The brakes are the most important feature of a car
Many new cars have a bulit-in emergency brake, which will automatically brake if the driver for instance is about to drive into a vehicle in front of it.
The official name for automatic emergency braking is AEB and it comes from Euro NCAP who crash-test all new cars.
Some car brands and on certain models, the AEB braking system (AEB-City) is standard equipment. This applies mostly to luxury cars for brands like Volvo, Mercedes and BMW.
The automatic braking system has gained traction in recent years, and it has previously been estimated the safety system will result in fewer road traffic accidents and deaths.
The automatic emergency braking, which at BMW is called ‘Driving Assistant Plus’, works by having the car decelerate when approaching obstacles. While some cars only react at speeds up to 30 km/h. (AEB City) works on other models even when driving on the motorway (AEB Inter-Urban).
Finally, there is a version that gets the car to stop when there are pedestrians in front of the car (AEB Pedestrian). The modern safety equipment is reassuring when driving, but it only works provided the car’s brakes function as they should.
When you drive your BMW for servicing, you must therefore make sure the mechanic conducts a proper inspection of the car’s brakes. Ask the mechanic to look behind the rim to check how worn the brakes look. Even if you have the mechanic’s word that the brakes are working correctly, it is still important that you are aware yourself if the car’s braking system suddenly starts to react differently.
If you experience irregularities, you should as quickly as possible have a brake inspection done that can indicate whether any cleaning, lubrication or adjustment of the brakes is possibly required.
Brake replacement – get the best price
If you need to send your BMW to a workshop, it may be a good idea to obtain several quotes in order to compare price and what each workshop includesin their price.
If you use autobutler.co.uk there may be money to be saved. Back in 2013, autobutler.co.uk actually conducted a price check on all brake jobs that were put out to tender among the affiliated garages. The results showed that car owners could save 31 percent on the bill from the garage by choosing the cheapest rather than the most expensive quotes.
If you need to change the brakes on your BMW, then expect it to cost an average of £300. The price has been calculated on the basis of all quotes on brake replacement for BMW that have been sent to the users of autobutler.co.uk. The price covers all BMW models.
Create a job on autobutler.co.uk and receive 3 written quotes from garages near you. On autobutler.co.uk, you always get a detailed description of the scope of the service from all garages. It is your assurance that you can easily choose the workshop that suits you the best.
Read the quote carefully when brakes need to be replaced
When you get a quote for a brake replacement for your BMW, the garage will have calculated how much the parts cost and how long the replacement of the brake parts is expected to take.
By comparing different quotes, you can see if the garage has calculated that both the brake plate, caliper as well as brake discs and pads should be replaced. New brake pipes are rarely included in the quote unless you have indicated that they should be changed. But as a precaution, it may be a good idea to ask the mechanic to check whether the brake pipes are working properly.
Is it time to change the brakes?
How often you should replace your car's brake pads and possibly the brake discs all depends on driving style and your driving habits. The brakes wear less for example when you mostly drive on country roads or motorways and also avoid sudden braking.
It is relatively easy to see when the brake pads are worn down. Nearly all cars nowadays have a brake wear indicator, which wears when driving. When the brake pads are about to be worn down, a warning light is activated in the car’s dashboard that tells you that an impending brake replacement is underway.
Even though there are no warning lights that light up on the dashboard, there can be indications that the pads need replacing if the braking seems ‘uneven’ or if there is a whistling sound when you activate the brakes.
Below is a list of the points that you should be aware of in regards to your car’s brakes. If you have experienced just one of these points, then it is time to get the car to the garage.
- When you turn, the brakes make noise. It’s probably a sign that the brake caliper is not sitting as it should in relation to the brake disc.
- A grinding noise may be due to a little rust on the discs. The rust wears off during braking, and the noise will disappear after a short amount of driving. If the noise doesn’t disappear then you should get the brakes checked.
- The brake pads can be worn unevenly, if you notice that the car pulls to the side when braking.
- When you step on the brake pedal, it goes to the floor before the brakes work. The brake system needs brake fluid. Take the car to a garage and check to see whether there are problems with a leaking brake system.
- If you experience the opposite, that the brake pedal is hard to step down, then it is presumably due to that the vacuum servo is defective.
Save on the brakes
Your driving style affects how often your brakes need to be replaced. Do you as a rule always decelerate at the very last moment at a traffic intersection, and do you often brake hard from high speed?
If yes, then you wear your brakes more than necessary, and you will find that you often need to replace your brakes. Hard braking wear the brake discs a lot more than if you slowed down in time and did more 'soft' brakes. Make your brakes last longer by being prudent, and releasing the accelerator in time.