Dodge recommends you have your brakes inspected every other oil change yearly. Brakes wear as you use them. When using the brakes, you compress fluid in the master cylinder. In turn, the master cylinder pressurizes the brake lines to each wheel. The seals in the master cylinder can wear out, causing leaks. If the pedal goes to the floor or feels mushy, that can indicate master cylinder replacement. Brake fluid should be transparent; if it is dark, master cylinder seals may have broken down and let pressure escape. A BRAKE light on the instrument panel may notify you of a bad master cylinder. The brake booster must work as advertised for the power brakes to give you the boost you desire. The following symptoms may indicate that you need a new brake booster:
-Hard brake pedal
-Longer stopping distance than you are used to
-Under braking, the engine stalls or runs rough
Besides transporting pressure to the brake pads, brake fluid absorbs friction-generated heat. Brake fluid absorbs water and should be drained and bled every two years to prevent rust from forming on your brake parts. A spongy brake pedal may indicate a brake fluid leak. If braking action isn’t as good as you are accustomed to, air may need bleeding from the system. Hoses connect the master cylinder to the calipers where brake pads press against the rotors when you brake. Leaks here can cause a soft brake pedal. The calipers are designed to handle the friction heat of braking but will decline in efficiency over time. Seals can leak, and caliper pistons can seize. The wheel with a seized caliper will have little or no braking action, and the car will pull under braking. Seized caliper pistons can cause you to drive with partial braking on; increased brake pad wear and decreased fuel mileage will result. Everyone’s brakes wear differently based on highway vs. city driving and how assertively you brake. Because of these differences, regular inspections are in your best interest. Brakes function by pressing pads against rotors; disk-shaped components bolted to your wheels. The following symptoms may accompany pad and rotor problems:
- Pulsing or vibration when braking
- Veering while braking
- Extended stopping distance
- Dashboard BRAKE Light illuminated
- Intense odor
- Grinding noise when braking
- Grooves on the rotor
- Should you encounter these, bring your Dodge Ram in for service immediately.
Worn-out pads usually cause brake noise. When the brake pads wear down metal to metal, they will no longer work as you expect and need replacing. Wheel sensors send critical information to the ABS and stability control to help you maintain directional control in slippery conditions. Our mechanic will test them while conducting a brake inspection. Finally, our ASE-certified mechanic will adjust your emergency brakes. Our Service is complete when brakes are road-tested and conform to factory specifications. At Precision Auto Care, we have dedicated brake repair experts.