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Some Quick Info About Brake Pads

Brake Pads brake repair

Long Beach Bixby Pads Replacement

Drivers in Long Beach, Downtown  are asking “what components of my vehicle should I be most concerned about?” We tell them “the are the brakes of course, in particularly, the brake pads”. Your brakes are what makes your vehicle stop. They’re also one of the components that when they wear out over time can be a huge safety risk. This due to the fact that because as we all know what happens if you can’t stop when you need to. The reason that they wear out is due to the fact that they use friction to help you vehicle stop.  But on the other hand, all that friction will eventually takes a toll on your brakes and over time is shows. Brake pads are made up of materials engineered to slow your vehicle without destroying the brake pad and brake disc each time contact is made, although, there is a slight bit of wear each time they are used. Years ago brake pads used to be made of asbestos. Until it was discovered that asbestos was a carcinogen and associated with causing certain types of cancers and  that element was eventually fazed out of production. Now days auto manufacturers have engineered several new materials for making brake pads. These are generally named organic, semi-metallic and ceramic.

Organic –  Organic brake pads made from materials like rubber, glass, and Kevlar. They are softer than other types of brake pads, and make for a quieter slowing experience. As a softer material they tend to wear more sooner and create more dust and debris as they wear down. Additionally, because of their softer make, they don’t offer as much stopping power making them generally suited for light cars that don’t see heavy use.

Semi-Metallic – Semi-metallic pads, sometimes referred to as metallic pads, are a more sturdy product. As per their name, they are made from metal, such as iron shavings or bits of steel wire held together with graphite. Metal usually makes up about 30 to 65 percent of the brake pad, thus the name “semi-metallic”. Because metallic brake are hard, they provide good stopping power, but they put more wear on brake rotors / discs. The hard pads are also noisier than organic pads. Another con  is that metallic brake pads need to warm up before they work at their best. In very cold weather, they can take longer to achieve their maximum efficiency, so caution is always advised until your vehicle is fully warmed up.

Ceramic – Ceramic brake pads are even more durable. As you may have guessed per the name they are mostly made from ceramic materials, sometimes with small amounts of copper. The ceramics are better at dissipating heat, which helps keep them from wearing as quickly as other materials. Unfortunately,  that can mean that the rotors take on more heat, which can lead to warping the rotors. Ceramic pads tend to be more expensive. Ceramic pads are also lighter, which, paired with their heat resistance, makes them well suited to motorsport or aggressive driving. They also produce the least brake dust of any type of brake pads, and less noise than semi-metallic pads.

How often should you have your brakes checked

Most vehicles have a few ways to tell if you need brake service. Some brake systems have a metal scraper attached to the pads that creates a warning alarm by squealing or screeching when they wear to a certain level. Even though the sound is very disconcerting and annoying it’s usually harmless, unless ignored. If the noise is less of a screech and more of a grumbling, grinding sound, the pads at one or all of the wheels may be completely worn, and continued use of your vehicle can cause serious damage to the rotor(s). If you hear grinding when slowing down you should contact Orozco’s Auto Service of Long Beach Downtown ASAP. Most all vehicle’s today have brake-pad sensors that let the driver when the brakes need be checked via a warning light on the dash or a message showing when you start your vehicle. You should never wait to replace the brake pads, considering functional brakes are a top priority. From a safety standpoint, they are more important than the engine. Due to the fact, a poorly maintained engine could result in engine needing a new engine. But poorly maintained brakes can be life-threatening.

To be sure that your vehicle is always able to make the safest stops, we recommend changing the brakes before they exhibit the irregularities mentioned above. Your vehicle’s owner’s manual should have recommendations for inspecting the pads at every oil change because the life of brake-pad can vary greatly, depending on your driving style, whether and driving conditions. Brake pads should always be replaced when they reach their service limit, which is usually measured at about 0.1 inch.

If your vehicle is showing any of the above signs or you believe your vehicle’s needs new brake or are not sure and would like to have your brakes inspected, call Orozco’s Auto Service of Long Beach Downtown today at 562-920-1871.  Always keep your vehicle in good condition and ensure the safety of yourself, your loved ones, and those around you!


Orozco’s Auto Service Long Beach – Los Angeles County CA
3033 Long Beach Blvd., Long Beach, CA USA
Call Today: 562-426-6322 – Auto/Fleet/Diesel Service Repair

Orozco’s Auto Service has five convenient locations throughout Los Angeles and Orange Counties Long Beach, Bellflower, Garden Grove or Fullerton!

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