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What is a wheel cylinder for ? A wheel cylinder is a small piece that is part of the vehicle’s rear braking system. It is similar to the brake caliper since it acts in the same way. Indeed, a brake cylinder is made up of two small pistons which, fed by pressurized brake fluid, allow the brake shoes to be pushed against the walls of the brake drum, causing friction and consequent braking of the vehicle. The wheel cylinder can be purchased alone or with the brake kit (pre-assembled). You can also change your or your BMW brake pads at the best price with Engine Finder.