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Brake Safety

At Cavendish Motor Company the goal with all of our customers is to keep them safe in vehicles they can trust. One of our sayings is “However fast you want to go, the vehicle has to be capable of stopping”.

Our worry is that worn brake pads are one of the most common problems we find on vehicles. This is why we have written this blog to let you know what you can look out for and how being vigilant can save you money on your brakes and keep you safe.


Faults with brakes tend to cause brakes to operate less efficiently. This can lead you to experience longer stopping distances, some inadvertent skidding and even brake failure. Ultimately this can lead to accidents, which we want to help you prevent.

Worn pads can also cause unnecessary expense because they too often lead to brake disc damage.


Modern brakes are made up of a complex combination of components, both mechanical and electrical. Most cars in the UK these days have an ABS (Anti Lock Braking System) which involves sensors recording wheel speeds and a computer monitoring and controlling the application of the braking system in emergency situations.

This technology means that most brake faults we find involve brake pads and brake discs. Pads and discs are friction components that are subject to wear and need replacing when required.

Your brakes work by you applying pressure to the brake pedal with your foot. This is then amplified by a brake booster, which in turn causes pressure in the master cylinder that pushes brake fluid to your brake’s caliper.


The caliper’s fluid pressure is applied to a brake piston that moves forward to press your brake pads hard up against your brake discs. This causes friction between the pad and the disc slowing the road wheel and ultimately bringing you to a stop.

Making brakes last longer

Progressive braking is a method that should start slight, increase with pressure and finish light. It is essentially a method of variable braking that you should endeavour to use rather than constant braking.

Used correctly progressive braking can:

  • Prevent the locking of wheels
  • Prevent a vehicle skidding
  • Save you fuel
  • Give other road users time to react to your driving
  • Reduce wear on your brakes and other related mechanical components
  • Among the things to like about progressive braking is the fact it saves you money!

Monitoring Brake Faults

Even if you’ve been using progressive braking at some point you’ll need a brake repair. It goes without saying that if you’re concerned about your brakes then booking in for an inspection is crucial, after all, better to be safe than sorry.

You should watch out for:

  • Noises like high pitched squealing, grinding or ringing noises when brakes are applied
  • Any vibrations during braking
  • A brake pedal that feels unusually soft or hard
  • Signs that the car’s stopping distance has increased
  • The brake fluid light illuminating
  • The ABS light illuminating
  • The brake-pad-wear light illuminating

When should you replace your brakes?

You should always replace your brakes before it’s too late. Vehicle maintenance should always be about prevention rather than cure, so get your brakes inspected every time the vehicle is serviced or when you are suspicious of any issue.

At Cavendish Motor Company, our technicians inspect your brake pads and discs, and compare the measurements they find with your manufacturer’s specifications to make sure there is sufficient service life. This will enable you to drive safely until the next brake check.

This image shows the difference between new braking components and old ones when they require replacing. It underlines the importance of accurate measurements over a simple visual inspection.

Along with inspecting your brake pads and discs Cavendish Motor Company’s technicians will test the brake fluid, because this has a service life and can have an effect on braking performance.

When in doubt…

For Cavendish Motor Company it’s all about safety and you being able to drive a car that you can trust.

So if you have any concerns about your brakes or you’d just like to be on the safe side then book in for a quick inspection today.

Call Cavendish Motor Company on 01670 523200