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Fluid questions

This is a discussion on Fluid questions within the Camaro / SS forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; OK so my girlfriend just text me and is getting her brakes changed. It is pretty obvious the the mechanic ...

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Fluid questions

    OK so my girlfriend just text me and is getting her brakes changed. It is pretty obvious the the mechanic is trying to screw her over. He wants to change her air filter and wipers that are both almost new.

    anyway. I know you have to bleed the brakes to change the pads. and her fluid is a little low.

    But this guy wants to drain all the brake fluid, and all the PS fluid, and replace both. and wants about $200 to do it.

    I've never owned a vehicle for over 2 years, and only had to do brakes once, but I have never heard of doing this. I worked at my grandads shop as a teenager, and we never did that either. just wondering whats yalls opinion is

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    Member NoscamaroSS's Avatar
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    BTW, you dont have to bleed the brakes to change the pads. You can use a c-clamp to compress the piston on the caliper.
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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoscamaroSS View Post
    BTW, you dont have to bleed the brakes to change the pads. You can use a c-clamp to compress the piston on the caliper.
    Really? didnt know that.


    Ive never personally changed a set of pads...i watched my dad do it some, but I was younger.
    Last edited by Spikito; 12-01-2009 at 10:05 AM.

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    Member NoscamaroSS's Avatar
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    Yep, its pretty simple plus you dont spray brake fluid all over the place, and you dont have to bleed the brakes.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Ill look into that....

    but my question was more about chaning the fluid completely

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    Member NoscamaroSS's Avatar
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    Changing the brake fluid completely would depend on the shape of the fluid that is currently in it. You can pretty much tell by looking at it if its in bad shape, or you can get test strips to tell you if it is needed.

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    Senior Member bluehawk2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoscamaroSS View Post
    BTW, you dont have to bleed the brakes to change the pads. You can use a c-clamp to compress the piston on the caliper.
    +1 that is how I always do mine

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoscamaroSS View Post
    Changing the brake fluid completely would depend on the shape of the fluid that is currently in it. You can pretty much tell by looking at it if its in bad shape, or you can get test strips to tell you if it is needed.
    so the fluid can wear out?

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    Member LimeNine's Avatar
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    Umm, I don't think the brake fluid "wears out"

    BUT it is designed to absorb moisture.
    I change my brake fluid in my motorcycles when it becomes cola colored, I like to have clean brake fluid. Maybe I'm just stupid?

    I purchased a vacum pump and bleed all the nasty fluid out. Brake fluid is cheap, like $10 . . .


    A shop will have a bleeding system, probably used with a compressed air line.
    If they do it and charge $200 - you'll be robbed.
    power steering? just add, shouldn't have to replace. ??

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    Your dealership guy konigandy6's Avatar
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    LimeNine is correct. Brake fluid is a hydraulic fluid. It absorbs moisture like a sponge. It is an excellent idea to flush your fluid out. Recommended about every 50k or 3 years. Power steering fluid I could go both ways on... it's always good to flush the system, but that fluid rarely gets abused. Both flushes run about $100 a piece from most shops. Mainly because they use a 3rd party flushing machine such as BG.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by konigandy6 View Post
    LimeNine is correct. Brake fluid is a hydraulic fluid. It absorbs moisture like a sponge. It is an excellent idea to flush your fluid out. Recommended about every 50k or 3 years. Power steering fluid I could go both ways on... it's always good to flush the system, but that fluid rarely gets abused. Both flushes run about $100 a piece from most shops. Mainly because they use a 3rd party flushing machine such as BG.
    thanks bud...ill check out her fluid when she comes in.....how hard would it be for me to change at home?

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    Go to your local auto supply store and pick up a Mity Vac. For about $30, it makes both changing the brake fluid and/or bleeding the brakes a snap. Less than a quart of fluid and about 30 minutes is all it takes to do it at home. Start with the back right wheel and then work your way closer to the master cylinder. Just do not allow the fluid level in the master cylinder to drop too low or you have to start over.

