What is Brake Fluid/Oil? What are its Types and Usages?

What is Brake Fluid What are its Types (1)

Brake fluid refers to any liquid that can be present in a hydraulic brake assembly to aid in stop-and-go braking. Brake fluids are reactive with boiling points greater than the temperature that the operated brake system may experience.

There are several reasons why we must use car accessories like brake fluid. Brake fluid is an additive that is usually found in petroleum-based transportation fuels and lubricants for lubrication. It is also used in braking systems to disperse heat which can quickly lead to damaging consequences such as irreversible vapor lock and faded paintwork.

Safe, quality brake oil is necessary since contact with it can mean death if lead or other heavy metals contaminate it.

There are too many uses and types of brake oil to even mention in a single article, but let’s go over a few!

What is Brake Fluid?

Some bicycles, light vehicles, and motorcycles require hydraulic fluid, known as brake fluid, hydraulic brake, and clutch applications. In addition to amplifying braking force, it is active to convert force into pressure. Liquids are not very compressible, which is why it works.

Today’s braking fluids are typical “glycol-ether” derived. But there is mineral oil, sometimes referred to as “liquid hydraulic mineral” or “LHM.” Most premium automobiles utilize mineral oils. There are other silicone fluids, which are often found in military vehicles. Currently, various distinct kinds of braking system fluids fall under one of three categories.

  1. Glycol-Ether based fluid
  2. Mineral oil-based fluid
  3. Silicone-based fluid

What Affects Brake Fluids Performance?

Moisture is one of the main factors that might reduce a car’s braking fluid’s effectiveness. Hygroscopic means that braking fluid can collect a small quantity of moisture from its surroundings, including the air, as it matures.

The hydraulic braking system’s performance is affected when the brake oil reaches the boiling point, which also changes the viscosity of the fluid. The braking system is generally rendered useless by this occurrence, also referred to as “brake fade.”

Because brake oil is hygroscopic, it can collect dust and moisture from the air and its surroundings. Your brakes’ tolerance to high temperatures may decrease, and your braking effectiveness will suffer if your brake oil picks up too much dust or moisture.

What are Different Types of Brake Fluids?

The US Department of Transportation classified brake fluid into four basic groups.

  • DOT 3
  • DOT 4
  • DOT 5
  • DOT 5.1

Each category partakes a distinct dry and wet boiling point, and “DOT” stands for “Department of Transportation”. The DOT 3, DOT 4, and DOT 5.1 braking fluids are glycol-ether-based. The braking fluid called DOT 5 is silicon-based. The wet and dry boiling points are different for the four groups.

Wet Boiling Points

At this point, the brake oil is uncontaminated by water and is at its purest state.

DOT 3 284F (140C)
DOT 4 311F (155C)
DOT 5 356F (180C)
DOT 5.1 356F (180C)

 

Dry Boiling Points

When brake oil becomes polluted with water (often from bad weather), its heat resistance decreases, and the boiling point considerably drops.

DOT 3 401F (205C)
DOT 4 446F (230C)
DOT 5 500F (260C)
DOT 5.1 500F (260C)

Even though most automobiles will fall into the DOT 4 category, you should always consult your car’s owner’s handbook for instructions and clarity. Each DOT type has its distinct boiling point.

Dot 3

The major component of this braking fluid is glycol. The boiling point of this braking fluid is the lowest of the four. You need to know that DOT 3 is hygroscopic, which means it absorbs water; therefore, to retain efficacy, you should replace it periodically every few years.

Dot 4

Some European competitors primarily utilize DOT 4 brake fluid. Like DOT3, this fluid is glycol-based with a borate ester component and attains a higher boiling point. Most vehicles made after 2006 utilize DOT 4 brake fluid. Due to the additional chemicals, DOT 4 often costs twice as much as DOT 3. DOT 4 is expanding significantly in new areas and is the market leader in Europe and the USA.

Dot 5

The silicone-based brake oil known as DOT 5 is insoluble in water and other brake oils. It is not advisable to combine it with other kinds of braking fluid. Only after a thorough system clean may systems change their fluid. In comparison to other forms of braking fluid, silicone is preferable since its viscosity index is more stable across a larger temperature range. The fact that DOT5 brake oil doesn’t harm paint makes it more suitable. Compared to other kinds of braking fluid, it does not absorb water and attain a substantially higher boiling point.

Dot 5.1

DOT 5.1 is a glycol-based braking fluid, like DOT 4, but it includes additional additives and chemicals, giving it a considerably higher boiling point than DOT 4. Therefore, it is also known as racing fluid. DOT 5.1 braking fluid is essentially a chicer version of DOT 4.

Can We Mix Different Types of Brake Fluids?

Many auto fanatics are anxious about the potential drawbacks of mixing various braking fluids. Brake oil from different brands is OK, but they must all be of the same grade.

The worst-case situation for combining brake oils of the same grade, such as DOT 3 and 4, is having a brake oil with a lower boiling point. Not the manufacturers, but the DOT standards indicate the boiling points of several fluids.

The automobile industry makes extensive use of glycol-based braking fluids known as DOT 4 and DOT 5.1. You can combine DOT 4 and 5.1 since both are glycol-based brake oils without damaging your braking system because they are compatible with one another. Never mix DOT 5.1-a glycol-based fluid, with DOT 5, a silicone-based fluid.

