The Balance Shaft Belt, most common in four-cylinder engines, moves the balance shaft, the mechanism that helps reduce vibration in the motor. The belt typically attaches to both the balance shaft and the crank shaft. Like any kind of belt, the balance shaft belt can wear out and need replacement.
Ball joints are important to the suspension and steering of your car. They attach the wheel hub, where the wheel and tire are mounted, to the rest of your suspension. They are designed to move horizontally for steering and vertically for shock absorption. If ball joints aren’t kept lubricated, the ball can rub against the metal casing and wear down. This will affect your car’s steering.
Your battery is what provides power to your car when the engine is not running. It is what allows you to start your car, and it’s also what lets you operate systems that run off of electricity, like the power windows, sunroof, or radio, when the car is not turned on. Once the engine is running, the alternator takes over for the battery in supplying power to these systems. Batteries recharge themselves through use, but may fail as a result of broken terminals, corrosion or low electrolyte levels. Eventually all batteries lose their ability to charge and need replacing.
While there are a variety of brake systems, all serve the same function: to slow down or stop your car when you apply the brake pedal. With disc brakes, the brake pad squeezes the rotor and the friction created slows the disc down. Over time, brake pads wear out and need to be replaced. Waiting too long to replace brake pads damages the rotors and makes the tires wear unevenly, which is why it’s important to have your brakes checked regularly.
When you press down on the brake pedal, the Brake Booster increases the force the brake pedal exerts on the brake master cylinder by using engine vacuum and pressure. This helps the brakes work more efficiently. A bad booster makes it difficult to push the brake pedal down all the way to the floor.
The Brake Line is an integral part of your car’s braking system. Today, most brake lines are hydraulic, which means that fluid is used to transfer power from your foot to the brakes. When the brake pedal is applied, fluid from the master cylinder is transferred to the brake calipers, forcing them to clamp down on the rotors. Although brake lines will typically last the life of your car, hydraulic fluid leaks can damage the hose and connections.
Similar to a rotor, a Brake Drum is what the brake shoes (or brake pads) press against to stop the car. Typically made of cast iron, and wear-resistant, the brake drum rotates with the wheel and axle.
Brake Linings are comprised of a durable, heat-resistant material that can withstand a high degree of friction. This lining is what is applied to a brake pad or brake shoe. Over time, brake linings wear out and must be replaced.
Holding together the main components of your brake system are a variety of screw assemblies, springs, bolts and caliper brackets. Each brake system requires a unique set of hardware for the proper operation of your brake system.
Brake Fluid is the hydraulic fluid that moves through the brake line of your car. It transfers pressure from the brake pedal to the braking system, to create the force needed to slow down and stop your car.
Similar to brake shoes, Brake Pads are attached to a brake caliper. When you step on the brake pedal, the brake caliper clamps down onto the rotor to slow down and stop the car. The pads are made of a durable, heat-resistant material that can withstand the friction of being pressed against the rotors. Over time, brake pads wear out and must be replaced.
If you’ve sat behind the wheel of a car, you probably already know that the Brake Pedal is located at the driver’s feet beside the accelerator (and clutch in the case of manual transmission vehicles). If the brake pedal becomes difficult to push down, pushes all the way to the floor, or makes noises when you press it down, you should have your brakes checked for problems.