Date registered: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2000 VW Golf Variant
Location: Leiden, Netherlands
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
A brake-fluid leak would result in malfunctioning brakes all the time.
It could be:
1. Old brake fluid overheating. The water in the brake fluid would turn into steam causing low brake pressure (steam is compressable, fluid is not). Brake fluid should be changed every two years.
2. Brake master cylinder malfunctioning. If brake fluid gets passed the piston, you lose pressure. Usually when this happens, you lose pressure when you keep the brake pedal depressed, the brake pedal doesn't go straight to the floor.
3. Brake fading. Braking is converting energy (of the moving vehicle) into heat. When the brake discs are too warm, no converting can take place and there will be no braking. This should not lead to lack of brake pressure. If this happens, there is brake pressure (unless the brake fluid has boiled), but there is no braking.
I would guess that it is number 1.
Brakes are important. Motorhomes are usually only driven in the season and stand still for a long period. Before heading out, check the brakes:
- Fresh brake fluid DOT4 (not older than two years).
- Check brake caliphers, the pistons should not be stuck
- Check brake hoses, they should be new and not bulging or worn-out
- Check hard brake lines for rust
- check brake discs for thickness, rust and grooves
- check brake pads: remove and check if they are not broken or old. Clean the brake caliphers, put pads back in with some copper grease on the back and sides.
On descents, shift back to 3rd (S) or 2nd (L) gear for engine braking.