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Brake Fluid 101

Brake Fluid & Copper Testing

Brake fluid is the life’s blood of the braking system. Just like engine oil, coolant and transmission fluid, brake fluid wears over time. This leaves the brake system unprotected and vulnerable to corrosion. Brake system corrosion can lead to: ABS damage, brake system failure and longer stopping distance.

New technology was necessary to accurately determine brake fluid condition to protect the system from damaging corrosion. In 1999, Phoenix Systems invented and patented a new technology using copper to identify when brake fluid replacement is required. BrakeStrip with copper testing technology quickly identifies the primary problem with brake fluid.

BrakeStrip Basics

  • You can’t determine brake fluid condition by moisture, color, time or vehicle mileage
  • BrakeStrip determines when brake fluid replacement is required
  • BrakeStrip uses MAP guidelines for brake fluid test results
  • BrakeStrip is a copper test, not a moisture test

Copper Is a Big Problem and a Tell-Tale Indicator

Brake lines have a copper lining that begin a slow corrosion process from the time brake fluid is added during manufacturing. Copper levels can actually predict when more damaging corrosion will occur. It’s like a wear indicator for your brake fluid. Copper plays a vital role in brake system safety.

Government studies have proven that copper can actually plate to ABS components causing them not to operate properly resulting in longer stopping distance. In addition, copper can accelerate the corrosion of iron components used in the brake system.

Copper Summary

  • Brake lines are lined with copper.
  • Copper predicts more damaging corrosion, it’s a wear indicator!
  • Copper can damage ABS components.
  • Copper accelerates corrosion.
  • Proper brake fluid exchange removes copper and replenishes the corrosion inhibitors.

How It Works

The technology is complex, but the test is simple. Simply dip BrakeStrip into the brake fluid for one second and the color reaction begins. The reaction zone on the strip will change from white to purple in proportion to the copper level in the brake fluid. Simply match the strip color to the color scale and replace brake fluid at 200 ppm or higher. This provides proof that brake fluid replacement is required.

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