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Losing Brake Fluid After Installing Rear Pads

hillre51

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City, State
vine grove, ky
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 explorer eddie bauer
Hope all is well, I've a 2003 Ford Explorer, 4.0, 115K miles. Issue: Replaced Brake Pads on rear of vehicle and found that right rear is losing fluid BAD. Difficult to determine if coming from hose or caliper! Need to know the best way to find the leak! I'm assuming it's the brake hose vs caliper due to fluid was found on upper part of frame near coil spring and strut but was also found on lower control arm and upper section of tire. Didn't have any leaks prior to changing pads! Any ideas on what could have caused this? Over torqued caliper? damaged brake hose while changing pads? I have NEVER seen a system leak after installing the pads.
Thanks
 



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Hope all is well, I've a 2003 Ford Explorer, 4.0, 115K miles. Issue: Replaced Brake Pads on rear of vehicle and found that right rear is losing fluid BAD. Difficult to determine if coming from hose or caliper! Need to know the best way to find the leak! I'm assuming it's the brake hose vs caliper due to fluid was found on upper part of frame near coil spring and strut but was also found on lower control arm and upper section of tire. Didn't have any leaks prior to changing pads! Any ideas on what could have caused this? Over torqued caliper? damaged brake hose while changing pads? I have NEVER seen a system leak after installing the pads.
Thanks

Did you remember to open the master cylinder cap prior to "pressing" the caliper piston back into it's housing, so as to make room for the thicker, new brake pads to fit? Just checking, because not opening the master cylinder cap to allow the back pressure in the brake line to escape would create intense pressure inside the brake lines or rubber brake line section and possibly cause a blowout in the rubber hose line. Just a thought on why a leak might happen during a brake pad change.
If you can't determine which is leaking, the caliper or hose line, just change out both. A new rear caliper should cost around $30-$40 and I figure the "rear rubber line section to the caliper" in the $15-$20 range plus the cost of brake fluid. You'll have to bleed air from the brake lines after the repair is made.
 






My first guess would be the copper sealing washers missing, damaged, or not tight enough on the hose fittings.

EDIT- Sorry, no mention of you loosening or removing the brake line to change pads. Wipe off the leaked fluid and have someone pump the brake pedal while you check for leaks from under the car. GL
 
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Oops, i sure didn't remove the cap from the master cylinder, i normally don't but i will from now on. I probably caused a blowout in the rubber hose as you stated. I will replace it and recheck it and if that doesn't do it, I will replace the caliper which has a limited lifetime warranty on it. appreciate the intelligence sir, take it easy and thanks very much.

Did you remember to open the master cylinder cap prior to "pressing" the caliper piston back into it's housing, so as to make room for the thicker, new brake pads to fit? Just checking, because not opening the master cylinder cap to allow the back pressure in the brake line to escape would create intense pressure inside the brake lines or rubber brake line section and possibly cause a blowout in the rubber hose line. Just a thought on why a leak might happen during a brake pad change.
If you can't determine which is leaking, the caliper or hose line, just change out both. A new rear caliper should cost around $30-$40 and I figure the "rear rubber line section to the caliper" in the $15-$20 range plus the cost of brake fluid. You'll have to bleed air from the brake lines after the repair is made.
 






Alright, well i plan on replacing the brake hose and afterwards see if the pedal builds up. it's going all the way down to the floor every push. I didn't remove the brake line, only the caliper. i've a warranty on the caliper but i think it may be good. I will definitely bleed it. I will get the wife to pump the pedal. Thanks for the intelligence, appreciate all of you for the knowledge.

My first guess would be the copper sealing washers missing, damaged, or not tight enough on the hose fittings.

EDIT- Sorry, no mention of you loosening or removing the brake line to change pads. Wipe off the leaked fluid and have someone pump the brake pedal while you check for leaks from under the car. GL
 






Oops, i sure didn't remove the cap from the master cylinder, i normally don't but i will from now on. I probably caused a blowout in the rubber hose as you stated. I will replace it and recheck it and if that doesn't do it, I will replace the caliper which has a limited lifetime warranty on it. appreciate the intelligence sir, take it easy and thanks very much.

The brake reservoir is vented through the cap. You don't have to remove it. But, removing it so you can see the level as you push the piston back in is highly recommended, otherwise you can make a big mess. There is no way to overpressurize your system by pushing the pistons back in. Generally, though, if you put new pads all the way around, then adjust the fluid level to the "full" line, you should never have to adjust it again unless you have a leak or do a flush.

My guess is you've got a dry-rotted brake hose and manipulating it finally did it in. The advice to not let the caliper hang by the hose is not superstition.
 






May be after the fact but this why you should ALWAYS open the bleeders when compressing the caliper pistons installing new brake pads. Prevents contaminants in the bottom of the bore from being pushed backwards into the ABS system and master cylinder. It also removes hydraulic pressure. Left pic is AFTER flushing the system using 2 quarts of DOT 3/4. Right pic is cleaned caliper before installing new bore seal and piston dust boot.

DSC03578-1.jpg
DSC03583-1.jpg
 
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Problem resolved, the bolt was loose that holds the brake hose to the caliper. I assume it came loose while adjusting the pads prior to re-installation. Used my smartphone Camcorder to find the leak while depressing the brake pedal. Caught it all on tape as they say. It was squirting out all over the place. i put a compressed card board box beneath it to catch the fluid. Performed same procedure after tightening the bolt, no leaking actions caught on video. Thanks for your info, appreciate it. This forum is the best. take it easy

The brake reservoir is vented through the cap. You don't have to remove it. But, removing it so you can see the level as you push the piston back in is highly recommended, otherwise you can make a big mess. There is no way to overpressurize your system by pushing the pistons back in. Generally, though, if you put new pads all the way around, then adjust the fluid level to the "full" line, you should never have to adjust it again unless you have a leak or do a flush.

My guess is you've got a dry-rotted brake hose and manipulating it finally did it in. The advice to not let the caliper hang by the hose is not superstition.
 






I will remember that, thanks very much. My problem was a loose brake hose bolt. Got it going now. appreciate your assistance

May be after the fact but this why you should ALWAYS open the bleeders when compressing the caliper pistons installing new brake pads. Prevents contaminants in the bottom of the bore from being pushed backwards into the ABS system and master cylinder. It also removes hydraulic pressure. Top pics are AFTER flushing the system using 2 quarts of DOT 3/4.

DSC03577.jpg
 






Problem resolved, the bolt was loose that holds the brake hose to the caliper. I assume it came loose while adjusting the pads prior to re-installation. Used my smartphone Camcorder to find the leak while depressing the brake pedal. Caught it all on tape as they say. It was squirting out all over the place. i put a compressed card board box beneath it to catch the fluid. Performed same procedure after tightening the bolt, no leaking actions caught on video. Thanks for your info, appreciate it. This forum is the best. take it easy

Be sure to bleed the system now and top off the brake fluid.
 






...a loose brake hose bolt.

For your own knowledge, it's called a banjo-bolt (hole through the center, out through the side)

(Not criticizing, just sharing)


-Dubya
 






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