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The brakes on your car utilise fluid pressure.
When the brake pedal is depressed, it activates a plunger in the master cylinder,
which pressurises the brake fluid in the pipes and hoses causing the brake components to move.
Brake repairs are one of the most common reasons to visit a garage; all cars need their brake discs and pads replaced at regular intervals. Some of the warning signs for brake failure are squealing or grinding noises when depressing the brakes, or the brake feeling 'spongy' when the pedals is pressed. And of course if you need to brake increasingly hard to effectively slow or stop your car, then you could well be looking at brake replacement.
There are two main types of brake systems: disc brakes and drum brakes.
Disc brake systems are comprised of two pads per wheel, which clamp down on the brake disc when the brake pedal is depressed. When the fluid becomes pressurised, it sends a plunger in the calliper forward, forcing the brake pads on either side of the brake disc to squeeze it, which results in the slowing and stopping of the car.
Drum brakes operate in the same way as disc brakes, but with a different design. They both use friction to slow and stop the car, but drum brakes use shoes, instead of pads. The shoes are inside the steel brake drum itself, which spins with the wheel. When brake pressure is applied, a component called the wheel cylinder expands, forcing the brake shoes apart and towards the inside edge of the drum. Drum brakes are usually found on older vehicles, or just on the rear brake system.
A heritage German brand that has been a favourite for decades, it’s hard to throw a stone without hitting someone who owns or has owned a Golf at some point in their life! It’s essentially a rite of passage for anyone searching for a safe, reliable, and family-friendly car.
Interestingly, Volkswagen has three cars in the top 10 list of best-selling cars of all time - the Volkswagen Golf, the Beetle, and the Passat. Not bad, right?
Known for their reliability and value for money, VWs have long served as a reasonably priced little sibling to the more luxurious Audi, receiving excellent reviews across the board when it comes to the motoring press. You’d be hard pressed to find a range of cars as practical, safety-conscious, attractive and just generally good to drive as a Volkswagen.
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