What Does It Mean to “Bleed Brakes”?
While your vehicle’s engine requires oxygen in order to power your vehicle down the road, your braking system is a completely different story. If you notice a squishy feeling when you press the brake pedal, it’s a sign that air is currently trapped in your brake lines. This often happens when the cap on your hydraulic fluid is taken off during routine maintenance.
Trapped air bubbles negatively affect your ability to brake since hydraulic fluid isn’t able to properly reach the calipers and drums. If this air isn’t released or “bled”, it can eventually result in full brake failure.
How To Bleed Brakes: Step-by-Step Guide
While bleeding your brake lines is generally a straight-forward process, some modern vehicles possess brake systems with special diagnostic tools that require a professional. Our team of licensed technicians are ready to help get your braking system back in good working order.
It’s advised to have a friend help you with this process as you’ll need one person to press the brake pedal while the other drains the hydraulic fluid lines.
- Place Your Vehicle on Jack Stands. In order to reach the brake bleeder nozzle, you’ll need to be able to reach behind each wheel. Jacks make this easier to accomplish and safer to perform.
- Loosen the Brake Bleeder Nozzle. Starting with the rear passenger wheel, use a small wrench to loosen the nozzle. You might need to use a lubricant to loosen the screw.
- Drain the Brake Line. Place one end of a 12-inch flexible hose over the nozzle and the other end into a large container. Remove the master cylinder cap to release pressure.
- Press Down on the Brake Pedal. This will help drain the old hydraulic fluid. As the pedal is depressed, slowly open the nozzle and take note of any air bubbles released.
- Tighten the Brake Bleeder Nozzle. Loose nozzles allow air to get back into the brake line.
- Repeat Steps 1-5.
Once this is complete, refill the master cylinder with fresh hydraulic fluid and tightly screw the cap back on. You’ll want to take your car for a test drive, paying close-attention to how the brakes react. If the pedal is firm to the touch, you’re done.
Schedule a Brake Inspection Today!
At Mile High Honda, our team of professionals are available to provide thorough care that’ll have you back on the roads of Denver, Aurora, and Centennial in no time. To get started, stop by our convenient location or go online to schedule an appointment today!