Replacing Brake Fluid and Bleeding Front Brakes - Triumph Speed Triple 2006

rnexussix's picture

The brake fluid in both, the front and rear brake fluid reservoirs, was nearing the "Min" levels and was turning a suspicious red / brown color.  The front brake lever was starting to feel spongy  as well  so, I decided it was time to replace the brake fluid on both front and rear brake systems.

I started with the front brakes. Below is the picture of the front brake reservoir. Note the level and the color of the fluid.

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I unpacked and assembled and connected the "Brake bleeding kit "I bought at the local auto-store (pictures below)

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Note the wrench is pre-positioned and bottle is a little bit above the bleeding nipple, so the expelled air bubbles (if present) run up the tube and in to the bottle.

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Brake fluid is a nasty substance. If it get's on the your bike's paint or plastic exteriror,  it will damage their finish. So I wrapped everything that was in close proximity to reservoir and the drain nipple on the caliper  with old t-shirts and other rags.

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I used philips screw driver to remove the metal bracket that secures the cap of the front brake fluid reservoir. Then I twisted and unscrewed the black plastic cap. Removed the cap,  plastic ring and the thin flexible rubber diaphragm. I wiped a the cap, the ring and the diaphragm with a clean rag and laid them aside. then opened a new container of DOT 4 brake fluid (bought it at the local automotive store for about $5.00 ( as opposed to a $25 at the local motorcycle store  for a "motorcycle specific" DOT4 brake fluid ). I don't race my bike and see no reason to spend such money for a questionable difference in performance.

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I filled the reservoir  almost to the brim, then I opened the drain nipple on the right caliper and pumped the brake lever. Watching the old brown colored fluid draining in to the collection bottle and keeping an eye on the top reservoir.  I knew it was really important not let the reservoir go empty as it would introduce air in to the brake lines and an unnecessary effort  of trying to get read of the air bubbles would ensue. As it was I noticed a few bubbles run through the see-through tubing with the old liquid in to the bottle. Several more pumps of the handle, several more refills of the reservoir with the fresh brake fluid  (had to unscrew the collection bottle and empty it a few times in to the old plastic milk container) and I started to see clear uncontaminated brake fluid flowing in to the collection bottle. With reservoir and the right caliper  flashed it was time to flash the left caliper.

I unhooked the brake bleeding kit from the right caliper (making sure that the drain nipple was fully closed before disconnecting the tubing) and reconnected it to the left caliper.  Again, I made sure that the reservoir was full with brake fluid and after opening the nipple it took only a few pumps of the brake lever  (and a couple of top offs for reservoir with fresh brake fluid) to get the clean fluid flowing out in to the drain bottle, since the reservoir and the main brake line were already flushed. Interesting to note, I so several  big air bubbles  coming out of the left caliper as well. No wonder the brake lever felt "spongy".

With left caliper flushed, I closed and tightened the drain nipple and removed the brake bleeding kit. Topped off the front reservoir and reinstalled the diagram, plastic ring, black plastic  screw top and the metal bracket.

That's what reservoir looks like with fresh brake fluid (compare it to the one at the top of this post):

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Comments

rnexussix's picture

5/16, or 8mm.

5/16, or 8mm.

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