Is it worth overpaying for reinforced brake hoses
Reinforced brake hoses for cars appeared on our market of spare parts relatively recently, but they have already managed to acquire popularity among the fans of aggressive driving style. Exactly to purchase, but not to earn. Because their popularity is the result of advertisement, but not the mass positive feedback from the drivers, who were convinced of their advantages comparing with their colleagues from special rubber reinforced by synthetic threads.
Goodridge reinforced brake hoses are one of the most expensive options sold in our country. On average a set of Goodridge reinforced brake hoses costs from 4.2 to 8 thousand rubles. A similar set of reinforced brake hoses from the company “Auto Sport Technics” is much cheaper (for price comparison – a set of reinforced brake hoses for VAZ 2108 can be purchased for a little over a thousand rubles). True, the performance of this company’s products are somewhat inferior to those of Goodridge. But in my opinion, you prefer Goodridge hoses only in two cases: if you are going to drive your car at -70 ◦ C or if the working pressure of your car brake system is close to 286 kg/cm2. It should be noted that in everyday life not every driver drives at -40 ◦ C. And the instruction manual for passenger cars says that the pressure of the brake system fluid during normal braking does not exceed 80 kg/cm2 , and during emergency braking barely reaches 100 kg/cm2 .
The construction of an ordinary brake hose
The construction of conventional rubber hose is not as simple as the car owners who are changing them for the newfangled reinforced brake hoses think. The basis of this high-pressure flexible connection is a multi-layer rubber tube. It has rubber layers interspersed with reinforcing layers that consist of synthetic threads. The reinforcing layer makes the flexible connection strong and allows it to withstand high fluid pressure from the inside during braking without stretching the walls, increasing the volume or rupturing. Only rubber with special properties can be used, as it has to remain elastic over a wide temperature range (-50 up to +150 ○ C). The design of this product also includes fittings. Fittings are steel tips for attaching it to other elements of the braking system. Fittings come in three types:
- With threads on the outside – like a “pop” bolt.
- With threads on the inside – like a “mom” nut.
- With a hole for attachment with an “ear” bolt.
The fittings are attached to the rubber tube with a flare. Annealed copper washers are used for tight fitting of hoses. The fittings are sealed with these in conjunction with parts and assemblies of the braking system during installation.
Causes of burst hoses
So far, not a single brake hose has burst because of insufficient safety margin. They only burst if they become defective during operation and do not wait for timely replacement. There can be only one conclusion – a brake hose, which will never burst, is not made yet. So if you want to avoid brake failure due to an unexpected rupture of the hose, it makes no sense to look for a heavy-duty one, as sooner or later any, even Goodridge, will tear.
And in order to rupture did not become a surprise, it is necessary to closely monitor their condition and timely change the failed parts of the braking system.
Comparison of brake hose parameters
The characteristics of the hoses Sogteso:
- Nominal pressure – 122 kg/cm2 .
- Operating temperature -60-+230 ◦ C.
Their products at a low price are of excellent quality. They are installed on about 65% of European cars. The company’s products take almost 10% of the Russian market. In addition, the company’s products are supplied to assembly lines of such major Asian car manufacturers like Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Hyundai and Kia.
Features of the hoses produced by the company Auto Sport Technics:
- Operating temperature -60-+150 ◦ C.
- Nominal pressure – 50 kg/cm2.
- Maximum allowable pressure – 90 kg/cm2.
The inner tube of high pressure hose is made of high quality nylon and placed in a metal braid of stainless steel, and covered with another layer of nylon on top.
Goodridge hose characteristics:
- Operating temperature -70-+260 ◦ C. For products with heat shrinkable top layer -20-+260 ◦ C.
- The nominal pressure is 286 kg/cm2 .
- Max. permissible pressure – 859 kg/cm2 .
What Goodridge reinforced brake hoses are made of:
- Stainless steel braid.
