Owners frequently decide to upgrade the performance characteristics of their car by tuning the engine or fitting bigger wheels and tires. Whenever this type of modification is performed, it’s important to look at the brakes as well and to choose a replacement brake kit that is designed for such performance.
INSTALL LEVEL OF DIFFICULTYDifficult
What Is a Brake Kit?
Many individual components must work in harmony to effectively stop a moving vehicle, but at the core of the system are the rotors, calipers and pads that are attached to a hub at each corner. While these components are reliable enough out-of-the-box and are carefully fitted by the factory before a car is sold, some owners decide that they want to upgrade them for better performance and durability. To make it easier to buy and to ensure that each component is properly matched with the other, brake kits are available to include all the major components.
How Does a Brake Kit Work?
An upgraded brake kit will start off with a set of sophisticated brake rotors, that are typically individual discs fused together and cross-drilled for better temperature dispersal. Next, performance calipers will be added that are designed to house the friction pads and which are powder coated through an electrostatic process, to resist rust and corrosion. Finally, a complete set of brake pads will be added to the box, which are typically upgraded as well to cope well in tough driving environments, at high speeds and in all weather conditions.
Brake kits will also come with all the necessary nuts, bolts and hardware and will be designed to slot into place easily using the original mounting points on the chassis. Typically, owners who choose to upgrade a brake kit like this will also add steel-braided hoses to distribute the fluid effectively between the pedal, master cylinder and calipers.
How Is a Brake Kit Made?
A performance disc brake kit features upgraded materials. The cast iron rotor is usually zinc plated and precisely machined, with beveled drill holes that have been shown to disperse elevated temperatures efficiently. The calipers are also treated to resist hot temperatures and contain upgraded components, toughened rubber seals and premium lubrication.
How Does a Brake Kit Fail?
- Dirt within the calipers
- Worn brake pads
What Are the Symptoms of Failure?
- Extended stopping distance necessary
- Spongy brake pedal
- Vehicle “pulls” to one side
What Are the Consequences of Failure?
- Inability to stop the vehicle
- Poor performance
While owners may choose to purchase a brake kit to upgrade the major braking components on their vehicle, they may also decide to fit an electric brake controller kit if they plan to start towing heavy trailers or caravans.
If you have questions or concerns about Brake Kits or any of your vehicle’s components, come into your local Pep Boys where we can answer any question, help you find any part, or perform any vehicle service you might need.