WHY DO I NEED PERFORMANCE BRAKE HOSES?
When it comes to high performance, most people think way more about the “go” than they do the “whoa”. We talk to people often about doing performance work on their European cars and the discussions always begin with talk about things like cold air intakes, superchargers, bigger turbos, and even performance camshafts and stroker kits.
We love talking about making cars go faster. It’s in our blood to see how we can push the limits of the cars we work on. But the most sensible way to increase a car’s performance is to start with the braking system.
You see, when you make a car capable of going faster before you increase its ability to stop in shorter distances, you’re asking for trouble. But you can’t really make a car stop too fast. There is an order to almost everything in life, so let me drive this point home one more time. Start your performance mods with the brakes.
BRAKE SYSTEM COMPONENTS
There are 5 main components to a braking system. These components include:
- Master cylinder
- Brake lines and hoses
Many European cars like the BMW M3 I show in the video above already have some pretty high-end braking components. This car has 4-piston calipers, drilled rotors, and performance brake pads. In most cases the master cylinder is sufficient unless you’re building a full-out race car. The part of the braking system that has been overlooked from the factory is the brake hoses.
Don’t get me wrong, the factory brake hoses are pretty good, but they can be better. These hoses are made up of a fluid resistant liner, a series of inner steel belts layered with rubber, and an abrasion resistant outer covering.
Compare this to a set of high performance stainless steel braided brake hoses, and well, there’s no comparison.
The performance brake hoses have a teflon liner, a layer of braided stainless steel, a synthetic layer of kevlar mesh, an outer layer of braided stainless steel, and a protective pvc coating.
The difference in the strength of these performance brake hoses is significant enough that you can feel a difference in the firmness of the pedal.
BENEFITS OF PERFORMANCE BRAKE HOSES
FIRMER BRAKE PEDAL
The first benefit of performance braided stainless steel brake hoses comes in the already mentioned firmer brake pedal.
Those who are seasoned drivers of performance and/or race cars know that you can “feel” the road not only in the steering wheel, but also in the brake pedal. Stock brake hoses have just enough “give” to keep you from being able to feel that feedback in the pedal.
BETTER HEAT HANDLING CAPABILITY
In performance driving situations, brakes see much higher temperatures than normal driving conditions create. Especially for those whose cars actually see track time, you know the feeling of brake fade when things just get too hot.
Brakes work through the process of friction. Friction creates heat. Because brakes are hydraulic, and the way hydraulic systems work is by using non-compressible fluids – and because we know that fluid has amazing temperature transferring properties – it makes sense that extreme temperatures make their way from the rotors and pads, into the calipers, and up the brake hoses.
When you look at the makeup of the performance hoses, you see materials like kevlar, teflon, stainless steel, and pvc. All of these are materials that are known for their ability to handle high temperatures.
HIGHER BURSTING PRESSURE
When driving any car, but especially a performance car, the last thing you want to think about is a brake hose bursting. In normal driving conditions, this nearly never happens. In performance or racing situations, it happens.
A stock vehicle is required to have brake hoses that can withstand up to 4000psi for a period of 2 minutes. This is more than sufficient for typical drivers.
When performance driving, or especially when racing, braking happens at a much more aggressive rate, under much higher intervals, from much higher speeds, and at a much higher risk of damage from impacts from other vehicles and road debris. It makes sense that your brake hoses need to be of much higher strength.
Performance stainless braided brake hoses like the ones we use from BrakeQuip have a burst pressure of 12,000 psi. That’s 3 times that of the stock hoses.
PERFORMANCE BRAKE UPGRADES FOR BMW, MERCEDES, VW, AUDI, OR ANY OF THE EUROPEAN OR EXOTIC BRANDS
Hopefully this helps you to understand why your brake hoses are one of the best places to start when doing performance modifications to your vehicle.
At EurAuto Shop, we love doing performance work on European and exotic vehicles. We’d be happy to be your trusted advisors and help you take your car to the next level. We can help you plan out those performance upgrades in the way that makes the most sense.
To schedule an appointment, use our online form or call us at (214) 225-3867.