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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
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bleeding brakes question

I've read you have to have a tech stream to be able to bleed the brakes properly? I changed out my rotors and my pads this weekend, bleed all 4 sides and it didn't have any bubbles in the line, but my brakes feel very soft and no where near what they used to be even with worn pads.

My question is if I open the bleeder and use the one person method with a bottle and tubing soaked in brake fluid to prevent air from traveling up when I press the brake pedal down after 5 of so times the brake is close to the bottom of the floor, do I keep pumping for 20-30 times to be able to flush out the old fluid and bring in new fluid as well as to check for more air bubbles? (I thought I read if the brake gets depressed to the floor too many times that can mess up the seals?) I bled the brakes on a honda civic and don't remember the pedal being so close to the floor after just a few presses.

I tested the brake booster per you tube videos and found that the booster is working properly. I want to bleed the system one more time before I take it to toyota unless I absolutely have to bring it for them to the the tech stream. Also how much would it cost to have the brakes bled with the tech stream, I tried to look for it on the dealers service site without any luck.

Thanks
Peter

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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 01:53 AM
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no need for techstream.do old fashioned brake bleed.
doing it with the jar will let air back in at the bleeder threads.best to do the 2 person or with vacuum pump or pressure bleed.
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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 08:50 AM Thread Starter
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I see, if i were to use the two person method my same question applies, when they push the pedal and it starts getting closer to the ground do I keep having them pump the brakes for a good 20-30 pumps to get more fluid out?
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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 09:58 AM
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-push on pedal and maintain pressure
-open bleeder and let fluid out while pushing on pedal
-close bleeder before pedal reaches bottom of stroke
-once bleeder closed,release pedal and let it return to top
-repeat until fluid is clear and air bubble free.

as op mentioned,in older systems,the action of pushing the pedal further than during normal operation can result in damage to master cylinder cups as they rub a part of master cylinder that is not smooth anymore due to corrosion.
this is also a reason why it's recommended to flush and bleed system every couple of years or so.

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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 02:22 PM
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Start with the back passenger side, back drivers side, front passenger side, then front driver side.

Put clear tubing on the bleeder and loop it above the bleeder with a trap so air doesn't back siphon. Fill the reservoir, crack the bleeder a half turn and slowly pump the brakes about 10-15 times. Keep the reservoir above the low level so you don't get air in the lines. Repeat until clear fluid comes out the bleeder. After your done with the complete drain, you can have someone pump the brakes while you purge the air out. It should only take 1-2 pumps per caliper at that point.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalMonkey View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by restosud View Post
-push on pedal and maintain pressure
-open bleeder and let fluid out while pushing on pedal
-close bleeder before pedal reaches bottom of stroke
-once bleeder closed,release pedal and let it return to top
-repeat until fluid is clear and air bubble free.


as op mentioned,in older systems,the action of pushing the pedal further than during normal operation can result in damage to master cylinder cups as they rub a part of master cylinder that is not smooth anymore due to corrosion.
this is also a reason why it's recommended to flush and bleed system every couple of years or so.
Yeah I've seen that video metalmonkey, and its explaining what restosud is mentioning. I will try that method out when my girlfriend is available

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Start with the back passenger side, back drivers side, front passenger side, then front driver side.

Put clear tubing on the bleeder and loop it above the bleeder with a trap so air doesn't back siphon. Fill the reservoir, crack the bleeder a half turn and slowly pump the brakes about 10-15 times. Keep the reservoir above the low level so you don't get air in the lines. Repeat until clear fluid comes out the bleeder. After your done with the complete drain, you can have someone pump the brakes while you purge the air out. It should only take 1-2 pumps per caliper at that point.
This is the original method I did. But when you say have someone pump the brakes what do you mean by when I purge out the air?

The other thing is my brake fluid is surprising clear already so it'll be a pain to tell the difference. But i think the line should be cleared out with 32 oz for all 4 corners.

Thanks everyone.
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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 02:48 PM
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Sometimes air can enter through the bleeder threads. As mentioned above, open the bleeder while someone pumps and close it before the pedal hits the floor.

After you installed the new pads, did you do the brake pad break in procedure? Drive around and pump the brakes a few times at increasing speeds, then drive for 10 minutes to let the rotors cool. You should feel them grab more after the rotors cool down.
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pchan87 View Post
I see, if i were to use the two person method my same question applies, when they push the pedal and it starts getting closer to the ground do I keep having them pump the brakes for a good 20-30 pumps to get more fluid out?
If you are "pumping" the brakes during the bleeding process, that is incorrect technique and that IS the reason you're having problems.

