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CALIPER PISTONS

Brake calipers are an essential component of your overall brake system, and the piston is the key component of the brake caliper. Pistons are responsible for forcing the brake pads to make contact with the brake rotor to bring your vehicle to a stop.

INSTALL LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY

Medium

How Does it Work?

A brake caliper operates using 1, 2, 4 or 6 pistons. Single piston designs allow the caliper to center during application so that the brake pads have equally applied force. Single piston designs allow the caliper to center during application so that the brake pads have equally applied force. Dual, 4 or 6-piston calipers apply hydraulic force from both sides of the caliper. Once the brake pedal is pressed, it forces the brake fluid to flow through to the caliper. The piston(s) then move outward and make contact with the brake pads which then stops your vehicle by creating friction between the brake pads and rotor.

How Is a Caliper Piston Made?

Molded using steel or phenolic material, it is cylindrical in shape, one end open, one closed.

Why Does it Fail?

  • Rust and corrosion
  • Old or contaminated brake fluid
  • Worn out piston seals

What Are the Symptoms of Failure?

  • One of the brake pads is more worn down than the other
  • Your vehicle may pull to one side when steering
  • Your vehicle may pull to one side when steering

What Are the Consequences of Failure?

  • A seized piston will interfere with the effectiveness of your brakes, causing a major safety concern

If you have questions or concerns about Caliper Pistons or any of your vehicle’s components, come into your local Pep Boyswhere we can answer any question, help you find any part, or perform any vehicle service you might need.

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