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Fluids and Lubricants discussion of all fluids and lubricants

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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 06:33 AM Thread Starter
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break fluid

Just got a notice from Harley stating you must change your break fluid every 2 years or you my loose brakes! What's up with that. Never changed fluid in all years I have been riding. Is this necessary?

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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 06:40 AM
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Brake fluid is hygroscopic - it has to absorb moisture - when the brakes heat moisture forms - when it gets hot enough it boils creating more moisture - over time it loses it's ability to absorb and it will create air pockets - air pockets mean you have no pressure which equal no brakes - (there's a little more to it but that is basic layman / rider terms!! Bottom line change fluid every two years - passenger vehicles as well - will they fail if you don't? Maybe not - but will definitely lose some stopping power........
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 07:40 AM
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You got a notice from Harley?

Or did you get an invite to get your bike serviced at the local dealership?

Your bike should have come with an owners manual, and in that manual is a table telling you about regular service intervals.

You follow this if you want to keep you bike in tip top condition and your riding experience safe.

I know many people wait for things to break on their cars before fixing them. On a bike that could mean real trouble.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 08:12 AM
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I just got one also , had my vin in the letterhead , came from Harley , and the last paragraph states :

"We strongly recommend that you visit your local authorized Harley-Davidson dealer to have your brake fluid changed right away unless you can confirm (with service records) the fluid has been changed within the last 2 years .."

The local dealer has not seen my bike since the 1k service in April 2011 . No dealer has ..

I have no issues changing the fluids , but what is so different about the ABS set up that you need special equipment ? AFAIK , dont need it with cages , and I change my cages brake fluids occasionally with apparently no issues ..
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 08:25 AM
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Got my notice from HD about brake fluid. I just had brake pads installed so I had the fluid changed before I got the notice.

Last edited by TONY G; 06-18-2017 at 08:30 AM. Reason: spelling
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 09:24 AM
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Got the notice too..funny thing..I bought mine but it had been at the dealer for a year already..so I guess 1 year post purchase and Ive got to change?? Are they covering their six if something happens? Do they have a severe overstock of HD brake fluid? lol...
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 10:45 AM
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Clutch Too

As HD has moved to hydraulic clutches similar service will be required to that system periodically as well.
Less frequently but necessary from time to time.
Some of my previous bikes had hydraulic clutches which started to perform poorly and after a flushing they returned to proper working order.
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 01:24 PM Thread Starter
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My notice was the same as HarleyJack and the above. Over 40 years I never changed break fluid, all other fluids 3 to 5000. I guess I will have to make another change in maintenance. Thanks all.

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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 02:06 PM
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It's either in my owner's manual or service manual that says it should be changed every two years. I had mine done at the 15k service along with the clutch fluid.

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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-18-2017, 02:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laconia View Post
Brake fluid is hygroscopic - it has to absorb moisture - when the brakes heat moisture forms - when it gets hot enough it boils creating more moisture - over time it loses it's ability to absorb and it will create air pockets - air pockets mean you have no pressure which equal no brakes - (there's a little more to it but that is basic layman / rider terms!! Bottom line change fluid every two years - passenger vehicles as well - will they fail if you don't? Maybe not - but will definitely lose some stopping power........
True enough the DOT4s are because of the added glycol. But the DOT5 is silicone-based and thus has a much longer service-interval than the DOT4.
That said is better to be safe than sorry. The US$15.00 or less brake fluid is a cheap insurance considering the alternative...

I've changed to DOT5 on my 2001 FLTRSEI2.


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