Whether you have to slam on your brakes while in traffic or gradually stop at a red light, your brake system prevents accidents from occurring. If they fail, don’t panic. Instead, follow the five steps below to get your car out of harm’s way and to an auto repair shop for brake service.
What to Do When Your Brakes Go Out While on the Road
1. Identify the Type of Brakes You Have
There are two types of brakes: anti-lock and regular. Your vehicle has anti-lock brakes if “ABS” illuminates on your dashboard when you start up the car. Anti-lock brakes prevent your car from skidding if you stop suddenly. The “ABS” is absent if you have regular brakes. You have to take additional steps to steer your car to safety with this type.
2. Change Gears & Pump the Brakes
When your regular brakes fail, immediately shift to a lower gear. Then, pump the brake pedal quickly multiple times. This step will increase brake fluid pressure, which should help you stop. If you have anti-lock brakes, press the pedal to the floor. The pedal will vibrate and you can steer to safety.
3. Engage the Parking Brake
If pumping the brake pedal a few times doesn’t bring the system back to life, slowly turn on the parking brake. The car will skid in an attempt to stop.
4. Steer Toward Safety
Use the steering wheel to direct your vehicle to a safe spot. Turn on your hazard lights and honk your horn to alert other drivers you’re having trouble.
5. Tow Your Car to an Auto Repair Shop for Brake Service
Once you’ve stopped, call a towing company to pull your vehicle to an auto repair shop that can perform brake service. They’ll determine the cause of brake failure and prevent it from happening again. Don’t drive any farther. Your insurance company can recommend an auto repair shop if you don’t already know of one.
To prevent brake failure, bring your vehicle to Bay Springs Auto Repair in Dothan, AL, for a number of car maintenance tasks. Their ASE®-certified mechanics have the skills to repair both foreign and domestic cars. In addition to brake service, they also perform transmission repair, check engine light services, and engine replacement. Call (334) 692-4229 to make an appointment or visit their website to learn more about their premier auto repair services.