1990 Ford Taurus Check Brake Fluid
The most important safety feature on your car is the brake system. One of the keys to keeping your brake system in peak operational condition is to check the level and condition of your brake fluid. Fresh brake fluid will have a clear or slightly yellow color. Old brake fluid will be much darker and discolored. Brake fluid is "hygroscopic," meaning it absorbs ambient moisture (water). The more water in the fluid, the less effective it is, giving you a mushy pedal feel and longer braking distance. Take care of your brake system and it will take care of you when you need it most.
 Tools Used
|Fresh brake fluid|
|Latex or Nitrile gloves|
|Shop rag or paper towel|
 Check Brake Fluid
- Pop your hood and visually look for your brake fluid reservoir. It is located on top of the brake master cylinder. The master cylinder is located in front of your power brake booster (large saucer-shaped part attached to the driver's side firewall).
- Wipe away any grime, dirt and grit around the reservoir cap. Unscrew the cap and set it aside on a shop rag.
- Look at the color of the fluid. If it looks dark, gritty, dirty or has sediment, it should be replaced.
- Check the level of the fluid. There will be "Max" and "Min" markings on the side of the reservoir. As long as the fluid is above the "Min" mark, the level is fine (the fluid level might appear low, but as long as it is above the minimum fill level, it is fine). Remember, the more your brake pads wear down, the more fluid is drawn from the reservoir and into the brake lines. If the level is below "Min," add some fresh fluid from a new, unopened bottle of brake fluid.
- Replace the reservoir cap. Make sure it's snug, but there is no need to over-tighten. Clean up any spilled brake fluid, especially any that spills on your car's paint, as it is highly corrosive.
 Tips & Warnings
- If adding brake fluid, do it only from a new, unopened bottle. This will guarantee that the new fluid you are adding will not have absorbed any ambient moisture.
- Brake fluid is highly corrosive. It will eat away at your car's paint job if you spill any. Wipe up spills as quickly as you can. It is also not the best stuff to get onto your skin or in your eyes, so wear safety glasses and latex or Nitrile gloves in case any fluid splashes back at you.