Diagnosing a bad brake master cylinder
Has your brake master cylinder gone bad? How would you know? What even is it? The Auto Repair Place in Boulder, CO has the answers.
Your brake master cylinder is an integral part of your brake system. When one fails, some odd symptoms may arise, and it may be difficult to diagnose. Here’s some information to help you decide if yours has given out on you.
The most obvious symptom of a bad master cylinder is brakes that don’t work at all. This is a pretty rare condition - the master cylinder is the hydraulic pump that pressurizes your brake lines with input from the pedal, and on anything made in the last half century is partitioned internally. This means typically either your front or back brakes will go out, but not usually both at once. If you do happen to find yourself in this situation, head down to our shop as soon as possible, so you can get back on the road quickly and safely.
Since usually only the brakes at the front or back will go out at a time, you will likely notice your car doesn’t stop as well as it should. Inadeqaute braking can cause unwanted accidents, minor and major, so it's important that you're able to identify the problem and strive to solve the problem before those accidents are able to occur. If only half your brakes are working, the master cylinder is likely to blame.
When a master cylinder begins to fail, sometimes the brakes will feel fine one second and lose braking power the next. If fluid is leaking past the seals inside the cylinder, the pedal may feel firm for a moment but won’t hold steady; it’ll feel spongy and keep sinking towards the floor.
If you notice brake fluid leaking from the back of the cylinder against the firewall or brake booster, or can see it leaking down the firewall on the inside of the car, it’s definitely time to have the master cylinder replaced. If it’s leaking, it’ll run out of fluid eventually, leaving you without at least half your brakes. Plus, it lets air enter the system, causing the brakes to feel spongy as well. Sometimes the pedal will regain firmness if you pump it a couple of times, but it typically won’t last for more than a few seconds.
If you’ve noticed any of these symptoms, have one of our technicians take a look. Your safety is very important to us, and we want to make sure your vehicle has the utmost reliability when it's on the road. We’ll diagnose and repair your bad master cylinder, and have your vehicle stopping like it’s supposed to in no time.
No matter your repair or maintenance needs, we’ve got you covered. For the best service shop in Boulder, CO, call or stop by The Auto Repair Place today.
Thank you for visiting The Auto Repair Place in Boulder, Lafayette, Louisville, Niwot, and Superior. Count on our automotive repair technicians to keep your car, truck, suv, or van on the roads longer and safer.