What causes a shudder or vibration when braking:
Brake vibration is where a shaking motion occurs when the brakes in a vehicle are deployed. This can vary from a slight shaking to a quite severe shuddering, depending on the severity of the condition. This should not be confused with the pulsation of ABS braking. This shuddering or vibration is caused when the brake discs have more than 0.5mm of run out. Run out meaning that the brake rotors move more than a minimal amount of 0.5mm. This can be caused by dirt or rust on the discs/rotors or uneven spots on the discs. This causes the brake pad to have intermittent contact with the disc instead of a constant motion, thus causing a shudder or vibration when the brake pedal is pressed. If the steering wheel shudders then it is usually the front discs that are worn or uneven and it could possibly be only one side and not always both (however, both need to be corrected). If the whole car and bodywork “shakes” then it could be the rear discs. As it is essential that your brakes work correctly it is important to have this corrected as soon as possible. This is corrected by skimming the brake discs, which will result in a smooth and clean surface for the brake pads. If the brake discs are too thin they need to be changed. Brake pads should never be fitted to brake discs that are worn, even if only slightly worn.Never wash your vehicle or spray water on your brake discs when your car is hot. Click To Tweet
Spraying water on your brake discs when they are hot causes your discs to warp. In the same way as a frying pan would warp if you put it in cold water when it is very hot, so do your discs warp when sprayed with water when still hot. You might ask why this does not happen when driving in the rain. When driving the constant movement cools the discs down and by the time the rain gets to the disc, it is a fine spray, which causes very little damage, unlike a blast of water when washing the vehicle.
ABS Braking System
Emergency braking or even braking on a wet or slippery surface can cause the wheels of the vehicle to lock. Locking wheels reduce the adhesion between tyres and the road surface and make the vehicle un-steerable. The vehicle no longer reacts to the steering intention of the driver and skids towards the obstacle. ABS (Antilock Braking System) prevents the wheels from locking. If any of the wheels begin to lock, ABS intervenes and ensures the vehicle remains steerable and stable. The obstacle can then be avoided. An emergency braking is often the only way of avoiding an accident. The car without ABS needs a considerably longer braking distance, as its wheels lock. The car with ABS is brought safely to a stop within a shorter braking distance. This may avoid the collision. On a vehicle without ABS, the wheels lock and the vehicle no longer responds to the driver’s steering intention, which can result in a collision. With ABS the vehicle stays stable during braking and the braking distance is considerably shorter.ABS keeps your vehicle directionally stable and steerable, even in emergency braking situations. Click To Tweet
When braking in emergency situations with ABS ensure that:
- You press the brake pedal quickly and hard all the way down.
- Keep the brake pedal pressed until the vehicle has come to a stop.
- If necessary, steer around the obstacle.
- The pulsation of the brake pedal and a clicking noise tell you that ABS is active. These are the ABS braking intervals.
- In each case, keep the brake pedal pressed and steer to avoid any potential obstacle.
- The vehicle is constantly steerable thanks to ABS and responds to your steering input.
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