How to prevent brake failure (and what to do if it happens anyway)
Have you ever been in the driver’s seat when brake failure happens? It can be downright terrifying. After all, being able to bring your car to a quick and efficient stop is an integral part of drive time safety. Toyota of Orlando is here to help you prevent this scary situation and also give you tips on how to react if you should someday face brake failure in your vehicle.
Orlando auto service can save your brakes
There are two main ways to prevent brake failure, and they’re fairly simple (and affordable).
- Pay attention to how your car is handling. Do your brakes seem “mushy” or non-responsive when you hit them? You should be able to tap them and get a reaction out of your vehicle. If you’re finding that you have to press hard to bring your car to a safe stop, it’s time to schedule Orlando brake service to have our techs check them out and see how they can tune them up again.
- Get routine auto service. It’s important to change out your brake pads when the time calls for it, check brake fluid, inspect rotors, and make sure the entire braking system is in excellent shape. When you slack on car care, your performance will suffer accordingly… and potentially lead to brake failure.
How to handle brake failure
So, what if you do all of this and you still find yourself in this dangerous situation? Here are some Orlando Toyota tips to help you bring your car safely to a stop.
- Use your horn. Once you’ve realized your brakes have failed, immediately use your horn to alert other motorists that you’re headed in their direction and that you’re not able to slow your car. This will help them get out of the way and reduce your chances of a collision.
- Downshift. In a manual car, you can achieve this by using the stick. In an automatic, taking your foot off the gas will ease the RPMs and your car should automatically shift to a lower gear. Either way, it helps slow your vehicle down.
- Try pumping the brakes. 3-4 hard pumps may switch your brakes back into action if you don’t have an ABS system in your vehicle.
- Use your emergency brake but BE CAREFUL. If you’re traveling at a high speed or your brake is powerful, it can cause you to skid. Bottom line, don’t yank it or slam it – gently pull or push (depending on what type of e-brake you have) to help slow your car.
- Pull off to the side of the road to get out of the way of other motorists and bring your car to a complete stop. DO NOT try to drive it again – call a tow truck and get it into Toyota of Orlando’s service center.
And remember, if you’re experiencing brake failure you should never:
- Turn your car off – this will get rid of power steering and increase the hazard in your situation.
- Shift to neutral – this will keep your car from downshifting and slowing. You’ll keep coasting at a high speed.
Have questions or need to schedule Orlando brake service? Call us today! We’re open seven days a week for your convenience at (407) 298-0001.