A brake bleeding question - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-26-2019 Thread Starter
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A brake bleeding question

In trying to solve a soft pedal problem, I've taken the master cylinder out to bench bleed it yet again. I realize there will be air in the lines after I put it back in.

I use a pressure bleeder tank and am wondering how much fluid I need to drain to be sure I've gotten rid of that air. I start on the passenger rear, and all the air I think I see is what was in the bleeder tube, even after letting quite a bit of fluid drain into the catch jar. Could be that I just wasn't watching closely enough; will watch better when I get the m/c back on this time.

I start with a bit of fluid in the bottom of the jar, so it's easy to see the bubbles. Progressing to driver rear, then passenger front and lastly driver front, I see very little air in those lines.

And don't bother telling me that the two person method is better. I know it is, but I don't have easy access to a helper.

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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-26-2019
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Originally Posted by Charles Reeves View Post
In trying to solve a soft pedal problem, I've taken the master cylinder out to bench bleed it yet again. I realize there will be air in the lines after I put it back in.

I use a pressure bleeder tank and am wondering how much fluid I need to drain to be sure I've gotten rid of that air. I start on the passenger rear, and all the air I think I see is what was in the bleeder tube, even after letting quite a bit of fluid drain into the catch jar. Could be that I just wasn't watching closely enough; will watch better when I get the m/c back on this time.

I start with a bit of fluid in the bottom of the jar, so it's easy to see the bubbles. Progressing to driver rear, then passenger front and lastly driver front, I see very little air in those lines.

And don't bother telling me that the two person method is better. I know it is, but I don't have easy access to a helper.

What do you have for brakes? disc front drum rear or 4 wheel drum?



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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-26-2019 Thread Starter
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Four wheel disc: older SSBC in the front new Wilwood in the rear. The MPBrakes power kit is for disc-disc. I have an SSBC proportioning valve on the rear line, currently set to max pressure. Obviously, I will have to reduce that at some point.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-26-2019
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Ok so I won’t tell you that the two person method is better but... a few months back I bled the brakes myself using a Mityvac. When I started to test drive the car, it took off due to a vacuum leak ( I believe) ... and when I absolutely needed those brakes to work... they didn’t. I stopped the car by slamming the transmission into park. I rebled the brakes with my wife (who hates working on cars with me) pressing the petal. Brakes work fine now... especially now that I remembered to install the cotter pins that hold the brake pads in. It’s amazing what you find left in the box...
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-26-2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Reeves View Post
am wondering how much fluid I need to drain to be sure I've gotten rid of that air. .
When you say pressure bleeder, I am making the assumption then that you are using a "old school-pro grade type unit" and not the "mity-vac" type specials.....as I have very little confidence with them.....In terms of pressure bleeder units, it's dependent on the system in your car...the quantity...and IMHO about 2 times what the system holds.....but, I base my final determination on 2 thinks...do I physically see or feel air escaping from was brake bleeder.....and the pro-type units had as an option a 4 wheel hookup so you can bleed all 4 corners at once eliminating the "floating air bubble" potential issue.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 04-27-2019 Thread Starter
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I'm using a Motive pressure bleeder tank:

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/mvp-0105

As per the instructions on it, I pump it up to 10 psi w/o fluid in the tank first to check for leaks (m/c full). I then fill the tank with at least 3-4 inches of fluid in it and keep an eye on it when I'm bleeding. The m/c is full of fluid when I start and still full when I remove the bleeder.

I don't like the vacuum bleeders either. I can't get enough vacuum to pull fluid to the rear wheels with the one I have. I also tried one that creates a vacuum using an air compressor. I didn't realize until I drained the m/c dry that I had the air pressure set way too high (no instructions came with the unit).
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019
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I use a vacuum bleeder I got at harbor fright, I never had any trouble, the trick is to pull the bleeder out and grease the threads so it doesn't suck air .
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019
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I've never successfully bled brakes, solo. Ever.

On the other hand, even dealing with a reasonably competent ten year old kid, you can usually get the job done perfectly, the first time. =) Have you got no neighbors at all, Charles?

Speaking from the point of view of a ten year old boy, I got to bleed the brakes for my neighbor - and sit in a really cool old car, while I learned a little bit about fixing things.

