How to increase brake stopping power and decrease stopping distances with Performance Brakes
A lot of our customers that visit us are looking to increase stopping power, but do not have an accurate idea of what it takes. We do offer a huge variety of Performance Brakes, from uprated brake discs, brake pads, big brake kits, and brake line kits.
Yes, you can increase stopping power and distance with performance brakes, but not every upgrade does what the advertiser claims.
Most amateur auto enthusiasts, when looking into performance brakes for the first time, think that braking power has something to do with being able to lock up your wheels. When we talk about braking power, we are talking about the amount of friction that exists between a brake pad and a disc.
Poorly performing pads and discs will not react to your braking commands quickly due to low friction quotients. By increasing that coefficient of friction, you will be able to decrease the time required to stop, and the distance it takes to do so.
If you race, high-performance brakes are a must. Performance brakes are designed to dissipate this heat build-up more efficiently than standard equipment brakes.
There are several brake components that contribute to your stopping power.
- Brake Pads
- Brake Discs (Size)
In order to maximize stopping power, it is important to address all 3 of the above components.
A tyre upgrade comes first. A general purpose tyre will not perform nearly as well as a high performance tyre when applying brakes firmly. A high performance tyre will have more surface area touching the road, and therefore more friction applied to the road overall.
Once you have installed performance tyres on your vehicle, you should then you can start looking at performance brakes the first step; high performance ‘street’ brake pads. Brake pads that are more aggressive than stock will have the ability to dig into the brake disc better and increase the coefficient of friction between the disc and pad. Note that a high performance pad will degrade more quickly than stock, and will need to be replaced more often as a result.
Once you have decided to install upgraded brake pads, then you should go one step further and upgrade your discs at this time.
What are your braking needs. If you anticipate braking aggressively over a short period of time, you should be using a cross drilled disc which will increase heat dissipation by increasing the surface area of the metal.
Brake pad material clearing. A slotted disc will be able to clear off brake pad dust that accumulates on the disc. If you are using a highly aggressive pad, then you most certainly want to use a slotted disc design.
Slotted design for additional brake pad friction. When using the slotted brake disc design, the slot groves will allow the brake pad to dig in better during braking. When using a combination of highly aggressive brake pads with slotted discs, you can realise a very high coefficient of friction. This combination of brake pad/disc use will result in the highest rate of brake pad degrade.
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