- Under the braid is PTFE polymer tubing with Teflon coating, compatible with all brake fluids.
Goodridge High Pressure Brake Hoses (HPBs) can be purchased by the meter, and fittings can be easily installed on them in an ordinary garage environment.
The difference between reinforced products and a factory-made hose
Self-assembly instructions for Goodridge hoses:
- Cut a piece of hose to the desired length. A special tool for this is quite expensive. Therefore, it is better to do it with a bolt cutter with a 1 mm thick cutting wheel. If you don’t have a grinder, cut it with a sharp side cutter. Insert a 4 mm rod inside and trim the edge of the cut with side cutters right up to the end.
- On the side of the high pressure hose where the fitting will be installed, put a heat shrink tube on top of the braid, followed by a nut.
- Loosen the tension of the braid. It is convenient to do this with a small slotted screwdriver.
- Put the “olive” on so that it is on the inner tube under the steel braid.
- Install the assembled hose in its place.
- Tighten the assembled fittings. This is done after installation to prevent the hose from kinking.
- Shrink the heat shrink tubing over the nut and heat it to reduce the diameter before you fix it on the nut. At this point the fabrication can be considered finished.
The requirements of GOST R 52452-205 and DIN 744310-2-1993 for brake hoses are practically the same. According to GOST, these parts are tested for tightness and strength at a pressure of 200 kg/cm2 for 2 minutes. There should be no ruptures, swellings, and seepage of fluid through the rubber walls and in the places of flaring of the tips. According to DIN the same test is carried out at a pressure of 196 kg/cm2 for 2.5 minutes. Both standards also stipulate:
- Durability test. This test is carried out under cyclic pulsating pressure with a frequency of up to 3 Hz and a total number of cycles of at least 150,000.
- Frost resistance test. The brake hose is cooled down to -54, -57 ◦ C for three days. After that it is bent and twisted. The product passes the test if no cracks appear on its surface.
- Axial load test. An axial tensile load of 180 kg is applied to a hose under pressure of 200 kg/cm2. After 1 minute of this load, the product should remain undamaged.
Checking the technical condition
To avoid the possibility of unexpected hose bursting, periodically check the condition of the hoses by means of external inspection. Make sure that they are flexible, dry, without cracks or other damage. If the hose inflates when you press the brake pedal, it means its reinforcing strings are torn and it will soon burst. If its rubber is hardened, it will not last long either, as it will crack from bending, and then burst.
Features and benefits of reinforced brake hoses for the car
As one of the most important nodes of the car, the brake system requires a lot of attention and timely maintenance. The safety of the driver and passengers directly depends on the efficiency of its work and the serviceability of the elements. Malfunction of the brake system can create an emergency situation on the road and cause an accident. Unfortunately, even with proper care nothing lasts forever, and one day every driver has to face repair or replacement of elements. The work of the hydraulic braking system is impossible without the brake hoses, and in a number of cases the failure of the unit is provoked by their wear.
The purpose of reinforced brake hoses.
When the hose is worn or even torn, the brake fluid will leak out, and its leakage, as well as any other technical fluid, can threaten the failure of the device and more serious consequences. Since the “arteries” of the brake system are constantly under pressure, it is crucial to monitor the integrity of the construction. Today reinforced brake hoses are increasingly being used for their high strength and durability. They have a lot of advantages and are adapted for high-speed driving.
The usual rubber hoses, by default installed on the car, under favorable conditions can serve for years without causing any inconvenience to the car owner. But in the age of high power and speeds, OEM devices are no longer enough. Modern automobile industry does not herd behind, producing cars, demonstrating impressive characteristics even to modern standards, and buying such a car, it is just a crime not to use its potential, and a rare driver will not exploit the bolivar half-heartedly and squeeze out all that it is capable of.
