Why Anti-Friction Coatings are Essential for Brake Assemblies

As an automotive engineer, every detail is critical. None more so than the brake callipers. When it comes to safety and performance, brakes are a key component so it is essential to ensure that the performance of the brakes is up to standard and this includes the lubricants used on different areas of the calliper and brake system.

The unstoppable march towards electrification in vehicles presents designers with a number of new challenges. One of these is noise. Quiet electric motors, as opposed to noisy internal combustion engines, meaning that squeaks, rattles and other friction-related noise events are now more noticeable in the cabin. Anywhere where two surfaces rub together will have a tendency to make noise. An area on a vehicle where during any journey moving parts move against each other dozens if not hundreds of times is the braking system. Lubrication between the brake-pad backing plate and retainer clips has historically not been a high priority for designers – until the advent of electric vehicles. Now the noise from these moving parts is more apparent and undesirable.

Now, it is possible to use a standard "wet" grease or paste, but these are exposed to the elements and risk being washed out by water or getting clogged with road grime when the car is in use. This can result in noise and uneven wear of the brake pads which will lead to unhappy customers and potential issues. An alternative to wet lubricants is to use a "dry" lubricant such as an anti-friction coating.

What are anti-friction coatings?

Anti-friction coatings are dry lubricants that are designed to reduce friction and wear on components. These coatings are also able to reduce noise making them ideal for automotive use where reducing cabin noise is a priority due to cars getting quieter. Anti-friction coatings are long-lasting and because they are dry they do not attract dirt and grime and are resistant to water washout making them ideal for use on components that are exposed to the elements or harsh conditions.

mage of a brake pad clip. Uncoated on the left and coated with MOLYKOTE D-708 on the right

When it comes to anti-friction coatings MOLYKOTE® is leading the way. They specialise in high-quality lubrication and are one of the biggest names in speciality lubricants. Their D-708 anti-friction coating is specifically designed to reduce friction and wear on brake pad clips. This high-quality coating is a long-lasting lubricant designed for metal on metal applications such as brake-pad backing plates and spring-loaded retainer clips used on brake calliper assemblies. This paint-like dry lubricant provides controlled friction that prevents wear to the brake pad and therefore reducing noise.

If you'd like to find out more about our MOLYKOTE® solutions for the automotive industry then contact us today.

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