Brake fluid change and ac

Discussion in 'Prime Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by EazyPeazy, Jun 3, 2020.

  1. EazyPeazy

    EazyPeazy Member

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    Just curious about when brake fluid should be changed. Also A/C reconditioning? I have 41K and change in my 2017 Prius prime which is at its 2 yr mark. When does brake fluid need replacement? About the A/C reconditioning? Is this even necessary? Looking for some advice. Thanks.
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    For the brake fluid, Toyota Canada says tri-yearly or 48K kms (30K miles), whichever comes first. Toyota USA says nothing on the subject. Repair Manual excerpt attached. The order to bleed them: start with front/right, then go around counterclockwise. It takes the Repair Manual a page or two to say that, in dribs and drabs, using acronyms like LH and RH. Maddening...

    I've done the non-Techstream method a couple of times now. My "special tools" for draining are a proper bleed valve coupler, pushed onto vinyl tube, run through a hole in the lid into a Kirkland Mayo jar (cleaned out...). Also a largish hypodermic needle (sans needle) with a tube extension, and a slim spigot pushed on the end, for basting fluid out of the reservoir.

    Also, even though it's 3rd gen, for sure watch @NutzAboutBolts video, I believe the principals are the same. One thing not mentioned in Repair Manual, is to baste out and replace with fresh, most of the reservoir fluid. This is common lore, makes a lot of sense, and of course is not mentioned by Toyota.

    AC, I'd make a point to use it periodically, say bi-weekly, and have it serviced (evacuation, pressure check and recharge, preferably by dealership) if/when you notice a fall-off in performance. There's a sight glass you can check: I believe it should be pretty much bubble free as the compressor runs, and there might be a little swirl of bubbles as compressor stops? And one of the lines from the compressor should be quite cold, when it's run a while.
     

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    #2 Mendel Leisk, Jun 3, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
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  3. EazyPeazy

    EazyPeazy Member

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    My A/C is doing just fine. Never had a odd smell or malfunction. So I won’t service it now. As far as the brake fluid, I will ask my mechanic friend to take a look. Thanks for your prompt reply!
     
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  4. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    As long as it is working, there is no routine maintenance for the A/C.
    Except maybe for changing the cabin filter and cleaning the condenser fins by the radiator maybe.

    You can't tell anything about brake fluid by "taking a look".
    It needs to be changed by a qualified shop AT LEAST every 4 years or 50K miles......which is longer than the recommendation.......or when other major brake work is done.

    Completely ignoring the brake fluid is NOT a good idea.
     
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  5. EazyPeazy

    EazyPeazy Member

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    What do you feel about brake pads? I have read that since the Prius Prime and priuses in general use regen braking to an extent, that brake pads won’t need to be replaced for like 100k miles? I don’t even have 42K yet on my prime and my dealer is telling me that they will need to be replaced at next service? Really?? Am I missing something?
     
  6. FuelMiser

    FuelMiser Senior Member

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    My theory on the brake fluid is as long as it remains clear (not cloudy) and not discolored (brownish) it's good to go. The reason to change/flush brake fluid is because water/contaminants get in it and gum up the ABS (anti-lock braking system) as well as the normal brake components (pistons). Your mechanic will hopefully concur. As for brake pad life, it's like MPG, yours will vary. They should be inspected and thickness measured. There are specs that are black and white as to when to change. Rotors should be smooth with no scoring. Pads evenly worn. Only a proper inspection/measurement can determine the condition of yours.
     
  7. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    I "feel" that they need to be replaced when they are worn out.......regardless of the mileage.
    Everybody's driving conditions and habits are different so the wear is different.
    Generalities are usually wrong for any one specific instance.
     
  8. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    Not if he is a "real" mechanic he won't.
    Brake fluid also deteriorates because of heat and age.
     
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    The
    again, Toyota USA has no recommendation, for brake fluid change. Not saying I agree with that, just for the record.
     
  10. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    AGAIN......I don't believe that at all. Unless it is a "misprint" in the owners manuals for a specific model year.
    My C is in the body shop now or I would look.

    From having other Toyota models over the years, I'm pretty sure that it is NOT true for all Toyota models in general.
     
  11. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Well if you find it post location. Cripes, not saying that's good, just trying to keep things straight for the record. Toyota Canada only started recommending brake fluid change around model year 2014. Which is also kinda nuts, my opinion.
     
  12. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Attached is the Toyota USA Warranty and Maintenance Booklet for 2013 Prius c (just one I happened to download some time back, from Toyota Tech Info). If you open that document, search for the text "brake fluid", you'll get zero results.
     

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  13. m8547

    m8547 Senior Member

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    Every time I've changed brake fluid, the fluid that comes out of the calipers is dark and disgusting, and the fluid in the reservoir still looks new. There's almost no circulation in the system.

    In other words, you can't inspect it properly without starting to change it. So you might as well just change it.
     
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  14. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Maybe not for all Toyota models, but definitely for Gen3 and Gen4 including PRIME in US has no recommended interval for brake fluid replacement. I can't remember if I ever did brake fluid replacement on our 2005 Sienna. Brakes yes, but maybe not brake fluid.

    I find it funny why Toyota has no recommendation in US but in Canada for basically the same cars.
     
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  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Yeah we get all the good stuff. :whistle:

    This is excerpt from 2014 model year Toyota Canada Owner's Manual Supplement (covers ALL models, not just Prius:

    upload_2020-6-4_7-9-2.png

    2014 might have been first year they came around, I know for our 2010 there was nada. I'll attach the full booklet.
     

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    #15 Mendel Leisk, Jun 4, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
  16. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    I just looked up the 2005 Sienna Scheduled Maintenance Guide.
    Nop, no "Brake Fluid" mentioned in entire booklet. Now, I suspect entire Toyota vehicle models in US has no recommended brake fluid replacement interval.

    FYI, Nissan USA goes completely opposite. They recommend brake fluid replacement every 2 years or 30k miles (or more frequent every 12 mo/15k miles under severe condition schedule) on all models including LEAF.
     
    #16 Salamander_King, Jun 4, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
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  17. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Maybe an understanding that dealer service advisors and service departments are sales driven profit centers. Once you realize that's their primary motive and not helping customers save money on unnecessary repairs, it begins to make more sense.
     
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  18. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Our nearby Honda dealership had a Service Manager that bucked that trend. Great guy: if there was something pricey needing doing, he would come out personally go over what it was, why it needed doing, and if there was multiple ways you could go, would explain the options. Sadly he didn't last there long. I heard he went on to teaching in a local community college.
     
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  19. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    When our aging 2005 Sienna needed a corroded tail pipe replaced, a Toyota dealer service mgr gave me an estimate but actually recommended me to take the van to Midas for a repair. The dealer would not repair the corroded section, so the replacement with genuine Toyota parts was huge cost, IIRC over $1K, but Midas would just repair the corroded section for a few hundred bucks.
     
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  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Funny, our chats were regarding rusting mufflers as well. :ROFLMAO:
     
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