Tag: brakes

135 Posts

Scion XA brakes get spongy with use
Nov 20, 2014

Today: What's Causing Spongy Brakes?

Dear Car Talk

Chris is a rural mail carrier and drives his 2005 Scion XA for work. The problem? His brakes start out fine each morning and go spongy by midday. The next morning they're fine again. What's going on here?


How regenerative braking works
Oct 21, 2014

Is Braking Etiquette Different for Hybrids and EVs?

Dear Car Talk

John has always hated those drivers who race to the stoplight and then slam on the brakes. It wastes gas and doesn't save any time. But for electric or hybrid cars with regenerative braking, is this really such a stupid maneuver? Find out what Tom and Ray say, right here.  

etiquette brakes electric vehicles hybrids

Front-end suspension on Jetta wobbles
Jun 26, 2014

What's Shaking Brian's Jetta?

Dear Car Talk

Brian's 2005 VW Jetta has a wobble in the front-end suspension. He's checked pretty much everything, the CV joints and axles, the tie rods, the struts and mounts, the tires. Can Tom and Ray tell him what he forgot to look at?

brakes Volkswagen Jetta

How anti-lock brakes work
Jun 05, 2014

Phil vs. Wife: Who's Right About ABS?

Dear Car Talk

Phil wants Tom and Ray to weigh in on a difference of opinion between himself and his wife. Tom says you're not supposed to pump the brakes when you have an anti-lock braking system, but his wife says she heard on MythBusters that it's safe. Find out how anti-lock braking systems work, right here. 

brakes winter

Does pressing the brake and accelerator at once damage brakes
Oct 10, 2013

Dad vs. Driver's Ed: Brakes Question

Dear Car Talk

Katie just finished driver's ed and was taught that driving through puddles can impact a car's braking capability. The instructor said they could solve this by braking lightly a few times after hitting a puddle. But her dad says all this does is wear out the brakes. Find out why Tom and Ray award this round to Katie's dear old dad, right here.

brakes safe driving tips

May 21, 2013

When to Replace Your Brakes? Our Top Ten

Staff Blog

How do you know when it's time to replace your brakes? When you get tired of repacking your drag chute after each stoplight! More unconventional metrics for brake replacement this way.


will i harm the emergency brake by using it every day
Apr 16, 2013

An Emergency Brake By Any Other Name . . .

Dear Car Talk

Today: Tom and Ray try to enlighten Todd, an emergency brake over-user, about the error of his ways. Find out why it's not a great idea to use this brake for regular stopping, and why it's really called the "parking brake", right here.

parking brakes brakes myths

does brake fluid need to be flushed
Nov 01, 2012

Is Steve Paranoid or Is His Mechanic Shy a Boat Payment?

Dear Car Talk

Steve is sure he smells a rat after his mechanic recommended that he flush out his brake lines and replace the brake fluid. Can Tom and Ray talk him down from his ledge of paranoia?

brakes ABS maintenance

when do i need to replace the brake rotors
Jul 06, 2012

Today: When to Replace Brake Rotors

Dear Car Talk

Ed's wondering about brake jobs--how do you know whether to replace the rotors, pads or both? Tom and Ray cover all the bases in their reply, starting with the history of brake pad materials, what's used most often in modern cars, and even make a prediction about the future of used brake rotors. 

brakes repairs

is it better to use the brakes as gently as possible
Apr 12, 2012

Is Gentle Braking Better?

Dear Car Talk

Mary always brakes gradually because she thinks this saves wear and tear on the car. Her daughter wonders why she bothers. Who's right?