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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 10-14-2013, 10:06 PM   #1
hermunn123
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Brake bleeding question

I'm in the process of bleeding my brakes. I haven't done it in the three years I've had it and I couldn't tell you when it was last bled.

I sucked out as much old brake fluid I could get from the brake fluid reservoir, then went to the right rear caliper. The fluid came out very dark, almost maroon. Nasty stuff. The fluid I'm putting in looks to be clear (I'll confirm in the day when I can see it better) and I've filled to 80% capacity TWO different 17oz water bottles and it still is coming out a light gold - much better from the dark maroon but it's not clear yet. I am topping off the reservoir as needed. I check it every few rounds.

How much fluid should I expect for it to take to flush the right rear line? I've got almost 32oz of expelled brake fluid... wouldn't think it would be that much.

Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:12 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hermunn123 View Post
I'm in the process of bleeding my brakes. I haven't done it in the three years I've had it and I couldn't tell you when it was last bled.

I sucked out as much old brake fluid I could get from the brake fluid reservoir, then went to the right rear caliper. The fluid came out very dark, almost maroon. Nasty stuff. The fluid I'm putting in looks to be clear (I'll confirm in the day when I can see it better) and I've filled to 80% capacity TWO different 17oz water bottles and it still is coming out a light gold - much better from the dark maroon but it's not clear yet. I am topping off the reservoir as needed. I check it every few rounds.

How much fluid should I expect for it to take to flush the right rear line? I've got almost 32oz of expelled brake fluid... wouldn't think it would be that much.

Any help would be appreciated.
Clarification - Did you suck out fluid from the reservoir then proceeded to bleed, without refilling the fluid in between?
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:24 PM   #3
hermunn123
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Re: Brake bleeding question

I did refill the reservoir after sucking out the old fluid, sorry for the confusion.

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Old 10-14-2013, 11:19 PM   #4
Simon P.
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If you passed 32oz of new brake fluid then trust me, you've replaced it 5X already. You should be good now...
Question; why only the right rear? Why not do all 4 corners?
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:26 PM   #5
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

What would my brake pedal feel if I ran out if brake fluid? Right now it feels very soft and spongy.


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Old 10-14-2013, 11:26 PM   #6
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Re: Brake bleeding question

If you're concerned about the fluid being light gold instead of clear, do a full round of bleeding until you get that light gold and no bubbles at all wheels then go again. If you want to be really thorough don't forget the clutch slave if applicable. The slave is kind of a pain in the ass to do right though... You might be getting tiny amounts of old fluid contamination from the other wheel channels that'll take forever to clear until you flush them out as well.

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Old 10-14-2013, 11:28 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Mflara20 View Post
What would my brake pedal feel if I ran out if brake fluid? Right now it feels very soft and spongy.


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what do you mean exactly?
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:34 PM   #8
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

I did a brake fluid flush with racing blue brake fluid from bavauto. My brake pedal feels very soft and spongy when brakes applied, the pedal goes almost half way down so the car can stop. I'm not sure when flushing if I ran out of fluid on the receivor, if I did can I just flush again to get my brake pedal to feel hard again?


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Last edited by Mflara20; 10-14-2013 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:37 PM   #9
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Brake bleeding question

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Originally Posted by Mflara20 View Post
I did a brake fluid flush with racing blue brake fluid from bavauto. My brake pedal feels very soft and spongy when brakes applied, the pedal goes almost half way down so the car can stop. I'm not sure when flushing if I ran out of fluid on the receivor, if I did can I just flush again to get my brake pedal to feel hard again?


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Sounds like you didn't bleed it enough. Still air in the system
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:40 PM   #10
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Brake bleeding question

I was afraid I've blowed the master cylinder seal.


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Old 10-14-2013, 11:51 PM   #11
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hopefully you didn't get air in the abs system
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:57 PM   #12
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

That was I was fearing, to check it do I have to take it to the dealer and let them fix it or Can I use a software?


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Old 10-14-2013, 11:58 PM   #13
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Brake bleeding question

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Originally Posted by Mflara20 View Post
I was afraid I've blowed the master cylinder seal.


