The average safe working life of a brake hoses is 8 to 10 years in our mild climate. With the recession, many drivers are keeping their cars for a longer period of time, and they will need brake hoses replaced.
Deterioration of brake hoses:
- High brake temperatures at the calliper or brake drum.
- Aggressive nature of brake fluid.
- Moisture absorption in the brake system.
- Movement of the hose as the wheel move up and down millions of times next to the shock absorber.
If you are based in an area with poor quality roads you will definitely need a brake hose supplier. Damaged or dirt roads intensify the wear on brake hoses.
The two ways of checking a brake hose are by visual inspection and by touch.
What to look out for when doing a visual inspection:
- Wet or pasty area around the back of the end-fittings, often looks muddy as the fluid seeps out of the crimp join.
- Bubble or blister in the hose, the fluid gets between the inner and outer part of the hose and forms a bulge. The fluid will quickly now eat through the outer layer from the inside.
- Cracks on the out layer of the hose, often as you bend a hose you will see fine cracks on the outer cover this means the hose needs replacing.
- Chafe marks on the hose
If you feel a new brake hose you will find it is firm, which will give you an idea of what to look for:
- Hoses that are very soft and easy to bend need replacing.
- A hard or brittle feel to hoses also means you need to replace them.
- “Spongy pedals” in your car will point you to looking at the brake hoses as a cause.
One of the best ways to test a brake hose is under pressure:
- Start the car in order for the booster to be working.
- Have someone else inspect the hose under pressure.
Important: if one hose is faulty this almost definitely means the others need to be replaced as they are likely to be the same age. Also you will need to bleed the system AGAIN if you do not replace the other hoses at the same time.