When you’re driving a car, your ability to stop quickly is more important than how fast it can go. Safety is of extreme importance for any motor vehicle manufacturer. At the heart of the vehicle safety is the motor vehicle’s braking system.
There are two commonly used braking systems: the disc brake system and the drum brake system. Disk brakes are superior to the drum brakes because they provide a more predictable response, particularly at high temperatures and in wet conditions. Disc-brakes are less prone to brake fade.
So what is a disc brake system? And how does a disk-brake system work?
A disc brake system is part of a hydraulic braking system mechanism that, when assembled, consists of a brake disc mounted on an axle, and a calliper assembly that has two brake pads that are pushed onto the brake disk after being activated by hydraulic pressure. The brake pads are forced against the sides of the brake disc, creating friction that will slow the moving vehicle down.
Disc brakes look a lot like the brakes on a bicycle. The bicycle brakes have a calliper that squeezes the brake pads against the wheel when activated by the brake lever. The same principle is applied with the disc brake system, except that the brake pads in a motor vehicle squeeze the disk instead of squeezing the wheel directly. In a motor, the force is transmitted hydraulically instead of through a cable (thank goodness – think of the force you’d have to send down that cable).Most disc breaks in motor vehicles are vented to allow for quicker cooling.
The majority of modern cars will have disc brakes on the front wheels and some have disk brake systems on all four wheels. Bigger, faster, heavier vehicles obviously require bigger and stronger brake discs to cope with the higher performance and greater forces that demand from a disc brake system.
We hope that helps answer the question ‘What is What is a Disc Brake?’!
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