Low cost tools helping to maximise bus disc brakes

Knorr Bremse braking gauge

In the latest issue of Route One magazine, Imperial Engineering looks at the role of inexpensive tools in extending brake pad service life.

Low cost special tools, such as measuring gauges, can play an essential role in maximising the service life and performance of bus disc brake systems, according to Imperial Engineering, the leading OEM bus parts distributor.  Disc brake technology has become ubiquitous throughout the UK’s bus parc with three OEM suppliers, Knorr Bremse, Meritor and Wabco dominating the market.

With the majority of buses typically operating very high duty cycles and a significant proportion of them running at low speeds in city centres, considerable demand is placed on the disc brakes. Consequently, they require regular inspection and maintenance in accordance with manufacturer guidelines. Imperial Engineering has seen a marked increase in demand from bus operators across the UK for replacement OEM disc brake components, despite the fact that items such as calipers are designed to last the typical 15-year service life, providing they are properly maintained.

In order to make the correct inspection of disc brake components safer and faster, as well as more cost-effective in terms of maximising service life, manufacturers such as Knorr-Bremse offer a range of special and auxiliary tools.  As well as being designed to undertake a specific task, tools such as a brake disc measuring gauge (K146719K50) can make all the difference when it comes to maintaining the service life of a brake disc, as the tool allows for accurate measurement, in many cases without removing the wheels.

Examples of other special tools for Knorr-Bremse disc brake systems include an Actuator Maintenance Gauge (K108806K50) designed to enable a quick and easy check of the actuator’s seal and push rod while ensuring the actuator corresponds exactly with the original installation by checking the seal condition. This tool will help maintain the important water tight seal between the actuator and caliper, preventing water ingress.  In addition, a special tool for tube release from Raufoss couplings, all provide inexpensive but high value solutions to extending the service life of OEM components.

Electronic test equipment is also available for more complex tasks, such as the Knorr-Bremse Digital Testing Device for Wear Potentiometers (K154433N50) which is designed to test potentiometer functionality and the wear condition of the brake pads and discs.

Imperial Engineering has a wealth of disc brake system knowledge and is pleased to support operators with technical advice and guidance. All these items listed above are available directly from Imperial. For further information, please call 01992 634255, or email enquiries@imperialengineering.co.uk