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    Thread: Brake Fluid Change Questions

    1. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-04-2005 10:56 PM #1
      Brake Fluid Change FAQ

      Intended Car: '02 GTI 1.8t w/ 5spd

      1) Recommended Brake Fluid Change Interval

      -- Every two years regardless of mileage

      1.1) Why should you change your brake fluid?

      --Brake fluid absorbs water over time. Water mixed into the brake fluid lowers the boiling point (if the brake fluid boils, it changes from an incompressible liquid to a compressible gas, resulting in loss of brakes) and can accelerate corrosion of brake system components.

      2) Brake Fluid Spec

      -- DOT4 (Typically labeled DOT3 and DOT4)
      -- DOT4 meets both DOT3 and DOT4
      -- Do NOT use DOT5 (silicone based)

      2.1) What type of brake fluid?

      -- OEM Fluid
      -- Motul
      -- ATE
      -- Valvoline Synthetic
      -- Castrol LMA
      ---- Do NOT use Super Blue Brake fluid on a manual transmission. The clutch pulls fluid from the same resevoir and on VW/Audi Clutches. The clutch master cylinder will start squeaking in several months.

      2.2) Volume of Brake Fluid

      -- 1/4 quart at minimum, 2 quarts to be safe on a full flush

      3) Necessary Tools

      -- Power Bleeder such as this
      or Motiv Power Bleeder
      -- Clear Tubing | ID: ??mm/??" x ??cm/??" length
      -- Empty Container at least ??L/??qt
      -- 11mm Open Ended Wrench
      -Jack and Jackstands
      -Wheel chocks (or a set of 2x4’s)
      -Small blade screwdriver
      -OEM VW lug remover
      -17 mm socket
      -10 mm socket
      -10 mm open end wrench
      -Brake fluid bleeder (or a rubber hose and a throw-away bottle)
      -Torque wrench: range 11-125 Nm

      4) Brake Fluid Change Procedure
      -- Note: Be sure not to lose seals
      -- Note: Leftover brake fluid should be tightly capped; it should not be used to top off a car that was given new brake fluid more recently than when the container was opened.
      -- Note: Brake fluid is poisonous and can damage car paint.
      --Alternate Procedure@Ottawa Vdubbing
      --Excellent Video Tutorial
      --Tutorial by same person who made the video tutorial

      5) Best Place to Purchase
      -- Super Blue ATE $12/L
      -- No Spill Bleeder Bottle $18
      -- Motive Power Bleeder $60
      -- Power Bleeder @ Parts4vws $45
      OR
      -- ECS Tuning : Power Bleeder $50
      OR
      -- Vaccuum Bleeder @ Tooldesk $53.50 + Fluid Evacuator Accessory $23.95

      6) Common Upgrades

      -- Stainless Steel Lines


      Modified by groggory at 9:42 PM 11-5-2005

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      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    2. Senior Member
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      11-05-2005 12:35 AM #2
      You probably want to change the order of the sections.

      #5 about changing the brake fluid every two years (add "regardless of mileage") should be #1. Also give the reason why it should be changed: Brake fluid absorbs water over time. Water mixed into the brake fluid lowers the boiling point (if the brake fluid boils, it changes from an incompressible liquid to a compressible gas, resulting in loss of brakes) and can accelerate corrosion of brake system components. Leftover brake fluid should be tightly capped; it should not be used to top off a car that was given new brake fluid more recently than when the container was opened.

      For the type of brake fluid, list the spec (DOT 4) first, then list the example brake fluids that meet the spec. Indicate that DOT 4 has higher dry and wet boiling points than DOT 3; leftovers can be used in cars specifying DOT 3.

      Note that brake fluid is poisonous and can damage car paint.


    3. Member tashistation's Avatar
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      11-05-2005 08:54 AM #3
      this is great
      add a "how too" and it's all set.

    4. Banned LETTERMAN52's Avatar
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      11-05-2005 09:31 AM #4
      That pretty much covers everything. The video really helped me when i did mine earlier this year.

    5. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-05-2005 04:32 PM #5
      If anyone has a server they can mirror the word doc and video at, that would be awesome. Thing I hate most on people's FAQ's is dead links.

      If you have a mirror post it and I'll add it to the writeup

      My Build
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      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    6. Senior Member bluefox280's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 10:51 AM #6
      Quote, originally posted by groggory »
      ---- Do NOT use Super Blue Brake fluid on a manual transmission. The clutch pulls fluid from the same resevoir and on VW/Audi Clutches. The clutch master cylinder will start squeaking in several months.

      Where did you get this piece of info? I know about the mated resivors...
      But, I've been using ATE Super Blue in my (2003 - 5speed) with sucess.
      I'm curious as to why I should dump it out...

      - Erik

      Pattern Draft Imaging.com - "...Where Engineering Discipline and Photography Merge as One..."

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      11-06-2005 10:58 AM #7
      Quote, originally posted by bluefox280 »
      Where did you get this piece of info? I know about the mated resivors...
      But, I've been using ATE Super Blue in my (2003 - 5speed) with sucess.
      I'm curious as to why I should dump it out...

