Suspension & Brakes

For a Safer and More Comfortable Ride

Vibrating steering wheels, grinding brakes, and extra-bumpy rides are all signs that your brakes or suspension might need some work. If you're finding that your car is riding a little less comfortably than it should, our auto repair experts can help.

  • Shocks & Struts Repair

  • Chassis & Suspension Repair

  • Suspension & Steering Repair

  • Brake Pad & Brake Rotor Replacement

  • Brake Hydraulics

  • Master Cylinder Replacement

  • Brake Booster Replacement

How Do Auto Suspension Systems Work?

If a road were perfectly flat, suspensions wouldn’t be necessary—but we all know that's not the case. Even freshly paved highways have bumps and divots that can interact with the wheels of a car, jogging it up and down.

Without a suspension, those bumps would go right to the frame of the car. The wheels would lose contact with the road, then slam back into the road surface—giving you the comfort-free (and hard-to-steer) ride of a toy wagon. But with a suspension system, the body of the car moves forward smoothly while the wheels follow bumps in the road.

Automotive suspension has three important jobs:

  1. Keeping tires on the road surface. Engineers call this “road holding.” It’s important for the tires to stay in contact with the road at all times because friction between the tires and the ground is what lets the car accelerate, stop, and corner. The suspension keeps the weight centered to maintain the grip.
  2. Stable steering and handling. The suspension keeps the car or truck body from tipping or rolling in a corner.
  3. Passenger comfort. Vehicle suspension systems keep the cabin isolated from the bumps on the road. Suspensions absorb that up-and-down energy and disperse it without too many bobbles.

How Do Car Brakes Work?

The modern automotive brake system has been refined for over 100 years and has become extremely dependable and efficient.

The typical brake system consists of disk brakes in front and either disk or drum brakes in the rear connected by a system of tubes and hoses that link the brake at each wheel to the master cylinder. Other systems that are connected with the brake system include the parking brakes, power brake booster, and the anti-lock system.

When you step on the brake pedal, you are actually pushing against a plunger in the master cylinder, which forces hydraulic oil (brake fluid) through a series of tubes and hoses to the braking unit at each wheel. Since hydraulic fluid (or any fluid for that matter) cannot be compressed, pushing fluid through a pipe is just like pushing a steel bar through a pipe. Unlike a steel bar, however, fluid can be directed through many twists and turns on its way to its destination, arriving with the exact same motion and pressure that it started with. It is very important that the fluid is pure liquid and that there are no air bubbles in it. Air can compress, which causes a sponginess to the pedal and severely reduced braking efficiency. If air is suspected, then the system must be bled to remove the air. There are “bleeder screws” at each wheel cylinder and caliper for this purpose.

No matter what the issue is, our auto repair teams in Kennewick, West Richland, and Richland can get your vehicle's brakes and suspension system in excellent working condition.