If you weren't all the way over in TN, I'd come running to help you myself! =)

Somehow you don't give me the impression of being a grumpy old man. Don't be afraid to ask someone for help on this one, sir! It might just make someone's day, instead of being an inconvenience.

Good luck on this!
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019
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Same here Grimbrand, my then 11 year old daughter helped me pump the pedal. Although she was sitting on the edge of the seat to reach the pedal.
I know she enjoyed it but not really sure if it was:
1 To help dad fix the car,
2 To sit in the car behind the wheel pushing pedals,
3 To sit in the car while being on a hoist going up and down.

I am thinking number 3.
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Tony, if she is anything like I was at that age, it was very challenging physically because of the effort involved and the smaller-than-anticipated size, but ALL THREE applied bigtime. =) Well, not the lift. We didn't have one of those. But I'd have liked that too!

*high five*
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I use a vacuum bleeder I got at harbor fright, I never had any trouble, the trick is to pull the bleeder out and grease the threads so it doesn't suck air .
I've used a Mityvac with a little 4 oz bottle that captures the old fluid, had consistent success for decades. Much easier than asking my wife for help. Instead of using grease I use teflon tape on the bleeder threads.

I done modern cars with anti-lock brakes as well, same method.

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Every time I've had a friend or customer who had an issue with "Bleeding" the brakes. It has always i mean every time turned out to be something simple in one of the steps. As mentioned above the leaking air around the bleeder screws.Small cracks in the bleeder hoses, bleeder hose too big or too small in diameter, other joints in the line (rear axle hose to steel line junction jumps to mind. Has the line been replaced at any time to the reproof the car? is there a joint instead of a solid line? Has the master cylinder been bled on the car before hooking up the lines?

If you really cant get help try starting at the right rear filling the MC placing the hose on the right rear bleeder and stick the end into a mason jar with some fluid in it (to cover the end) Slowly push the brake pedal twice. then using a brick or a pedal brace hold the pedal to the floor and then tighten the bleeder and refill the master cylinder. work your way around the car Note which wheel gives the most "improvement" in feel. Take that point and refill master pump the brake several times then use the pedal bracket/brick to maintain pressure then bled that wheel again.it may take two or three cycles of going around the car to get the all the air out.

I'd set the proportioning valve at 75 or even 50% while doing this. Fine tune after the brakes are properly bled.

I'D RATHER GO SLOW THAN NOT GO AT ALL
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-07-2019 Thread Starter
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Advice from Pat at MasterPower Brakes:

1. "Try extending the booster pin by one turn to see if it reduces pedal travel." No help, so I put it back where I had set it using their measuring tool.

2. "If that doesn't work, there has to be air in the system." So I bench bled the m/c yet again using the traditional method (tubes from the ports to the tank), and there was inded air in it. I put it back on the car and bled again using the pressure bleeder, starting in the passenger rear. I never saw any bubbles coming out of any of the calipers, even after pumping at least 3/4 pint of fluid. No change; the pedal still goes at least half way to the floor before I get a hard pedal.

I do have a next door neighbor gal who moved back to live with her mom after her husband died. I suspect she would be glad to come help bleed them, so I plan to ask.

But I do wonder if I'm doing something wrong with the bench bleeding. After I don't see any more bubbles, I pull the lines out of the tank, hold them up to keep from dripping fluid everywhere, and put the bladder and cap back on the tank. Then I take the lines loose from the ports and plug the ports. A little fluid drips from the ports while I'm screwing the plugs in. If I leave the bladder and cap off while doing this fluid pours out the ports.

I put the m/c back in the car with the cap still on, remove the plugs and attach the front and rear lines.
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IMHO, this is a real brake bleeder....


https://www.amazon.com/GearWrench-37...26-spons&psc=1


Everything else out there that I have seen is IMHO, somebody's garage based idea that was turned into a product...that sometimes almost works.

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IMHO, this is a real brake bleeder....


https://www.amazon.com/GearWrench-37...26-spons&psc=1


Everything else out there that I have seen is IMHO, somebody's garage based idea that was turned into a product...that sometimes almost works.
You could borrow my leg for $200 lol

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