Image of bleeding brake source Yourmechanic.com
There are many things that you can do to the brakes of your car to enhance their performance.
While brake pad and disc replacement seem to be the most popular activities that are done during the brake service, there is one extra task that is usually undertaken.
This is then brake bleeding.
What is brake bleeding? Why should I bleed the brakes? What is the procedure for brake bleeding?
To get the answers to these questions, spare a minute or two to go through this article.
What is Brake Bleeding
Brake bleeding is a brake service procedure that is usually performed on the hydraulic brake system. The procedure entails purging the brake lines (pipes and horses that transmit brake fluids) to remove the air bubbles in them.
Unlike the incompressible brake fluids, the air bubbles in the brake lines are compressible. This characteristic reduces the level of the hydraulic pressure in the brake system.
The procedures that are used in brake bleeding are also used for brake flushing. The flushing entails replacing the old brake fluid with the new one. All these procedures are done to improve the performance of the brake system.
Why Brake Bleeding?
Brake line image source Amazon
So, why should I bother to bleed the brakes of my car?
The main purpose of brake bleeding is to remove air in the brake line.
If you have experienced a deep in the performance of your brakes, then brake bleeding is one of the things that you should consider doing.
One of the reasons behind poor brake performance could be the presence of air in the brake pads.
The incompressible brake fluid is responsible for the transfer of pressure in the brake line.
The input force from the brake lever travels through the brake fluid to the brake calipers which in turn adjust the position of the brake pad so that they are in contact with the rotor.
All this is possible because of the incompressible nature of the brake fluid.
Can you imagine what could be happening if the brake fluid was compressible?
Air is compressible hence the presence of air bubbles in the brake line causes a breakdown of communication.
The brake fluid won’t be able to transmit the pressure as required.
This is why bleeding the brake is a necessary task that any driver should do. After all, driving with air in the brake lines is unsafe.
Procedures for bleeding the brakes
Is bleeding the brakes a difficult or complex task?
No. You can actually bleed the brakes by yourself or even let a friend assist you with this vital brake service.
Alternatively, you can take the car to a professional mechanic for the brake bleeding. Before you do so, find out how much does it cost to bleed the brake.
Meanwhile, there are five effective methods for bleeding the brakes.
1. Vacuum bleed
Image of vacuum bleeding source Hagerty
Do you know how to bleed the brakes with a vacuum pump? Well, this is one of the most effective methods of bleeding the brakes.
This idea is all about creating a vacuum that will draw the air bubbles and brake fluid out of the brake lines into a container.
You can do this brake bleeding yourself by using a hand-operated vacuum. You will attach the vacuum pump to the bleeder valve.
The pump will extract the fluid and air until it gets rid of all the bubbles.
2. Pressure method
Pressure bleeding brake source Hagerty
In this method, pressure is used to draw the brake fluid and the air out of the brake system.
A hand-operated pressure venturi will be the most ideal tool for the job. This brake bleeding tool is connected to the master cylinder, bleeder valves, and the pressurizing system.
Once you open the bleeder valves, the system will suck the air out of the fluid until none is left.
Advanced pressure pumps have a special feature that will keep the brake reservoir full during the whole bleeding process.
3. Pump and hold
Image of pump and hold method source Wikihow
In this method, you will press the brake pedal while opening the bleed screws one at a time. This will allows the air inside the brake line to escape.
Ensure that you close the bleed screw before releasing the brake pedal. This method is better executed by two people.
4. Gravity brake bleeding
Image of gravity bleeding source Hagerty
You can utilize the free force of gravity to bleed your brake. It is usually used when flushing the brakes.
All you need is to attach the hose to the bleed screw then open it up. The brake fluid and the air will flow.
The small bottle ensures that the brake fluid reservoir does not run dry.
5. Reverse method
This technique entails pumping brake fluid to the master cylinder through the bleeder valve.
This method works on the notion that air rises when in the fluid and will always want to escape from an enclosed setting.
I hope that now you have a full understanding of what is meant by brake bleeding and why you should bleed your brake.
If you follow the procedures that we have listed above, you will be able to execute the brake bleeding without any incidences.
Given that the brake system plays an important role in ensuring that you are safe on the road, you should not tolerate anything less than optimum performance.
Brake bleeding is just one of the methods of optimizing the brake performance.
If the issue is with the brake pads or brake discs, then get the right replacement.