The Brake Booster: How It Works In the Braking System

In terms of functionality, a brake booster does the same for a braking mechanism what power steering does for steering. The recent addition to the automobile brake systems is designed to improve braking performance and safety. With a brake booster, the driver does not need to exercise excessive force on the brake pedal when stopping the car.

Brake Booster Definition

Crucial to the functionality of the vehicle and safety of passengers, a brake booster looks like a black circular-shaped canister. It works with the master cylinder to give higher pressure to the brakes, thereby reducing the amount of pedal pressure required for braking.

The device sits on the back area of the engine case, specifically between the pedal and the master cylinder. It uses a vacuum to balance the high fluid pressure in the braking system of a vehicle, facilitating effective braking.

hydraulic brake booster

Photo Credit: Brake Booster

Brake Booster: How It Works

Brake boosters are available with two different diaphragms – single (for smaller vehicles) and tandem (for bigger cars and trucks). They work by multiplying the force exerted on the brake pedal. When the driver presses the brake pedal, a liquid transmits that pressure to the brakes. However, even that amount of force is not enough to stop the car. So, the brake booster multiplies that force to 2-4 times the size of the diaphragm.

When the brake pedal receives pressure from the driver, a shaft attached to the power brake booster moves forward, thrusting a piston to the main brake cylinder. As a result, brake liquid passes through the braking system. The brake booster, on the contrary, gives the pedal enhanced strength by using the engine vacuum, counterbalancing the braking system’s high pressure.

vacuum power brake booster

Photo Credit: Autovantage Service Center

When the liquid reaches the wheels after passing through the brake cylinder, it clasps the brake rotors’ pads, slowing down the vehicle. The frictional force works in transmitting the energy from the brakes to the tires, and then to the road.

The Advantages of Using Brake Boosters

The major function of brake boosters is to increase the power applied to on the pedal. You will need to exercise a tremendous amount of pressure to slow down and stop your car if there is no brake booster. So, it is a blessing for those people who does not have a healthy physique or who have to drive a lot as they no longer need to wrestle down with the brake pedal. Besides, easy braking with just a little amount of pressure on the pedal reduces the risk of accidents.