Q: How do I check the brake fluid?

asked by on December 14, 2015

How do I check the brake fluid?

Your car’s brakes are the most important safety system onboard. They’re hydraulic, which means they require fluid in order to operate. When you press the brake pedal, fluid is sent from the master cylinder through the brake lines to the calipers. The fluid pressure forces the calipers to close, squeezing the brake pads against the rotor and slowing your car down. If the fluid level drops too low, your brakes will not work as effectively (or at all). Here’s how to check the fluid level:

  1. Park level.

  2. Turn off the engine.

  3. Open the hood.

  4. Locate the master cylinder. It’s on the firewall directly in front of the driver

seat/steering wheel.

  1. Check the fluid level in the reservoir on top of the master cylinder. It should be between the minimum and maximum lines. As long as it’s between these two lines, you don’t need to add any fluid. If it drops below the minimum line, have your brakes inspected before you add fluid, as this can indicate that you need to have your pads replaced.

Tips

  • If your brake fluid drops after being topped off, have the system inspected for leaks.

  • It’s normal for the level of fluid in the reservoir to drop as your brake pads wear.

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