When do you need to change your brake drums?
Squeaking noises and harsh grinding coming from your brakes? If you have drum brakes, it's likely that the years of uneven wear have taken their toll. Every time the shoes have reached the point they need to be replaced, the friction material is worn down to the metal backing plate. That plate is now digging into the inner layer of the brake drum and slowly turning it out of round (lopsided). And, obviously, the longer that happens the worse the drum is going to get. If you catch it in time, you can get the inside of the drum resurfaced. But that can't be done too much. Plus, old man time is never kind to brake drums either. Rust and age can be detrimental to the structural integrity of the drum, rendering them unable to be resurfaced in most cases. And since your car or truck's brakes are a safety feature, it would be unwise to drive constantly without attending to their service. Keep you and your passengers safe with regular service to your brakes.
How do brake drums work?
Drum brakes were invented as a replacement to the old wood block style brake systems. As wheels on cars were starting to be wrapped with rubber tires, they needed a new way to slow them down. Applying friction to the inside of a rotating drum around the axle was the new preferred way of achieving reliable and efficient braking. Semi-circular brake shoes are mounted on the inside of the brake drum, and are pushed against the drum by a hydraulic cylinder using friction to slow its movement. It was not without its disadvantages; thermal expansion and water-logging will reduce effectiveness of brake drums. Still, much better than the alternative at the time they were invented.
Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty.
When changing your drum brakes, it is important you have the right tools and follow the right procedures. Doing so will make the process much easier and safer for you and the people in your car.
- First, you must loosen the lug nuts on the wheels where you are replacing the drums. Once this is done, you can now lift the car and set it on jack stands.
- Next, fully remove the wheel to expose the drum and wheel hub.
- Then, using a brake drum removal tool, pry the drum from the wheel hub. If you are changing rear drums, make sure the parking brake is released.
- Now, with the drum internals exposed, you can take this opportunity to change the springs, hold-down hardware, and the shoes. We definitely recommend changing the shoes at this time.
- After that is done, you can simply put the new brake drum back on. To complete your install, just do the other side and you are finished.
Stop in and save at CPD!
Buying replacement brake drums from Car Parts Discount means you are getting top quality brand names at our lowest prices. Whether you are on a budget, in a hurry, or performing a restoration, our selection of reproduction and original equipment drum brakes can't be beat. Plus, we offer super fast shipping inside the continuous 48 states from one of our dozens of distribution warehouses. So don't hesitate, don't fret, and don't worry - buy with confidence today.