How to Check Brake Fluid

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Over the course of its life, your vehicle is going to need some tender loving care in the form of regular maintenance services. In between these services, though, it’s important for you as a car owner to keep tabs on several parts of your vehicle including the brakes. This means checking your brake fluid.

We at Pat Peck Nissan have put together this detailed guide to help you check you own brake fluid at home. Drivers in Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Waveland should read ahead for step-by-step instructions and brake fluid checkup tips!

Step-by-Step Instructions

Checking your brake fluid is easy if you know what you’re doing. Below, you’ll find six simple steps that will help you check your brake fluid:

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  1. Open the front hood of the car and secure it.
  2. Locate the master cylinder under the hood, which is normally on the driver’s side of engine bay in the back. On top of the cylinder itself should be a reservoir.
  3. If the reservoir is clear, like it is in most new models, you’ll be able to see the fluid line and if it’s between the minimum and maximum fluid lines. If not, you’ll need to remove the reservoir cap either by screwing it off or popping it off with a screwdriver.
  4. Use a Brake Fluid Test Strip to test the quality of your brake fluid. If this test strip indicates the breaking down of its corrosion inhibitors, you’ll need have a technician drain your brake fluid and replace it.
  5. If your fluid is too low, top off the reservoir with the DOT specification recommended for your vehicle. This information can be found in your owner’s manual.
  6. Once you have enough brake fluid in the reservoir, secure the cap back on and shut the hood of your vehicle.

Using these helpful steps, you’ll be able to check both the quality and the quantity of your brake fluid. If you notice that the color of your brake fluid is darker than normal, you’ll want to make a trip to the service center to have it checked out by a professional.

Helpful Brake Fluid Check-Up Tips​

When you’re checking your brake fluid, there are a couple of things to keep in mind to ensure that the whole process goes smoothly and as intended. Be sure to…

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  • Before opening the cap, be sure to brush away any build-up to ensure that none of it ends up inside the reservoir.
  • When you’re getting ready to put brake fluid into the reservoir, be sure not to shake it around.
  • Brake fluid should be poured into the reservoir slowly.
  • Be sure to check back on your brake fluid a couple days after topping it off at home to be sure everything is working properly.

If you follow these helpful tips, checking your brake fluid will take less than ten minutes and the process will be a piece of cake.

Have Questions about Brake Fluid?

Drivers in Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Waveland who still have questions about brake fluid should schedule service at Pat Peck Nissan today.