Identifying Electric Brake Magnets & When you need to replace them - A Simple Guide
If you're looking to replace the magnet for your Electric Backing Plate before your next trip, have a read through this simple guide before you purchase. In this article we will look at how to identify the two main types of brake magnets, and how to tell IF they need replacing.
So, lets start at the beginning, there are a few common types of Electric Brake Magnets:
- Standard Brake Magnet
- Off-road Brake Magnet
Each electric brake magnet has a few key features and benefits that make them easy to identify, and ideal for their specific application:
Standard Brake Magnet:
- Comes with a retaining clip to hold the magnet in position on the arm of the backing plate.
- Has a Cross shaped Mounting hole in the centre: X
- Interchangable for both passanger and driver side brakes.
- Ideal for use on highways or well maintained roads
Off-Road Brake Magnet:
- Has a plastic centre to reduce wear and tear from the magnet arm vibrating on rough terrain - has been proven to be reliable in extremely harsh conditions
- has NO retaining clip - Uses a rubber band to hold magnet in to position until first use. After first use, rubber band will break causing the brake magnet to set in the ideal position against its retaining spring.
- Has a single straight mounting point in either: / or \ position
- Cannot be used interchangably on both sides of vehicle, sold as either LEFT (passenger side) or RIGHT (driver side) brake magnet.
- Essential for any travel off-road or on badly maintained roads
How do you tell if your brake magnet needs to be replaced?
- Check the four small holes on the face of the magnet(the side that has contact with your brake drum) these are known as "Wear indicators"
- If you cannot see the wear indicator holes, or if they are fewer than four, you need to replace your magnet
- If the centre of the magnet hole has worn, you need to replace your magnet and you may need to replace the lever
- Magnets draw roughly 3.2 amps each
- Wires can be connected either positively or negatively
- The magnet face is the side that has contact with your brake drum, and it has 4 wear indicators
- Always bed new magnets before regular use
- Once wear indicators are no longer visible, copper becomes exposed which can cause an open electric circuit and render your brakes useless