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Understanding the Importance of Auto Service: A Guide for Everyone

Auto service is critical, and without it, you can lose your car or put yourself in danger. Hi, my name is Pete, and after ignoring my brakes for too long, I was in an accident. I made it my goal to learn everything I could about the importance of car service. Regardless of how much or how little you know about cars, I hope that these blogs can help you. I plan to focus on a range of topics related to auto service and possibly some other ideas as well. This is my first blog, and I hope that you enjoy it. When I'm not writing, I work in a coffee shop during the day and part-time for a telemarketing company in the evenings. I enjoy cooking and spending time with my family.

Understanding the Importance of Auto Service: A Guide for Everyone

Why Brake Fluid Is So Clever—and What to Do When Things Go Wrong

by Alexandra Obrien

You may be aware that your braking system relies on fluid in order to operate correctly. However, this is not an ordinary type of fluid but is very carefully engineered specifically for this job. The main difference between this product and any other liquid is that it will not compress, and this capability helps to keep you safe on the road. However, what happens when this fluid is exposed to other agents so that it is compromised? Would you know what to do if you suddenly lost your brakes?

Brake Fluid 101

It pays to understand how brake fluid works so that you can look after it as carefully as possible and try to avoid any issues.

You must maintain the right amount of fluid within the system and always make sure that it is topped up to the line within the chamber. This will ensure that whenever you press the brake pedal the same amount of force is applied at the other end of the system to push the brake pads against rotary discs and slow each wheel down. If the network of pipes were to be filled with a compressible solution such as ordinary water, nothing would happen when you put your foot on the brake pedal, so you can see how 'clever' this fluid actually is.

Risk Factors

Unfortunately, brake fluid should never be exposed to the atmosphere. Whenever any air gets into the system, its efficiency can be reduced, and temperatures may rise to boiling point and beyond. When this happens, steam may be generated, and minute water particles will form inside the brake lines. As the fluid is hygroscopic, this moisture will be absorbed, and it will significantly affect the efficiency of your braking system.

When Things Go Wrong

In the worst-case scenario, you will press the brakes only to find that the pedal moves towards the floor with no corresponding reaction. In this situation, your first move may be to panic, but you should remain calm and go through a routine.

What to Do in an Emergency

Slowly, but methodically, try to pump the pedal, as this will sometimes restore functionality. However, if this does not work, then you should change down to a lower gear to use the engine as an additional brake. Leave the vehicle in this gear and don't depress the clutch pedal so that you get as much help as possible from the motor to slow the car down. If you also have a manual parking brake, then you should gently pull on this, as it is typically connected by cables to the rear wheels.

Some people think that if they shut off the engine this will automatically bring the car to a halt. However, it's likely to lock the steering wheel instead, which would certainly add to your problems.

Being Proactive

If it's been some time since you took your vehicle in for a checkup and brake repairs, perhaps it's time to do so. This will help ensure that your brake fluid is always in tiptop condition and that you never encounter such a brake failure.