Brake fluid is an essential component of your hydraulic braking system, but what precisely is it and what does it do? Does brake fluid deteriorate or need to be replaced? We’ve got the answers, including when to change your brake fluid and four indicators that your brake fluid level is too low, down below.
WHAT EXACTLY IS BRAKE FLUID?
Brake fluid is the liquid chemical solution utilized in modern automobile hydraulic braking systems. It is intended to increase the power of your foot on the brake pedal and convert it into braking pressure on your vehicle’s brakes. It would take a lot more than your foot to stop your automobile without brake fluid. That is why you need a professional assistance for Brakes repairs in Hertfordshire to get your brakes issues fixed.
What is the function of BRAKE FLUID?
So, what actually happens when you press the brake pedal? Initially, the force generated by your foot is amplified by a vacuum booster located right beneath the pedal. This increased force activates the master cylinder, causing pressurized brake fluid to be pushed into the brake lines. The more power you apply to the brake pedal, the more pressured the fluid becomes, increasing the braking force.
The brake fluid then goes via the brake lines to each wheel’s caliper (or wheel cylinder on drum brakes). The pressurized fluid then drives a pair of pistons to push the brake pads against a rotating rotor. Since liquid includes brake fluid is incompressible, which means it may behave as a solid force under pressure yet moving like a liquid. As the brake pads contact against the rotor, the friction slows and finally stops the wheels.
All of this happens in the blink of an eye, which is impressive. Nevertheless, if you’re braking fluid has deteriorated or is too low, your brakes will be less sensitive or, worse, may not operate at all. That is why it is critical to get your brake fluid checked on a regular basis.
DOES THE BRAKE FLUID NEED TO BE CHANGED?
The quick answer is yes. Brake fluid deteriorates and should be replaced according to the instructions in your owner’s handbook or as indicated by a specialist based on copper level testing findings.
There are several reasons why your brake fluid degrades over time. The first is that braking fluid is hygroscopic, which means it collects moisture from the air rapidly. Even though your brakes are meant to be part of a closed system, minor quantities of moisture can mix with your brake fluid. This is commonly caused by microscopic holes in rubber hoses, faulty seals, or when the brake fluid lid is left open for an extended period of time.
Corrosion in the braking lines is another factor that might need you to replenish your brake fluid. Brake fluid contains antioxidants and corrosion inhibitors to assist the efficient operation of essential braking system parts. Nevertheless, when these inhibitors deteriorate, metal corrosion and the accumulation of impurities that obstruct the flow of brake fluid occur. Metal components may rust with more water present.
Consult your local auto service professionals for a free brake inspection that includes brake fluid testing to avoid driving a car with tainted brake fluid. Our qualified experts may advise a brake fluid exchange, which involves draining and refilling the brake fluid in your hydraulic braking system, based on their findings.