If you enjoy reading about cars and other related topics, we’d love to share our Auto Care Blog with you. At CARS of America, Inc., our highly trained auto mechanics deliver the very best in auto repair services through our two locations in Glenview. One way we accomplish that is in the time we take to help educate our customers so they feel confident making auto repair decisions. Our Auto Care Blog is just one way we meet that goal. Let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to hear more about!

 

Why is it important to have my brake fluid Serviced every two years?

 
Many clients ask us, "Why is it important to have my brake fluid Serviced every two years?
 
The reason is two-fold. 
 
First, Brake fluid is Hygroscopic, a fancy word for "it tends to absorb moisture from the air." 
Why is that important?  Your brakes are frequently referred to as "hydraulic Brakes"  In the early 20th century, brakes were mechanical, consisting of cables, levers, and other things. All that stuff was exposed to the weather, tended to get rusty, and stop working. Your bicycle has mechanical brakes, with cables and actuators.
 
Hydraulic brakes are more efficient, provide the ability to "leverage" the foot pressure to apply more brakes when needed. Think of hydraulic brakes like a tube of toothpaste. You step on the tube and caulking squirts out of the nozzle. Hydraulic brakes work the same way; you step on the pedal, and fluid is forced to all four wheels simultaneously and apply the brakes.
 
  1. So, you are probably thinking, "what does all this have to do with periodic brake fluid service?" When water freezes in a bottle, it breaks the bottle because water expands when freezing, aka gets bigger, but the glass bottle prevents the expansion until it breaks. What happens when we boil water? It vaporizes into a gas called water vapor. Vapor is not solid, so that It can be compressed. Hen you make an emergency stop, the brake components on each wheel instantly heat up to 1,000 to 1,800 degrees, which instantly change the water moisture in the brake fluid into water vapor, which can be compressed, allowing the brake pedal to sink to the floor with little or no braking action.
 
I'm sure everyone has heard about or experienced "brake fade" or loss when driving in mountainous terrain. 
 
The second concern is that moisture-contaminated brake fluid becomes very corrosive to the steel brake lines and cast iron brake calipers (actuators). Lack of fluid service causes premature actuator failures and steel lines. If you have never experienced a  sudden brake fluid pressure loss due to a line or actuator failure, I would recommend avoiding it.
 
And that is why a conscientious service provider will keep track of when the brake fluid service was last performed and remind you when it is due again. That is also why that service is called "Preventive Maintenance" Prevents heart Failure, Brake Failure, and premature brake component failure, aka higher repair costs.
 
Feel free to stop by and have a complimentary brake fluid contamination test performed while you wait.
 
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