Brake fluid flush

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Why change my vehicles brake fluid?

Brake fluid is hygroscopic. This means it attracts and absorbs moisture. Their rationale is based on the fact that glycol-based brake fluid starts to absorb moisture from the moment it is put in the system. The fluid attracts moisture through microscopic pores in rubber hoses, past seals, and exposure to the air.

The problem is obviously worse in wet climates and here on the west coast, we are surrounded by moisture. Brake fluid contaminated with moisture becomes acidic, corroding vital brake parts. It also lowers the boiling point of the fluid, causing a low or no brake pedal situation as the braking system heats up.

As the concentration of moisture increases, it causes a sharp drop in the fluid’s boiling temperature. Brand new Dot 3 brake fluid has a dry boiling point of at least 401 degrees F. Brake fluid with only 1% water in the fluid can push the boiling point down to around 320 degrees, and 3% will take it all the way down to 293 degrees, which is dangerously close to failure under normal stopping conditions.

On a A.B.S. type brake system, which are on most newer vehicles, corroded parts and their repairs can be extremely expensive.

New brake fluid looks very much like clear apple juice. What color is your brake fluid?

Many experts have long recommended changing the brake fluid every two years for preventive maintenance.


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