8608 North State Road 19, Etna Green, IN 46524

6 Things to Know About Truck Brakes

The stopping distances of a fully loaded truck (which could weigh up to 80,000 pounds) could be as much as 525 feet—nearly the length of two football fields. By comparison, a passenger vehicle traveling at 55 mph takes about 135 feet to stop. If the truck’s brakes are hot, it could take another 100 feet or more to stop.

With such a stopping distance, truck owners and drivers must ensure their brakes are properly functioning. And understanding the key aspects of truck brakes can help you make informed decisions about maintenance and repairs. 

Here are six important things you should know about truck brakes.

1. How Long Do Truck Brakes Last?

The brake pads on a truck generally last about 40,000 miles, depending on where and how you drive. Some drivers must change the brake pads as soon as 25,000 miles, while others can wait until 60,000 miles. 

It is essential to monitor the condition of your brakes regularly and have them inspected by a professional to ensure optimal performance. As part of your fleet maintenance schedule, we at Mast Service Center can check your truck’s brakes if there’s a need for repair or maintenance.

2. Air Brakes or Hydraulic Brakes?

Most trucks have air brakes. However, some do have hydraulic brakes. 

Air brakes can stop a fully loaded truck more efficiently. They use compressed air to close the calpers and press the pads against the rotor. Hydraulic brakes use hydraulic brake fluid to do the same thing. 

Understanding which type of braking system your truck utilizes is essential for proper maintenance and repairs. At Mast Service Center, we can provide brake repair and other services for your trucks.

3. What Are the Components of a Truck’s Airbrake System?

The airbrake system on a truck has more components than hydraulic brakes. Components include:

  • An air compressor (to create pressurized air)
  • Air storage tanks
  • Alcohol evaporator (to help keep the brakes from freezing during cold weather)
  • A safety valve (releases air pressure if the pressure is too high)
  • Brake pedal
  • Foundation brakes (S-Cam, wedge, or disc brakes) 
  • A pressure gauge (tells how much air pressure is in the air storage tanks)
  • Brake pads.
  • Brake rotors.

Each component plays a vital role in the overall operation of the braking system, and regular inspection and maintenance of these parts are necessary to ensure their proper functioning.

4. When Should I Check My Truck’s Brakes?

You should always check your truck’s brakes before you leave for the day. Instead of just trying the brakes before you leave the yard, visually inspect any visible brake part, including the air lines. It is also recommended to have your truck’s brakes checked by a professional at least once a year or every 25,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

Additionally, pay attention to warning signs that indicate brake problems, such as: 

  • Squeaking or grinding noises
  • Reduced braking responsiveness
  • Vibrations
  • An illuminated brake warning light

If you notice any of these signs, it is essential to have your truck’s brakes inspected immediately.

5. Where Can I Get the Best Truck Repair Services and Brake Repair Services?

With our team of experienced technicians and state-of-the-art equipment, Mast Service Center provides top-notch truck repair services in Etna Green, Nappanee, and nearby areas in Indiana. From brake inspections and repairs to comprehensive maintenance, we offer many services to keep your truck operating safely and efficiently.

6. The Consequences of Poor Brake Maintenance

Trucks, even bobtails, are much heavier than the average passenger vehicle. Thus, the chances of an accident being catastrophic or fatal are much higher. Not only can drivers lose their jobs and licenses. Trucking companies and owner-operators could lose their businesses if the truck driver is found to be at fault.

Thus, keeping up with truck and brake maintenance is imperative because of the danger of bad brakes. Worn-out brake pads or shoes, brake fluid leaks, or faulty brake components can significantly impact your vehicle’s stopping power and increase the risk of accidents. 

Get Expert Truck Brake Repairs Now at Mast Service Center 

Understanding the important aspects of truck brakes is vital for maintaining safety on the road. And by prioritizing brake maintenance and repairs, you can drive with confidence and peace of mind knowing that your truck’s brakes are in optimal condition.

Contact Mast Service Center for an appointment or information on servicing your fleet. Call us at (574) 646-2127. We are conveniently located at 8608 Noth State Road 19, Etna Green, IN 46524.