AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
New technology Brakes!
Exciting developments may impact the way brakes are serviced, thereby affecting dealer profitability
When the subject of new brake technology is mentioned, most people think about all the new anti-lock brake systems (ABS) that have been introduced in the past couple of years. That's one trend that won't change, and will likely accelerate in the years ahead as the demand for ABS continues to grow. But there are a number of other exciting developments that may soon impact the vehicles upon which you work and the way you service brakes, such as:
* The introduction of aluminum brake rotors that are lighter and run hundreds of degrees cooler than conventional cast iron rotors.
* The elimination of asbestos from all friction materials, and the simultaneous introduction of new generations of nonasbestos organic substitutes.
* The integration of the master brake cylinder and power booster into one assembly.
* The addition of traction control to anti-lock brakes.
* The trend toward installing "loaded" caliper assemblies rather than overhauling calipers in-shop.
* The use of a brake fluid sensor to tell the motorist when his fluid needs to be changed.
Sound interesting? Then keep reading because these changes will be here before you know it.
Cool aluminum rotors
A new ceramic/aluminum composite rotor that's being developed by Duralcan USA, a division of Alcan Aluminum Ltd., a Canadian-based aluminum manufacturer, may soon make cast iron brake rotors obsolete. Engineers have long looked at rotors with a wistful eye toward reducing weight because rotors, like brake drums, represent a lot of dead weight. Congress is now considering legislation that would raise the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for vehicle manufacturers above the current 27.5 mpg level. If this happens, you can bet every ounce of weight will be closely scrutinized to see if it can be reduced or eliminated.
Composite brake rotors have been one approach to reduce weight. Though several pounds lighter than a conventional …