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Old 01-26-2020, 02:02 PM #1
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Losing brake fluid mysteriously

2001 with the dreaded ABS system. Was having issues with the dash brake warning light,buzzer,trac, abs lights coming on and going off after a while. Decided to bleed the brakes a few weeks ago. Seemed to help as far as the warning lights not coming on all the time. Checked fluid level yesterday, it was at the low mark. Added fluid. All is good. My question is where did all that fluid go? I park in the same spot, no drops on the ground and no fluid anywhere under the vehicle. Is it possible that there was air trapped in the lines and it has since worked its way out?


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Old 01-26-2020, 02:40 PM #2
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As pads ware the fluid level goes down. When fluid gets to the minimum line you are supposed to check your brake pads and shoes.

Sometimes the rear wheel cylinders leak and itís not obvious until you remove the rear drums.


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Old 01-26-2020, 02:45 PM #3
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I don't think air in the system would be it, it's a sealed system so air shouldn't be in there and couldn't work its way out.

There is not a lot of volume there. Maybe you wouldn't see a drip. It would only be a couple ounces over several weeks? Could you have a bleeder not quite tight enough? It would likely leak under pressure more so than resting. Get a helper to tromp on the brakes and look under for weeping.

I don't know if it's possible for the master cylinder to leak into the booster but maybe. That's one spot you wouldn't see.
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Old 01-26-2020, 07:20 PM #4
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Agreed with all that 19963 said above
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Old 01-26-2020, 07:38 PM #5
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+ 2 with the other 2 users. If your brake system doesn't have any leaks. It goes to min line. Brake are warn out. If a small seep in the back shoes can be hidden for a while.

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Old 01-26-2020, 07:56 PM #6
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I thought 4runner were plagued often by leaky wheel cylinder in back.. If its drum brakes.

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Old 01-27-2020, 02:21 PM #7
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Quote:
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I thought 4runner were plagued often by leaky wheel cylinder in back.. If its drum brakes.

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You don't hear much about it on this forum. Maybe 1 or 2 over the years but not a common complaint like the rear ale seals.
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Old 01-27-2020, 05:17 PM #8
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Did you follow the instructions on the master cylinder reservoir for how to properly check the fluid level? On the 2001-2002s with the hydraulic brake booster you need to pump the brake pedal ~40 times with the truck off to purge the pressure from the accumulator before checking the level. Once you turn the truck on and the system "pumps up" the fluid level drops down a bit, so if you top it off with it pressurized, the fluid may be overfilled.
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Old 01-28-2020, 02:18 PM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rightyouareken View Post
Did you follow the instructions on the master cylinder reservoir for how to properly check the fluid level? On the 2001-2002s with the hydraulic brake booster you need to pump the brake pedal ~40 times with the truck off to purge the pressure from the accumulator before checking the level. Once you turn the truck on and the system "pumps up" the fluid level drops down a bit, so if you top it off with it pressurized, the fluid may be overfilled.


Yes, I did follow the instructions. I have the service manual for the 01 4Runner. I will pull the tires off and check the pads and drums in the rear. Thanks for the support.


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Old 01-28-2020, 07:14 PM #10
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Yes, I did follow the instructions. I have the service manual for the 01 4Runner. I will pull the tires off and check the pads and drums in the rear. Thanks for the support.


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Ok cool. It's an easy thing to miss and is unusual for most cars. Good luck finding the culprit.
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