Question about 2003 Kia Rio

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Brakes seem to lock up when roads are wet

I have a 2003 Kia Rio, and I have a braking/sliding problem. It's happened a couple of times over the last six months but today was the worse yet. The roads were wet and I had to stop suddently and quickly. When I put on the brakes, slammed on the brakes would be a more apt description, the back end of the car began to slide. Luckily, I was able to avoid an accident. Any suggestions on what I should do to prevent this type of thing from happening again?

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If your car does have ABS (Anti-lock Braking System), it may not be working. 
Check your instrument panel's idiot lights when you first turn the key; all cars cycle the lights for whatever indications are supported and if you have ABS, you should see an indicator that flashes on briefly.
With ABS, standing on the pedal should cause a throbbing or pulsing in the pedal and no skid.
If your car does not have the system, you need to act like it does by very quickly pumping the pedal. Locking up any wheel steals control of the car from you and yes, you might end up sideways.
The pumping technique might require a little practice but I successfully avoided losing control and causing an accident over the many hundreds of thousands of miles I have driven over the last 50+ years. Just choose a lightly traveled stretch of road and practice a little; you can experience the effects even better if you have a clear area of slick roads or a large empty parking lot and simulate an emergency situation.      
If you still feel the brakes are not balanced, I would highly recommend either pulling the wheels yourself to inspect them or having a trusted mechanic check them for you. You could have lost the composite lining of the pads or shoes and are braking with steel on steel; this will definitely cause a wheel to lock up since this will cause the two metal surfaces to seize. 

Posted on Nov 22, 2008

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First of all if your problem is only when it rains, get some tires for wet weather driving. Most cars have anti lock brakes now so you shouldnt have problems sliding to far. Your probably following to close to the car ahead of you. Give it the 2 sec rule. Put the car 2 sec in front of you. Another thing, Kia Rio's are light weight cars so if you slam on the brakes their is not a lot of weight on those tires to stop the car on a dime.

Posted on Nov 21, 2008

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