Mazda Brake Service
A vehicle’s brakes provide one of the most important elements of safe driving. Your Mazda’s disc braking system consists of brake discs (also called rotors), calipers, and pads. When you apply the brakes, pressurized hydraulic brake fluid squeezes the brake pads against the surface of the disc/rotor, and the friction that’s produced slows and stops the vehicle. But the decreased performance of any of these components can affect the distance it takes to get to a complete stop.
What Causes Brake Problems?
Wear is the main factor that can affect braking ability. By the very process of creating the friction to slow or stop your car, brake components – especially brake pads – wear out. Because of this inevitable wear, the worst thing you can do is to neglect your braking system and not get it checked by an authorized service technician at regular intervals. Many people don’t ever think of their car’s brakes until they notice that it takes longer to stop, or the car starts making odd noises during braking.
Where you tend to drive can speed up the wear on your brakes, since conditions like hilly terrain or stop-and-go commuting will cause you to use your brakes more often. Driving at highway speeds causes you to apply your brakes less often but potentially much harder than normal if you don’t begin the slowing process by taking your foot off the gas pedal. And, of course, a more spirited driving style overall will bring about accelerated wear as well.
Signs and Sounds of Brake Problems
Have you noticed that when you attempt to stop your car you have to travel a greater distance than you did before? Does your brake pedal feel spongy? Have you noticed that when you stop your vehicle it seems to pull to one side or the other? Or maybe you’ve heard screeching or whistling when you apply your brakes. Does your car vibrate or shudder when you press the brake pedal? All of these are signs that your vehicle’s brakes are overdue for some attention.
The components most frequently replaced are brake pads, due to their important role in getting your vehicle to stop. These pads absorb most of the heat and friction produced during the stopping process and are the fastest-wearing component of the braking system. Replacing your pads regularly can extend the life of your brake rotors, which will eventually need to be replaced as well. Also, brake fluid collects dirt and debris over time, so it should be replaced before the contaminated fluid affects the brakes’ performance.
If you are experiencing any of the above problems, or if your brakes have not been checked in the last six months, we will be happy to perform a brake inspection at Balise Mazda. Our factory-trained Mazda technicians will get your vehicle up on the lift and thoroughly evaluate all of its components to determine whether any need maintenance. You can reach our Service Department at 413-788-8360, or you can schedule an appointment online.