Ultimate Guide To Brake Testing

Testing your brakes is a vital part of keeping your car safe, not just for yourself, but for your fellow road users too. You don’t need to test your brakes by slamming on them, they can be tested by a professional in a safe place.

Testing the brakes using a ‘Roller Brake Tester’ is a simple process, your vehicle is driven onto the testers and kept idle. The wheels are then spun at a consistent speed to test the brakes.

Continue reading the post below to find out everything you need to know about brake testing using ‘Roller Brake Testers’.

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All About Roller Brake Testing

Brake testing detects a problem with your brakes, or hopefully, no problem. The test will only stop when maximum effort has been reached after gradually applying the parking brake or when the wheel locks and the tyres slip.

There is a wide range of signs to look out for if you think your brakes might fail their test.

  • Soft Brakes – If your brakes feel soft or spongy when using them, make sure you get your brakes checked, fluid may be leaking.
  • Hard Pedals – If your brakes feel hard but they’re not working, it might be that something in the braking system has broken. That or there’s something stuck under the brakes!
  • Pulling – When braking, your car might start pulling to one side
  • Brake Lights – The earliest warning sign is the brake light switching on, it’s best to see a specialist when this happens.
  • Smell – Whilst you’re braking, there might be a burning smell around the car.
  • Noises – You’ll be able to hear squealing or metallic noises whilst driving if your brakes are failing.
  • Fluid – Your car may be leaking fluid, this is a huge sign to get your brakes tested.
  • Vibration – There’ll be a vibration either whilst you brake or in your steering wheel.

Having one or more of these warning signs without a doubt means you should have your brakes checked and tested. Having these warning signs and not getting your brakes tested is not only a danger to others on the road, but it’s also a danger to those inside the car.

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How Brake Testers Work

Brake testers have an automated weighing system to correctly determine how well the braking system works. These weighing cells help to determine if a vehicle is present on the brake tester, also measuring any slips from the tyres.

A brake test can take anywhere between 45 minutes to an hour and after it’s complete, the results will be given to you on a written brake report.

Your vehicle will be driven onto the brake testers with the wheels centrally placed between the two large rollers. Once your vehicle is in place, the details of your vehicle will be entered, the rollers will then be switched on and spun at a consistent speed.

Once the details are in place and the rollers are being spun, the operator will apply the brakes whilst a transducer measures the braking force as the vehicle slows down. This will then create an in-depth analysis of each wheel that’s being tested.

During the progression of this process, other things are also measured, this includes the fluctuation which determines the balance of the braking force between both the front and back wheels.

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Importance Of Testing Your Brakes

There are so many reasons to regularly check the brakes on your car besides obviously being able to keep yourself and others safe. Your brakes should be tested every six months and most of the time, they’ll be tested when you have your car maintenance or MOT done.

Your brakes working are key for consistent performance and effective braking. Your brake fluid should also be replaced if your brakes begin to feel spongy. It’s vital all of the brake components are in working order.

Brake tests are vital if you want to stay safe on the road. If your brakes aren’t road safe, it’ll result in you either injuring yourself, or someone else, including pedestrians. If you’re unsure of how reliable your brakes are, it’s always best to book an appointment to get your brakes tested.

That’s all we have on brake testing, now all you have to do is head off to your local garage and get a reliable service to make sure your brakes and brake pads are in working order.

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