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Brake Fluid Leak Symptoms & Repair Cost

March 6, 2016 | Quick Service Info

Brakes are important components of a vehicle. Keeping them in good condition is one of the best ways to ensure that a vehicle has a long operating lifespan. When the braking system fails, there can be many different possible causes for such a failure. The most common cause of brake malfunction is due to a brake fluid leak. There are many reasons for a brake fluid leakage problem. And basically, the brake system has 4 main areas that could possibly leak:

  1. Brake master cylinder Area
  2. Brake line Area
  3. Front Brake Caliper Area
  4. Rear Brake Caliper or Rear drum cylinder Area

The average cost to repair brake fluid leak

On average, depending on the make and model of car being serviced, the costs of fixing a brake fluid leak are not too severe. This is not a repair that is going to set a vehicle owner back very much money when compared to some of the more costly types of automotive repair procedures. With the average make and model, you can expect the cost of repairing a brake fluid leak to be:

Brake Master Cylinder Leak
Repair: Between $100 – $200 (Labour $80 – $140)
Replace: 200 – 300 (labour $40 – $80)
Repair Brake Line Leak
Between $100 – $200
Brake Caliper Leak
Repair: $100 – $200 (labour $80 – $100) for one side
Replace:  $200 – $300  (Labour $40 – $80) for one side
Rear Drum Cylinder Leak
Repair: $10 – $20 (Labour $80 – $100)
Replace: $25 – $40 ($40 – $80)

However, it is possible to fix the issue by yourself as long has you have sufficient automotive experience to know what you are doing. For everyone else, hiring a mechanic is going to be the smartest course of action to take to ensure that any and all braking repairs are performed carefully and correctly the first time. When repairing a leaking brake line, there is no real margin for error because if the brakes do not work, then this is putting a driver in a significant amount of risk. For anyone in need of braking fluid line services, some information about the average brake fluid leak repair cost and steps for fixing a leak will now be considered.

Common symptoms of brake fluid leak

  • Brake warning light comes on
  • Brake pedal going further down when you press the brakes
  • If the brake fluid too low, brake cannot stop the vehicle
  • Brake pedal will feel squishy

The most important thing is, if the brake fluid too low, the vehicle cannot stop properly even you press brake pedal. This condition is very dangerous, you should go to the repair shop immediately. 

Read also: Brake Pad Thickness Measurement

Inspecting Brake Fluid Leak

Inspecting Brake Line: The first step for identifying and fixing a brake fluid leak is to first check the lines for a leak to verify that one actually does exist. Besides simply locating the leak, checking the line will also determine how severe the leak is as well. Next, it is possible to verify that the leak is active by simply looking underneath a vehicle chassis to visually see if there is any brake fluid present on the ground. If there is, then this will confirm the presence of a leak. If there is fluid leaking, it would be wise to then prevent the fluid from getting everywhere by laying some newspaper down on the ground underneath the car. Once the vehicle has been double checked to be off, it is time to pump the brake pedal to force any remaining fluids out. After that, it will be safe to get under the car to pinpoint where the leak is located. Once the leak is found, it can be fixed and that is the last step in the process.

Inspecting Brake Master: It is easy to visually inspect the brake master cylinder. Just check the condition on the master cylinder area.

Inspecting Brake Caliper or Rear Drum Cylinder: In this step, you must open each tire to check the leak at each caliper. If inspecting the rear brake using brake drum, you should open the drum to check the drum cylinder inside the brake drum.

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