We rely on our cars day in and day out to get us to work or school. Trusting that our vehicles are in good working order not only provides safety for ourselves and loved ones, but gives us a sense of security knowing our vehicle is reliable. A good braking system is pivotal to owning a safe car. Below, we examine the different types of braking systems and the inner components to each.

Disc Brakes vs. Drum Brakes

Brakes for vehicles are either disc brakes or drum brakes. While both brake types certainly work to stop your car, there are benefits to each. Drum brake technology is much older and is often outperformed by disc brakes. Drum brakes are still used on cars today because of their simplicity, low maintenance, and low-cost repairs. These brakes work by moving two inner "shoes" outward when pressure is applied to the brake. As the shoes move outward, they come in contact with the drum, which builds up friction and causes the car to slow and eventually stop.


Alternatively, disc brakes work by using a hydraulic calliper within the braking system. When pressure is applied to the brake pedal, the caliper is filled with hydraulic fluid and forces a piston into the backside of the brake pad. This applies friction to the spinning rotor which eventually stops your car. These breaks are of higher performance and work well for cars that are meant for high speeds. Disc brakes are more costly to repair than drum brakes but also have increased performance.

Brake Components

To make your car's braking system work, there are several components that require regular maintenance. Let's take a look at a few of the parts and what they do:


●        Rotors

The rotors attach directly to your vehicle's wheel by way of the caliper. Brake pads come in contact with the rotors, applying pressure and eventually stopping the vehicle. Rotors can become damaged or worn and need to be replaced if you begin to hear a grinding sound.

●        Pads

Pads work directly with the rotors and are responsible for applying the pressure to the rotor in order to stop the vehicle. If your vehicle squeaks or squeals when you apply pressure to the brakes, it’s a good sign the pads have experienced excessive wear.

●        Caliper

This part of the brake contains the hydraulic piston and holds the brake pad in place.

●        Shoes

Shoes are used in drum brakes and work to apply pressure to the interior of the drum, which stops the vehicle. This part can become worn out from high heat and friction. The shoes should regularly be changed in order to keep your vehicle in good working condition.

If you are experiencing squeals or squeaks from your car, it may be time for some professional maintenance. At AA Auto Technicians, Inc. we are passionate about quality work, excellent customer service, at fair prices. Contact us today to schedule an appointment to get your vehicle back on the road and in top performance shape.