Anyone who has ever done home improvement has likely heard of a shim - it's a small piece designed to correct an imperfection. For example, from time to time floors can become a bit warped, which would make installing a cabinet or other piece of furniture a challenge. That's when you use a shim - to ensure everything remains level and in sync.
The idea is similar when it comes to your brakes. Brake pads are designed to serve as a buffer for the rotors. But over time, the continual grinding together of these two parts can create some imperfections. This is usually the underlying cause of any squealing or other strange noises coming from your brakes. However, it doesn't always indicate a big problem with the vehicle - you may just need some brake shims to prevent the noise.
Drivers have two options when it comes to shims - rubber or titanium. Rubber is cheap and suitable for most applications, but drivers should be aware that the heat of the brakes will wear the material down over time.
Serious gearheads will go for titanium shims, which essentially work as heat shields - although they might be a bit noisier. These shims provide the added benefit of reducing the temperature of your brakes. Hot brakes can actually boil the brake fluid, which reduces stopping power. Thus, the titanium shims are a good choice for those who want the very best for their brakes, as they will not only help correct the imperfections, but reduce future problems.
Attaching shims to your vehicle is typically quite simple. Rubber brake shims are secured with double-sided tape to the back of brake pads, so all they require is the adhesive in question and access to the brakes.
Titanium shims are a bit more complex, but still nothing majorly complicated. These parts typically have a hole at the top and will come with some type of thread. The user needs to attach these shims by threading them through the caliper pins - although they still rest in the same spot, between the brake pads and the rotor.
So whether you need a high-performance part that will keep your brakes cool or simply need to stop the squealing every time you approach a red light, brake shims could be the answer that you are looking for.