I am not a mechanic or a representative of any motorcycle or tool manufacturer or anything else official. This page is only my notes on doing this procedure myself. Although I believe what I have documented here is correct, I make no promises and you do this at your own risk.
Changing your brake fluid is part of the regular service schedule for your bike. In this article we will change the fluid for the front brake (the rear, used less often and less forcefully, needs the fluid replaced less often).
- Rear stand (recommended)
- Phillips screwdrivers
- 10mm open-end wrench
- Large clamp (spring type or c-clamp with padded faces) or a second person to hold brake lever
- New brake fluid of specified grade (my manual calls for DOT-4)
Difficulties & Warnings
Some difficulties could be:
- Spilled brake fluid is messy and can damage paint on bodywork.
- Insufficient bleeding can leave air in the brake line, resulting in a “mushy” feel and reduced braking effectiveness.
- To fully fill the brake line with new fluid, use the following steps:
- Open the bleeder valve slightly
- Pull the front brake lever all the way in and hold it pulled in with a clamp — or have a helper hold it pulled in.
- Close the bleeder valve while the brake lever is pulled in
- Quickly release the brake lever
- Repeat these steps several times until the act of pulling the brake lever is discharging new brake fluid into the bleeder drain hose.
- To remove any air bubbles from the reservoir pump:
- Remove the reservoir cover
- Slowly and gently squeeze the brake lever several times until no bubbles rise into the reservoir.
- To remove any air trapped in the brake line:
- With the bleeder valve closed, squeeze the brake lever hard and either clamp it in this position or have a helper hold it squeezed.
- With the brake lever squeezed, quickly open and re-close the bleeder valve.
- Release the brake lever.
- Repeat these steps several times until there is no sign of air coming out of the bleeder valve when it is opened.