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My brake pedal is feeling kinda squishy, and I want to bleed them. I've owned the truck for a little over 1.5 years ... should I just replace all the fluid? is that done differently than bleeding?

What is the procedure? I bought this ~$5 brake bleeder kit from harborfreight.. comes with a tube to put on the bleeder, and a small bottle.

am I supposed to take the cap off the reservoir? have a friend pump the pedal 3 times, holding it down the last time, open up the bleeder, let it all squirt out, and close it. do that like 3 times?

am i even close? can this be done without removing the wheels?

thanks..
 

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before you start bleeding, check for any brake fluid leaks.
 

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if you take the cap of the brake fluid reservoir and pump brakes, you will shoot oil all over. So do not do that.
It sounds like your doing it correctly. It may take more than 3 tries, depending on how much air/bubbles you have in your line. As you stated, have your buddy pump brakes 3 times and on the third or fourth time hold the pedal down and release the bleeder. Dont let it all squirt out (catch with cloth so it dont shoot everywhere), just quick release and close the bleeder and repeat 3-4 times per side. Hope that helps. I doubt you have to switch the fluid.
 

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oh and start from the wheel thats farthest from the brake reservoir. so that means RR then LR then RF and lastly LF.
 

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2016 Colorado Z71 Crew cab
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My brake pedal is feeling kinda squishy, and I want to bleed them. I've owned the truck for a little over 1.5 years ... should I just replace all the fluid? is that done differently than bleeding?

What is the procedure? I bought this ~$5 brake bleeder kit from harborfreight.. comes with a tube to put on the bleeder, and a small bottle.

am I supposed to take the cap off the reservoir? have a friend pump the pedal 3 times, holding it down the last time, open up the bleeder, let it all squirt out, and close it. do that like 3 times?

am i even close? can this be done without removing the wheels?

thanks..
Remember the front calipers have a bleeder valve on each side. (2 per each front caliper)
 

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2007 Colorado regular cab, 2.9L 2WD
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Remember the front calipers have a bleeder valve on each side. (2 per each front caliper)
I have the Isuzu shop manual that instructs to run the engine while depressing the brake peddle for bleeding. Is this really necessary if I am not trying to bleed the ABS module? I've never before read to do this while the engine is running. (I don't even have the proper scan tool to cycle the solenoids.)

From the manual:

BLEEDING OF THE BRAKE HYDRAULIC CIRCUIT

If air enters the bake lines, it will cause poor brake action. Therefore, bleeding should be performed if the brakes have been used with the level of brake fluid in the reservoir excessively low or if brake pipes have been disconnected in the course of brake servicing.
The bleeding operation calls for co-operative action of 2 persons.
  • Set the parking brake firmly while bleeding.
  • Perform bleeding operation with ENGINE RUNNING, to prevent damage to push rod seal.
    Make sure exhaust is suitably ventilated.
  • Bleed the hydraulic system with the fluid reservoir filled to the specified level.
  • Bleed the system starting with the rear wheel cylinder farthest from the master cylinder.
 

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I have the Isuzu shop manual that instructs to run the engine while depressing the brake peddle for bleeding. Is this really necessary if I am not trying to bleed the ABS module? I've never before read to do this while the engine is running. (I don't even have the proper scan tool to cycle the solenoids.)

From the manual:

BLEEDING OF THE BRAKE HYDRAULIC CIRCUIT

If air enters the bake lines, it will cause poor brake action. Therefore, bleeding should be performed if the brakes have been used with the level of brake fluid in the reservoir excessively low or if brake pipes have been disconnected in the course of brake servicing.
The bleeding operation calls for co-operative action of 2 persons.
  • Set the parking brake firmly while bleeding.
  • Perform bleeding operation with ENGINE RUNNING, to prevent damage to push rod seal.
    Make sure exhaust is suitably ventilated.
  • Bleed the hydraulic system with the fluid reservoir filled to the specified level.
  • Bleed the system starting with the rear wheel cylinder farthest from the master cylinder.
Disregard what Bluem00n said. Besides bumping a 13 year old thread, his reference to the calipers is for the second gen. If the manual says run the engine, run the engine, but don't do so in an enclosed space.
 

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2007 Colorado regular cab, 2.9L 2WD
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Disregard what Bluem00n said. Besides bumping a 13 year old thread, his reference to the calipers is for the second gen. If the manual says run the engine, run the engine, but don't do so in an enclosed space.
Thanks. And yeah, CO poisoning :( (A recent news article depicted a young woman who died while hanging off the back of a boat swim platform. She 'drowned', just kind of let go and slipped away, but the coroner found lethal amounts of CO in her blood so she likely passed out and let go. Just from being near the boat exhaust too long. -- Chemistry can be unforgiving to the unaware.)
 

