum brakes, disc brakes offer better stopping performance because the disc is more readily cooled. As consequence discs are less prone to the brake fade caused when brake components overheat. Disc brakes also recover more quickly from immersion (wet brakes are less effective than dry ones).
What about the Pads?
The brake pads are made of a softer material than the metal of the brake discs. This means it is the pads which often wear out faster (and depending on the properties of the material, disc wear rates may vary). You will find that you will have to replace your brake pads more often than your brake discs. Most brake pads are equipped with a method of alerting the driver when this needs to be done.
Determine your problem and cause!
Issue – Braking requires an abnormal amount of force on brake pedal
Likely Cause – Worn brake pads
Issue – Car pulls to one side when braking
Likely Cause – Brake pad lining(s) soaked with oil or brake fluid
Issue – Poor braking performance
Likely Cause – Brake pad lining(s) soaked with water, oil, or brake fluid; Overheated brake pad linings
Issue – Sensitive braking
Likely Cause – Incorrect brake pad linings; Greasy brake pad linings
Issue – Noisy braking (grinding or screeching sounds when braking)
Likely Cause – Extremely worn brake pads