Southern Ute Community Action Programs (SUCAP)
Section 4 – Breaks: Use of Service
- Brakes on the vehicles are air brakes and applied by pressing brake pedal gradually. Varying degrees of brake application are obtained by varying the distance the pedal is depressed.
- The best braking can be obtained by making the initial brake application gradually to the extent of braking required. The brake pressure should then be reduced gradually as speed is reduced so that, at the end of the stop, only slight pressure remains in the brake chambers. For proper braking technique remember: the use of brakes on a long and/or steep downgrade is only a supplement to the braking effect of the engine. Once the vehicle is in the proper low gear, the following is the proper braking technique.
- Apply the brakes just hard enough to feel a definite slowdown.
- When you speed has been reduced to approximately five MPH below your “safe” speed, release the brakes. (This application should last about three seconds.)
- When your speed has increased to your “safe” speed, repeat steps 1 and 2.
- DO NOT ”pump” the brake pedal. This practice causes a loss of air pressure, excessive heating and excessive wear on the brakes. Pumping does not increase brake pressure, but decreases BOTH the air supply and brake pressure.
If the low pressure warning comes on, stop and safely park your vehicle as soon as possible. There might be an air leak in the system. Controlled braking is possible only when enough air remains in the air tanks. The spring brakes will come on when the air pressure drops into the range of 20 to 45 PSI.