Brake Calipers

One of the most important parts of a car is the brake, and brake calipers are crucial to the functionality of the brakes. Any malfunction in these can lead to further damage to the braking system — or worse — accidents.

If your vehicle is showing problems braking, the brake calipers are the likely culprit. At the first sight of wear-and-tear or brake-related problems in Rancho Cordova, Sacramento, get an inspection from people who know how to replace brake calipers.

Read on to learn more about brake calipers and when to bring them in for a replacement.

What Are Brake Calipers?

The brake calipers come as part of a vehicle’s disc braking system. In such braking systems, the brake calipers will be on the front end of the vehicle. Brake calipers often come in pairs, enabling the brakes to work in several ways.

First, the brake calipers  will slow the tires in the front down when the driver activates the brakes. The brake calipers contain the brake pads and pistons that pinch the wheel when a driver uses the brakes. As a result of the friction, the wheels decelerate in rotation until the vehicle comes to a full stop.

What Are the Two Kinds of Brake Calipers?

When a mechanic checks a vehicle’s braking system, replacing the brake calipers will depend on the type. There are two types of brake calipers — floating calipers and fixed rotor calipers.

Floating Calipers

Floating calipers — or sliding brake calipers — consist of hydraulic connections, a piston, guide pins, and a brake lining. When a driver steps on the brake pedal, fluid causes the hydraulic connections to axially displace the piston of the caliper.

The piston then adds pressure to the guide pins that in turn press on the brake disk, creating friction. As soon as the driver releases the brake, the piston goes back to its original position, removing the pressure on the disc brake.

Fixed Rotor Brake Calipers

Fixed rotor calipers are different in that the pistons are on both sides of the disc brake. For the most part, the brake lining that contains the pistons are on top of the wheel instead of in front. The pistons simultaneously add pressure to the brake, claiming it from both sides.

When To Replace Brake Calipers

Any driver would do well to keep an eye out for brake caliper issues. Unfortunately, some of the signs of problems aren’t easy to spot.

Whenever the following symptoms of brake issues present themselves, it’s time to bring a vehicle in for an inspection:

The Brake Light Turning On

The first sign of brake problems is when the brake light turns on long after disengaging the brakes. When the brake light stays on even after the disengagement of the hand brake, it’s time for brake maintenance.

When the Vehicle Pulls to One Side When Braking

This is a telltale sign that there’s asymmetry in the function of the two brake calipers. Ignoring this can be dangerous especially when braking on slippery roads.

“Soft” Brake Pedals

Brakes need to be responsive. When the brakes meet the floor of the vehicle, it’s a sign that one of the brake calipers needs a replacement.

A High-pitched Grinding Sound When Braking

Sometimes, vehicles will screech upon the activation of the brakes. There are several reasons that can account for this. However, the most likely culprit would be the brake pads in the brake calipers. Thus, the brake calipers are a good place to start when checking for brake caliper problems.

Leave It to the Professionals in Rancho Cordova, Sacramento

The brakes of your car are one of the most important parts of your vehicle. For this reason, you need to keep an eye out for problems because ignoring them can spell disaster.

If you don’t know how to replace brake calipers, you’re better off leaving it to people who do. We’re a call away in Rancho Cordova, Sacramento. If you sense any problems with your braking system, we’ve got you covered.

Call us now for a free and instant estimate of our brake repair and replacement services. Entrust your vehicle to Sacramento’s most trusted auto repair shop.