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On my '97 SHO with OEM brakes I change the fluid (Valvoline synthetic) about once a year or when ever I put new pads on. I have the rear bias plugs installed. I feel the brakes like I have them are great and need no improvement as I will run out of tire before I run out of brakes.

I agree that the fluid should be changed at least every two years. Most people's problems come from using cheap, below OEM capable pads.
 
J

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Interesting story...

I have 52k miles on my car and never had the fluid changed, just did a brake job around 35k and put on new Aimco rotors and Performance Friction Carbon Metallic pads, I love my brakes, they work great and feel really good. I have considered changing the fluid, but I just figured they work really well, so why bother, but I might give it a try. :)
 

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A few questions about bleeding the brake system and brake fluids;

1) If I bleed the system how much fluid do I buy before doing so? My manual doesn't say what the capacity of the system is. Is 2 of the 12oz. cans enough?

2.) Maybe Topgun already answered this, but does that Valvoline Synpower Fluid mix OK with whatever's currently in my system? Manual says use Dot 3 and Synpower has a Dot3/4 item. I assume my current fluid is the original. So if I use this synthetic to top-up or if I just replace what's in my master cylinder reservoir will this cause any problem?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
John in Charlotte, you will probably only need one 12 oz. container of Valvoline SynPower Brake Fluid. FYI, an unopened can has a shelf life of 3 to 5 years, so you don't want to run an inventory of brake fluid; an already opened container should be kept no more than 9 months. Yes, Valvoline SynPower is totally compatible with other brake fluids and meets Ford's HBH (heavy duty) specs.
 

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This is one reason why I love this club. The only time I have ever done anything with brake fluid on any of my cars is when I take it in to get the brakes replaced. Not once have I thought about just changing the fluid without having all the other stuff done. I will be at 25k before the end of the year so I will change the fluid then. Thanks for the wonderful advise.
 

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I think I'm going to try bleeding the brakes on saturday. What is the proper procedure, how long after driving should I wait, and how do I go about disposing of the used brake fluid?

JR
 

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Also, can someone provide a link for this one man bleeder? I'll be doing it by myself and wouldn't know what to look for.

JR
 

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Discussion Starter #9
godspunk32,

First, with ignition turned off, depress brake pedal 25 times, to remove any residual vacuum from the power brake booster. Second, take battery squeeze bulb and suck most of the old brake fluid out of the master cylinder reservoir, leaving around 1/4" to keep air out. Third, refill master cyclinder with Valvoline SynPower Brake Fluid and close cap. Fourth, attach One-Man Bleeder to right rear brake cylinder, open bleeder screw with, I think, an 8mm combination wrench, and gently pump brake pedal 10 times by hand. Continue until fresh fluid appears and any air bubbles are gone. Fifth, repeat this procedure for left front, left rear, right front (in this order!). Make sure master cylinder reservoir is full between wheels. Should only take one person 45 minutes to do the complete job. Start car, pump brakes, and test drive. Finally, engage ABS system to change brake fluid in the internal reservoir.
 

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So there's really no way to get everything out...you just erplace the majority of the fluid. And I'll only need one bottle of fluid. How much is the one man bleeder?

JR
 

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One word of caution..... I've read on this board and many others that while bleeding the brake fluid, it's not too hard to break off or strip the bleeder valves. Seems like it happens quite frequently from what I've heard.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Spray bleeder screws with WD-40 first. Use a 6-pt. combination wrench to brake them lose. Dispose of brake fluid where you dispose of anti-freeze. They are both glycol-based products. It won't be much.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Correct, you'll change most of the old brake fluid. Do the job again in several months, if you want, and then you'd be about 100%. One-Man Bleeder used to be available from Tractor Supply Company (TSC) for $2.79. In my opinion, it's easier and better than all of the other brake changing pieces of equipment on the market. All it is is a one-way check ball, to make sure you don't get air in the system. The guy who thought this one up should get a medal. So simple, and cheap, that most stores don't want to sell it.
 

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I bled the fluid in the 95 SLO and 97 SHO a few weeks ago. The fluid toward the rear wheels was DARK. The pedal feel and braking performance in the SLO improved a bit. The SHO didn't change much, if any at all, for around-town usage, but I'm sure the "hot" performance is stronger. Most importantly, I got the moisture out, so I don't have to worry about corrosion as much.

One of the reasons that the bleeder screws strip/sieze regularly is because the leftover brake fluid attracts moisture to the steel in the bleeder screw and corrodes them VERY quickly. Now, after working on the brakes, once the bleeder screws are snugged up, I give the screws a quick blast with silicone lubricant to fend off some of the moisture.

TopGun... I have speedbleeders on both cars. I just use a 1/4" ID hose and a 20oz soda bottle to collect the fluid. I use a MityVac pump to drain the MC.
 

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Originally posted by godspunk32@Aug 26 2004, 03:30 PM
Well, I won't have access to a Tractor Supply Company...is this available at Autozone?

JR
IIRC, they have them at almost all parts stores. Lisle makes a popular equivalent 1-man brake bleeder kit.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
On my Honda, I alternate between ATE SuperBlue Racing brake fluid and ATE TYP 200 (amber color). Makes it real easy to know when you get all of the old fluid out. A great German innovation. I could use it in my Taurus, but I haven't, yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
SixFoFalcon

Many racing enthusiasts have done what you have, in order to easily bleed brakes between races. I'm using a "portable" One-Man Bleeding Tool, where the original bleeder screws are reused. It's also cheaper than permanently installing speed bleeders on each wheel.
 
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