How to Prevent Injuries When Changing a Vehicle's Brakes

How to Prevent Injuries When Changing a Vehicle’s Brakes

Motor vehicle repair and maintenance is generally considered to be a high-risk activity. The hazards involved are tremendous, therefore safety should be first when repairing vehicles, particularly changing brakes. Brakes should be maintained in good condition because they play an instrumental role which is slowing down and halting the car. Driving with worn-out brakes is a hazard and may lead to fatalities. So, brake replacement should never be put off to a later date than scheduled. Most people prefer to consult an auto technician, however, some take it upon themselves to change their vehicle’s brakes. Regardless, there are ways you can avoid injuries when changing brakes.

Siphon out some of the brake fluid.

This is crucial because when brakes wear out, the brake fluid in the reservoir usually goes down. Therefore, when replaced, the brake fluid in the reservoir may overflow, causing it to smoke when it spills on the engine and may consequently lead to a fire breakout. To avoid burns, draw out some of the brake fluid prior to changing your vehicle’s brakes to prevent brake fluid overflows.

Hoist the vehicle up, using jacks.

Extra safety can be achieved by using jack stands as well. This will allow for the removal of the wheels and easy access to all the bolts and motors therein. Improper hoisting of the vehicle may cause the vehicle to come crashing down on you when underneath the vehicle. To avoid this, take time to ensure the jacks are safely placed and in good condition. Also, put barriers next to the rear wheels to prevent the vehicle from rolling, just to be extra careful. This might not only injure the people on the premises but may also damage property and equipment.

Use personal protective gear.

Disposable or reusable nitrile mechanic gloves are extra thick and form a formidable barrier against abrasions. Also, they are made to be resistant to chemicals that might cause corrosion to the skin. Not forgetting to wear a thick protective overall.

Brakes all the machinery.

Continuous carrying of these heavy parts may lead to long-term musculoskeletal injury. Assuming proper posture while picking up and carrying these parts will definitely prevent this form of injury. In addition, stretching right before getting into changing the brakes will enable the muscles to be prepared for strenuous physical activity. A slip may even occur which might cause the loss of a digit or even a limb. Researching and reading up on proper handling of the equipment and parts will prevent these incidences.

Asbestos-lined brakes and disc brake pads have been used for decades because they are fire-resistant, but in the 1980s, this practice was abolished. However, those asbestos brakes have been spotted in the market in the 21st century and pose a great risk to health. Handling these machinery leads to inhalation of asbestos which has been associated with different types of cancers. Therefore, it is extremely important to be keen on the materials used when purchasing brakes.

Some injuries may be immediate, while others are long-term. Either way, both can be avoided by adhering to safety measures. Conducting risk assessment will help to identify and reduce the risks and injuries associated with changing brakes.