How Does The Braking System Of A Car Work? The Knowledge You Should Know

When you own a car, it is important that you have a full understanding of how each part works. The information is vital because it will help you know where the problem is if any part fails to work. For instance, a grinding noise when braking; what does it mean? One of the most important parts of your car is its braking system. How does the braking system of a car work? It involves science and in most cases, science does not fail.

To understand this science, we need to first consider the different types of car breaking systems. Here is a brief description of the three different systems:

  1. Disc Brake

If peer through the hubcap of your automobile’s front wheels, you will readily see a shiny metal disk inside. This is referred to as a disc brake. When the driver of a car with disc brakes steps on pedal for brake, a pad of compact-wearing metal clamps onto the disc. This causes rubbing action on the wheel resulting in the car slowing down in a similar manner a bicycle brake works.

  1. Drum Brakes

The drum brakes work pretty much the same way as disc brakes but with a slight difference. This type of brakes features shoes inside the hollow wheel hub that press against a spinning surface. This particular surface is referred to as drum. As the shoes push into the wheel, resultant friction slows the car down. Many cars have disc brakes on the front wheels and drum brakes on the rear wheels.

  1. HandBrake

All cars have hand brakes, also referred to as parking brakes. It applies the rear brakes, whether drum or disc, in a slower, less forceful when the driver pulls on a lever located between the two front seats. The handbrake is powerful and can bring the vehicle to an abrupt stop. It also secures the vehicle when parked.

The Breaking System of Modern Cars

Modern car brands feature brakes on all the four wheels. These brakes are operated using a hydraulic system. Since the front brake plays a greater role in halting the automobile than rear brakes, they are of the more efficient disc type.

This is because stopping a moving car throws its weight forward on the front wheel. High-end car models including certain sports and luxury cars feature all-disk braking systems while most old car models feature all-drum braking systems.

The Brake Hydraulics

Each hydraulic brake circuit consists of a fluid-filled master as well as slave cylinders interconnected by pipes. When you apply pressure on the pedal, it pushes a piston within the master- cylinder to force fluid to flow through the connecting pipes.

The fluid then flows to slave cylinders usually located at thewheels thereby forcing the pistons out to place the brakes. The pressure exerted on the fluid distributes itself equally around the brake system.

Most models of modern cars feature two-fold hydraulic-circuits with dual master cylinders. One substitute for the other should the one fail. At times a single circuit operates the front wheels while the other works for the rear wheel. The back brakes are made less powerful deliberates to prevent dangerous skidding in the event of heavy braking.

The Power Assisted Brakes

Certain cars also feature power assistance to help minimize the effort required to apply the brakes. The origin of this power is usually the difference in pressure between a partial-vacuum present in the inlet manifold as well as the air outside.

The servo unit designed to offer the assistance features pipe links to the inlet manifold. A direct-action servo is fixed in-between the pedal and master cylinder. The car’s pedaling pushes a rod, which in turn pushes the piston within the master cylinder.

However, the pedal also has some action on a set of air valves with large rubberized diaphragm linked to the piston of the main cylinders. Stepping on the brake pedal closes a valve that connects the backside of the diaphragm to the manifold, thereby opening a valve designed to let in air from outside. This higher pressure from the outside forces the diaphragm to push on the piston of the master-cylinder to assist the braking effort.


If someone asked you, how the braking system of a car works, I am optimistic that you can provide a reliable answer. If the braking system of your car fails then you will possibly know what mechanics need to repair. Furthermore, you now know what happens when you step on that brake pedal. Modern cars have very efficient braking systems that are not prone to knocking or failing. Now that you are well informed on how braking systems of a car works, you may also like to find out What Does Abs Mean on a Car?

Author Bio

Alice is the founder behind the She is described as the car repair helper, money sever and advice giver when it comes to automobile industry. gives best automotive products and repair posts that are straightforward and share her expertise in a manner that is easy-to-understand. Readers definitely are in for a unique and fun reading experience when the visit