What is Brake Fade?
Brake Fade is a term used to describe when the brakes of a vehicle become less effective. It usually occurs when the brakes have been used for a prolonged period of time continuously. It may feel like the pedal is working, though the car will take longer to stop than usual.
The most common type of brake fade is known as Friction Fade. This is where the driver presses lightly on the brakes (enough to slow the car down gradually) on a long downwards hill.
In a usual situation, the heat from pressing the brakes would be relieved because the driver of the vehicle would let off the brake. If the driver keeps the brake pressed and doesn’t let off, the constant friction on the brake pads and rotor creates an enormous amount of heat. The build up of heat causes the friction surfaces of the brake pads and rotor to stop working as they should.
How can I prevent Brake Fade?
In order to prevent Brake Fade from happening, you should press on the brake pedal firmly then let off to give them a cooling off period. To further slow down the vehicle you should change to a lower gear.
If you are already experiencing friction fade, then you need to stop your vehicle in order to reduce the temperature of the brakes. This cooling off period should last about an hour before proceeding.