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ChrisTropea
ChrisTropea Associate Editor
3/20/23 12:33 p.m.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/L8ftzt5b_p4

Why is it so important to regularly change your brake fluid, especially for a car that’s tracked often?

We’ll tell you–and we’ll even show how to test the brake fluid currently in your car plus what you should replace it with for track duty.

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AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) UberDork
3/21/23 1:35 a.m.

Awesome info about the most neglected fluid in most cars!  

SKJSS (formerly Klayfish)
SKJSS (formerly Klayfish) PowerDork
3/21/23 7:08 a.m.

Outstanding!!  Yep, when I get a car that has any chance of seeing the track, the first thing done is brake fluid flush.

As AnthonyGS said, most neglected fluid in a car outside of the synthetic blinker fluid.

Andy Hollis
Andy Hollis
3/21/23 8:10 a.m.

SRF or GTFO

I change mine once a year in all the track cars...and my cars see a LOT of track time.

Back in my pro racing engineer days, it's all we used under the Realtime tent.

One of the least hygroscopic fluids out there.

camopaint0707
camopaint0707 New Reader
3/21/23 8:16 a.m.

In reply to Andy Hollis :

what about typ200 if you are poor?

David Schotz
David Schotz
8/10/23 1:46 p.m.

In reply to Andy Hollis :

Endless 650 as good or better than SRF in my experience.  

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
8/10/23 2:21 p.m.

The Formula 500 gets Castrol LMA.

The Datsun has been feed Prestone DOT 3 for 30 years...........the brakes on it are overkill / under stressed so it's not an issue.   I also freely admit that the fluid gets flushed maybe every 5 years in this car. I live in a dry climate and the car does 6-8 events a year.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
8/10/23 2:52 p.m.
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Awesome info about the most neglected fluid in most cars!  

I would wager in cars with hydraulic power steering, that power steering fluid is the most neglected fluid in most cars. 

 

Noddaz
Noddaz GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
8/10/23 6:56 p.m.

Wow, now I am learned.  Thank you.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
8/10/23 8:43 p.m.
z31maniac said:
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Awesome info about the most neglected fluid in most cars!  

I would wager in cars with hydraulic power steering, that power steering fluid is the most neglected fluid in most cars. 

 

Nah people start crying if they have to use effort to steer.  No one ever checks brake fluid.  

Berck
Berck Reader
8/10/23 9:16 p.m.
z31maniac said:
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Awesome info about the most neglected fluid in most cars!  

I would wager in cars with hydraulic power steering, that power steering fluid is the most neglected fluid in most cars. 

 

Can confirm this is the case for my cars.  I change brake fluid every 2-5 years.  I'm certain that the power steering fluid in my 1991 Miata is the stuff that came in it from the factory.

glyn ellis
glyn ellis New Reader
8/11/23 2:24 p.m.

You folks need to track a C5 Corvette. It guarantees that you'll replace the PS fluid every couple of years by emptying the system via the rack. 

spedracer
spedracer New Reader
8/11/23 8:28 p.m.

In reply to camopaint0707 :

I'm probably slow compared to Andy, but I use typ200 and mostly do a once a year change. I do flush maybe 2x a year, mostly because I "should" not because I noticed any difference. w2w, but stock powered NB Miata with a BBK so not sure how that washes out compared to your use.

90BuickCentury
90BuickCentury Reader
12/27/23 12:16 a.m.
mysterylutestring said:

I am certain that the power steering fluid is the [link removed] same as the one that was originally installed in the vehicle by the manufacturer.

And I'm certain that you are a canoe, so I guess we're even now?

mad_machine
mad_machine GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/27/23 12:41 a.m.

I seem to recall back in the 90s, VW was recommending brake fluid change every 2 years. 

BA5
BA5 GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
4/19/24 9:50 a.m.

I guess the corollary to this is:

Is there a better power steering fluid out there for racing? It's hard to say if it's making any effect on the steering because there's so many other variables in the system, but you can definitely see/smell a hard day on course taking it's toll on the power steering fluid if you check it. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/19/24 10:36 a.m.

In reply to BA5 :

Redline makes a performance power steering fluid.

  • Improved wear protection, resists thermal breakdown, evaporation and foaming 
  • Provides continued high pump output, suitable for most power steering units 
  • Lightweight fluid avoids power loss 
  • 50% greater high-temp viscosity and 1/5 of the high-temp evaporation 
  • Greater heat resistance helps to prevent boil-over 
  • Helps to prevent high-temp steering fade and difficult effort steering at low temps 
  • Compatible with petroleum's and synthetics 
  • 1/4 of the oxidation of petroleum power steering fluids 
  • Helps prevent leakage and squealing

https://www.redlineoil.com/power-steering-fluid

theruleslawyer
theruleslawyer Reader
4/19/24 10:54 a.m.

In reply to BA5 :

You can use ATF, at least in my rack. I imagine a performance fluid with less viscosity change at temp would help. Or just put in a better power steering cooler. That's easy and effective.

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
4/19/24 11:02 a.m.

I can tell you the "purists" would have a conniption if they knew what I used for track duty. Parts house dot 4. Changed at least once a year. $5 a bottle does the whole car. Never had fade or overheating brakes. 

wspohn
wspohn UltraDork
4/19/24 12:01 p.m.

When I was racing I always bled the fluid in the calipers out and topped  up - failing to do that would sometimes result in soft pedal when really hot.  Street cars get new fluid every 2 years or so.

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
4/19/24 12:04 p.m.

In reply to BA5 :

in the older Hyundai/Kia cars, they used their SPIII trans fluid in the p/s system. For a normal, daily driven car it was fine. Try to push one in the mountains or a 5 cone slalom at the end of an autox and you lose p/s because it's boiling/foaming out of the reservoir. I learned that Amsoil's p/s fluid had an extremely high boiling point and a lot of anti-foaming additives. Switched over to it and never had another problem, even in cars that had no p/s cooler. 

j_tso
j_tso Dork
4/19/24 12:10 p.m.
Tom1200 said:

The Formula 500 gets Castrol LMA.

I used to find that in most parts stores here in central TX, but not since 2010ish.

Interestingly, Autozone started stocking VP Racing 622.

CAinCA
CAinCA GRM+ Memberand Dork
4/19/24 12:11 p.m.

I have a couple open bottles of SRF. One was a couple years old and the other is pretty recent. I live in a fairly dry climate. I tested them with my moisture meter and they were both under 1%. Would you guys feel comfortable using it?

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/19/24 12:44 p.m.
bobzilla said:

I can tell you the "purists" would have a conniption if they knew what I used for track duty. Parts house dot 4. Changed at least once a year. $5 a bottle does the whole car. Never had fade or overheating brakes. 

Yup. I'm a firm believer in Valvoline Dot 4. Keep it fresh and it'll do the job for 90% of use cases. Then again, I'm a casual couple-of-track-days-a-year kind of guy. For real racing, you need real fluid.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/19/24 12:53 p.m.
bobzilla said:

I can tell you the "purists" would have a conniption if they knew what I used for track duty. Parts house dot 4. Changed at least once a year. $5 a bottle does the whole car. Never had fade or overheating brakes. 

Then you need to either brake harder or get more power :) But changing it often is probably helping a lot.

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