As shown in the two person bleeding video provided by @MetalMonkey , each bleed cycle is a single pedal application with communication between the bleeder and the pedal operator. Simple commands, such as "Down" and "Up", can be used by the bleed person to instruct the pedal operator on the action to be taken.

A "Down" command from the bleed person means for the pedal operator to apply pressure to the pedal. As the pedal operator holds pressure on the brake pedal, the bleed person will loosen the caliper bleeder valve. When the bleeder valve is opened, fluid and possibly air will be ejected from the valve, and the pedal inside will immediately fall to the floor unless the bleed valve is just cracked slightly open. The pedal should be held to the floor by the pedal operator and not released until the bleed person instructs him to do so. If the pedal is released BEFORE the bleed valve is closed, air WILL be drawn back into the system.

With the pedal on the floor, the person bleeding then tightens the bleed valve, and instructs the pedal operator "Up", which literally means "Let the pedal UP off the floor". Repeat the cycle as many times as necessary to replace all the old fluid in the brake line to that wheel. As the video said...check the reservoir level frequently; if you allow air to be sucked in through the MC, then you start over as they said. Repeat this process on each wheel.

I have read the recommendations for not allowing the pedal to go all the way to the floor, and I can only say that coordinating that objective between bleeder and pedal operator will be next to impossible with the help I can find. With skill and experience, the bleeder person can probably just crack the bleed valve slightly open, expel a little fluid and then tighten it before the pedal gets to the floor. Otherwise, you'll be better off to figure out how much stroke is appropriate (Huh...that'll be tricky), then jerry-rig a device to physically limit pedal travel to that amount. Personally, after a life time of bleeding brakes, I've never experienced any problems from allowing a brake pedal to travel fully to the floor.

Since the Tundra has antilock brakes, forgetting to maintain the fluid level in the MC reservoir and allowing air to be pumped into the antilock brake controller may render the simple bleeding process that would have worked before no longer effective. If you bleed the system properly and still have a soft pedal, THEN the Tundra Service Repair Manual indicates that you can fix that problem with a TechStream bleeding process.


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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Sometimes air can enter through the bleeder threads. As mentioned above, open the bleeder while someone pumps and close it before the pedal hits the floor.

After you installed the new pads, did you do the brake pad break in procedure? Drive around and pump the brakes a few times at increasing speeds, then drive for 10 minutes to let the rotors cool. You should feel them grab more after the rotors cool down.
I did the brake pad break in procedure as directed, didn't even know I had to do that until the day of the install. I wasn't able to drive around for 10 mins but did do 4-5 mins before I had to slow down and U turn.

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If you are "pumping" the brakes during the bleeding process, that is incorrect technique and that IS the reason you're having problems.

As shown in the two person bleeding video provided by @MetalMonkey , each bleed cycle is a single pedal application with communication between the bleeder and the pedal operator. Simple commands, such as "Down" and "Up", can be used by the bleed person to instruct the pedal operator on the action to be taken.

A "Down" command from the bleed person means for the pedal operator to apply pressure to the pedal. As the pedal operator holds pressure on the brake pedal, the bleed person will loosen the caliper bleeder valve. When the bleeder valve is opened, fluid and possibly air will be ejected from the valve, and the pedal inside will immediately fall to the floor unless the bleed valve is just cracked slightly open. The pedal should be held to the floor by the pedal operator and not released until the bleed person instructs him to do so. If the pedal is released BEFORE the bleed valve is closed, air WILL be drawn back into the system.

With the pedal on the floor, the person bleeding then tightens the bleed valve, and instructs the pedal operator "Up", which literally means "Let the pedal UP off the floor". Repeat the cycle as many times as necessary to replace all the old fluid in the brake line to that wheel. As the video said...check the reservoir level frequently; if you allow air to be sucked in through the MC, then you start over as they said. Repeat this process on each wheel.

I have read the recommendations for not allowing the pedal to go all the way to the floor, and I can only say that coordinating that objective between bleeder and pedal operator will be next to impossible with the help I can find. With skill and experience, the bleeder person can probably just crack the bleed valve slightly open, expel a little fluid and then tighten it before the pedal gets to the floor. Otherwise, you'll be better off to figure out how much stroke is appropriate (Huh...that'll be tricky), then jerry-rig a device to physically limit pedal travel to that amount. Personally, after a life time of bleeding brakes, I've never experienced any problems from allowing a brake pedal to travel fully to the floor.

