Safely using safety technology: The ABS of braking

Know how technology works

Your anti-lock braking system is an active safety feature which you need to know how to use before you can harness its full advantage. ABS helps your car maintain stability and control and prevents your brakes from locking during an emergency stop. Remember, this technology does not replace good driving skills but can only work properly if you have a clear understanding of how it operates and only when used in conjunction with defensive driving habits.

  • Know the difference between cars that are fitted with ABS and those that have not.
  • Know how the brake pedal will react and then maintain a firm and continuous pressure on it and do not pump the brake.
  • Pumping the brake turns the system on and off. ABS ‘pumps’ the brakes for you at a much faster rate.
  • If you take your foot off the brake it will disengage the system.
  • Whether you have ABS or not you still need to keep a safe following distance of three or more seconds.
  • Practice emergency stops so you can become accustomed to the ABS.
  • Depending on how old your vehicle is, you can expect mechanical noise and pedal pulsations when ABS is activated.
  • Continue to steer normally once you engage ABS.
  • If there is a problem with the ABS system, the warning light will indicate this and conventional braking will start.
  • Know where to look for this emergency light. If in doubt, consult your user manual.

To learn more about safely using safety technology, give MasterDrive a call on 0861 100 618. Their defensive driving training will give you everything you need to handle most situations.