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I think it goes like this:
With car running press on brakes. Hold brakes. If the pedal sinks, it's the master cylinder.
With car off pump brakes. Then press brakes and hold. If the pedal sinks, it's the brake booster.

If neither happen, you have air in your system and it just needs bled.
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Old 10-15-2013, 03:44 AM   #14
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

It sinks a little bit not all the way an I can hear like it's sucking/releasing air from the brake pedal area.


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Old 10-15-2013, 04:48 AM   #15
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Brake bleeding question

You should only press the pedal a little more than half way if bleeding the vintage way, helps to not damage master. If air is stuck in the abs then you can pull off in gravel and lock up your brakes to engage abs a few times, the bleed again. that's the only way I know of besides the dealer. It sounds like air to me an just keep bleeding and bleeding, took me five rounds one time to get it out. Power bleeders are much better to use also.


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Old 10-15-2013, 05:10 AM   #16
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If you're going to bleed your brakes badly, there's no need to buy the more expensive racing performance brake fluid.

There is an established approach for bleeding that involves bleeding the caliper closest to the reservoir and then moving progressively to the one furthest away. The reason is simple. Just think it through.

Never let the reservoir run out of fluid. Let me say that again. Never let the reservoir run out of fluid.

If you put brand new clean gold colored brake fluid in the reservoir and you bleed it through the system, it will still be gold colored when it comes out the caliper bleed screw.

If you have half a bottle of brake fluid left over from your last bleed job, throw it away.

If you don't like the paint job on your car and want to remove it, pour brake fluid on it.
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Old 10-15-2013, 06:11 AM   #17
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Podman View Post
If you're going to bleed your brakes badly, there's no need to buy the more expensive racing performance brake fluid.

There is an established approach for bleeding that involves bleeding the caliper closest to the reservoir and then moving progressively to the one furthest away. The reason is simple. Just think it through.

Never let the reservoir run out of fluid. Let me say that again. Never let the reservoir run out of fluid.

If you put brand new clean gold colored brake fluid in the reservoir and you bleed it through the system, it will still be gold colored when it comes out the caliper bleed screw.

If you have half a bottle of brake fluid left over from your last bleed job, throw it away.

If you don't like the paint job on your car and want to remove it, pour brake fluid on it.
Thanks and I though you should start with the farthest caliper away from the receivor.


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Old 10-15-2013, 06:12 AM   #18
Mflara20
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Brake bleeding question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imanewbie View Post
You should only press the pedal a little more than half way if bleeding the vintage way, helps to not damage master. If air is stuck in the abs then you can pull off in gravel and lock up your brakes to engage abs a few times, the bleed again. that's the only way I know of besides the dealer. It sounds like air to me an just keep bleeding and bleeding, took me five rounds one time to get it out. Power bleeders are much better to use also.


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Thanks I'll do that.


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Old 10-15-2013, 07:52 AM   #19
hermunn123
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Originally Posted by Simon P. View Post
If you passed 32oz of new brake fluid then trust me, you've replaced it 5X already. You should be good now...
Question; why only the right rear? Why not do all 4 corners?
That's what I thought, I just wanted to make sure. I just started with the right rear and didn't want to switch to the next until I was positive I had flushed it enough. After I realized I had nearly gone through an entire container of fluid, I stopped because I thought that would have been plenty. I will flush the other three corners today.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tangent_ View Post
If you're concerned about the fluid being light gold instead of clear, do a full round of bleeding until you get that light gold and no bubbles at all wheels then go again. If you want to be really thorough don't forget the clutch slave if applicable. The slave is kind of a pain in the ass to do right though... You might be getting tiny amounts of old fluid contamination from the other wheel channels that'll take forever to clear until you flush them out as well.

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I completely understand why the ATE Super Blue is so popular now. No confusion.

Thanks for the help all.
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Old 10-15-2013, 09:34 AM   #20
Imanewbie
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Brake bleeding question

It's sad they are going to stop making super blue.


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