Why is regular brake fluid important?

According to most automotive engineers, brakes are arguably the most crucial component of a car’s safe operation. You’re stuck with your vehicle’s bumper if you don’t have them. The critical components of your car’s braking system are in motion and ensure you come to a complete stop thanks to vehicle accessories like brake fluid.

Like how your brain sends electrical signals to move your muscles, car brake oil also functions similarly. After an input causes the brake fluid to rush to the callipers and brake pads in the brake system, the vehicle stops moving.

How, though, does the brake fluid function? What materials does it consist of?

What Is the Use of Brake Fluid?

An automobile’s braking system uses pressurised brake fluid, a particular hydraulic fluid. There are several distinct types of liquid. It’s necessary mentioning that brake fluids may feature silicone or glycol.

Why Use Brake Fluid?

The effectiveness of the hydraulic brake system on an automobile still depends on the brake fluid. For this reason, low fluid levels, moisture in the liquid, or problems with the liquid’s flow could make stopping the car more difficult.

How Do You Check the Brake Fluid?

Do you recall the classic “Flintstones” cartoon where the titular character would drag his feet across the ground to slow down his car? Surprisingly, today’s car brakes share several characteristics: The car stops when you place your feet on the basis. 

But in your case, there are a few things between you and the road, including tires, brakes, and a remarkably beneficial but underrated liquid you term “brake fluid.” Your foot pressure cannot reach the brakes without brake fluid. 

Liquids create a perfect medium for transferring pressure from your foot to the brake without losing force. This is because they are primarily incompressible by nature. The driver is unaware of the powerful forces acting on the brake pads. This is undoubtedly a benefit of brake fluid over a total nonliquid mechanical option.

On one side of a stagecoach from the 19th century, you’ll notice a large lever that you would have to use to halt the vehicle. Think about the vibrations traveling up your arm, especially if you had to stop fast.

The Upkeep

While brake fluid is essential, it still needs routine maintenance, like other vehicle fluids. The experts suggest changing your brake fluid every one to two years for most automobiles. Your car’s owner’s manual will have details particular to it.

You can perform a brake fluid replacement independently if you’re ambitious. Given the congested circumstances beneath modern vehicles’ hoods, this procedure is more complicated than changing your motor oil. You must first bleed, or drain, your brake fluid system before adding fresh, clean fluid. If you’re up for the challenge, you can save much money by changing your brake fluid.

What Are the Various Brake Fluid Types?

The fact that there are many kinds of brake fluid might surprise you! There are three. It’s about time that you examine the main distinctions and parallels.

  1. DOT3

The most common braking fluid is DOT3. The boiling point of DOT3 brake fluid right out of the bottle is 401 degrees Fahrenheit. That boiling point falls to 284 degrees when you have used up the braking fluid. Additionally, it is very corrosive. It would be best if you didn’t routinely pop open your brake reservoir because it can absorb water through the air.

You can combine DOT3, DOT4, and DOT5.1.

  1. DOT4

Due to its higher boiling point and other chemistry to limit its water absorption, DOT4 is beginning to overtake DOT3 as the industry standard. It is also highly corrosive, just like DOT3. Use caution when handling.

You can choose to combine DOT4 with DOT3 and DOT5.1.

  1. DOT5

DOT5, which is silicone-based and has a boiling point of 500 degrees Fahrenheit, differs from the first two in that it is polyethylene-glycol-based. However, when the air becomes stuck in the system, DOT5 can bubble and become very challenging to remove from the brake system. DOT5 does not absorb water either. ABS-equipped vehicles shouldn’t use it.

You may never mix any other substance with DOT5.

  1. DOT5.1

Because of the strangeness of its name, DOT5.1 is an intriguing object. While not silicone-based like DOT5, it has a boiling point comparable to that of DOT4 racing fluid. Although there is no benefit to doing so, you can combine it with DOT3 and DOT4.

How Often Should You Replace Your Brake Fluid?

It would be best to change brake fluid regularly, like other auto fluids, because it degrades with time. The latter is feasible if you have compromised the hydraulic system or the liquid has absorbed moisture. As a result, it takes less effort to stop the automobile when the driver applies the brakes.

According to this belief, replacing your car’s brake fluid is crucial to improving its braking performance. Sadly, there is no set time frame for replacing the brake fluid in a vehicle.


You may ideally set up an appointment with Carorbis online today to learn more about brake fluids.

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