Reinforced Brake Hose Construction
Under constant stresses regular hoses, which are made of rubber, quickly lose their properties, stretching or cracking under pressure, such defects lead to the fact that the design begins to leak brake fluid, there are difficulties in driving the car, and the reliability of the system as a whole becomes questionable. Reinforced brake hoses for cars differ from the factory rubber hoses, being the following design:
- inside the hose is a tube of polytetrafluoroethylene (or fluoroplastic-4), more commonly known as Teflon,
- The tube is covered by a steel braid which gives additional strength and protects it against mechanical damage – thanks to the reinforced coating the inner cross-section remains unchanged under the influence of high pressure,
- Some reinforced hoses can be additionally covered with a plastic layer.
In extreme operating conditions the best solution is to install reinforced hoses. This element of the braking system is replaceable, so it will be easy to dismantle and install new hoses, and there is no need to change other parts. With the procedure the motorist will be quite able to cope on their own. At the same time, when buying hoses, it is necessary to take into account the fact that they are manufactured for specific models of cars. Hoses must match the other elements of the braking system in terms of parameters (fitting size, thread type, angle of inclination of the hose, fastening). Any deviations are inadmissible, as correctly mounted elements in the system is no longer possible.
Advantages of reinforced brake hoses
Reinforced brake hoses installed on the car, have many advantages and due to the materials used in the creation of the construction are superior in quality characteristics to conventional:
- Polytetrafluoroethylene is sufficiently strong and resistant to the aggressive influence of the environment, in this case the brake fluid.
- Another feature is the tightness. Unlike porous rubber, polytetrafluoroethylene does not let air and excessive fluids in, which ensures durability.
- Steel braid coating provides resistance to corrosion damage.
- Reinforced hoses can withstand high pressure (up to 600 atmospheres) under hard braking, without deforming, while the rubber hoses in the same conditions expand, increasing the braking distance.
- High response speed of the braking system is ensured. The reinforced tubes transmit the impulse to the brake pedal precisely, regardless of the force, giving the driver more control over the braking process.
- The properties of the materials result in excellent temperature resistance, they are not lost under the influence of different parameters, they cope in the range from -70 to +270 ° C.
- Another advantage is repairability. If one structural element is damaged, it can be easily replaced or repaired without affecting the serviceable parts.
- Less tendency to wear and tear compared to conventional hoses, which crack as a result of rubber aging, losing functionality.
All these features provide the structure with durability, increased life and reliability, and the system with high efficiency, while the braking distance is significantly reduced. When driving calmly and in the absence of an emergency situation, the difference between the rubber and reinforced hoses is difficult to notice, so it is unlikely to assess all the advantages in practice. But if there is a cause of sudden braking, when the outcome of the situation decides in seconds, the driver will certainly feel that the control is more controlled and the car does not continue to wander for a few meters after the brake pedal is depressed.
When to change to reinforced hoses
The usual rubber hoses for decades have been used in cars, and even today they are installed by manufacturers in modern models, so we can not talk about their absolute uselessness or irrelevance. If the driver is moderate driving, and the car is operated in standard conditions, to replace the classic sleeves, which are quite capable of performing their task, reinforced inexpedient.
Another thing is when it is time to replace the elements of the node due to wear and tear or the entire brake system, distinguished by a different pressure. Old hoses are not always able to cope with higher pressure, and then fall into disrepair. To avoid an incident and likely consequences, you should replace the hoses along with the rest of the system. The need for such tuning can also be caused by aggressive driving style, participation in competitions, as well as by the intended operation on off-road or in difficult weather conditions.
Contrary to stereotypes, the preference for reinforced hoses is not only the choice of sportsmen, extreme virtuosos of contra-vehicle driving or the whim of fans of “show off”. In many cases, the replacement of the classic factory hose with an improved model is really necessary. The only disadvantage of the reinforced hoses is their high price comparing with the rubber ones. But if the event of replacement is really necessary, the driver will feel the positive changes in practice, and the new hoses will pay for themselves quickly enough.