Can Brake Fluid Expire?

You might be aware of changing your brake pads or rotors, but what about the brake fluid? Can it go bad? In short, brake fluid can go bad or wear off over time. 


In vehicles with a hydraulic braking system, brake fluid is carried and sealed in a closed system. The fluid should remain effective for several years or longer. But, moisture in the air can sometimes seep through and contaminate the fluid. Once the fluid absorbs the moisture, it can cause a drop in the fluid’s boiling point. In other words, your brakes will become less effective at braking and become prone to overheating. Additionally, the excess moisture can deteriorate the brake lines, brake caliper, brake cylinder, and other vital brake parts. This is why it is essential to have your brake fluid or DOT fluid exchanged. 

What Are the Signs of Old or Expired Brake Fluid?

The longevity of brake fluid depends on various factors like the DOT fluid type, the conditions your vehicle operates in, and your personal driving habits (ex. how harsh you are on the brakes). Vehicles that run in high-humidity environments may need a brake fluid exchange more often than a car that runs in dry climates. And race car drivers may need more brake fluid services than the average commuter. 


Signs that indicate it is time to change your brake fluid:

  • Brake warning light illuminated
  • Spongy or soft brake pedal 
  • Brake lag or unresponsive brakes
  • Weird sounds when braking
  • A burning smell coming from the brakes
  • Overall lack in brake performance

If you suspect you’re due for a brake service or repairs, look no further than the brake specialists at Westside Car Care. We provide quality brake services at fair prices and with superior customer service. Please give us a call or visit soon!