How to Bleed Brakes
What’s the deal with bleeding your brakes, anyways? Well, sometimes, after your brake fluid levels get a bit too low, air bubbles can infiltrate your brake lines-clearly, this isn’t good. These air bubbles in your brake lines will diminish the strength of your brake fluid column, putting you (and everyone else) at risk.
However, if you get those pesky bubbles out of the brake fluid column, everything should go back to normal-and that’s the deal with bleeding your brakes.
To help you on this endeavor, our team here at Pat Peck Nissan wrote this helpful guide to how to bleed your car’s brakes. Keep reading for the most convenient do-it-yourself steps. If you live around Gulfport, Pascagoula, or Waveland, MS, our brake specialists will bleed ’em for you!
Just call us, chat with us online, or stop by our service center in person to set up your appointment.
How and Why Should you Bleed Your Brakes?
Most of our customers have two simple questions about brake bleeding: how and why? Check it out…
How can I tell when it’s time to bleed my brakes soon? The main warning sign is a sort of spongy feeling when you press the brake pedal down. Also, if the pedal feels like it’s perennially down too low, it may be time to bleed those brakes.
Why did the air bubbles get in there in the first place? Often, when the brake pads wear too thin (i.e. if you haven’t replaced them in a very long time), the brake fluid in your master cylinder reservoir can dip way too low. Then, a couple of air bubbles sneak their way into those lines. Since your brakes lines are effectively a closed system, you now have an air spring amidst your brake fluid column. Not good!
Of course, as soon as you hear the answer to the how and the why, you’ll want to know the what, too…
What can I do about it? Your Official 14-Step DIY Brake Bleeding Guide
Here’s what you can do about bleeding your brakes on your own. Follow these 14 simple steps today!
- Take the top cap off your car’s master cylinder reservoir.
- Drain that nasty, black, oily fluid (using a clean turkey baster).
- Wipe the reservoir dry with a fresh, lint-free rag or towel.
- Now, completely fill the master cylinder with clean fluid.
- Pump the brake pedal (with your foot) several dozen times.
- Partially unscrew the bleeder valves (use a box-end wrench).
- Attach a tube to the partially unscrewed bleeder valves.
- Put a block under the brake pedal to prevent it from dipping.
- Now, re-top-off the master cylinder reservoir with more clean fluid. This step is crucial. If you don’t keep this reservoir full of fluid, more air bubbles could make their way into your lines.
- Finally, replace the top cap on your car’s master cylinder reservoir.
- Get a friend to depress the brake pedal. Have them let you when know it’s all the way down.
- For each wheel (four total), turn the bleeder bolt one quarter-turn to the left. Both old fluid and those criminal excess air bubbles will pour into the tube. Once the fluid stops flowing, close it.
- Then, tell your friend to let the brake pedal up. Repeat steps #11-13 (for each wheel) until only clear fluid is exiting the bleeder bolt into the tube. Dirty fluid means there’s work to be done!
- Finally, tighten the bleeder bolts back up (one quarter-turn to the right). Do it for all the wheels.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Pat Peck Nissan Professionals!
Okay, admittedly, bleeding brakes isn’t the simplest of do-it-yourself auto repairs. So, if you don’t have the time, energy, or know-how to follow the 14-step brake-bleeding process above, contact us!
Regardless of whether you live in Pascagoula, Waveland, Gulfport, or any of the surrounding towns or cities in Mississippi, our Pat Peck Nissan service team will bleed your brakes for you. Contact us today!