Brake System Maintenance - Flushed Out - CHP Step By Step

Bleeding the brake system

Sean Haggai Jan 28, 2011 0 Comment(s)
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Daily drivers, weekend warriors, or even full-race trim vehicles require regular system and component maintenance to ensure reliability and safety. Engine oil, coolant, transmission

fluida vehicle’s fluids all have a life expectancy, which must be respected and monitored. This is especially true of the brake system, considering it’s the viability of the brake fluid among others that allows the vehicle to continue slowing down when needed.

1103chp_01_o Brake_system_maintenance 2/11

Brake fluid endures vast cycles of heat and load so it’s important to check the brake fluid level or flush out the entire system. The high boiling point of brake fluid wicks away heat from the brake system but also prohibits vaporizing in the lines. Since vapor is compressible, you can see why it’s important the brake fluid never gets to this point. It’s the fluid’s push into the calipers or wheel cylinders that activates the pads or shoes. If left untouched, old brake fluid can also retain moisture, which corrodes internal brake parts over time. A neglected system requires more distance to stopor could lead to a total brake system failure.

To illustrate bleeding the brake system, we found a daily driven ’67 Camaro that had just been upgraded to a four-wheel power disc setup. Its brake fluid had not yet been checked or flushed. The crew at Lou’s Performance in Sun Valley, California, began work by getting the car on a lift and removing the tires to give you a better view. The best part is that the job only took us about an hour to complete and can even be done in the garage with basic tools.

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