After What Time Do, We Need to Change Brake Fluid?

The response varies. Like oil changes, there is no specific mileage or time frame after which you must change your braking fluid. You may need to change your brake oil depending on the vehicle, the driving environment, and the manufacturer’s recommendations.

However, a good rule of thumb is to inspect it every time you change your oil and plan to replace it every four to five years. If your brake oil smells burned, isn’t clear or transparent, or is at a lower level than it should be, you must have it checked out immediately.

Most Famous Brake Fluids in Pakistan

You are responsible for your safety when driving. Make sure the brakes on your automobile are operating properly. You eliminate all opportunities for speculation here. Therefore, you must be certain to use the best brake oil.

If you’re unsure about the top brands, this article gives a top pick that will put your mind at ease.

Mobil Brake Fluid

Mobil Brake FluidAutomotive discs, drums, anti-skid brake systems, and clutch systems can use Mobil Brake oil DOT 4, hydraulic brake oil with very high performance.

Features

Based on polyethylene glycol ether technology, Mobil Braking Fluid DOT 4 offers the best clutch and brake performance in both newer and vintage cars and commercial vehicles.

  • High boiling point
  • Minimum rubber component swell
  • Excellent corrosion protection

Toyota Genuine Brake Fluid

Toyota Genuine Brake Fluid

Toyota Genuine Braking Fluid is a Dot 3 brake oil with very high performance for use in automotive disc, anti-skid brake, and clutch systems. Use brake oil inside the brake cylinder of the car for the brake to operate smoothly.

Features

  • High boiling point.
  • Contains the antioxidant, corrosion inhibitor, PH modifier, anti-rust, and wear additives to provide higher performance
  • Reduce water absorption and boiling point variance.
  • Reduce rubber swelling, which contributes to brake oil leaks.
  • Toyota strongly advises it for Toyota automobiles
  • More than 40,000 KM mileage.

Liqui Moli Brake Fluid

Liqui Moli Brake Fluid

For safe brake operation, synthetic brake oil with outstanding wet and dry boiling points is used even under race circumstances. Contains inhibitors to lower oxidation at higher temperatures and stop internal brake component corrosion. Special LIQUI MOLY inhibitors stop the vapor bubbles from forming prematurely.

Features

  • Outstanding wet and dry boiling points
  • Contains inhibitors to lower oxidation at higher temperatures
  • Special Liqui moly inhibitors stop the vapor bubbles

Liqui Moli Brake Fluid Dot 5.1

Glycol ether, alkyl polyglycol, and glycol ether esters are the basis of a synthetic formulation that ensures full functionality even under adverse circumstances. Unique inhibitors and a higher wet and dry boiling point than DOT 3 and DOT 4 brake oils offer corrosion and oxidation prevention at high temperatures. Scavengers suppress steam when the moisture content is greater.

Brake Fluid DOT 4

Glycol ethers, alkylpolyglycols, and glycol ether esters are the basis of a synthetic formulation. Unique inhibitors and a high wet and dry boiling point protect against corrosion and oxidation at high temperatures, ensuring complete functionality even under harsh conditions. At higher moisture levels, steam is curbed using scavengers.

Brake Fluid DOT 3

Built on glycol ethers and alkyl polyglycols, synthetic braking fluid. It has inhibitors that minimize oxidation at higher temperatures and stop the corrosion of metallic brake components. The wet and dry boiling points of braking fluid are both quite high. All disc and drum brake systems and vehicle clutch systems that call for a synthetic brake oil that meets this criterion can utilize this fluid. The brake oil is suitable with ABS braking systems as well.

Features:

  • Synthetic brake oil
  • Prevents corrosion of metallic brake components
  • Reduces oxidation at higher temperatures
  • High wet and dry boiling point
  • Special moisture scavengers to prevent the formation of steam bubbles
  • Adaptable to brake systems with discs and drums
  • It is Suitable for motor vehicle clutch systems
  • Suitable for ABS brake systems
  • Suitable for conventional brake oil bleeding devices
  • Compatible with high-quality synthetic brake oils

Loin Super Heavy Duty Brake fluid

Loin Super Heavy Duty Brake fluid

The minimum wet boiling point of LION Super Heavy-Duty DOT 3 Brake oil is 284°F, which complies with DOT 3 motor vehicle and federal FMVSS #116 regulations.

Features:

  • Meets the requirements of DOT 3 motor vehicle specifications.
  • High-quality drum or disk brakes
  • The minimum wet boiling point of 284°F
  • Available in 250 ml and 500 ml

STP Heavy Duty Brake Fluid

STP Fluid

In today’s vehicles and trucks, STP® Heavy Duty Brake oil DOT 3 is carefully designed for maximum performance with disc or drum brake systems.

Features:

  • Helps to prevent vapor lock from causing brake failure.
  • Stops corrosion in the brake system
  • Compatible with all brake systems that use dot 3 fluids

Summary

As you choose brake oil for your automobile, we hope this guide will help you better understand the many types of car wheel accessories like brake fluids on the market, as well as their various features. Check out all the products available at the auto store.pk