Master cylinder or brake line (OR JUST AIR)

  • 1.8L
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • 130,000 MILES
Yesterday checked all the fluids in the old beauty. Brake fluid was a lil low, so resolved to pick up today! Noticed y'day that brake pedal became spongy. Went out to dinner & on way back coming down steep hill the brake pedal made a quick move towards the floor & brake lights all lit up. I took a quick left onto a flat road & was able to make it to service station & got a couple pints of the stuff. I put a 1/2 pint in & brakes seemed tight. Now for the 1000,0000? If I had air in the line could the air force the fluid out of the line, or is there something
more dangerous here?
Do you
have the same problem?
Thursday, September 8th, 2016 AT 6:44 PM

1 Reply

The fluid will normally go down a little as your brake shoes/ pads wear

Basically, as your shoes/ pads get closer and closer to the to the drum/ rotor,

The Caliper's Pistons or wheel cylinder follow right behind, thus requiring more fluid to fill the void


If you have a leak somewhere, fluid is being lost (Not just displaced somewhere else in the brake system, as in my above explanation)

Brake fluid is water soluble, it will EZily wash away with a garden hose.

Rain on the road will wash away the big tell-tale signs of a leak too!

Look on the insides of your wheels/ tires (under the vehicle) for streaks generating from the inside of the rim and forming lines all over the tire.

Generally speaking, usually you will only see one tire like that if there is a problem with a caliper or wheel cylinder, I seldom have seen two at the same time (But it is possible!)

Look at your brake lines

The rubber ones mainly

All of 'em (steel ones too) if your vehicle is subjected to a bunch of salt used to de-ice roads

Look over the lines to the master cylinder and the backside of the master cylinder.

Be thorough, this is your BRAKES!

Back to "I RAN OUT!"

You probably now have air in the master cylinder and maybe in "THE LINE" leading to where ever the leak is at. YOU NEED TO FIX THE PROBLEM and Bleed the system! Like immediately!

I've been there twice!

1) My sisters Ford Escort ran dry back in the "80s", Nothing like the inability to stop at a place you "HAVE TO", but able to do as you did and steer into a safe zone.

2) Bosses truck had the same scenario, Mega Pucker Factor (MPF) as I sat/ squirmed helpless in the passenger seat, while he screamed like a little girl, as we moved perpendicularly across 6 lanes (3 each way) which were moving at at 45+MPH at rush hour. I have no Idea how we made it thru unscathed? It took a good bit of tugging to get the vinyl out of my butt after it rolled to a stop!

Keep us posted on your findings!

The Medic
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Thursday, September 8th, 2016 AT 7:30 PM

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