Acura MDX SUV Forums banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I am getting ready to do a brake flush(may be next weekend), have a question for you...

Brake fluid in the reservoir is light brown in color and as much as I know fresh brake fluid is clear. Can anyone confirm if the fresh brake fluid that Honda sells currently with "red" label is also clear(color less). Just wondering if the fluid in my MDX reservoir is good(light brown color) or is it the time to flush. I am not happy with the brake pedal/stopping feel(pads are 75% worn after 53K miles) and like to start with brake fluid flush first.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
All brake fluid I’ve used is pretty much clear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
367 Posts
I think this generation MDX calls for brake fluid flush every 3 years. My 2006 and other vehicles I've had have called for every 2 years.

All brake fluid I've used has been clear to start and always turns light brown and then darker brown as time goes on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
379 Posts
Brake fluid is probably one of the most overlooked maintenance items on cars, definitely worth changing every couple years. I've never seen truly clear fluid, its usually more straw colored, like light beer. Brown is due for changing I would think.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,030 Posts
I bought the brake fluid from the Acura dealer - it wasn't that expensive. The color is as carli stated - kind of light amber - like beer. It's pretty clearish. It's to be expected that the old brake fluid would be fairly opaque and brownish. This comes in handy when you flush the brakes so you can see the new light clear type fluid replacing the old opaque brownish fluid - i.e. bleed until you see the clear fluid starting to come out.

I doubt the fluid itself is having any effect on your brake feel unless you somehow have some air in the lines, which would be unusual and is usually pretty noticeable due to a spongy pedal feel. It's time to do the flush anyway but just don't expect it to solve whatever your brake feel problem is.

If you think the brakes aren't as effective as they used to be and since you have 53K miles on them and they're at least 75% worn, just go ahead and replace the brakes along with the fluid flush. You'll get the braking feel back to what it was when it was new and get another 53K or so miles out of it before you need to be concerned about it again. You'll need to replace them fairly soon anyway so just go ahead and do it now all at once.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Heat is the one of worst problems for brake systems and with 75% loss of pad your probably causing the pad and fluid to heat up during use. I can't tell what part of the country you live in or how hilly or mountainous but with your pad loss you may want to consider both pad and fluid change.

Most of the people that ride Motorcycles understand how important regular brake maintenance (to reduce Brake Fad) the same translates to a car...

It is always better to be Safe Than Sorry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
245 Posts
Hello,

I am getting ready to do a brake flush(may be next weekend), have a question for you...

Brake fluid in the reservoir is light brown in color and as much as I know fresh brake fluid is clear. Can anyone confirm if the fresh brake fluid that Honda sells currently with "red" label is also clear(color less). Just wondering if the fluid in my MDX reservoir is good(light brown color) or is it the time to flush. I am not happy with the brake pedal/stopping feel(pads are 75% worn after 53K miles) and like to start with brake fluid flush first.
I am on the same boat, will do the brake fluid and bleed this summer. Mine is around the same miles.
I am thinking to replace the brake pads and flush the fluid.

If you are a DIY person, please take photo or video and share with us. (if you can)
Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I doubt the fluid itself is having any effect on your brake feel unless you somehow have some air in the lines, which would be unusual and is usually pretty noticeable due to a spongy pedal feel.
My main concern is .... my brake pedal feel is something like it having weakened return spring. Not sure if my MDX pedal has a return spring, I feel as if it does not always return back to its "Zero" position. Also, I feel the brakes are not biting on the disks tight.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,030 Posts
It's best to not overthink this - just go ahead and do a brake job at this point - given your mileage and how worn you say the pads are. It's about that time to do it.

As the pads become worn the caliper adjusts to keep the pads right at the surface of the rotor - i.e. the pedal travel s/b the same when they're worn as when they're new. You should notice that the fluid level is down quite a bit in the master cylinder to accommodate that caliper adjustment. When the pads are replaced the caliper pistons will be pushed back into their cylinders which will raise the fluid back up in the master cylinder. If the fluid was topped off in the meantime, as would happen if you flushed the fluid before doing the brake job, then some of the fluid will need to be sucked out of the master cylinder to accommodate this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Brake fluid is changed every 3 years regardless of miles, color, etc...they do make brake fluid testers you stick into the fluid to test how much water is in it. Its fairly cheap tool.

Also brake fluid will not change the way your pedal feels or bites unless pedal is spongy then you got other issues.

If you want more bite when braking I suggest higher end ceramic pads not the oem pads.
Proper brake bedding in is also very important too can cause no bite if not broken in.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Last weekend I managed to do brake fluid flush on the rear two lines. I purchased a one man brake bleeder bottle(Allstar $20 plastic bottle with rubber hose and check valve) to bleed the lines. I guessed the bleeder bolts to be tight and I did not want to apply too much force so sprayed wd-40 the week before. Below is the procedure I followed,
1. sucked out old fluid from brake reservoir using a syringe(it was light brown in color, did not look dirty/bad)
2. Using a 10MM wrench, loosened the bleeder screw by gently tapping with a hammer back and forth.
3. After the screw got loose, pulled out the bleeder screw cap on the rear right and connected the rubber hose to the bleeder screw.
4. Got in and pumped the brake pedal 3 times, and checked the bottle. There was about 3 ounces of fluid(light brown)
5. Though I could have tightened the bleeder screw now, I asked my son to step on the brake and hold it until I tightened the screw.
6. Repeated the same on the driver rear also.

