Telltale Signs That Your Commercial Vehicle’s Brakes Need to Be Repaired
Stopping is probably the last thing on your mind while running a commercial vehicle fleet. Your mind needs to be constantly focused on getting things to move, not slowing down. However, there needs to be an exception made for brakes. Without reliable brakes, your drivers and vehicles are at risk of an accident. Here are some telltale signs that your commercial vehicle needs its brakes repaired.
Uneven Wear on Brake Shoes or Pads
Uneven wear is one of the major signs that there’s something not right with your brake system. It doesn’t matter if your commercial vehicles use brake shoes or pads. Either type of friction device can be susceptible to inconsistent usage. If you notice that one or two pads or shoes are totally different than the others, it’s time to have someone look at the brakes. This is likely an indication that there is a misalignment of some kind causing certain pads or shoes to do more work. You might think uneven wear is acceptable as long as the vehicle can come to a stop. But large machinery needs all its parts to be working together the right way. It’s important you fix any inconsistencies, as they can lead to greater problems. You Hear Grinding
A grinding sound is about the last thing you want coming out of your commercial vehicles. There are several notorious grinding noises that can be made by cars and trucks. Your brakes are one of the common places of origin. The most likely reason you would hear a grinding coming from the brakes is because the pads are worn down. Essentially, brake pads create a buffer zone between metal elements in the brake system. When they get worn down too far, metal parts grind against each other when you apply the brake. This is of course not good for your vehicle. You will want to replace this as soon as possible. Luckily, brake pads are a very simple fix. Although, you might want to compare commercial auto insurance quotes to see if plan cover damage from using over-worn brake pads.
Oil on Brake Shoes or Pads
Most people associate oil and grease as inherent aspects to cars and car parts. While they are essential to proper vehicle functionality, these things don’t belong everywhere. For example, there shouldn’t be any oil, grease, or brake fluid on your brake shoes or pads. Oil is slick. That’s exactly what you don’t want for your brake pads. They need to be kept free of slippery substances in order to preserve maximum friction potential. If there’s oil on a brake pad, it won’t do its full braking job. This will cause the vehicle to brake with extreme unevenness. This can be dangerous at high speeds. But it will also lead to misalignments in the brake system.
Air or Fluid Leakage
There are a couple reasons why air or fluid leakage from the brake system can be bad news. First, these substances are necessary to the functionality of their respective braking systems. Whether your vehicles are using compressed air or a hydraulic brake, they can’t afford any leaks. This will cause pressure discontinuity, which will affect the usefulness of the brakes. Especially with commercial vehicles, you can’t risk driving with leaking brake air or fluid. Additionally, leaking brake fluid can soak into the brake pads. As stated in the previous point, this can cause slippage, and a host of resulting problems.
While not as glamorous, stopping is just as important to driving as moving forward. You need to ensure all your commercial vehicles have up-to-date brake systems with no malfunctions.