      - Erik

      I started using ATE Super Blue recently and haven't had any problems yet. I would also like to know more info.


    8. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 12:46 PM #8
      I put in that bit about the super blue because of numerous negative experiences here on the vortex. I searched through every thread I could find to compile this information and there are like 5 or 6 where people had problems down the road.

      So its not 100% verified, but it has been observed.

      My Build
      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    9. Member bootymac's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 01:16 PM #9
      Good stuff

    10. Senior Member bluefox280's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 03:31 PM #10
      Quote, originally posted by groggory »
      I put in that bit about the super blue because of numerous negative experiences here on the vortex.

      Could you explain what the details were behind the negative experiences?

      - Erik

      Pattern Draft Imaging.com - "...Where Engineering Discipline and Photography Merge as One..."

    11. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 05:27 PM #11
      as I put in my initial post, people reported that the clutch master cylinder will start squeaking in several months.
      My Build
      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    12. 11-06-2005 05:31 PM #12
      even though u explained things clearly, i still dont think i am going to change it myself.

    13. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-06-2005 08:13 PM #13
      Quote, originally posted by jetta1.8tbee »
      even though u explained things clearly, i still dont think i am going to change it myself.

      It's probaly fine. I just mentioned that so people could pick a product with a good track record. I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

      My Build
      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    14. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-09-2005 01:22 PM #14
      Why do I need a brake bleeder? I don't exactly understand. What is a bleeder's advantage over the old pedal pump tequnique?

      If I'm not making sense here please just explain what you know.

      Thanks

      Just a guess, but here's my guess on how to use a fluid pump....

      -Uncap your brake fluid res.
      -Have a friend keep the fluid res. topped off with new fluid as you evacuate the old fluid.
      -Turn the brake nipple 1/4 turn
      -Put fluid evac. tube over nipple
      -begin sucking out the old fluid. Your friend makes sure the brake fluid res. stays above the min mark to keep bubbles out of your brake lines.
      -keep on sucking fluid out until you see new fluid coming through the tube.
      -evacuate a little of the new fluid to make sure you've removed all of the old fluid.
      -Remove Tube from nipple
      -tighten nipple 1/4 turn
      -cap nipple with protective cap

      repeat for all the other wheels in the proper order

      Is this correct? If so that means I don't have to tighten and loosen the nipples a million times as my friend pumps the brake pedal. Totally worth the money of the fluid evac.

      Please double check me on this. I don't want to make a mistake and have never used a fluid evac before.

      Thanks.


      Modified by groggory at 6:29 PM 11-9-2005

      Is this correct. Someone just give me the thumbs up or something on this?

      Thanks.


      Modified by groggory at 2:41 AM 11-10-2005

      My Build
      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

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      11-09-2005 01:29 PM #15
      Quote, originally posted by groggory »
      Why do I need a brake bleeder? I don't exactly understand. What is a bleeder's advantage over the old pedal pump tequnique?

      If I'm not making sense here please just explain what you know.

      Thanks

      you don't need a bleeder per se, it can make it easier with only 1 person....


    16. Moderator groggory's Avatar
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      11-10-2005 03:37 PM #16
      Quote, originally posted by groggory »
      Why do I need a brake bleeder? I don't exactly understand. What is a bleeder's advantage over the old pedal pump tequnique?

      If I'm not making sense here please just explain what you know.

      Thanks

      Just a guess, but here's my guess on how to use a fluid pump....

      -Uncap your brake fluid res.
      -Have a friend keep the fluid res. topped off with new fluid as you evacuate the old fluid.
      -Turn the brake nipple 1/4 turn
      -Put fluid evac. tube over nipple
      -begin sucking out the old fluid. Your friend makes sure the brake fluid res. stays above the min mark to keep bubbles out of your brake lines.
      -keep on sucking fluid out until you see new fluid coming through the tube.
      -evacuate a little of the new fluid to make sure you've removed all of the old fluid.
      -Remove Tube from nipple
      -tighten nipple 1/4 turn
      -cap nipple with protective cap

      repeat for all the other wheels in the proper order

      Is this correct? If so that means I don't have to tighten and loosen the nipples a million times as my friend pumps the brake pedal. Totally worth the money of the fluid evac.

      Please double check me on this. I don't want to make a mistake and have never used a fluid evac before.

      Thanks.


      Modified by groggory at 6:29 PM 11-9-2005

      Is this correct. Someone just give me the thumbs up or something on this?

      Thanks.


      Modified by groggory at 2:41 AM 11-10-2005

      Is this right?

      My Build
      My FAQ / DIY Thread -- Look here for 90% of the questions you have

      Welcome to the world of racing! Budgets are ALWAYS exceeded, deadlines are never meet, end-goals never reached, and wives always unhappy... it's all worth it though!

