Inspected front wheel bearings today & found a way to avoid bleeding brakes

Joined
Aug 23, 2021
Messages
15
Location
PNW - USA
I discovered a way to avoid bleeding your brake line (for the most part) when you need to remove a caliper and I thought I might share the info in case anyone else hadn't heard of this...

I stumbled across a post in some mechanic forum that discussed a way to disconnect your hard brake line from your caliper without having to drain/bleed your brake line (much).

"Before you do anything press your brake pedal until you feel good pressure and block it there with a stick/bar/etc.
Then remove your brake line from your caliper and replace.
Once your caliper is back in and brake line installed, open the bleeder valve and remove the stick on the brake pedal.
Be prepared to top off your brake fluid reservoir as it drains down a bit.
Close the bleeder valve when fluid comes out steadily.
Pump brake pedal and hold to bleed as needed but likely you're good to go."

I tried this and only had to bleed the brake line 3 times and pressure felt good. topped reservoir off and was back on the road. I've only messed with brakes once before, but it involved 3-4 hours of bleeding the brake line. This was a huge time-saver and I wanted to pass it on.

I'm sure someone with more mechanical knowledge than myself will be able to explain what's happening inside the brake system to make this work.

Cheers
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jan 9, 2004
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1,667
Its called gravity bleeding. If you remove the cap from the reservoir, the weight of the fluid above in the reservoir will push the bubbles out the bleeder you have cracked. I've been bleeding my brakes like that for decades. I also rather than pinch the rubber flex line when removing the front callipers, I use vacuum caps on the steel hard line to minimize the mess.
 
Joined
Aug 23, 2021
Messages
15
Location
PNW - USA
Its called gravity bleeding. If you remove the cap from the reservoir, the weight of the fluid above in the reservoir will push the bubbles out the bleeder you have cracked. I've been bleeding my brakes like that for decades. I also rather than pinch the rubber flex line when removing the front callipers, I use vacuum caps on the steel hard line to minimize the mess.

Beyond the gravity bleed, the biggest discovery was that with the brake pedal held down the brake fluid was unable to drain.
I removed the caliper and watched as maybe 8 drops of fluid came out, then stopped completely. The reservoir didn't even budge until we did the gravity bleed at the very end.
A huge relief as I was expecting a multi-hour bleeding process.
 

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