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Brake Bleeding

new 5/13/02

BLEEDING THE BRAKES (from Baer Brake website www.baer.com)

This requires a properly sized box wrench, for the bleeder and the clear brake hose provided with your system. Good fluid is a must. Baer Racing has tested a wide variety of fluids and strongly recommends Performance Friction’s new Z-Rated fluid # 90016 for street and occasional track use (with Ford HD # C6AZ-19542-AA our backup suggestion for this same duty). These two fluids are both packaged properly in cans, not plastic bottles and have proven more effective than fluids which are often many times more expensive. For racing, Baer recommends and uses only Castrol SRF. Baer Racing stocks and sells the Performance Friction Z-Rated, Ford HD and Castrol SRF.

Always remember, good to excellent brakes or fluid do not function without adequate cooling. In fact the more serious your brake system the more attention needs to be directed to proper ducting, as they will generate more heat due to the increased capacity.
Proper Bleeding Technique
Slowly pour fluid into the master cylinder so as not to aerate the fluid.


Enlist someone who will help you bleed the brakes. Make sure they also read these instructions carefully (so they understand the goal).

  1. For systems which are essentially dry front and rear, start by filling the master cylinder with proper fluid.
  2. Next, at the caliper farthest from the master cylinder attach the clear plastic bleed line to the bleeder and open it, VERY SLOWLY stroke the brake pedal by hand or foot until fluid comes out. Now close the bleeder.
    1. Have your partner very slowly, with modest pressure (approximately 25-30 ft/lbs), stroke the pedal ONE TIME until hydraulic resistance is encountered. Ask your partner to hold at this point with the same modest and even pressure and notify you that he is, "holding."
    2. Open the bleeder, letting the pedal go to the floor or until it stops using the same modest level of pressure, close the bleeder, notify your partner, "the system is sealed."
  4. Repeat BLEEDING SEQUENCE (never stroke the pedal more than one time), until all signs of air are purged (no bubbles) from fluid. IMPORTANT NOTE: DO NOT LET THE MASTER CYLINDER RUN DRY, be sure to check fluid level after every third bleeding sequence or sooner if reservoir volume is very small.
  5. Move to the location which is the next furthest from the master cylinder and repeat the procedures previously outlined. Continue until all calipers have been bleed. You are now 75 % complete with the bleeding process.
  6. Now, take a small block of wood or a plastic hammer and carefully tap the calipers to dislodge any additional air bubbles that may be trapped.

Before re-installing wheels and placing the car on the ground, we recommend you carefully wipe clean all caliper surfaces, hose joints and fittings making sure they are all dry and free from seeping. If not, inspect and tighten appropriately. Spray all rotor surfaces with Brake Klean® or a similar product to remove all dirt and oils from your hand that may have been transferred to the rotor during assembly. Also remember to remove the nut which has been holding rotor in place, before attempting to re-install the wheel.

For street use, as with any time you open the brake system, it may be advisable to repeat the bleeding procedure after driving the vehicle for a day, as driving the car may dislodge some additional air bubbles. For competition cars, we recommend repeating this procedure directly after at least the first two sessions the car is on track and at the beginning of each race weekend thereafter.

Even if your pedal is high and firm and additional bleeding is deemed unnecessary, always inspect the calipers, hoses and fittings after the first outing for signs of any fluid seeping and correct immediately. If any of this is unclear, or you have comments, please call us at (602) 233-1411.

This method is fine, I've used it many, many times myself in the past...screw open, pedal down slowly, screw closed, pedal up...repeat ad nauseum. You can even be both people if you need to, just wedge the pedal down against the seat base, dash, or steering wheel, go tighten the screw, release the pedal, open the screw, blah, blah.

One potential problem with it (on vehicles which have not had regular fluid flushes) is that you will force the pedal lower with the system opened than it's normal range of travel, pushing the MC pistons further into areas where there are sometimes deposits formed in the MC...destroying the internal seals. I have seen this happen more than once; bleed the system fully as described below, and then immediately need a new MC. This is less of a problem with an aluminum MC, but can certainly still happen. Some people use a block of wood to limit travel.

A much better and faster method IMO is the Mity-Vac hand pump or similar. One-person bleeding, works perfectly every time for me, no pedal movement necessary. The only trouble I've heard of with this method is when the bleeder screw threads are not sealed first, allowing air to be pulled in at the bleeder as fluid is pulled out...making it look as if you'll never be finished bleeding. (This is why the self-bleeder screws with the internal one-way valve have thread sealant.) Remove and clean the screw, wrap it's threads twice (carefully and tightly) with Teflon tape, reinstall, insert vac pump nozzle/nipple, pump to 35-40psi, open screw a turn or so, maintain vacuum, close when fluid is clean and free of air, top off fluid, on to the next caliper.


The best setup is the SpeedBleeder screws and fresh fluid once a year. Put a quart on Valvoline synthetic in it and have fun. It is going to good bad much faster in your brake system than it will on the shelf in a plastic bottle.

By a quart and a pint. Do a thorough flush and then a new quart every year.

Paul Nimz
'97 TR
'93 EG mtx



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