Brakes are an essential part of safe driving, and have come a long way from simple beginnings. Nowadays, multiple braking systems work together and have different roles within the same car, and all are important for overall safety and performance.

What are the different types of brakes?

There are several types of brakes that serve different purposes. Service brakes are those thought of most commonly, and are what serve to slow and stop the car while driving. They come in two main forms – drum brakes and disc brakes. Drum brakes are aptly named for the brake drum located inside the wheel. On either side of this drum are two brake shoes that press on the drum, causing friction which will slow and ultimately stop the vehicle. Disc brakes have a disc-shaped brake rotor attached to the wheel. Brake pads are located on both sides of the rotor and squeeze the disc, again creating friction which slows and stops the car.

Anti-lock brakes have been critically important in preventing crashes since their widespread introduction in the 1970’s. These brakes prevent wheels from locking up completely when pressure is applied, thus maintaining contact between the tyre and the road. This is achieved through a hydraulic system that recognises and reduces excessive brake pressure on any one tyre. This prevents skidding and loss of control when sudden stops are unavoidable.

The emergency brake, also known as the hand or parking brake, is a separate braking system. Controlling the rear two wheels, this system keeps the car stationary, but can also be used to slow and stop the car should the service brakes fail.

Why is brake selection important?

Proper brake selection can mean the difference between a close call and a life threatening accident. Daily drivers will want to be sure to have long lasting brakes that work efficiently in all weather conditions. Performance drivers will be asking more of their brakes, and will require brakes that can handle the increased speeds at which their cars are driving. A step up in quality can be found with carbon-ceramic materials, or CCM, braking systems. Developed for Formula One racing cars, these brakes have been transferred to private vehicles for owners who want the best in braking power. CCMs can withstand the extreme temperatures reached during high speed driving compared to traditional cast iron brake rotors. Increased resistance to warping also means these brakes last longer and decreased weight means even better performance on the track.

Why choose Eurotorque?

Whichever braking system you need help with, the experts at Eurotorque have the knowledge to help you make the best choice. They use quality products so you can rest assured you will be able to drive safely and stop suddenly when required. Eurotorque assesses your brakes at every service, advising when brake pads will need replacing, as well as offering machining, skimming, and replacement of brake rotors. Eurotorque can install new braking systems, including Brembo, currently the leading producer of CCM discs. Eurotorque has experience with old and new cars, and can source older parts, however, second hand parts will not be installed – quality and safety are the number one concern. Contact Eurotorque today for all your braking needs.