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In follow-up: between replacing the front pads and a full brake fluid flush, these brakes feel great. The old fluid looked like dark cloudy olive oil to start. Weird, as ethylene/propylene glycol is clear. Used a syringe with six inches of aquarium air line tube to aspirate all of the old nasty fluid (and some particulate floaties) out of the reservoir. Refilled with fresh fluid. Used the syringe like a baster to squirt around and stir up as much as possible.

I know some of you are wincing at the thought of stirring up crud within the master. Yes, if all that garbage goes into the ABS or a piston, will it cause mischief? I am pretty patient with these things and had no intention of leaving suspended garbage to get deeper into the machine. After rinsing and repeating until what I sucked up was clear and clean, I filled the reservoir back to the bottom of the cap neck. Left a shop cloth over the opening, started the engine and pumped the brakes a few times. The master cylinder did NOT squirt up -- seems the inner baffles of that reservoir prevent that.

Next, I bled the rears (RR first, with a bleeder kit, then the LR) They are both fed from the same line from the ABS. Took probably 20 presses of the pedal (and reservoir topping off) before the cloudy green gunk started flowing clear. Ran some additional pumps through to be sure. Rear bleeder nipple is an 8mm.

Then did the RF. As Tom S noted, the 1st gen trucks only have one bleeder nipple on the caliper. It's a 10mm. [GM engineers - why different sizes on everything? why do you make it so freaking difficult to work on a car? Couldn't you you leave ALL brake nipples at 10mm, or 8mm? One set of parts used universally is vastly more efficient and cost-effective.] Anyway, flushed until clear. Took a bit more flushing until clear, perhaps the caliper piston stroke takes a good deal more volume up front than the drum rears. That would make sense as the front brakes do so much more work stopping the wheel.

Finally the LF, and a good bit of flush. All in all, took 3 quarts of Valvoline DOT 3+4 to completely rinse the system.
 

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In follow-up: between replacing the front pads and a full brake fluid flush, these brakes feel great. The old fluid looked like dark cloudy olive oil to start. Weird, as ethylene/propylene glycol is clear. Used a syringe with six inches of aquarium air line tube to aspirate all of the old nasty fluid (and some particulate floaties) out of the reservoir. Refilled with fresh fluid. Used the syringe like a baster to squirt around and stir up as much as possible.

I know some of you are wincing at the thought of stirring up crud within the master. Yes, if all that garbage goes into the ABS or a piston, will it cause mischief? I am pretty patient with these things and had no intention of leaving suspended garbage to get deeper into the machine. After rinsing and repeating until what I sucked up was clear and clean, I filled the reservoir back to the bottom of the cap neck. Left a shop cloth over the opening, started the engine and pumped the brakes a few times. The master cylinder did NOT squirt up -- seems the inner baffles of that reservoir prevent that.

Next, I bled the rears (RR first, with a bleeder kit, then the LR) They are both fed from the same line from the ABS. Took probably 20 presses of the pedal (and reservoir topping off) before the cloudy green gunk started flowing clear. Ran some additional pumps through to be sure. Rear bleeder nipple is an 8mm.

Then did the RF. As Tom S noted, the 1st gen trucks only have one bleeder nipple on the caliper. It's a 10mm. [GM engineers - why different sizes on everything? why do you make it so freaking difficult to work on a car? Couldn't you you leave ALL brake nipples at 10mm, or 8mm? One set of parts used universally is vastly more efficient and cost-effective.] Anyway, flushed until clear. Took a bit more flushing until clear, perhaps the caliper piston stroke takes a good deal more volume up front than the drum rears. That would make sense as the front brakes do so much more work stopping the wheel.

Finally the LF, and a good bit of flush. All in all, took 3 quarts of Valvoline DOT 3+4 to completely rinse the system.
EDIT: I didn't notice this was a 1st gen thread or the year of your truck until after I posted this...my bad

This is an ancient thread!

Just a note: The correct bleed sequence for 2nd gen is RR, LF, LR, RF.
 

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EDIT: I didn't notice this was a 1st gen thread or the year of your truck until after I posted this...my bad

This is an ancient thread!

Just a note: The correct bleed sequence for 2nd gen is RR, LF, LR, RF.
Yeah, it may be old, but I didn't think there was much point in starting a fresh one over just adding to this. I'm probably wrong about this, but both my grandfather and dad taught me farthest to closest on the bleed. I wonder why it's different for the 2nd gen vehicle. Does it have to do with how the ABS is plumbed?
 

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Yeah, it may be old, but I didn't think there was much point in starting a fresh one over just adding to this. I'm probably wrong about this, but both my grandfather and dad taught me farthest to closest on the bleed. I wonder why it's different for the 2nd gen vehicle. Does it have to do with how the ABS is plumbed?
Yes, it's a combination of plumbing and an ABS module which is located under the cab. Your grandfather and dad taught you correctly, based on the brake system designs they were familiar with.
 
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