Brake work is a big part of what we do at Milito’s Auto Repair. No matter what kind of vehicle, the brakes see plenty of wear and tear through normal driving, and that means routine maintenance, inspections, and replacements for cars, trucks, and SUVs of all makes and models.
When our customers bring their vehicles in for brake related service, many of them ask the same basic question: “How can I extend the life of my brakes?” While brakes are always going to wear down through constant use, there are steps (and good driving habits) that all drivers can turn to for prolonging the life of their brakes.
The faster a vehicle is moving, the harder the brakes have to work to slow it down. Even just a few miles per hour can make a difference when compounded over time.
It might not seem like much, but driving a bit slower and being more conscientious about speed will reduce wear and tear on brake pads over time.
It only makes sense that using your brakes less will allow all of the components to last longer. An easy way to reduce braking is to coast whenever possible.
Approaching a red light, stop sign, or turn involves slowing down, and most people keep a foot on the accelerator until it’s time to start braking. Instead (and only if it can be done safely), stop accelerating and allow the vehicle to coast toward the stop, effectively reducing the speed before pressure from the brakes needs to be applied.
The heavier a vehicle is, the harder it is to stop. That goes for giant trucks and industrial vehicles, of course, but the same is true for even the smallest cars! The golf clubs in the trunk, the aftermarket speakers, even the odds and ends left in the back seat – all of this stuff contributes to the overall weight of the vehicle, and makes the braking system work that much harder to slow down and stop.
By staying conscious of the car or truck’s weight (and removing unnecessary items whenever possible), drivers reduce the workload of the brakes and help prolong their life!
Extending the life of your brakes isn’t just about weight and workload. Getting a professional inspection at the first sign of a problem can make a big difference. It’s also a good idea to have brakes inspected any time tires are rotated, alignment is adjusted, and so on. If rotors are warped, brake pads won’t last, and a routine inspection can identify such issues before major damage occurs.
Similarly, getting your brake fluid drained and flushed regularly (especially with an older vehicle) helps internal components last longer and makes the whole system operate more efficiently. How often a vehicle needs a brake flush depends on a variety of factors, but one of Milito’s expert mechanics can provide a recommendation.
Taking small steps can extend the life of your brakes, especially if those steps are taken consistently. If you have any questions, want an inspection, or need maintenance on any part of your brake system, contact Milito’s Auto Repair today!