What Color is Brake Fluid?

November 7th, 2018 by
Technician performing a brake fluid exchange

When you check your master cylinder reservoir (which you should at least twice a year), it’s important to pay attention to color. Fresh brake fluid is clear with a slight yellow tinge. This applies to all brake fluid types, such as DOT 3, 4, or 5. If your Mazda car‘s brake fluid is still mostly clear, it’s usable. Read on to learn more about how to tell when brake fluid is old, and when to schedule a brake fluid flush near Nampa!

What Does Brake Fluid Look Like When It’s Old?

Over time, the braking system’s fluid color can start to resemble engine oil. Why does the fluid turn to a dark or light brown — or even black? Here are a few common reasons:

  • Aging: It’s been a while since the fluid was changed and contaminants have built up.
  • Moisture: The fluid has absorbed moisture from the rubber brake lines.
  • Aging Rubber Brake Lines: Your car’s brake lines may be deteriorating and need replacement.
  • Regular Heating: The braking system’s fluid is heated as it makes contact with the calipers, causing a chemical reaction that changes the fluid color.

Signs it’s Time to Check Your Car’s Brake Fluid

If it’s been two or more years since the fluid has been changed, you may start to notice some issues. Here are a few indicators it’s time for a fluid flush:

  • You have to press the brake pedal to the floor.
  • Your car won’t come to a stop unless you press the brake pedal two or more times.
  • The dashboard brake light is on.
  • There’s a brake fluid puddle under your car.
  • The brake fluid reservoir indicates low fluid.

Get More Car Care Tips from Dennis Dillon Mazda in Boise!

Whether it’s time for a fluid flush or you’ve noticed a fluid leak, Dennis Dillon Mazda’s service team can help! We’re conveniently located near Caldwell and Meridian. Contact us with any questions about brake fluid leaks, exchanges, and other services. Also, be sure to browse our service specials for savings on brake service and genuine Mazda parts!

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