How Your Vehicle's Brakes Are Inspected

Taking your vehicle in for a brake inspection and want to know what will be done? Since this is likely a job you don't know how to do on your own, it makes sense to leave it to the professionals. Here is what is involved with a professional brake inspection when your vehicle uses a brake drum mechanism.

Tire And Brake Drum Removal

A mechanic cannot perform a quality brake inspection unless they remove the tires of your vehicle. That is why it is common to lift your vehicle up on a hoist and take the tires off. None of the internal components can be looked at with the brake drum on the vehicle, so those will be taken off as well to get a good look at what is going on inside.

Brake Drum Inspection

The next thing that will be done is a visual inspection of the inside of the brake drum. The mechanic is going to look for problems, such as grooves or indications on the inside that the brake drum could fail. They'll also look for warping of the brake drum itself, which is another indication that the brake drum could need replacement. A micrometer can be used to take measurements of the brake drum if there is a suspicion that the part is warped, but it is hard to tell with a visual inspection. 

Brake Shoe Inspection

The brake system is located within the brake drum, and it works by pushing outward and coming in contact with the brake drum to slow down your vehicle. The mechanic will look at those components, known as the shoes, that physically push against the brake drum. There are two shoes located within each brake drum, and they should have about the same amount of wear on both shoes. If one shoe is worn more than the other, then both brake shoes should be replaced so that they are even once again.

Brake Hardware Inspection

There are a few pieces of hardware to inspect as well. Any components that are rusting should be replaced, as well as springs that are not nice and tight. Springs are very cheap to replace, so it is best to put in new springs if there is any signs of potential failure. The wheel cylinder uses brake fluid to push out the pistons and move the brake shoes forward, so that part should be inspected for leaking fluid. If it's leaking, it can be replaced with a brand new part to ensure brake fluid is not leaking out of the brake system.