It’s that time of year again.  Parents are getting antsy.  Kids are seeing all the signs.  Teachers are loading up on coffee.

That’s right.  You’ve seen the ads, heard the grumbles, and probably have it circled on your calendar.


For most people, the main focus is school supplies like books, paper, and backpacks.  But, here at Rob’s tend to focus on one of the oft overlooked things when it comes to the back to school time.

While we’ve previously discussed routine maintenance on our blog, and hit on some points about tire tread and alignment, one aspect of vehicle maintenance we haven’t touched on is brakes.

When we think of back to school, we think of all the stop and go, all the school zones where you ride your brakes, the kids who don’t look both ways before they decide to cross a street.  All those times when it is crucial that your brakes are working as they are supposed to be.  If your brakes fail, you could be seeing us for more than just brakes (collision, towing, etc).

Most modern cars have a hydraulic brake system.  And, in general, have disc brakes in the front (as they are generally more efficient at slowing a vehicle, and drum brakes in the rear (rear brakes can cause undue stress on the front brakes by effectively throwing the weight of the vehicle forward when momentum is slowed).  Drum and disc brakes have their differences, but both have the same purpose: to slow/stop your vehicle.

For most brake jobs, we tend to only have to replace brake shoes (drum brakes) and brake pads (disc brakes), as those are the components that provide friction to the wheel to slow the vehicle down.  These parts wear down every time you apply the brakes.  Having these parts inspected at regular intervals can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.  Whenever you bring your vehicle down to Rob’s, be sure to ask one of our service technicians to inspect your brakes to make sure they haven’t worn to the point of damaging other parts of the brake system.  Repairing the other components of the brake system can cost a small fortune.

As the summer break draws to a close, take care of all your back to school shopping as soon as you can.  But, before you go shopping for shoes, bring come down to your closest Rob’s service center to make sure your vehicle’s shoes (and pads) are in tip-top shape.