When you’re behind the wheel, you expect your car to slow down and stop when you step on the brake pedal. This is what you should expect, however, sometimes that may not happen. This instance is known as brake failure. This is when your hydraulic brakes go out and your car will not come to a stop when you press on the brake pedal. While this situation sounds scary, it can be handled safely with a prepared driver. Our Orlando Toyota service technicians want YOU to be prepared if you ever face car brake failure. So, you’re coming up to an intersection and the light turns red and you step on the brake pedal and it goes straight to the floor- but your car isn’t slowing down. What do you do?
Tips for handling car brake failure
The first thing to remember is to stay calm. You can make more rational and calculated decisions when you’re not panicking. Once you’re calm, it’s time to put in place brake failure evasive maneuvers:
Step 1: Remove your foot from the accelerator. If you can’t slow your car down with the brake, it’s best that you let your car slow down by taking your foot off of the gas pedal and let your car slow down naturally.
Step 2: Immediately turn your emergency, or hazard, lights on. These flashing lights will indicate to other drivers that there is a problem with your vehicle and that they should use extra caution. If a vehicle gets too close while you’re trying to slow down, use your horn to alert other drivers.
Step 3: If you’re able, shift your vehicle into a lower gear. Our Orlando auto service technicians say this will help slow your car down while facing brake failure.
Step 4: Search for a place to pull off of the road and stop. If you’re driving on the highway, carefully switch lanes and pull onto the shoulder of the road. If you’re on a city street, look for a grassy area or empty parking lot to pull into and come to a safe stop. Wherever you bring your car to a stop, make sure you’re out of traffic and out of harm’s way.
Step 5: Once you’re in a safe location to stop, our Orlando Toyota service techs suggest using your emergency brake. It’s important that you only engage your emergency brake once you’re away from obstacles because this mechanical stop will lock up your back tires and bring your car to a quick stop. To avoid damaging your vehicle, place your slow moving car in neutral and slowly engage the parking brake.
Congratulations! You’ve successfully maneuvered your way out of danger and into safety. Once you’re at a safe stop, turn your car off and call for a towing service. Have your vehicle brought to our Orlando Toyota Service Center. Our professional Orlando auto service technicians can determine what caused your car’s brake failure and get it fixed up in no time.
You can prevent your car brakes failing with routine brake service! To make an appointment at our Toyota Service Center in Orlando, give us a call at (866) 945-0493!