Replacing the brake fluid

This weekend was one of those where my plans to make the most of some kart-free time didn’t quite pan out as expected. I made it to Sunday afternoon before a friend (who is quickly becoming KartingDad’s Dad!) offered to help me replace the brake fluid with friend. The brake fluid levels were getting a little low and the fluid itself was looking pretty dirty. My lad hadn’t expressed any issues with the brakes but it was something I wanted to sort out as well as get some exposure to the last part of the kart that I had yet to experience maintenance on.

The first issue was what brake fluid did I need? There is a fair amount of conflicting advice to be found on the web. I went with the recommendation of Dot 5, which was not what was being used in my brake system. This Kosmic Setup Guide from Australian outfit Remo Racing has some useful information on the type of brake fluid (it’s also a pretty decent tuning guide for novices) for which type of OTK brake: typically it would appear most recent (post-2006) OTK kart will use the BS6 brake caliper which requires Dot 5 brake fluid. I placed my order for EBC brake fluid (cheaper than OTK or Putoline) as well as a couple of brake caliper seals and four master cylinder seals.

I had intended to try to document this process but it would be fair to say this wasn’t the most straightforward of maintenance procedures! Cleaning out the old brake fluid from the system was simple enough, as was replacing the seals but I wouldn’t like to have had to re-assemble the system and bleed the new fluid through on my own. It’s definitely something I’d need some baby sitting on next time as well although I don’t expect to have to do this again anytime soon. The brake certainly seems nice and hard but I’ll ensure Junior takes his opening laps fairly gently next time out!

Cost of parts: £26 (2x  brake caliper seals £3.71ea, 4x master cylinder seals £2.64ea, EBC Dot 5  silicone brake fluid £8.28)

Total spent so far: £2,468

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