Brake Drum Replacement from just $328

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Brake Drum Replacement

With the rise of disc braking in modern cars, drum brakes aren’t used as often anymore. However, some utes and modern cars still use drums for the rear wheel braking. A drum brake consists of a ‘drum’ looking iron bowl which sits behind the wheel and spins at the same speed. Inside this drum are two shoes which are pushed against the inside of the spinning drum. The resulting friction is what slows the car down. 

What is a brake drum?

A brake drum is usually made out of iron or steel and has the wheel lugs poking through. It has a smooth inner surface which the shoes press into. The shoes are shaped in a crescent way, with a backing plate fixed to the springs to hold them in place. When the wheel is bolted on, it fixes the drum in place and allows it to spin at the same speed as the wheel. 

Why do you need a brake drum?

It’s important that your brake drum is in good condition to ensure that the shoes have a smooth and even surface to press into. As brake drums go through many heat cycles and different forces, they do wear down over time. If they start to fail then you may struggle to stop your car and that’s not something you want.

How to tell if you need a new brake drum

If your brake pedal is spongy or you can feel a shaking or juddering when braking then your brake shoes may not be grabbing properly. Another indicator is that your braking distance is increased further than usual. If you hear any weird sounds when braking then it may also be worth getting it looked at, just in case.

How is a brake drum replaced

The mechanic will firstly loosen the wheels and hoist the car into the air. The wheels will be removed and the brake drum pried off of the hub. The shoes will be inspected and cleaned as well as the new brake drum. Any other required components will also be cleaned or replaced as needed. The new drum will be fitted and the wheels refitted. The car will be test driven and the new brakes bedded in. 

How much does a brake drum cost?

It’s not a difficult job but with both parts and labor expect prices in the range of $220 to $500 for replacing two drums.

How often do I need a brake drum replaced?

Typically around every 150,000km. They can wear out in less or more time depending on the braking bias and style of usage. 

Is a broken brake drum unsafe?

Yes it is. If it interferes with your cars’ ability to stop then it’s something that can be very unsafe. Don’t risk it, get your brake drums replaced when it’s needed. 

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