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97 sedan deville
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51 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone:

A couple weeks ago, the brake light along with the Check Brake Fluid Level message started popping up. Upon checking the brake fluid, the level looked ok, but the fluid looked dirty. Could dirty fluid cause the message to come up? Anyways, mechanic put some brake fluid in last week and it seemed to fix the problem.

Today though, the brake light came on again with the check brake fluid message.

Although the entire time the brakes have felt just fine. What could this be?

Also, does this car need a special kind of brake fluid or will it take any universal brake fluid?
 

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2001 DeVille
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411 Posts
Any fresh DOT3 will work fine. Sounds like you have a leak, there's no other way it could be that low again so soon. Brake fluid is not consumed, only lost or displaced into the calipers. Have a mechanic check the system for leaks ASAP.

Vernon
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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68,531 Posts
Look at brake fluid specs in your owner's manual and on the parts store shelves - "DOT 3" fluids meet the latest Department Of Transportation specs for brake fluid formulae.
 

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2001 DeVille
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411 Posts
The most widely used specification of automotive brake fluid. Dot1 and 2 are obsolete. Dot4 can be incompatible with some ABS units and cause leaks. DOT5 is silicone based, won't mix with 3 or 4, and doesn't work in ABS. You can use any name brand DOT3 brake fluid safely in the car.

Vernon
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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68,531 Posts
FWIW, it is recommended that you have a good shop do a complete brake fluid exchange at least every 5 years.

Study up on "brake fluid' - it simply LOVES to absorb moisture, for one thing .................... thus the warning in manuals and on brake fluid bottles "Use only clean fluid from new, unopened containers".
 

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1926 Model T street rod, 2000 Jaguar XJ8, 1999 Corvette.
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6,737 Posts
Low fluid most likely means thin front brake pads. As pads wear, the brake fluid drops in the master cyl. to fill the caliper. Have all the brakes checked for per cent remaining. Most foreign car manufactures recommend brake fluid flushes every 24 months. If we adopted this practice, less master cylinders, calipers and wheel cylinders would need to be replaced! Would put alot of brake part vendors out of business! Brake fluid is hydroscopic, meaning absorbs moisture. Moisture eventually corrodes, pits and rusts out wheel cylinders, master cylinders and calipers.
 

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97 sedan deville
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51 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Well everyone. The car is in the garage and recently, while stopped, the brake pedal started going down more like it was going down to the floor. The car still stops normally, but the brake light would stay on with the check brake fluid message. The mechanic believes that it could be the master brake cylinder which is not at all good since I've heard that they can be very expensive. Also, the brake fluid level was at max too when we checked it.

How expensive is a master brake cylinder?

Are there remanufactured MBC's?

How long does it take to change the master brake cylinder?
 

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98 DeVille, 97 DeVille d'Elegance
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7,345 Posts
A MC change is one of the cheaper and overall easier things to do on a Cadillac. Don't cheap out, get a new unit with warranty. Couple hours to change and bleed the system.
 
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