You've enjoyed the braking performance of your disc brakes for the past season.
Now it's mid winter & we're all thinking about the return of warmer weather, longer days & getting back out on the bike.
But what does this mean for those disc brakes that did such a great job of slowing you down last season?
While disc brake systems allow riders to enjoy better braking with less maintenance or adjustment than their previous caliper brakes, they do require regular service.
We here at Apex Velo along with all major brake manufacturers strongly recommend having your brake systems bled once a year.
This process serves two purposes. First, it replaces potentially fouled or contaminated brake fluid & removes any air that may have made it's way into the hydraulic system. This is a key element of strong, consistent & reliable performance from any hydraulic brake system. Secondly, the process of bleeding the brakes allows the technician to carefully inspect all of the parts in the system. During a bleed we look at the function & condition of your brake pads, brake rotors, calipers, levers, hydraulic lines & all fittings. Any issues with these parts can then be addressed & repaired as necessary.
Modern bicycle disc brakes offer many advantages to the rider compared to their predecessors. We want you to have 100% confidence in these systems as you roll out to start your next ride. Properly serviced brakes will provide piece of mind that your bike is ready for the upcoming season & keep you riding longer, safer & faster!
While every bike goes through a different amount of wear, you can see the difference between Old (top photo) and New (bottom photo) brake fluid for a Shimano system.
The fluid has brake pad dust and potentially debris in it. Over time it can damage the seals in the system and damage the lever internals as well as calipers.
We also check to ensure the Olive and Barb connection is snug as it can loosen over time and cause air and debris to get into the system.
You can see below circled in blue an air bubble in the system that was removed during a brake bleed.
We will also measure the rotors to ensure they have enough material left. Shimano rotors are aluminum cores sandwiched by two steel plates, it allows for the better heat dissipation and longer rotor life. Once the steel wears .25mm they are worn and need to be replaced, or else the pads will bite into the very soft aluminum core and can cause a serious failure.
Finally the brake pads themselves. You can see a worn pair with maybe a few rides left on them on the Right. On the Left you can see a new pair with a lot more material on them.
While brakes just slow you down, it is very important to keep them functioning in working order to ensure a safe ride.
Contact us [email protected] with any questions or to schedule an appointment