Braking is essential for every vehicle. Although there are different braking systems, the most common is the disc braking system. Calipers are the building blocks of these mechanisms, which allow you to slow your vehicle. However, like all other mechanical components, calipers also require inspection. It is infrequent but mandatory.
Vehicles have calipers in both the front and a rare braking system. However, the overall front brake caliper replacement cost is relatively less because they are easier to replace. Here is a quick guide on brake caliper-related essentials.
What Damages the Brake Calipers?
There are numerous reasons which deteriorate the working of brake calipers. Here are some common ones.
The most common cause of brake calipers’ failure is rust. Since they are the most exposed part of the braking system, they can rust easily. Dirt amassing topped with environmental humidity leads to corrosion and ineffective braking.
Too much dirt buildup also affects the actuator shaft. Passive actuator shafts further lead to jammed brake calipers.
When you apply brakes, the brake calipers squeeze the braking discs. The process produces friction which converts the vehicle’s kinetic energy into heat.
Similarly, on releasing the brakes, the calipers immediately cool down. This constant heating and cooling wear out the component over time.
What Is the Average Endurance of a Brake Caliper?
Brake calipers are sturdy components and usually last for 7 to 10 years. In other words, they can bear 75,000 to 100,000 miles. The overall life span of brake calipers also depends upon the vehicle’s use.
Load-carrying and long-journey vehicles will naturally cover the mileage quickly. In comparison, brake calipers usually last until the next vehicle replacement for an everyday user.
When Should You Change Your Brake Calipers?
The ideal practice is to inspect your brake calipers after a year. However, some other symptoms may indicate an urgent evaluation and replacement.
Leaking Of Brake Fluid
Brake calipers use hydraulics to apply intense pressure to stop the wheels. Brake fluids present within these components help attain the necessary force.
However, brake caliper deterioration causes the brake fluid to leak. You must strictly avoid driving vehicles with fluid leaks as they are extremely dangerous.
When you apply brakes, the system maintains the car’s position while stopping it. However, with worn-out calipers, you’ll notice the vehicle drifting away from its place when you brake.
Clicking sounds during braking are another common symptom of a defective caliper. Although, it is not as dangerous as a fluid leak issue. But the quickest repair ensures safety.
Unevenly Worn Brake Pads
Calipers squeeze the brake pads to slow down the vehicle. However, worn-out calipers apply uneven pressure on the brake pads, resulting in uneven wear. Imbalanced brake pad wear is the most unmistakable sign of a defective caliper.
The Bottom Line
Brake calipers have rubber seals. However, these seals wear out or harden over time, resulting in ineffective braking. Determining your brake calipers’ replacement time is complicated, especially when unaware of the causes and symptoms.
The above excerpt talks about all the essentials. You can estimate the replacement time if you know what damages your brake calipers. Brake calipers last up to 10 years; however, applications and the environment may cause them to wear out faster.
Worn-out brake calipers exhibit prominent signs. And, if you can identify them, you’ll know when you need to turn to your mechanic.