Brake Shoes VS Brake Pads – Which Is Right For My Truck?

All trucks have a braking system that aids the drivers in controlling and stopping them when necessary. The braking system differs depending on the truck’s size and the wheels’ position. The most common types of brakes are the drum and disc brakes. The drum brakes rely on brake shoes to stop your truck, while the disc brake uses brake pads. From this guide, you will get to understand the difference between the two by looking at head-on comparison of brake shoes vs brake pads.

Brake Shoes vs Brake Pads – Differences

The disc braking system has brake rotors that rotate as the wheel spins. It is the role of brake pads to apply pressure on the rotors to stop your truck. On the other hand, the drum braking system has a drum brake that rotates as the wheels spin. In the drum, there are brake shoes whose roles are to apply pressure on the walls of the brake drum to stop your truck. 

The drum brakes have been the traditional braking system of vehicles since their invention, but the disc brakes are the latest technology in the braking system. The old trucks use drum brakes, but the newer ones use disc brakes. Some trucks use drum and disc brakes—the difference between the two.


You will realize that your truck has these two braking systems. At the front axle, you will find the disc brakes and the brake shoes at the rear axle. If your truck is a front-wheel drive, you will realize it has both drum and disc brakes. 

Most 4WD or all-wheel drive trucks have only disc brakes with brake discs fitted on each wheel. 


The brake pads resist heat and keep friction away from the brake discs making them more efficient in stopping your truck than the brake drums. The brake pads have a better response, especially during extreme weather conditions.

The ability of the brake pads to resist heat makes them perfect for the front axle and gives them a longer lifespan compared to brake shoes. In terms of replacement, the brake pads carry the day. They are easy to access, making anyone with mechanical background replace them. 


As mentioned earlier, brake pads are more resistant to heat, making them more durable than brake shoes. The main advantage of brake shoes over brake pads is that you can reuse them. Once the brake pads are worn out, you must dispose of them.


The market price brings a significant difference between the two pads. The brake shoes are relatively cheaper compared to the brake pads. The distinct features of the brake pads, such as the ability to resist heat, make them more expensive. On the other hand, brake shoes overheat very fast and can be recycled, making them relatively cheap.


It isn’t easy to make a final verdict on the kind of brake shoes which is suitable for your truck. Some trucks use brake pads and brake shoes, and others use the brake pads alone. Your test and preferences will aid you in choosing the correct places for your truck.

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