Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Little Rubber Hose--Your Life Depends On It!

by: Tommy Sessions

I won't go into details with this job, but I want you to think about it. Your brakes are very important. Your life depend on them. When you have to have brakes repaired on your favorite vehicle, don't skimp.

Sure, it looks like all you need is a set of pads, or shoes. But, if the pads or shoes are wore out, what about the other parts?

I don't recommend having the rotors or drums turned. I know, a lot of technicians will tell you that you will have better braking if you turn them. On the small cars with the removable rotors on the front, I have had some turned, and then I had to buy the customer a new set of rotors and pads!

For some reason, the little rotors seem to eat the pads, after you have them turned. They are not that expensive. Go ahead and replace them if they are not usable. By that, I mean, if the pads were down to the metal plate and rubbing on the rotor.

Another thing to take into consideration is the rubber line coming from the caliper to the metal line that goes to the master cylinder. if your vehicle is several years old, that line is too.

Those lines tend to deteriorate inside. With the heat from the outside air, and from the engine, and the rotor when you apply your brakes, the fluid gets rather hot.

If you don't replace those two lines on the front you may have to replace a lot more parts. The particles from the inside of the hoses will get into the master cylinder and the caliper.

The master cylinder can cause a major malfunction and not apply the brakes when you need them. See
the little child playing ball in the street?

If the particles get into the caliper, they can cause it to "stick" in the outward position. That could happen, and I've seen it, when you apply your brake, and release them. Only thing, the caliper doesn't release.

This causes the piston in the caliper to keep pressure on the pads against the rotor. It will cause the vehicle to pull to one side upon braking. It will burn the pads before their time. It will probably overheat the rotor and cause it to crystallize, causing it to loose its braking power even if you put new pads on it.

It can also cause extreme heat through the system. Causing the grease in the wheel bearing to melt and run off the bearings. Then you have a wheel bearing  to go out. Is a $39 hose worth it?

Replace it the next time you have a major brake repair. Have the master cylinder and brake lines flushed, and new brake fluid added every two or three years.

About the author:
Tommy has been in auto repair since 1970. He publishes Bad Car Again for people who want to learn about their favorite vehicle, and about things that do happen at some repair shops. Join the ezine: mailto:badcaragain@txucomnet?subject=join_ezineA1 Visit the site:

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