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Brake Glossary

brakes glossary

Nate's Brakes Glossary

At Nate’s Brakes, we understand that vehicle maintenance can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially when it comes to the intricacies of brake systems. To help our customers feel more confident and informed, we’ve created this concise Brake Glossary. Whether you’re trying to understand the components of your vehicle’s brake system or you’re curious about specific brake-related terms, our glossary provides clear and concise definitions. Dive in and get to know your brakes better!

1. ABS (Anti-lock Braking System)
A safety system that prevents wheels from locking up during braking, helping to maintain control of the vehicle.

2. Brake Caliper
A component of disc brakes that houses the brake pads and pistons. It squeezes the brake pads against the brake rotor to create friction and slow down the vehicle.

3. Brake Disc (Rotor)
A flat, round component that rotates with the wheel. When the brake pads press against it, the resulting friction slows down or stops the vehicle.

4. Brake Drum
A cylindrical component used in drum brakes. It rotates with the wheel, and when the brake shoes press against it, the vehicle slows down.

5. Brake Fluid
A hydraulic fluid used in the brake system. When you press the brake pedal, the brake fluid transmits force to the brake calipers or wheel cylinders.

6. Brake Line
Tubing that carries brake fluid from the master cylinder to the brake calipers or wheel cylinders.

7. Brake Pad
A friction material that presses against the brake rotor to slow down or stop the vehicle. Brake pads are used in disc brakes.

8. Brake Shoe
A curved friction material that presses against the brake drum to slow down or stop the vehicle. Brake shoes are used in drum brakes.

9. Master Cylinder
The component that converts the force from the brake pedal into hydraulic pressure in the brake lines.

10. Parking Brake (Handbrake or Emergency Brake)
A secondary braking system used to keep the vehicle stationary when parked. It can also be used in emergencies if the primary brakes fail.

11. Brake Booster
A device that amplifies the force applied to the brake pedal, making it easier to stop the vehicle.

12. Brake Fade
The reduction in braking power due to overheating of the brake components, often caused by prolonged or intense braking.

13. Brake Proportioning Valve
A valve that adjusts the pressure between the front and rear brakes to prevent wheel lockup and ensure balanced braking.

14. Brake Warning Light
A dashboard indicator that illuminates when there is an issue with the brake system, such as low brake fluid or worn brake pads.

15. Disc Brakes
A type of brake that uses a rotor and caliper to create friction and slow down the vehicle.

16. Drum Brakes
A type of brake that uses a drum and brake shoes to create friction and slow down the vehicle.

17. Hydraulic Brakes
A brake system that uses brake fluid to transmit force from the brake pedal to the brake calipers or wheel cylinders.

18. Power Brakes
A brake system that uses a vacuum or hydraulic pressure to assist in applying the brakes, reducing the effort required by the driver.

19. Brake Dust
Tiny particles produced by the wear of brake pads and rotors. Brake dust can accumulate on wheels and other parts of the vehicle.

20. Brake Inspection
A routine check of the brake system to ensure all components are in good working condition and to identify any potential issues.

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