Would putting power steering fluid into brake reservoir hurt your car

Tiny
PENSFAN34
  • 2007 CHEVROLET IMPALA
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 121,000 MILES

Yes, I went to put power steering fluid into my car the other day and when I put the power steering fluid into my break reservoir. I did not know that I did until I went to put some more power steering fluid into my car today and then I realized I put it in the wrong spot even though it was alot I am just worried that my brakes will give out anytime. I was reading online that it could happen if you put power steering fluid into brake fluid reservoir. So I just wanted to see if it is true and if so what can or should I do to make sure I have brakes?

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Monday, December 12th, 2016 AT 7:15 PM

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Tiny
KOOLCADDY6
  • EXPERT
  • 61 POSTS

You should flush your brake system. You do not want to contaminate your system it will cause the rubber seals to swell.

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Monday, December 12th, 2016 AT 8:03 PM
Tiny
PENSFAN34
  • MEMBER

But would it cause my brakes to give away because I was reading online about how it would cause me to loose my brakes completely.

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Monday, December 12th, 2016 AT 8:14 PM
Tiny
PENSFAN34
  • MEMBER

Also, I have another question my friend just put a new fuel pump on my 2006 Chevrolet Trailblazer and after he got everything back on he went to start the vehicle and it will not start. He is not getting any power to it he seems to think the automatic starter is going bad on it because he just put the new fuel pump on it and install a new battery so how can you tell if the automatic starter is bad? And if so how do you go about changing it?

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Monday, December 12th, 2016 AT 9:06 PM
Tiny
STEVE W.
  • EXPERT
  • 2,829 POSTS

Yes the power steering fluid in the brakes can cause total brake failure. The pistons, seals and rubber parts in the ABS system are not petroleum safe. Power steering fluid will cause them to swell and soften so they fail. You need to get the system flushed out ASAP and do not continue driving it as it is. If the various parts get contaminated you are looking at a very large repair bill, basically every part except the steel lines.

On the 2006, Do you mean a remote start system or something else when you say automatic start? Is the system a factory unit or aftermarket? Did it run fine before the pump was replaced?

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Tuesday, December 13th, 2016 AT 9:10 AM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
  • 28,554 POSTS

Steve W. Is right on the money, but he still didn't go far enough. There is only ONE proper repair. That is to remove every part with rubber in it, flush and dry the steel lines, then install new parts with rubber parts in them. That includes all the rubber flex hoses, front calipers, rear wheel cylinders, master cylinder and reservoir, combination valve or, if you have anti-lock brakes, the hydraulic controller. Trucks and minivans usually use a rear height-sensing proportioning valve. That has rubber o-rings, so it must be replaced too.

The entire hydraulic system is contaminated, and if you overlook any one of those rubber parts, the contamination will leach out of it and recontaminate all the new parts. This is definitely a very expensive repair, and it can send a car to the salvage yard.

Every year I did a demonstration for my students where I put fresh, clean brake fluid into two beakers. I dropped a rear wheel cylinder lip seal into each one, then in one beaker, I added one drop of power steering fluid or engine oil. After one week, the seal in the contaminated fluid had grown about 1/8" in diameter and was very soft and mushy.

Automatic transmission fluid, penetrating oil, axle grease, and any other type of petroleum product will do the same thing. Most mechanics even wash their hands with soap and water before handling rubber brake parts to avoid getting fingerprint grease on them.

If you ignore this, you'll find the front brakes getting real hot and the car won't want to move. The lip seals in the master cylinder are going to grow past the fluid return ports and block them. As the brakes get hot, that heat transfers into the brake fluid which will expand. Since the fluid return ports are blocked by those seals, the expanding fluid will apply the brakes even harder. Eventually the car won't move. The brake pedal will be unusually high and hard. When you remove the cap from the reservoir, the rubber bladder seal under it will flop out and you won't be able to pop it back into place. It will feel slimy and mushy. You generally won't reach the point of losing the brakes because the car won't move.

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Wednesday, December 14th, 2016 AT 1:28 PM
Tiny
PENSFAN34
  • MEMBER

Ok now can someone help me with the issue with the 06 trailblazer cause we're trying to get it back on the road again but we're trying to figure out what is causing it not to start cause it has a brand new fuel pump and battery in it and it still won't start my friend said it seems like it could be the remote starter on that is causing it not to start and if it is how can you tell and is there a way fix that issue

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Wednesday, December 14th, 2016 AT 2:00 PM
Tiny
STEVE W.
  • EXPERT
  • 2,829 POSTS

What is it doing? Turns over but doesn't start? doesn't turn over? Does nothing?
Is the remote start factory or after market? Take a can of engine starting fluid, spray a bit into the air cleaner, does the engine try to run? If yes you still have a fuel issue. Could be a bad pump connection, bad pump relay, bad ECM. If it does nothing it could be bad ignition, ECM, crank sensor or more.

Why was the pump replaced? Do you hear the pump turn on to prime when you first turn the key? Try testing for fuel pressure.
https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-check-fuel-system-pressure-and-regulator

reply back and we'll see what we can do.

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Thursday, December 15th, 2016 AT 9:40 AM

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