Since the Tundra has antilock brakes, forgetting to maintain the fluid level in the MC reservoir and allowing air to be pumped into the antilock brake controller may render the simple bleeding process that would have worked before no longer effective. If you bleed the system properly and still have a soft pedal, THEN the Tundra Service Repair Manual indicates that you can fix that problem with a TechStream bleeding process.
Thank you for the thorough explanation, I will do this with the girlfriend hopefully Sunday.
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post #11 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 10:15 PM
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once done and pedal is still too soft,brake hard enough to activate the abs pump and bleed the brakes again.
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post #12 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 05:32 PM
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What the Old Guy said!! My dad attempted to teach me the old-old-skool method years ago. I think he told me if not performed correctly that planets would crash into the earth. Their ideas of conserving brake fluid, by running the tube into the jar, watching for bubbles..........then dumping excess back into the reservoir as needed was really just bad advice. No more than what brake fluid costs and the fact that it does not need to be recycled in any capacity, is just one more reason to not observe the old-old-skool method. My opinion. But, if you have lots of vehicles or if you can vision yourself doing a few brake jobs here and there I'd highly suggest investing in the Mighty-Vac. I definitely hope your GF is far better at pumping on things than what I have experienced (hopefully none of this will get me into too much trouble)! You can use the Mighty-Vac on numerous hydraulic applications; brakes, hydraulic clutches, pre-bleed a master cylinder.......... Watch the You Tube video on it to, there is a guy who tells you to Teflon tape the bleeder valves or you will suck air or can suck air in when they are opened. Yes it sucks that hard!!

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post #13 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 07:04 PM
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...Their ideas of conserving brake fluid, by running the tube into the jar, watching for bubbles..........then dumping excess back into the reservoir as needed was really just bad advice...
The real purpose for running the tube from the bleeder valve into a jar with a level of brake fluid is not as a tattle-tale for air bubbles, but to form a brake fluid seal to prevent air from being drawn back into the brake system if the pedal operator inadvertently releases the pedal prematurely. If that happens, old fluid may be drawn back into the system, but it is better than getting air in. The old fluid drawn back will then be expelled again on the next bleed cycle. In that case, it's a good idea to have a heart-to-heart to reinforce your helper's training before continuing.

Because air can leak past the bleed valve threads, using a liquid seal of this type is likely to be less than 100% effective. I consider it pointless and generally don't bother with it. I insure that my helper and I understand the two-person bleeding process, and use the tube and jar simply collect the old fluid and prevent a mess. As you said, recycling brake fluid is ridiculously stupid: the whole point of bleeding a system with a hard pedal periodically is to remove the old water-saturated, contaminated fluid and replacing with fresh fluid.

I have a MityVac, and thought it was the be-all to end-all on my first brake bleeding. Then, I had difficulty getting my brakes to bleed properly, and finally figured out that the cause was air leakage past the bleeder valve threads. Because of that, my MityVac now stays on the bench when I bleed hydraulic systems.

In my previous maintenance engineering profession, use of Teflon tape on pipe or fittings of any lubricating oil or hydraulic systems was strictly prohibited because improper tape application can lead to any excess being cut off the fitting/pipe thread to obstruct downstream orifices and ports, resulting in downtime and a trouble-shooting nightmare. It's probably safe enough for the bleeder valve application, but why go looking for trouble? For permanent piping installations, I use Teflon paste on pipe threads, but the paste is not suitable for brake bleeder valves.


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In the past when using a mighty vac to bleed brakes, I've taken a healthy glob of vaseline and smeared it around the threads of each bleed screw when the bleeder was cracked open.. . Keeps air from getting past the threads and you get a positive draw on the brake fluid from the lines. Hasn't let me down yet

To be clear I do this just on the exterior of the bleeder and I don't remove the bleeder all the way. That, I assume, would cause problems

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post #15 of 40 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 05:27 PM
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In the past when using a mighty vac to bleed brakes, I've taken a healthy glob of vaseline and smeared it around the threads of each bleed screw when the bleeder was cracked open.. . Keeps air from getting past the threads and you get a positive draw on the brake fluid from the lines. Hasn't let me down yet

To be clear I do this just on the exterior of the bleeder and I don't remove the bleeder all the way. That, I assume, would cause problems
Not sure why removing a bleeder valve all the way would cause any problems? Just so long as you do not pump or pressurize the system in some way. I knew several mechanics who would let a caliper hang, open the bleeder valve, attach a drain hose and let it gravity bleed. They swore by this to, said it was by far the easiest way. For those who do not like the Mighty Vac tool I am sure you have your reasons.

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