What stops it better

Learn about the (ABS), (VSA), and (HSA) in your car.


The Brake System

ANTI LOCK BRAKES (ABS) are a system that is between the brake master cylinder and the wheels. The system prevents an unstable condition of the car under extreme braking conditions. It modulates the pressure of the brake fluid that is applied to both front brake calipers and/or both rear calipers, preventing the wheels from “LOCKING UP“. Normal brake fluid pressure is restored when there is no longer a possibility of the wheels locking up. Each wheel has a SENSOR that the system monitors for each wheels rotation. If one of the wheels is turning slower than the others, the anti lock system releases the pressure to that wheel. The system is designed to provide positive feedback by way of a kickback on the brake pedal when the system has been activated. The system works very well in wet or icy conditions, preventing skids and loss of directional control.


The ABS computer controls all functions of the antilock brakes. If there is a problem with the ABS system, the ABS INDICATOR LIGHT on the dash illuminates. Have the car checked out immediately. In the event of a failure of the antilock brake system, it does have a fail-safe function that allows for normal braking.

Now the newer cars have technology from the space age…

VEHICLE STABILITY ASSIST (VSA) is a system that applies the brakes as necessary to stop the car from spinning out.  It works by selectively applying the brakes to a specific wheel to help maintain a straight path. In other words if the car is in a skid and starts to spin sideways, the brakes apply on the side facing the spin to attempt to straighten the vehicle.

HILL START ASSIST (HSA) is a system that keeps the vehicle from rolling back when stopped at a red light on a hill.  It works by keeping brake pressure to the brakes when the angle of the car exceeds 3%. This allows you to take your foot off the brake without rolling into the car behind or infront depending on the angle of the hill (uphill or downhill). The brake pressure is applied long enough to allow smooth acceleration from a stop.

…and that’s the way the brakes work!!

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