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TMD issues brake cleaner warning

TMD Friction, the manufacturer of Mintex brakes is warning mechanics and technicians that the incorrect use of brake cleaner can seriously affect a vehicle’s braking performance

Mintex one of the leading brands from the TMD Friction stable pride themselves on customer safety, quality and performance of its products – and customer satisfaction is always at the forefront of any developments in technology.

Investing over €20 million in research and development per year, product testing is a necessity to keep these standards at the highest possible level. It has been brought to light however despite this vast investment in friction material development that something as simple and cheap as a brake cleaner if used in the wrong way can have drastic effects!

“Not only are we looking to satisfy the fitters with easy fit first time premium aftermarket product but we’re also looking to ensure the vehicle owner has peace of mind once their brakes are replaced,” Simon Bradley, UK Marketing Manager said.

He continued: “We took a typical everyday popular vehicle – a VW Golf 2009 and replaced the pads and discs with Mintex brand and assessed the results. As we would expect, the performance was well within the +/- 15% of the original equipment requirements (Regualtion 90), however, we then re-ran the tests having applied a freely available brake cleaner with “anti noise” properties following the instructions on the aerosol, the results were more than surprising – and something we feel vehicle owners as well as fitters should be aware of.”

Infact, the technicians at TMD were horrified to discover that once the anti-noise cleaner was applied to the braking system the performance of the brakes became unsafe.

“The silicone based product if used “to clean” the braking system once new pads have been fitted is clearly getting onto the face of the brake discs and causing initial poor braking performance, in this instance virtually doubling the stopping distance of the Golf in our test,” he said

“Another example of best practice procedure not being followed, but also misleading instructions of usage of brake cleaner and other lubricant aerosols within a safety critical braking system.”

“This is not about brake cleaner being unsafe, but about raising awareness of the issues it can cause if used incorrectly and our very own Technical Sales Representatives have seen it first hand in some garages they have visited.”

TMD says it will work with manufacturers and suppliers of such products to offer its expertise to raise the awareness of best practice procedures and instructions for use.