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Parking brake shoes keep your car from rolling away when it is parked. Parking brake shoes only exist in cars with rear rotors (cars with rear drums rely on the brake shoes to act as parking brakes). When you deploy the parking brake, the parking brake shoes clamp onto the rear rotors and keep your car from moving. As the parking brake shoes wear thin, they’ll need to be adjusted.
Parking brake service can be overlooked. Like all aspects of your brake system, your parking brake system should be inspected during all major maintenance services, and adjusted accordingly.
Your parking brake system is what keeps your car from moving when you are parked. If you have a vehicle with rear brake rotors, then you have parking brake shoes. When you pull on the parking brake (also known as the emergency brake), the shoes clamp onto the rear brake rotors, and keep them from moving. This keeps your wheels from being able to spin, and keeps your car from moving while parked, even when your vehicle is on a hill. As the parking brake gets used, the shoes will begin to wear (as will the rotor). This makes the gap between the shoes and rotor larger, which means that when the parking brake is engaged, the shoe isn’t clamping the rotor as tightly, and the parking brake will be less effective. A parking brake shoe adjustment will make the gap between the shoe and rotor smaller, and will make the emergency brake system far more reliable and safe.