Learn How to Check Brake Fluid On Your Own

Mechanic checking brake fluid

Looking for a guide on how to perform a DIY brake fluid check so you can regularly check your own brake fluid at home in Hurst? Welcome to the Momentum Alfa Romeo service center’s comprehensive guide on how to check brake fluid! Herein, we’ll answer your questions such as “What is brake fluid?”, “What color is brake fluid?”, “Why is it important to check brake fluid regularly?” and yes, of course, the titular “How to check brake fluid”. Ready? Let’s go!



What is Brake Fluid, Anyway?

You know that your car brakes are an essential part of its many safety systems. After all, brakes stop your vehicle, allowing you to safely travel from Southlake to Keller and beyond without a second thought. But what is brake fluid, and how does it work in the braking process that brings your vehicle from vigorous acceleration to a dead halt?

Simply put, brake fluid is a hydraulic fluid that helps with the movement of the brake pedal. It lubricates your braking system too, keeping corrosion at bay. Brake fluid in most vehicles is glycol-ether based, but there are also silicone-based (DOT-5) and mineral oil-based (LHM) fluids available. Check your owner’s manual to find out which type your specific model uses.

3 Steps to Check Brake Fluid

  1. Find your vehicle’s brake fluid reservoir on the master cylinder (this is usually found in the engine bay). Check your owner’s manual to find the specific location in your Alfa Romeo.
  2. Time to Measure: On the outside of the brake fluid reservoir you should see “minimum” and “maximum” lines. Measure the brake fluid against these lines. If the brake fluid is closer to the minimum line, it’s time for a brake fluid replacement or brake service.
  3. Inspect the Brake Fluid Color: Take alook at the color of the brake fluid closely. If it’s dark brown or black and looks more like oil, you’ll need a brake fluid flush ASAP!

Why Does Brake Fluid Need to Be Changed Routinely?

Brake fluid must regularly be changed because of these reasons (and more):

  • When brake fluid ages, it usually gets contaminated with small debris that easily damage brake-related systems.
  • Brake fluid is moisture-loving, which can cause extra corrosion on your brakes over time as it attracts moisture to it like a magnet to metal.
  • Systems like ABS and traction control create a lot of heat when they are in use, which can shorten the lifespan of your brake fluid, necessitating required maintenance sooner than later.

In sum, you want to regularly check your vehicle’s brake fluid so you can avoid a scenario where your brakes fail and you cause harm to yourself, your family, and your vehicle, not to mention others on Dallas roadways.

What Color is Brake Fluid Normally?

New brake fluid is clear to very slightly opaque with a yellowish tinge to it. Of course, it is noral that this color will change over time with routine use. That said, as mentioned earlier, dark brown to black oil-like-colored brake fluid is indicative of brake fluid that’s seen a lot of use and picked up a heavy helping of dirt and debris over time, necessitating a brake flush and fluid replacement immediately.

Brake Fluid Service Intervals

You should get in the habit of checking your brake fluid with every oil change, or at leastonce a year. While it’s not uncommon for brake fluid to last four or even five years, that estimate is just that, and depending on the unique vehicle, the driver’s habits, and more, you may need to change out your brake fluid much more frequently than that.

Momentum Alfa Romeo Helps with Brake Service

Ready to have your brake fluid changed in Hurst, or at the very least check to see if its time for brake fluid replacement? Schedule service online now! Don’t forget to check our service specials page for any applicable deals and discounts on brake service near Southlake.


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