Using Brake Sensations To Diagnose Malfunctions

Does your vehicle stall or stutter when you come to a stop? If this is a problem you are experiencing click here to learn more about it.

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Does your vehicle stall or stutter when you come to a stop? Do you struggle to keep your foot on the gas at each stop light to ensure the car doesn't stall in the middle of traffic? There are several issues that could be causing your car to stall - some of these problems are easily fixed. If this is a problem you are experiencing, take a moment to visit my website. There, you will find a list of possible causes, some troubleshooting techniques and what your mechanic may do to keep your car running when you stop. It is my hope that you will find exactly what you need to help keep your car running from start to stop.


Using Brake Sensations To Diagnose Malfunctions

14 September 2015
, Blog

You can tell a lot about a brake's condition by the way it feels. A good brake system should be firm (not hard) when you push down on the pedals. Any other sensation means that you have a malfunctioning brake. Here are three ways you can use your brake's sensations to diagnose its problems:

Pedal Is Spongy

Brake pedals should be firm. A brake pedal that feels spongy or soft can be caused by different problems, but the main one is the occurrence of air in the brake system. Air can be introduced into the brake system if the fluid is extremely low or leaking. The solution is to bleed your brakes (remove air from the brake lines), something that should be handled by a professional mechanic since improper bleeding may just introduce more air into the brake system.

Pedal Is Hard

Automotive brakes use power assists so that drivers don't have to use all their force when stopping. The power assist can either be a vacuum or hydraulic type. If the assist fails, then the brake pedal will be extremely hard to push.

Power assist failure in a vacuum brake system is commonly caused by the loss of vacuum, for example, if the brake line has a split. If it's a hydraulic brake, then the most likely culprit is fluid leakage or low fluid.

Note that your brake will still be working if the hard pedal is caused by power assist failure; it will just be hard. If it is so hard that it doesn't press at all, then the problem is mechanical (for example, a broken connecting rod).

 Pedal Is Pulsating

A pulsating brake pedal, especially if it is jerky and shuddering when you brake, is probably caused by a warped brake rotor (part of the brake system that comes into contact with the brake pads to stop the car). The vibration is caused by alternate grabbing and slipping of the rotor due to the warping. This is the most likely cause, but it can also be due to a loose brake parts, bent axle shaft or loose wheel bearings.

A professional diagnosis is essential, because the necessary fix depends on the cause of the pulsations. For example, if it is the loose brake parts, then tightening them will solve the problem. As for the warping of the rotors, resurfacing may be enough to flatten them.

The brake is an essential part of the car. A malfunction here deserves the attention of a professional mechanic, like those at Soundside Automotive. Don't risk driving with a damaged brake because you never know when you may need it.