Brake Drum: How does it work? (Guide)

As with most vehicles, a brake drum is a significant component of a vehicle's brake system that helps regulate a car's speed. The drum is cylindrical and is attached to the top of a car's wheel, rotating at the same rate as the car's wheel.The brake drum is resistant to wear and tear because it is mainly of iron.

Since the early 1900's the brake drum has been in existence. Moving into the future, it is a common component of most cars. However, Maybach vehicles were the first to use a brake drum.

Break drum - how does it work

How does the brake drum work?

Brake drum components

The operation is pretty straightforward; brake shoes surround the brake drum with a significant covering that enhances friction.So, once the vehicle is in motion, the brake drum comes into play when the brake pedal of a car is pressed.

Afterwhich the brake shoes push towards the brake drum's inner surface, causing friction. This friction caused will, in turn, bring down the speed of the car, almost to a halt.

Drawbacks of a brake drum

Furthermore, the drum comes with its own set of demerits. The major challenge here comes with the heat generation this component is often subject to because of the friction effect.In scenarios whereby the brake is engaged continuously for a prolonged period, the brake drum heats up, which will inadvertently affect the brake system's overall performance.

This means that during this prolonged engagement, the drum expands due to the heat. This expansion places a demand on the brake shoes to extend farther than it usually would contact the brake drum's inner surface.When this phenomenon happens with a car, we refer to it as the "long pedal." Like the name, the driver will be required to press his brake pad further down to get the desired result.

This result on a typical day will be easy to get without the driver press it as low as this.Another demerit or disadvantage common with the drum is its susceptibility to water ingress. Here water can get in between the brake shoe and the inner surface of the brake drum. The implication is that the time it takes a car to stop when the brake is applied becomes more extended than usual.

This trapped water will continue to affect the brake's performance. However, when a significant amount of heat is generated, the water evaporates, and the brake's performance returns to normal. With a drilled disc brake, a situation where moisture gets trapped is foreign to it.Lastly, the drum can be complex to understand and maneuver compared to the drilled disc brake. The drum is tedious to service and overhaul.

Generally, it takes more time to get a decent job in place than with a disc brake.

Always think Safety

Disciplined drivers will immediately notice a drop in their brake's performance and adhere to it swiftly.As earlier mentioned, the drum is an essential part of vehicles. It is durable and has a shallow susceptibility to wear or tear. However, when it wears, the braking becomes unreliable. It is wise to initiate an immediate response to solve the problem.This response might demand a change of the brake drum.

It is expedient that when you decide to change your brake drum, you must change the axle are well. This will help you avoid differences in your brake force's efficiency within a particular axle of your car. Always make sure a specialist in this field carries out the changes and replacements done on your brake system. Remember that the manufacturer's manual must be strictly adhered to for such changes.

Furthermore, the drum is not something a driver should fret about or disturb with maintenance. Regular servicing and maintenance by a specialist will have you safe less, giving you little or nothing to worry about.

Finally, as a diligent driver, you must crosscheck to ensure that your mechanic uses the best quality products when changes and repairs occur. A simple as this might sound, it has the potential to maintain the value of your car and keep you from stress and uncertainties.

Irrespective of the load a vehicle carries, the efficiency of the brake system must be top-notch. The brake drum's diameter should not expand beyond its limit. The expansion often a result of heat generated.Safe braking is dependent on some factors. These factors include the drum's friction surface roughness, good thermal conductivity, narrow form, and positional tolerance.

These factors are essential in guaranteeing the reliability of the braking. With the drum often exposed to severe atmospheric conditions such as winter, the road grime and potent substance like road salt and spray water can affect the brake drum.

The negative effect of this substance can cause corrosion of the brake drum. However, manufacturers have navigated a way out by producing brake drums with anti-corrosion coatings.

These anti-corrosion coatings also help to make the brake drums look presentable and decent after replacement.

Wheel bearings are present in the recent models of the brake drum. The wheel bearings are always placed simultaneously with the brake drum for safety reasons. As a result, most manufacturers prefer to integrate wheel bearings and brake drums when producing. This implementation has to make repairers manipulate this device quickly and has helped slash down repair costs.

Key Takeaways

  • A brake drum is an integral part of drum brakes. Its association with the brake shoe forms a friction pair that is necessary for stopping the car.
  • These drums are not susceptible to wear and tear because they are of iron origin.
  • Although they have been subject to corrosive effects in time, most manufacturers have integrated an anti-corrosive coating to newer models. The term "long pedal" is a phenomenon that occurs when the brake pedal is continuously in use for a long time.
  • This continuous engagement makes the brake drum heat up rapidly and expand. If the brake is initiated after this period, the result will be fatal as the brakes would not respond adequately.
  • Always take your brake drum to a specialist when it needs replacement. It is also essential to adhere to the manufacturer's manual while the replacement is in progress. Replacements will require high-quality products.

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