How to Locate Car Brake Lines

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When locating a car's brake lines, remember that most new vehicles only have two sets, including the front and rear brakes. Look for brake lines to come down from the master cylinder with help from a certified master mechanic in this free video on car maintenance.

Part of the Video Series: Car Maintenance
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Video Transcript

Good afternoon. My name is Tom Brintzenhofe, certified master tech, out of Redding, PA, and today, we're going to talk a little bit about how to locate your car's brake line. Now, all cars that are made out there, are basically all designed the same way. You have your master cylinder, right here, and after your master cylinder, you'll have either two or four lines coming out of it. Most of the new vehicles only have two, your front brakes, your rear brakes. They'll come down from your master cylinder, into your anti-lock brake unit, which is kind of a little hard to see from where you're at, but right here is your unit. It comes in, you've got two lines coming in, front and rear, and your four lines going out, and all of your brake lights throughout the whole vehicle, all basically look the same way. They all come down here in this fuel line, and they'll run down to each wheel. At the wheel, they'll run into a smaller section of rubber hose, and that's what they call your brake hose, which runs to your brake calipers or your brake's drum wheel cylinders, or whatnot, but basically, all your brake lines throughout the vehicle, look like these here. They're like all steel made. A lot of times, if you end up breaking one of these, the easiest way to find where your brake is, is just follow your lines from here, down each wheel. They've gone individually to that wheel, your right front, then your left front, then your left rear, and your right rear. If you break one, just follow it on down through. They usually run on one side of the frame route, to the rear. You can follow them both, but basically like I said, here's your design of your steel brake line. If you have to replace one of these, your local parts stores have them, just take a piece with you. A lot of the newer designs out there, you don't need any special tools, you can actually bend them with your hand, without crimping them. They cost quite a bit much more than a regular steel line, but it's a lot easier to use. You end up going and crimping a steel line, to the point you can't use it, and then throw the whole piece away, and start on the next one, and so on, but get the ones, like I said, that you can bend with your hand, real simple to use, and just trace them. A lot of times you can just run them right alongside the old ones. Make sure when you do run these new lines, that you end up either wire tying them together, or secure them fast to the vehicle, so they're not bouncing around, and rubbing through, but that's basically the easiest way I can tell you, how to locate your brake lines in your vehicle.

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