Too often, drivers ignore the condition of brake fluid in their cars. Not only does brake fluid have to serve as an incompressible medium within the brake lines, it must maintain a consistently high boiling point in order to function properly.
Over time, the boiling point of brake fluid slowly drops due to deterioration, contaminants, and moisture. This leads to decreased brake performance, and can result in a dangerous situation where the heat generated from the brakes can cause the fluid to boil. To avoid this, using a high-quality brake fluid and performing regular changes are both highly recommended.
Brake fluid is an important component in car safety, so make sure that your choice offers more performance than you are likely to need.Since brake fluids with much higher performance are often considerably more expensive, it's best to evaluate your needs first. However, not needing racing brake fluid for your driving doesn't mean an inferior product will do.
These are some of the best brake fluids on the market, based on their overall performance. All of the following picks offer performance which exceeds the needs of most regular drivers, with several picks that are suited for the high demands of track driving.
Although the price and performance of ATE's Super Blue Racing brake fluid is likely to be overkill for the average driver, it is well worth the added cost for enthusiastic or track drivers. A higher boiling point and longer drain intervals make this brake fluid suitable for heavy-duty usage. Read Full Review
You may not feel that racing brake fluid is strictly necessary for everyday use, and you'd be right for the most part. However, if you're a heavy brake user or if your car ever sees track time, it would be downright negligent to use substandard brake fluid with a lower boiling point designed for light street use.
ATE's Super Blue racing brake fluid may be expensive, but the increased performance and longer drain intervals are well worth the price. With a dry boiling point of 536 degrees Celsius and a wet boiling point of 392 degrees Fahrenheit, this brake fluid has what it takes for heavy-duty usage. ATE Super Blue brake fluid is considered to be a DOT 4 compliant brake fluid, though specifications far exceed that standard.
If you need heavy-duty performance from your brake fluid, Castrol's SRF brake fluid is an excellent, albeit expensive, choice. This brake fluid features performance and technology designed for racing, making it well-suited to heavy brake users or those who take their car to the track. Read Full Review
Designed for high-stress racing applications, Castrol's SRF brake fluid is just about the best brake fluid out there today. This product far exceeds the standards set by the DOT4 specification with a dry boiling point of 590 degrees Fahrenheit and a minimum wet boiling point of 518 degrees Fahrenheit. Needless to say, there won't be any overheating/boiling issues with ratings like this.
This brake fluid features silicon ester, which is highly resistant to absorbing water and other contaminants which can reduce brake system performance by lowering the boiling point. The only drawback here is the exorbitant price, which can make brake fluid changes very expensive. However, the performance and technology of the Castrol SRF brake fluid allow extended brake fluid drain intervals, which somewhat evens out the cost issue.
This high-performance brake fluid is considerably more affordable than the competition for the performance it offers, but can be difficult to find at major retailers. Motul's RBF600 brake fluid is suited for racing applications, but can enhance braking performance on any vehicle. Read Full Review
Motul's product line focuses on high performance fluids for automotive/motorcycle usage. RBF600 is Motul's racing brake fluid, named for its high boiling point of 593 degrees Fahrenheit dry. Wet boiling point is impressive, with a rating of 420 degrees Fahrenheit minimum ensuring wet driving conditions will seldom pose a problem.
In order to preserve braking performance, the container is sealed with nitrogen to eliminate the contamination that standard air brings. Although Motul RBF600 is not as easy to find as the more common offerings from Castrol or Valvoline, it’s hardly unavailable especially if you know where to look. Best of all, the price is very reasonable considering this is a racing brake fluid.
For regular driving, it's difficult to do better than Valvoline's Sythentic Brake Fluid. This affordable brake fluid offers good all-around performance, while being affordable and easy to find at most major retailers. Read Full Review
Affordable, easy to find, and featuring good performance, there's no reason why Valvoline Synthetic Brake Fluid should be ignored or overlooked. Dry boiling point is rated at 480 degrees Fahrenheit, and the minimum wet boiling point is 311 degrees Fahrenheit, making it highly unlikely your brake fluid will boil during everyday driving.
This brake fluid is suitable for mixing with both DOT 3 and DOT 4 brake fluid, though the performance exceeds either specification. If you perform semi-regular brake fluid drains and would like to keep costs down and performance up, Valvoline Synthetic Brake Fluid should be on your short list.
Castrol's GT LMA brake fluid delivers an appealing blend of affordability and accessibility, with performance that is perfectly suitable for daily driving. Since most drivers don't need the added expense and performance of dedicated racing brake fluid, this brake fluid is a good alternative. Read Full Review
To many people, racing brake fluid is expensive overkill. However, giving up too much performance can result in dangerous problems like boiling in the heat of braking. As an alternative, Castrol offers the GT LMA brake fluid which is ideally suited for daily use. The 'LMA' name refers to the 'Low Moisture Activity' blend, which reduces the likelihood and effects of moisture buildup within the system.
Though this brake fluid may not boast the amazing performance and stratospheric boiling points of the latest racing fluids, 446 degrees Fahrenheit dry and 311 degrees Fahrenheit wet is still far higher than what is normally encountered during everyday driving. Castrol GT LMA brake fluid is reasonably priced, and works extremely well as intended.