In between I did look at the bake reservoir to me sure it is not empty.

I should have done the fronts too but could not dare to jack up and remove the weeks to access the bleeder screw. For rears there was no need to jack up or remove wheels.

Result: Prior to the procedure I suspected that the brakes were not biting, I could tell that by looking at the disks in the front vs rear. Fronts were pretty shiny but the rears were not. But after the brake bleeding, the rear disks look shiny too, so I think bleeding the brakes helped.

Are the MDX wheels heavy? I did work on my other cars but MDX looks big and heavy so not sure if I can mess with jacking up and taking the front wheels off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,030 Posts
I should have done the fronts too but could not dare to jack up and remove the weeks to access the bleeder screw. For rears there was no need to jack up or remove wheels.
...
Are the MDX wheels heavy? I did work on my other cars but MDX looks big and heavy so not sure if I can mess with jacking up and taking the front wheels off.
There's no problem jacking it up and taking the wheels off. I don't know why you're hesitant to do that. It's what you'd need to do if you got a flat. The wheels/tires are a little heavy but not so much that most people couldn't handle them. I find that for putting them back on sitting on the ground and using my legs to help lift them to the lugs works well. You should complete the job and bleed the fronts as well.

Of course, make sure you do it safely by chocking the wheels so it won't roll and when you jack it up and remove the wheel don't put your body parts where they'll get crushed if the vehicle falls off the jack but this is easy to do for just accessing the bleeder screw. It's best to put a jackstand there as well because jacks can fail (I had it happen once).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
367 Posts
If the rears weren't biting (not shiny as you say), I would more suspect a seized caliper slide pin, or pad sticking in the clips.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
357 Posts
Brake fluid is changed every 3 years regardless of miles, color, etc...they do make brake fluid testers you stick into the fluid to test how much water is in it. Its fairly cheap tool.

Also brake fluid will not change the way your pedal feels or bites unless pedal is spongy then you got other issues.

If you want more bite when braking I suggest higher end ceramic pads not the oem pads.
Proper brake bedding in is also very important too can cause no bite if not broken in.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Best response so far.

Brake fluid attracts moisture and that's the main reason why it needs to be changed every 2 or 3 years regardless of mileage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
600 Posts
Brake fluid is DESIGNED to attract moisture to keep it from puddling in the brake system as humidity condenses in the reservoir etc. Two things happen as the % of moisture goes up - (1) brakes get steam in the lines when the calipers get hot and that makes the brakes spongy and ineffective (2) it causes corrosion.

Be sure to use the right kind. I know that in earlier years replacing the fluid also meant replacing the brake fluid that is in the ABS system also, and that used to take special tools.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Brake fluid is DESIGNED to attract moisture to keep it from puddling in the brake system as humidity condenses in the reservoir etc. Two things happen as the % of moisture goes up - (1) brakes get steam in the lines when the calipers get hot and that makes the brakes spongy and ineffective (2) it causes corrosion.

Be sure to use the right kind. I know that in earlier years replacing the fluid also meant replacing the brake fluid that is in the ABS system also, and that used to take special tools.
I just flushed out the old fluid by pumping the pedal 5-6 times for all 4 lines(I did the front 2 today by pulling the car up the ramps, no need to take the wheels off).

There is more in the ABS system? I hate to pay dealer $130 on top of what I already spent.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
There is more in the ABS system? I hate to pay dealer $130 on top of what I already spent.
1. No. A normal bleed procedure is fine for the MDX.

2. The dealer won’t do anything special except take more of your money.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
1. No. A normal bleed procedure is fine for the MDX.

2. The dealer won’t do anything special except take more of your money.

Do you or anyone else happen to know the brake fluid amount needed to perform a flush?

The owner's manual does not indicate the capacity amount compared to other fluids such as ATF, Fuel, Washer fluid, etc.

I want to do a brake flush but first need to know how much i need before I purchase a bottle or two from the dealer.

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,030 Posts
Do you or anyone else happen to know the brake fluid amount needed to perform a flush?
I went through about 1.5 12oz bottles when I flushed mine.

The amount isn't precise due to the nature of flushing - it just depends on how much flushing is done before you decide the fluid coming out is clear enough to move onto the next wheel.

I used Acura brake fluid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
123 Posts
2 bottles(12 oz) of Honda Dot 3 fluids is sufficient for brake flush. But I always buy 3 of them, trying to drain more. They're cheap, usually $6 per bottle. You don't have to use Honda/Acura fluid, Dot 3 fluid from any reputable brand works just as well. When you're done, throw away(recycle) what's left along with old fluid, unless it's not opened.

Remember to bleed clockwise beginning from driver side front, FL - FR - RR - RL.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
About this Discussion
22 Replies
13 Participants
cardude10
Acura MDX SUV Forums
Acura MDXers Forum - a community where enthusiasts discuss engines, tires, service and everything you need to know about the MDX!
Full Forum Listing
Top