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Thread: brake fluid put in power steering box....bad?

  1. #1
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    brake fluid put in power steering box....bad?

    after just sucessfully completing 'option b' with out a problem, went to do a power bleed of the brake lines when brain fade kicked in. I filled up the PAS tank with brake fluid. Worse still i took it for a drive to check the brakes!

    Planning on doing a bleed and flush of the poswer steering now (not exactly how i thought i was going to spend my sunday night, but cant blame anyone but myself !

    have i just done some major damage, or should it be ok given that it was only in there for a couple of hours max ?

    please be ok, please be ok..........
    Often "geographically challenged" but never lost

    2001 D2 TD5 ES - if its not leaking oil then its out of oil.

  2. #2
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    I can't say I have heard of anyone doing this. Fortunately, I do not think that brake fluid will have an immediate damaging effect on the seals as would be the case if you did it the other way (power steering fluid into the brake system). While the lubricity of brake fluid is less than the fluid the system was designed for, it is unlikely that a short drive will cause serious damage (pump rather than box would be the likely damage). If properly flushed and refilled, I think it is likely that you will get away with it.

    John
    John

    JDNSW
    1986 110 County 3.9 diesel
    1970 2a 109 2.25 petrol

  3. #3
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    providing you only topped up with and not "totally filled" you'll be right. drain flush refill, then do it again just to make sure.
    Dave

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  4. #4
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    Cool thanks all - turns out it was the ACE I topped up, not the power steering tank. Poured out the contents of the tank and refilled. Ran out if time to flush it tonight so first thing after work....

    I take it the ACE runs all the time and so some of it would have gone through the pump? looking at teh state of the ACE fluid (murky brown) id say its due for a flush anyway.

    Good thing is the power steering got a flush out !! Found out that by putting hose on the bleed nipple I could drain the bleed fluid with out it spraying every where, like I had read when researching my predicament.
    Often "geographically challenged" but never lost

    2001 D2 TD5 ES - if its not leaking oil then its out of oil.

  5. #5
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    I read somewhere that a bit of brake fluid expands the rubber seals and can give temp stop leak properties to power steering leaks

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamin Strides View Post

    Good thing is the power steering got a flush out !! Found out that by putting hose on the bleed nipple I could drain the bleed fluid with out it spraying every where, like I had read when researching my predicament.
    so lets get this straight--
    using the same clear plastic hose I use for bleeding brakes, I can attach to the power steer bleed nipple and by just letting the engine idle I can flush the system,,,
    how fast does it use the reseviour up?
    "How long since you've visited The Good Oil?"

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro_The_Swift View Post


    so lets get this straight--
    using the same clear plastic hose I use for bleeding brakes, I can attach to the power steer bleed nipple and by just letting the engine idle I can flush the system,,,
    how fast does it use the reseviour up?

    Yep although its slightly bigger. I use silicon hose (thanks work!) which is probably a little more 'stretchy' than what you use, so it worked a treat.

    it empties the tank very quickly.....so i found out. I guess though if you only slightly open the nipple it will restrict the flow some what.

    I ran it into a 2 litre paint tin under the car and i had it half full in no time.

    they put that nipple in a realy easy place to get at too!! (read heavy sarcasm)

    cheers
    Chris
    Often "geographically challenged" but never lost

    2001 D2 TD5 ES - if its not leaking oil then its out of oil.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by It'sNotWorthComplaining! View Post
    I read somewhere that a bit of brake fluid expands the rubber seals and can give temp stop leak properties to power steering leaks
    Yes - I have heard the same (from reputable sources). Brake fluid in a PAS system works like "stop leak". However may not be good for the seals long term...

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    To flush the PAS and ACE (same reservoir) the most sensible solution came from a post by Urban Panzar a few months ago.

    Use a turkey baster to suck out the old fluid in the reservoir, immediately fill with new fluid and then go for a drive. Repeat if necessary. Simple
    '99 ES D2 V8 + 2" lift, AMV CDL, LR Roof Rack

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by simonl8353 View Post
    To flush the PAS and ACE (same reservoir) the most sensible solution came from a post by Urban Panzar a few months ago.

    Use a turkey baster to suck out the old fluid in the reservoir, immediately fill with new fluid and then go for a drive. Repeat if necessary. Simple
    I did a similar thing but by lifting the tank up and out of the holding bracket and turning the opening over into a cut in half plastic bottle....precarious and messy when tired dirty and using a single LED head torch down my back laneway at 10.30pm sunday night

    I prefer your way!! will be off to coles tomorrow shopping for turkeys......and their baster!!

    cheers
    Often "geographically challenged" but never lost

    2001 D2 TD5 ES - if its not leaking oil then its out of oil.

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