Brake Fluid Is Necessary to Your Car's Performance

Your car's brakes need a lot of things to make sure that they work properly. One of those things is brake fluid. Without any brake fluid, your brakes may fail, so you want to make sure that the fluid is always full and ready to go. 

Brake Fluid

You might not realize it, but brake fluid is actually a kind of hydraulic fluid. The fluid takes the force that you use when you put on the brakes and transfers that force into pressure. That pressure helps to increase the braking force of your car. One reason for this to happen is because you can't compress fluids. Compression refers to pushing down a substance until all the empty spaces in between the molecules are filled. Liquids don't have those empty spaces, so there is no way to compress them. That means that when you put down the brake pedal that liquid gets pushed down instead of compressed. There are different kinds of brake fluid that can be used. 

DOT Ratings

Brake fluid is classified by DOT ratings. DOT stands for Department of Transportation. The DOT has set out different regulations that brake fluid must meet in order to be used. Brake fluid ratings are DOT 3, DOT 4, DOT 5.1, and DOT 5. You can mix some brake fluids, although it's not recommended. For example, if your car uses DOT 3 fluid already in your brakes, you can use DOT 4 in there. What kind of fluid you should use in your car depends on what kind of brakes you have, if it has traction control, and how old it is. What differentiates the different ratings from each other is generally the boiling point, the effects heat has on the fluid, and how much moisture is in the fluid. 

There are also other things that can help to differentiate. Brake fluids have different kinds of esters in them. DOT 3, 4, and 5.1 are based on ethyl glycols. Ethyl glycol will absorb water which can adjust the boiling point of the brake fluid. DOT 3 or 4 are likely the kind of brake fluid that you will find in your car. DOT 5 is a silicone based fluid and doesn't absorb water.

Brake fluid boosts your car's braking performance. Without having enough fluid in your brake system, your car may not stop. For more information, talk to a glycol supplier in your area.