Wes Duenkel
October 23, 2017

Your brakes are pretty important, but are one of the most overlooked aspects of your car. We change oil religiously, but often don’t give the brakes a second thought. Most performance-minded experts suggest bleeding and flushing fresh brake fluid through the system once a year. There are lots of opinions on the best way to bleed brakes…but professional race teams do it the old fashioned way. Here’s how:

1. Starting at the right rear caliper, connect the bleeding bottle and wrench to the bleeder fitting.
2. Make sure the master cylinder reservoir is properly filled with fluid.
3. Have the pedal pusher apply pressure to the brake pedal, and say, “Pressure.” (DO NOT PUMP THE PEDAL. Doing so can introduce bubbles into the master cylinder.)
4. Open the bleeder fitting with the wrench, and observe the fluid through the hose.
5. When the pedal pusher reaches the bottom of the brake pedal stroke, have them say, “Down,” and have them maintain pedal pressure at the bottom of the stroke.
6. Close the bleeder fitting.
7. Say, “Closed,” which signals the pedal pusher release pressure on the pedal.
8. Repeat steps 3 through 7 until the fluid coming out of the bleeder is free of bubbles and clean.
9. Repeat steps 2 through 8 for the left rear caliper, right front caliper, and left front caliper (in that order).

1. Take the cap of the master cylinder reservoir and make sure it’s full of fluid. Tip: Because brake fluid dissolves paint, use a rag to soak up any brake fluid drips or spills.

2. You’ll need a helper to push the pedal while you open and close the bleeder screws.

3. Here’s a diagram showing the order in which to bleed the brakes. Always start with the caliper furthest from the master cylinder, finishing with the caliper closest.

4. Starting at the right rear caliper, connect a clear hose that fits tightly over the bleeder nipple to a bottle. Using a box-end wrench, slowly crack the bleeder screw open.

5. When you’re done, the fluid coming through the hose should be clean and free of bubbles.