Victoria Car & Vehicle Maintenance - Brakes - Anti-Lock Brakes



The anti-lock braking system is a system on motor vehicles which prevents the wheels from locking while braking. The purpose of this is twofold: to allow the driver to maintain steering control and to shorten braking distances. It's called ABS, from the German name "Antiblockiersystem," from its inventors at Bosch. Since 1995, the majority of vehicles are equipped with ABS.

Understanding popular safety technologies like antilock brakes may reduce the injuries that you and your passengers receive during a collision. A study by the Highway Loss Data Institute (funded by the Insurance industry) found that many drivers don't know how to properly use their ABS to reduce the frequency or the costs of vehicle collisions

Before the development of ABS, drivers were taught to "pump" their brakes, especially on wet, icy, or other slippery road conditions. ABS, on the other hand, does pumping for you, controlled by computer.. ABS also uses electronic controls to maintain wheel rotation when braking hard, to prevent locking a vehicle's wheels. This increases both steering and braking ability, when on roads slick from rain or winter ice.

The best strategy is to avoid situations requiring hard or emergency braking. However, in an emergency with ABS brakes, apply firm, steady pressure to the brake pedal, and continue to apply it until the emergency is resolved. This reduces the risk of your vehicle skidding out of control, and you can continue to steer the vehicle.

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