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    Just me Y2KPewterSS's Avatar
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    There is no need to bleed the system to change the pads.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pajeff02 View Post
    Go to your local auto supply store and pick up a Mity Vac. For about $30, it makes both changing the brake fluid and/or bleeding the brakes a snap. Less than a quart of fluid and about 30 minutes is all it takes to do it at home. Start with the back right wheel and then work your way closer to the master cylinder. Just do not allow the fluid level in the master cylinder to drop too low or you have to start over.
    so what do you do...just pull the fluid down the line, then add more as it gets low.....till it comes out clean on my end?

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    Member LimeNine's Avatar
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    I thought I was reading somewhere that ABS brake systems are pressurized?

    Anyways, here's the Mity-Vac ($45 cheap) vaccum pump

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    Quote Originally Posted by Y2KPewterSS View Post
    There is no need to bleed the system to change the pads.
    Agreed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spikito View Post
    so what do you do...just pull the fluid down the line, then add more as it gets low.....till it comes out clean on my end?

    Flushing the system works best with a helper who can monitor and add fluid to the reservoir during the process. The steps are as follows:

    1. Jack up the vehicle and remove all 4 tires for ease of access.

    2. Remove the cap on the brake fluid reservoir.

    3. Add a small amount of clean brake fluid to the Mityvac container such that the bottom of the tube is covered. This helps to ensure that air is not sucked back into the system.

    3. Starting at the right rear wheel caliper, attach the Mityvac to the bleeder and pump it up so that there is vacuum on the fitting. Crack the fitting with a line wrench and open it just enough to allow fluid to flow.

    4. As fluid is pulled from the braking system, you will need to pump the Mityvac to maintain vacuum at all times. Your helper should add fresh fluid to the reservoir as it is drawn down.

    5. Continue bleeding until you have clean brake fluid in the hose on your Mityvac, then tighten the bleeder while maintaining vacuum.

    6. Repeat this process first at the right rear wheel caliper, then right front and finally left front.

    7. Once all wheels have been bled until clean, top off your reservoir and you should be good to go. Test the brakes with the vehicle in park or neutral just to be sure before driving it.

    8. As an alternative step: In the event your bleeders are corroded, you may wish to free all of them before beginning using a 6 point socket. Just make sure to tighten them all back down or you will draw air into the braking system as you start bleeding.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    Thanks man...i appreciate that

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    change brake fluid = good

    change power steering fluid with a flush = bad

    just use a turkey baseter to suck some out and add new fluid, do it a couple of times

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    i wasnt going to worry about the PS...but if we do ill keep that in mind

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    Quote Originally Posted by pajeff02 View Post
    Agreed.




    Flushing the system works best with a helper who can monitor and add fluid to the reservoir during the process. The steps are as follows:

    1. Jack up the vehicle and remove all 4 tires for ease of access.

    2. Remove the cap on the brake fluid reservoir.

    3. Add a small amount of clean brake fluid to the Mityvac container such that the bottom of the tube is covered. This helps to ensure that air is not sucked back into the system.

    3. Starting at the right rear wheel caliper, attach the Mityvac to the bleeder and pump it up so that there is vacuum on the fitting. Crack the fitting with a line wrench and open it just enough to allow fluid to flow.

    4. As fluid is pulled from the braking system, you will need to pump the Mityvac to maintain vacuum at all times. Your helper should add fresh fluid to the reservoir as it is drawn down.

    5. Continue bleeding until you have clean brake fluid in the hose on your Mityvac, then tighten the bleeder while maintaining vacuum.

    6. Repeat this process first at the right rear wheel caliper, then right front and finally left front.

    7. Once all wheels have been bled until clean, top off your reservoir and you should be good to go. Test the brakes with the vehicle in park or neutral just to be sure before driving it.

    8. As an alternative step: In the event your bleeders are corroded, you may wish to free all of them before beginning using a 6 point socket. Just make sure to tighten them all back down or you will draw air into the braking system as you start bleeding.
    I would only add as a first step to use the turkey baster to remove most of the old fluid from the resevoir and add new so you are pulling clean fluid thru from the start.

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