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ATF in brake system.. Carb Cleaner on brake parts.. oh my!

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by 78Suburban, Apr 14, 2007.

  1. 78Suburban

    78Suburban 1/2 ton status

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    OK guys, a buddy and I have been having a debate. I want some expert opinions to back up how right I think I am :p: I'll send this link to the buddy once there are several replies.. hopefully he'll believe me then.

    My buddy ran out of brake fluid and decided to use ATF in his system. I told him ATF is oily and would fubar his system. He insists its fine. Am I right?

    I told him to use brake cleaner on his brake parts. He used supertech carb cleaner. Doesn't that stuff have a mild oil in it that will demolish brake shoes and whatnot?

    Is he really right and I'm just anal? Or is his brake system as FUBARed as I think it is?
     
  2. MuddinManny

    MuddinManny Banned

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    FUBAR! ATF will destroy the linings inside the brake system and he will have total failure of the brakes. Time for a really really good flush. Carb cleaner also is FUBAR. It will not evaporate like brake fluid and will leave the oily residue you speak of.

    Manny
     
  3. Russell

    Russell LB7 Tahoe Status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    yeah, he messed up his brakes pretty badly :S Don't let him drive that rig till he fixes it properly!
     
  4. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    He might as well start replacing his brake system since the ATF is going to just mess it all up.
     
  5. MTChevy

    MTChevy 3/4 ton status Premium Member

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    what manny said. I'm pretty sure the ATF will **** stuff up. and if its like manny said, the lines could start to fail, then problems. I do notice that carb cleaner when sprayed is different than brake cleaner and does leave a film type stuff. So I don't know. but thats what i say. no good on both counts
     
  6. 78Suburban

    78Suburban 1/2 ton status

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    I showed my buddy the thread, and he said the brake lines are metal tubing so it won't eat them.. I say its still shafted. am I right?
     
  7. MTChevy

    MTChevy 3/4 ton status Premium Member

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    theres gotta be some rubber somewhere
     
  8. MNorby

    MNorby 3/4 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    my room mate put PS stop leak into his MC. the brakes wouldn't release and stay locked and ssssssssssllllllllllloooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwllllllllyyyyyyy come back. We bled it numerour times and seemed to be ok but he sold the truck too. Another friend who works at a shop had to replace every rubber component of a brake system cause a guy put engine oil into the MC. Even the little rubber on the bottom of the MC cap once he pulled it out it was so swelled up he couldn't put lid back on.
     
  9. 78Suburban

    78Suburban 1/2 ton status

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    Yeah, I'm sure the old 53 powerwagon has rubber front and back, because the suspension has to travel. Isn't there rubber in the wheel cylinders as well? What about master cylinder seals? I'm thinking alot of crap is destroyed. He hasn't used it yet.. is it possible he could just bleed bleed bleed with real fluid and be ok?
     
  10. MuddinManny

    MuddinManny Banned

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    Tell your buddy that the ATF is going to eat away at every rubber lining, gasket, o-ring and he will have total brake failure. If he values his own life, his family's or anyone else's for that matter, he'd stop being stubborn and flush the system completely. Disconnect all the lines from the calipers and the wheel cylinders on the rear drums and flush it out. If not, he is going to have total failure! If he has already driven it, he'll have to clean the calipers and wheel cylinders out.

    Manny
     
  11. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    has he ever taken brake pads off and seen the cylinder in the caliper? how about the seal that prevents air from getting into the master cylinder? what about the lines that go from the metal lines to the caliper or the line at the rear that goes down to the rear axle. i'm thankful i live on the left coast because of him! that's just dumb.

    edit: manny beat me to it!
     
  12. Corey 78K5

    Corey 78K5 1 ton status

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    Yeah like in the master cylinder, calipers, proportioning valve, wheel cylinders and the rubber sections of the brake lines........
     
  13. ssped

    ssped 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Ok here is the skinny. Braided steel brake lines have rubber encased inside, Calipers have a rubber seal in them around the piston, master cylinders have rubber cups in them to supply pressure, and wheel cyliners have cups in them too. ATF will contaminate and impregnate the seals like getting a woman pregnant they swell up and get gooey. They Will fail. Here is your test. Take a standard rubber glove(we use them in the shop) and place it in ATF. The glove will get all jacked up. They make seals for trans fluid from some other plastic or something.

    P.S. anything you place in the brake fluid will absorb into and contaminate it. Brake fluid is a Dessicant.
     
  14. MuddinManny

    MuddinManny Banned

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    And if your buddy still wants to be stubborn, use a little common sense. Why have brake fluid made if ATF will do the job? Hello somebody! Anybody home?

    FUBAR! F*cked Up Beyond All Recognition!
     
  15. surpip

    surpip 1 ton status

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    not always true, most in fact have teflon inside
     
  16. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    Tell your buddy to flush that **** out FAST, if he doesn't hes looking at replacing EVERY part of his brake system(except the hard lines). Hmm $5 trip to the parts store for Brake fluid vs. Master Cylinder, Calipers, Wheel Cylinders, Brake hoses, and possibly proportioning valves. Hope its not ABS and that didn't **** up seals in the ABS motor, thats $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
     
  17. Txchevy18

    Txchevy18 1/2 ton status

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    I can atcually say from first hand exp that this is a very bad idea! My grandpa somehow ended up with a bottle of brake fluid full of atf. Well goin down the off ramp he lost all brake control. Luckily he down shifted and was able to control the truck to a safe stop w/ the e brake. Well we dragged to back to the shop and pulled the cap on the mc. It was swelled up like a balloon.. I ended up rebuilding the entire brakin system from front o back except for the hardlines.. Not a fun project on a 94 k2500. Get that crap out asap atf is a detergent and can and will eat anything rubber it comes into contact with. Kinda like acid..

    Txchevy
     
  18. resurrected_jimmy

    resurrected_jimmy 1/2 ton status

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    On a truck that old that constantly has brake problems anyways he might as well start rebuilding brake components. I have restored many military vehicles and am very familiar with power wagon brake systems. IT IS DONE FOR. Start ordering the wheel cylinder kits, master cylinder kit and new rubber lines for the front axle and the drop line for the rear. If he is cleaning of the shoes with carb cleaner then add a set of linings to the list.
     
  19. 78Suburban

    78Suburban 1/2 ton status

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    He still doesn't believe me! I guess the bright side is that it will only go 45 mph and so a crash into a tree might not be so bad. Maybe I need to find a scholarly journal of science to show him or something! :eek1:
     
  20. Corey 78K5

    Corey 78K5 1 ton status

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    Or he could just hit a car full of kids.......
     

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