Best Practices to Keep Your Brakes in Good Condition

Check List ✔

  • Air Systems
    Ensure your brake system is well-balanced.
  • Chambers
    Make sure your push rod is even on all chambers. To help, cut the push rod to the appropriate length.
  • Slack Adjuster
    Ensure your slack is set up properly per the manufacturer's recommendation.
  • S-Cams
    Make sure no grease is on your S-cam head. Aim for free play movement in and out, and up and down. Also, seal your installation.
  • Hardware Kits
    When performance a brake job, replace the hardware kit completely, not only the springs.
  • Shoes
    Do a complete replacement, not only one wheel. The minimum should be a complete axle if it's not possible to do an entire unit.
  • Drums
    Make sure to use heavy drums for severe applications. Use of lightweight brake drums on any heavy duty application is not recommended - they frequently lead to damaged and cracked drums.
  • Lining Wear Patterns
    To begin, after removing drums look at the brake shoes and lining before you remove them off the wheel - it will tell you a story.
  • Brake Adjustment
    Jack up axles and snub up brakes, then back off 1/4 to 1/2 turn on manual slacks and use templates on automatic slack adjusters.
  • Brake Lining Burnishings
    Heat up the brakes until you are able to smell them. Then, allow them to cool. Do this procedure within 1/4 to 1 mile. Check wheel temperature with a heat gun.