New car models all seem to have larger brakes each year but what makes that such a good thing? Performance enthusiasts always seem to change the brake calipers and brake disc on their cars to something different but why? The fact of the matter is that the brake system on a vehicle is one of the most important parts in the car. Even if a car has a blow engine it can still start rolling on a hill and if the brakes are gone it won’t be easy to stop.
The key to big brakes or just an overall great braking system is to match the system to what the vehicle is intended for. The idea of larger brakes is that larger brake pads can be fitted and more contact can be made between the pad and the disc. Big discs are not the only factor in better stopping power, evenly spaced and properly positioned pistons for the calipers are a huge factor.
The disc is very important to the braking as it must be vented for proper cooling and slots can be added for even more. There is a down side to slotted or drilled rotors and that is when the drilling or slotting is done it reduces the surface area of the disc and thus lessens the cars ability to stop. Many times it will be seen on the road when some car owner bought the “upgrade discs” for their car and now it can’t stop as quickly.
The key to brake upgrades is to go larger and also add slotted or cross-drilled rotors to reduce brake fading over time. There is not really a cheap way to get better braking in a car so be sure before ordering a set of “upgraded” discs that there is a plan to do a complete brake system upgrade. Lastly don’t forget that the tires are the only part that touches the tarmac so if they are bad the brakes won’t help.
If you need some helpful tips on brakes, check out our Repair Brake System page in our How To sectoin, CLICK HERE