The parking brake (or hand brake) holds one or more brakes continuously in the applied position. The parking brake employs the regular drum brakes on the rear wheel. Instead of hydraulic pressure, however, a simple mechanical linkage is used to engage the brake shoes. When the parking-brake pedal is depressed (or, in some cars, a hand lever is raised), a steel cable pulls taut a tension lever; other cables draw the brake shoes firmly against the drums. The release knob slackens the cables and disengages the brake shoes. The parking brake is self adjusting. An automatic adjuster in the piston moves on the thrust screw to compensate for lining wear.
Parking Brake Warning Light
The parking brake warning light notifies the driver that the parking brake is engaged. This reduces the chances of driving off with the parking rake engaged, causing premature wear of the rear brakes.