Brake Shoes

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Brake Shoes are components of a drum brake system. They work with other constituents inside the system to stop your vehicle. They consist of a curved or crescent-shaped metal and a frictional material called brake lining.

How do they work?

When you press your pedal, the master cylinder is activated converting the energy into hydraulic pressure. The master cylinder sends the brake fluid into the wheel cylinder, pushing the pistons outward. The pistons then apply pressure on the them. They then push against the rotating brake drum, which slows down your wheels, bringing your vehicle to a stop.

What is the difference between brake shoes and brake pads?

  1. They are used in a drum brake system, while brake pads are used in a disc brake system.
  2. A drum brake system functions differently from a disc brake system. The shoes stop your vehicle by pushing outward in the direction of the brake drum while brake pads move closer together to push against the rotor.
  3. Brake pads have a higher stopping power than the shoes
  4. They last longer than brake shoes because the drum brake protects them.
  5. They are protected against dirt and other road obstacles that could pose a risk.

How long do they last?

Typical they can last for a distance between 30,000 to 35,000 miles with proper maintenance and care. However, this duration will depend on several factors like the quality of the brake shoes’ material, the condition of the road, and the type of vehicle.

When to replace brake shoes

They are susceptible to wear and tear. When you subject your vehicle to braking hard with little or no maintenance, they are likely to wear out faster. The following are telltale signs that you need to replace the shoes in your brake.

Rattling sounds

When your brake shoes wear out, the brake linings material might get loose. The loose pieces in the brake drum cause the rattling sounds. When this happens, you should consider getting your brake shoes replaced. You can try to use heavy commercial brake linings to ensure longevity.

Longer response time

Your brake shoes will move closer to the brake drum when they wear out. As a result, you will have to press your pedal harder to stop your vehicle. This can be dangerous, and you should seek a mechanic promptly to have your brake shoes replaced.

Loose parking brake

If you notice that your car is still rolling even after applying the hand brake, your shoes might be worn out. Your shoes might be unable to hold your wheels firmly when they wear out. In this case, consider hiring a qualified mechanic to inspect your brakes.

How to ensure they last longer?

Let us guide you on some tips that you can use to ensure your brake shoes last longer.


Avoid overloading your vehicle.

If you own a commercial trailer, ensure that you carry the correct load size. Overloading your vehicle makes your brakes work harder to stop your vehicle. In this case, they will wear out quickly.

Slow down your vehicle gently.

Try to drive at an ideal speed that doesn’t require too much braking power. Sudden braking strains your the shoes, causing too much friction. They wear faster.

When you slow down gently, your brake linings requires less friction power to halt your car, ensuring they last longer.

Try engine braking.

This is where you stop using the accelerator pedal and use your gears to slow your vehicle, commonly used in manual vehicles.

Engine braking reduces the wear and tear on your braking shoes by reducing friction, which in turn extends their life. However, if your vehicle is automatic, you can seek the counsel of a mechanic before applying this technique.

Schedule regular inspection and maintenance services

Schedule appointments with your selected mechanic to inspect the condition of your brakes and make improvements where necessary.

They are a crucial component of your drum brake system. Without them, your vehicle cannot function on the road. Try to extend their lifespan by undertaking safe driving practices like carrying minimal loads. You can also listen for warning signs to avoid causing accidents. If you require any assistance regarding brake shoes and brake linings for heavy commercial vehicles, do not hesitate to contact us today!

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