Low brake fluid levels can cause car accidents. Don’t let it happen to you. If you don’t check your brake fluid regularly, you could end up with brake failure putting your life and others at risk. That’s why in this guide, I will show you how to check your brake fluid level in a few easy steps. It’s a simple but essential skill that every driver should know.
Hi, I’m John Cunningham, an experienced and qualified mechanic.
Step By Step Brake Fluid Level Check
First, let’s understand what brake fluid is and why it’s so important. Brake fluid is a hydraulic fluid that is responsible for transferring force from the brake pedal to the brake calipers.
The calipers clamp down on the rotors to slow or stop your vehicle. Without brake fluid, your brakes won’t work at all!
Steps by Step Brake Fluid Check
Now, let’s move on to the steps to check your brake fluid level. It’s a simple process; you can do it yourself without any special tools. Here’s what you need to do:
Park your car on a level surface and turn off the engine.
Open the hood and locate the brake fluid reservoir, which is usually found near the windshield on the driver’s side.
Clean the area around the reservoir cap with a rag to avoid contamination.
Remove the cap and check the brake fluid level. The level should be between the minimum and maximum lines on the reservoir.
You’ll need to add more brake fluid if it’s below the minimum line.
Brake Fluid FAQ
Now that you know how to check your brake fluid level, you may wonder when to change it. Generally, brake fluid should be changed every 2-3 years or 30,000 miles, whichever comes first. However, if you notice that your brake fluid is dark, murky, or contaminated, you should change it immediately. This is because contaminated brake fluid can cause corrosion and damage to your brake system, which can be costly to repair.
Before we wrap up, let’s answer some commonly asked questions about brake fluid.
- Can I use any brake fluid? No, you should use the type of brake fluid that your vehicle manufacturer recommends. Using the wrong type of brake fluid can damage your brake system.
- Can I mix different types of brake fluid? No, you should never mix different types of brake fluid. This can cause chemical reactions that can damage your brake system.
- Can I reuse old brake fluid? No, you should never reuse old brake fluid. It can be contaminated with dirt, moisture, and other debris that can damage your brake system.
I hope you found this information helpful and feel more confident in checking your brake fluid level. Remember always to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations regarding brake fluid and maintenance. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments, and I’ll happily respond.
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John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.