Brake failure is a very dangerous and scary situation to be in when you’re behind the wheel. However, it’s preventable (for the most part). Our Orlando auto service techs are here to give you tips on how to handle brake failure should you find yourself facing it, as well as how to take steps to prevent it from happening in the first place.
How do you prevent brake failure?
How can you prevent yourself from ending up in this scary situation? Here are a few tips that the Toyota of Orlando auto service center offered up when we asked:
Tip #1: Pay attention to how your car drives. If you notice something sounds, feels, smells, or looks different – for example, your brakes seem “mushy” or non-responsive – then you should bring your car in to have it checked. You know what’s normal and if something seems off, don’t ignore it.
Tip #2: Get routine brake service! This is quintessential to having your brakes work the way they should. If you want to maximize your car’s performance, don’t skimp out on getting routine car maintenance when it’s due.
Learn how to handle this drive time emergency safely
What if brake failure happens anyway? Here are some Orlando Toyota tips to help you deal with this dangerous scenario from the driver’s seat.
1) Immediately use your horn. This will alert other drivers to your presence and hopefully help them quickly get out of the way so you don’t end up in a collision.
2) Try pumping the brakes three times in succession if you don’t have an anti-lock brake system in your car; it may get them to re-engage.
3) Refrain from turning your car off (you’ll lose your power steering) or from putting it into neutral (you’ll lose the ability to downshift).
4) Downshift. In an automatic car, taking your foot off the gas and letting the car slow itself should signify to the engine that it needs to downshift. In a manual car, simply use the gear shifter to shift into a lower gear and slow your vehicle.
5) If possible, use the emergency brake. You never want to use this if you’re driving on wet roads or at high speeds, as you’re likely to lose control of the vehicle. If you are able to use the e-brake, pull it slowly and gently to help bring your car to a lower speed.
6) Steer onto the shoulder and look for a firm, level surface. Try not to drive through sand or mud, which can cause you to lose traction.
7) Call a tow truck. NEVER drive your vehicle after you’ve experienced brake failure – let Toyota of Orlando’s auto service team take care of it before you get back on the road.
Need to schedule brake service or want to have your brake system checked out? Call our Orlando auto service center today at (407) 298-0001. We’re open seven days a week!