Brake Calipers are designed to be a robust part of your vehicles braking system. However, over time, the heat generated in driving can cause a breakdown in the seals within the pistons and caliper piston bores. 4WD rugged terrain or beach driving with salt causing corrosion can also cause wear to your brake caliper. There are a number of tell-tale signs that you may have issues with your calipers –
Does the vehicle pull to one side when applying the brakes? If a brake caliper or slide is seized this may cause the vehicle to pull to one side under the application of the brake. You may also experience the vehicle pulling under normal driving conditions.When inspecting the vehicle do you notice any fluid leaks? The calipers are activated by hydraulic fluid and under increased pressure when the brake is applied. Over time due to the constant pressure and or wear, the caliper can develop brake fluid leaks from the piston seal or bleed screw.Under braking does the pedal feel spongy or soft? The application of force on a fluid in a sealed system would not have a ‘soft’ feel. By attempting to compress a fluid the feel should get stronger. A leaking caliper can cause a spongy or soft feel as the fluid is escaping and hence not providing the expressed rigid feel.In combination it should be noted that a seized piston or sticking slide can create excessive clearance between the pad and rotor and may cause a variation in pedal feel or feedback.The result of any or all of the outlined potential issues is – if you do have a faulty caliper, will result in reduced braking ability.
Other attributes that can be impacted by caliper malfunction are uneven brake pad wear. Uneven brake pad wear may be a result of sticking caliper slide pins thus creating bias in wear characteristics. Further signs of ineffective caliper operation may be the experience of abnormal noise. The resultant seizing of brake caliper will wear down the brake pads unevenly with the end result being noise, requiring early brake pad/caliper replacement.
At any service interval it is imperative the entire brake ‘system’ is checked and reviewed. The effective braking of a vehicle relies on all parts of that system working in unison the be effective.
While attempting to repair a leaking or otherwise faulty caliper is not uncommon, studies show that the time required to do so, in combination with running the risk of the fault reoccurring within a short period of time, makes a replacement of the caliper the by far more economical solution. DBA’s range of Street Series calipers puts DIY enthusiasts in a position where you can do just that – bolt off, bolt on, and save time and money.
DBA’s Street Series brake calipers are available as single units for direct OE replacement and require no modification to the vehicle. They are supplied including brackets, however do not include brake pads to allow for pad combinations to suit your driving needs.