If you know your vehicle well, you know that it has brake fluid in the brake system that ensures your brakes have the power needed to stop your vehicle. Brake fluid is crucial for working brakes, and it begs the question, is it important to change brake fluid and if so, when does it need to be done?
There is no set time to change the brake fluid in your vehicle. The timing varies by type of car, the driving conditions you typically encounter, and the manufacturer’s recommendations. But a good rule of thumb is to check it during regular oil changes, and expect to change it every four to five years. An expert mechanic can give you more detailed information regarding when a brake fluid exchange or brake bleed should be completed.
When you don’t change your brake fluid, your car’s braking capabilities can be hindered. Typically, brake fluid needs to be changed when it becomes contaminated. It can absorb moisture through bad seals, which reduces its efficiency. Due to this reason, a brake fluid inspection is recommended at least every year. An actual brake fluid flush is usually needed after 60,000 miles or so, but it depends upon the make and model of your vehicle. Also, the condition of your braking system comes into play. If you don’t take care of your brakes, chances are seals will be weak and the brake fluid will be contaminated quickly.
If you’re unsure if your brake fluid is bad, take a look at it. It should be clear or light gold in color. The fluid is kept in the master cylinder reservoir, as well as the brake lines. If your brake fluid has become dirty or contaminated, it can change how your brake system operates – you may find that your brake pedal is soft and spongy when you press down on it. Also, driving with brake fluid that has absorbed moisture can lead to rusting and corroding within the braking system.
Paying attention to your car’s brake fluid and getting it changed on time according to manufacturer recommendations will keep your brakes working at their best for longer. When you need a brake fluid flush, bring your car or truck to Barney Brothers Off Road & Repair for service!