Brake Ducts

Brake Ducts and Ducting

A brake cooling system is a critical component for high-performance driving. As such, events involving high speeds and regular braking usually take a heavy toll on the braking system. Brake pads usually function effectively and efficiently when they operate within the temperature range determined by their manufacturers. When braking, component utilize friction to convert kinetic energy into heat energy. The brake pads clamp down on the rotors, also referred to as brake discs, and this slows down or stops a moving car. This process usually generates an intense amount of heat, especially if the car is heavy or is at a high speed. During races, the temperature regularly gets to over a 1000 degrees Celsius.

Brake Fade

Dissipating heat as soon as it is generated is of utmost importance. When temperatures exceed the operating range, the brake components gradually cease to absorb heat and this greatly hampers friction. In this situation, the driver has to press harder and harder in order to get a brake response. As the temperatures continue to exceed, the driver can experience total brake failure. This is called a brake fade. It can also occur when the brake fluid boils. Brake fluids are hydraulic, which means they are incompressible. They usually convert the force applied on the brake pedals into pressure, which is in turn applied on the brake pads creating friction with the rotors. During the braking process, the brake fluids also absorb a substantial amount of heat. When this heat accumulates, it may start boiling the fluids and this creates air pockets. Air is compressible, therefore, more force is required to overcome the limitations of air. The risk of brake parts damage is always high at extreme temperatures. The heat can melt or weaken the rotors eventually disfiguring them. When the discs are damaged, it'll be only a short while before the pads are damaged too. If this happens regularly the long-term costs will be high for the drivers.

Manufacturers are coming up with innovative disc designs such as vented rotors in a bid to enhance heat dissipation. This may improve the driving experience for casual road users, but it just doesn't cut it for racers and drifters. Cooling systems are required to minimise damage and brake fades. Convection has been identified as the most effective way of dissipating heat. This is the method of cooling which relies on the flow of air. Fast flowing cold air is passed over the heating parts thereby cooling them.

Brake Ducts and Ducting

Brake ducts are conduits used to direct air from an area of high pressure such as the front centre of the car to the braking system. As a race car driver, your braking parts are more prone to damage and require more cooling efficiency. Performance brake ducts offer the perfect solution due to various reasons. Firstly, they are aerodynamically designed to let in larger amounts of air. Secondly, due to the high amount of heat produced by race cars' braking systems, the performance brake ducts are high-temperature tested and tried. Thirdly, the material used for the hoses is usually light and durable, which means they can be able to withstand high air pressure for a long period of time.

A suitable duct cooling system usually has 3 major sections, namely the inlet, a hose and the outlet. For maximum efficiency, the inlet should be set up where there is maximum air pressure, and the direction of the air flow is directly aligned to the funnel. Any area within the centre of the car's nose should do the trick. The downside of placing it further from the centre is due to the fact that air flows sideways as you approach the car edges creating low-pressure zones.

When choosing the hose, size is crucial. Size determines the amount of air that gets to the pads and rotors. The outlet is usually made narrower than the inlet. The purpose of this is to increase the speed of air as it is directed towards the brake components.

In the world of racing, brakes are essential. If they fail, then the outcomes would be disastrous. With heat being a major cause of brake components damage, brake cooling systems have significantly improved the racing experience for drivers. One can finally hit the metal to the pedal worry free.

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