    17. 11-10-2005 04:08 PM #17
      Added to FAQ, Lets keep this informative

      -Marc


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      07-12-2006 04:24 AM #18

      Bump, but added information. If you are going to bleed the brakes and you have a manual transmission, don't forget to bleed the clutch as well. See http://forums.vwvortex.com/zerothread?id=2708374 for detailed how-to.

      Mike

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      http://www.chapter11dubs.com
      -----------------------

    19. Senior Member mujjuman's Avatar
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      07-12-2006 06:27 AM #19
      nice! thanks for the info
      mujjuman

    20. 07-12-2006 08:36 AM #20
      Quote »
      Quote, originally posted by groggory »
      ---- Do NOT use Super Blue Brake fluid on a manual transmission. The clutch pulls fluid from the same resevoir and on VW/Audi Clutches. The clutch master cylinder will start squeaking in several months.

      Where did you get this piece of info? I know about the mated resivors...
      But, I've been using ATE Super Blue in my (2003 - 5speed) with sucess.
      I'm curious as to why I should dump it out...

      - Erik

      Same here. I have Super blue in both my GTI and Passat. Been fine for the past 2 years.


    21. 05-06-2007 07:15 AM #21
      I decided to attempt this project this weekend... only I decided to change out the rubber brake lines for stainless ones as well. I was also going to change the pads, since they needed it. One small caveat that should probably make it into the FAQ... according to my Bentley manual, if the reservoir goes to empty, you hav eto "pre-bleed" the ABS system, use a scan tool to reset some stuff, and then actually bleed the clutch and brake system separately. (details on page 47-13).

    22. 05-06-2007 07:36 AM #22
      Quote, originally posted by orsinijj »
      I decided to attempt this project this weekend... only I decided to change out the rubber brake lines for stainless ones as well. I was also going to change the pads, since they needed it. One small caveat that should probably make it into the FAQ... according to my Bentley manual, if the reservoir goes to empty, you hav eto "pre-bleed" the ABS system, use a scan tool to reset some stuff, and then actually bleed the clutch and brake system separately. (details on page 47-13).

      I also did my brake fluid this weekend, not because of this thread but one that I saw in the DIY last year. I went and bought the motiv power bleeder and this things paid for itself after one use. The only thing that I would really recommend is to altenate the color of fluids (use superblue instead clear and vise versa). On the last wheel (drivers front) I accidentally drained out the reservoir and heard only air hissing out. It was 9:30 at night, cars on jackstands and I had no fluid left...So I did a bad thing and used some of the used fluid from the front lines, just enough to fill the reservior and bleed the front till no more air came out. I know this is not good and I'll do a full bleed again in a couple months. Function is better than before though so something worked out right.
      As for resetting stuff and what not, I found no problems at all after the reservoir went dry. Clutch shifts smoothly and brake pressure is better than before.


    23. 05-07-2007 07:25 PM #23
      Another very inexpensive (about $6) for getting a good bleed on your brakes and doing it by yourself is to buy a speedbleeder valve. I have 2 Jettas and they take an "SB1010S" bleeder valve. It is just a bleed valve with a spring loaded check valve built in so that when you pump the pedal it allows the brake fluid to flow out but closes and prevents air from sucking back as you release the pedal. I remove the normal bleed valve and put the speedbleeder valve in only long enough to bleed that caliper. It does take different size wrench (3/8") than the car bleed valve but it is quick and simple. http://www.speedbleeder.com/size.htm

    24. 05-07-2007 07:39 PM #24
      btw... DOT 5.1 is suitable also. DOT 5.1 is not silicone based

    25. 05-07-2007 08:09 PM #25
      I was going to use the synthetic DOT3/DOT4 compatible brake fluid... seems to have a hire boiling point than the traditional DOT4 Super? Anyone have experience with synthetics? I run 0W40 in my VR624v and it seems to run great...

    26. 05-07-2007 09:51 PM #26
      I use the Valvoline synthetic but will be switching to superblue because of the color so I can alternate between clear and blue. This way you don't end up with a retard move like what happened to me.

    27. 05-09-2007 10:24 AM #27
      Just to touch base back with the forum on the ABS issue... I did not have to touch anything concerning the ABS, use a scanner reset tool, or anything of the sort. The brakes work better now than ever and the fade under extreme braking is gone. Thanks to everyone in the forum for their help.

    28. 05-09-2007 06:14 PM #28
      Great!

    29. 07-24-2007 04:55 PM #29
      subscribing

    30. 09-01-2007 07:12 PM #30
      The video links don't seem to be working...

    31. Member jhirsch123's Avatar
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      10-09-2007 04:43 PM #31
      Does anyone have a copy of this video?

    32. Member
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      10-09-2007 05:35 PM #32
      I do at home.

      Mike

      Chapter 11 Dubs: Member #001
      http://www.chapter11dubs.com
      -----------------------

    33. 10-22-2008 02:58 PM #33
      TDI for the win !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    34. 10-22-2008 03:20 PM #34
      This is fantastic. Nicely done.

    35. 10-22-2008 03:24 PM #35
      Check my diy in my sig, if you do it with a power bleeder its pretty fool proof.

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