Keep Your Brakes in Check with Auto Slack Adjusters – Gear Up with Gregg’s


Hi there! It’s good to be back here in the Gear Up With Gregg’s studio. I’m Dave and I’m one of the many customer service reps here at Gregg Distributors. Today on Gear up with Greggs we
are going to pump the brakes and talk about why Auto Slack Adjusters are so vital
for your truck, trailer, and tractor. In May of 1996, Transport Canada amended the
Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 121 to make it mandatory that a vehicle with airbrakes
built from May 31, 1996 onward must have automatic slack adjusters. Most brake failures and vehicle runaways are
not caused by a faulty air system. Instead it is more likely that a poor brake
maintenance routine or a driver failing to do their daily brake checks are the cause
behind these sorts of accidents. Ultimately the driver can be held accountable
if there is an incorrect adjustment or if the brakes are not working properly. In general, no matter the type of vehicle
you have, the most important part of any braking system is the foundation brakes. Foundation brakes are the brake components
located at the wheel, and they form the basis on which the rest of the system is built. Even the most state of the art air brake system
will not be able to complete a stop safely if these foundation breaks are not in working
order and adjusted properly. This is where automatic slack adjusters can
help. Before we get into the Auto Slack Adjusters
or ASAs, we should make sure that we understand what an ASA is and what it does. An ASAs job is to regulate the distance that
the air brake has to travel before bringing your vehicle to a safe and complete stop. Why would you need something to regulate that
distance travelled? Well over time the distance increases between
the brake shoe and the brake drum due to the constant friction that causes the brake shoe
to wear away. Slack adjustment refers to the process of
adjusting the brakes to keep the pushrod within an appropriate distance from the air chamber.
This ensures that the brakes remain effective. As the brakes are applied, the pushrod extends
from the air brake chamber and engages the S Cam. The S Cam expands the brake shoe assembly
and applies pressure, causing the brake shoes to contact the brake drum and stop the wheels. However, ASAs must be checked daily to ensure
they continue to do their job. But you still need to be careful, as even
incorrectly adjusted brakes may seem to work when the brakes are applied. However, when you need to apply
severe braking pressure or make an emergency stop, incorrectly adjusted brakes may not
work as they should… This may result in disaster! All of these Automatic Slack Adjusters are sold
in a completed kit with a clevis fastener, clevis pins, and a template. And if you need replacement parts, clevis
kits are in stock and ready to go. Dont like crawling under your truck to make
sure the push rod is positioned correctly? No Problem! These slack adjusters come with a permanent
indicator, eliminating the need to crawl under your truck and making the daily walkaround
inspection that much quicker. As you can see, this Auto Check indicator
has a bright yellow pointer, and a marker plate divided into four colours for easy inspection. The White Area indicates the “home” position. This means that your ASA has been set up correctly. The Green Area means youre good to go since
the push rod is working at a normal stroke. The Yellow Area indicates caution, since your
brake stroke is getting near its re adjustment limits. And the Red Area is the most important as
this tells you that it is time to stop and adjust your brakes. If an automatic slack adjuster moves into
the red area, this usually means that there are other brake problems that need to be resolved
by a qualified mechanic. Just like all the other critical components
of industrial vehicles, ASAs should be regularly inspected and maintained in order to ensure
proper operation. When adjusted correctly, the running clearance
between the brake shoes and the drum is only a few thousandths of an inch. Thats hardly
thicker than a few sheets of paper! If your ASA is properly installed, it shouldnt
need any manual adjustment. However, when they are first installed, and
again whenever you get a wheel alignment done, they must be manually adjusted. So, if you dont want to be crawling under
your truck in order to do that pre trip inspection, consider picking up one of these Automatic Slack
Adjuster with Stroke Indicators. Save your brakes, save some time, and maybe
even safe a life. If you have any questions about ASAs, please
don’t hesitate to call us or leave us a comment down below. Or you can visit our website at greggdistributors.ca. Well as you can see I’m ready to go out and deliver great customer service. Thanks for watching another episode of Gear Up With Gregg’s. And I hope to see you out on the road. And remember, have a great Canadian day!

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