Every modern vehicle is capable of reaching high speed due to advancement in technology, but to go fast also brings about the need to slow down to a halt quickly, and that’s where your vehicle’s brakes come in.
One of the earliest forms of braking on a vehicle, drum brakes are called as such because the components used to slow down your vehicle are housed in a drum. How this works is that there are brake shoes inside the rotating drum, and when pressing on the brakes pushes the shoes outwards onto the drum, using friction to decrease the speed of your vehicle.
Drum brakes are cheaper than disc brakes, but there are downsides such as faster heat build-up and reduced brake efficiency because everything is located in a drum, which dissipates heat slower.
Although the idea was conceived around the same time as drum brakes, disc brakes never made its way into the automotive industry for another 60 years. Disc brakes utilise a spinning disc with calipers hovering above it and when braking, the calipers are pressed onto the disc, also using friction to slow it down.
Since disc brakes are more exposed, they are more efficient at braking for the heat generated during the process is dissipated faster. They are also easier to upgrade to bigger discs or calipers to improve braking performance.
What is the best for my car?
Most cars these days are equipped with a front disc / rear drum setup with more luxurious cars having an all disc brakes setup. Before you start wondering why some cars are still using drum brakes, modern drum brakes can still give adequate stopping power needed in cars equipped with it, so there’s nothing to worry about.
If you feel that your car’s brakes aren’t as capable as it used to be, make sure to have it checked for it is one of the most important aspects of your car.