Amber brake fluid in DOT 5 system

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by patrkd, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. patrkd

    patrkd New Member

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    I checked the brake fluid in my 2000 FLHTC and it was amber in color. Owners manual and reservoir cap says use DOT 5 fluid. DOT 5 is supposed to be purple NOT AMBER. Anyone ever experience this or have ideas.
    Appreciate any help here.
     
  2. Grey Sailor

    Grey Sailor New Member

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    For what it's worth.....I have a 2002 RK and found the same color fluid in both my clutch and brake pots. Got to reading around and found that the earlier DOT 5 either didn't have the purple dye, or it fell out of solution over time. Anyways, I took a sample of the fluid in my pots and did a little experiment by mixing half and half with water, then shaking the life out of it. The fluid separated from the water quickly, indicating that it was synthetic. Tried the same experiment with DOT 3, and it stayed emulsified for hours. Based upon this "Cajun Test Protocol", I topped up my pots with purple DOT 5.

    Luke

    [notes]
    A Friendly Reminder - Harley Davidson Community
    [/notes]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 12, 2009
  3. patrkd

    patrkd New Member

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    Thanks Luke for the quick reply. I trust that you had no problems when you topped it off with DOT 5. I thought maybe it had deteriorated; I never considered that the dye would settle out.
     
  4. glider

    glider Veteran Member

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    The purple in the Dot 5 will turn to an amber color over a not too long period which is normal.
     
  5. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    Glider has it exactly right of course, and amber going towards brown is usually a sign of contaminants as the DOT5 purple turns essentially very pale yellow/clear over time.
     
  6. patrkd

    patrkd New Member

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    Thanks everyone, I'll evacuate and flush the system and refill with DOT 5.