What is Brake Assist in Cars? [What every driver NEEDS to know]

In the frightening occurrence of an emergency stop on the road, you want full control of your car's braking system. With brake assist, you can safely make sudden stops and have complete control over your vehicle in an emergency.  To help you understand what a car's brake assist system is, we researched it to give you a full detailed explanation.

Brake assist or BA is a safety feature in your car's brake system that automatically applies increased braking power if it detects the driver attempting to make a sudden stop. When the brake assist system senses the driver trying to make an immediate stop, it will pump high-pressure brake fluid that is stored in the ABS to produce additional braking power to the wheels. Car disc brake and blue shock absorber, What is Brake Assist in Cars? [What every driver NEEDS to know]

Now that you know what a car's brake assist is—we will go in-depth about how it works and why it is so important for drivers. You will also learn about the technology advances that are improving a car's brake assist. 

What is a Car's Brake Assist? 

In the case of an emergency braking situation, a driver's reaction time and the amount of force they place on the brake pedal may not be enough for a sudden quick stop. Some drivers, especially inexperienced ones, may panic during an emergency and not press the brake pedal hard enough.

Without sufficient pressure needed to stop the car, drivers can find themselves in a hazardous situation. The insufficient brake pedal pressure is where brake assist comes in to help the driver. 

A brake assist system is designed to reduce the stopping distance required for a complete stop in an emergency. Without the use of a brake assist system, cars have a far longer length they must go before coming to a full stop. Since its invention in the 1990s, by Mercedes, this feature has become a mandatory feature in cars due to its increase in safety for drivers.

 The brake assist system works together with the ABS to allow the driver to have full control of the car when braking, allowing to steer correctly and to avoid the hazards while the brake pedal has been activated. With the use of a brake assist system, the driver can produce forces to the braking system far higher than they would be able to with just their foot.

The brake assist feature is automatically activated and can even be activated if the driver steps on the brake pedal lightly if the system determines that you need to make a sudden stop. As modern cars continue to become safer, brake assist systems have become more effective and accurate in the amount of pressure they add in an emergency stop. 

Automatic Brake Assist Systems

As technology improves in these brake assist systems, the use of an active brake assist system has become more prevalent in modern cars. Cars have become equipped with braking systems that can make a sudden stop without the driver pressing down the brake pedal of the vehicle.

Active brake assist systems help drivers prevent collisions with unexpected hazards they encounter while driving. It can also prevent crashes with a distracted driver. Its reaction time is far faster than the reaction of the driver. 

These active brake assist systems use radar and camera data technology to determine its surroundings and apply sufficient brake pressure needed to avoid hazards it detects. The radar and camera technology can pick-up moving cars, stationary cars, and even pedestrians.  

How Does Brake Assist Work?

The brake assist system computer will measure the amount of force you are placing on the pedal, as well as the speed of your vehicle to determine how much help to provide to the driver.

If the brake assist system decides that you need assistance with emergency braking—it will apply additional brake fluid pressure to all four wheels. When the driver takes their foot off the brake pedal, the brake assist system will release the extra pressure used during the sudden stop. 

The braking pressure added to the wheel will be at the maximum amount of pressure that the braking system can produce. The extra braking power is provided by the high-pressure fluid that is stored for the ABS. These two braking safety features complement each other to give the driver increased control during a sudden stop.

What Does Brake Assist Feel Like?

When a car's brake assist is activated, the driver can not feel any significant difference in their braking abilities. Typically during a sudden emergency stop, the driver will hit the brake pedal as hard as they possibly can—making it hard to determine if the brake assist is helping.

In most cases, the brake assist will be activated and produce braking power stronger than what any driver could produce by themselves. Without a brake assist, you may not have been able to make as sudden of a stop, potentially resulting in a crash. 

Is Brake Assist the Same as ABS?

While brake assist and ABS are features on a car's brake system, they both play different roles to help you make safer stops. 

ABS or an Anti-Lock Braking System is a feature on a modern car's brake system that prevents the locking of a car's tires in the case of a sudden stop. Its features allow for your car's tires to maintain a better grip on the road during difficult stops. If a driver experiences a situation that calls for a sudden stop, the ABS will be activated and release the brake pad intermittently to avoid a wheel lockup.

A moving tire during a sudden stop gives the driver control to steer and prevent striking a potential hazard.  Preventing your wheel from locking is a crucial safety feature in your car. If a car wheel becomes locked in place, it will become uncontrollable, and you will continue going in a straight path. 

ConclusionCar disc brake and blue shock absorber, What is Brake Assist in Cars? [What every driver NEEDS to know]

A car's brake assist gives you the extra helping hand that you need in stressful situations on the road. The brake assist system assists during harsh stops to help drivers produce an adequate amount of pressure necessary to avoid colliding into other cars or avoid any possible mistakes on the road. 

Check to make sure your brake assist system is functioning correctly. Once you know that it works properly, you will be confident that it will be there when you need it most.

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  1. I found this information very helpful. I thought I knew what ABS braking was. I what an idea but now I really understand it. Thank you for being so specific for people like me that are curious. I was actually googling braking assist and I found myself reading more and more. Nope not your typical female here. Lol GREAT JOB

  2. Brake assist is nothing more than the brake vacuum booster using the engines vacuum to pull on a diapram that in turn allows the system to use that force to apply additional pressure via hydraulic pressure to the wheel braking components.

    BTW vacuum assisted brakes were invented and first used in 1920 on the Pierce Arrow.

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