Melanie Reiff
Bleeding the brake master cylinder is a pretty straightforward process that many people are able to handle themselves, but a mechanic can also handle it for you. You might need this service if your brake pedal starts feeling spongy or your brakes feel less effective.
The brake master cylinder is an essential part of your car’s braking system, which can become less effective if the system has filled up with air. That’s why car insurance super app Jerry is here to tell you what you need to know about bleeding your car’s master cylinder.
The exact cost varies between different Chevrolet models. For example, newer vehicle models are usually made with more expensive materials, so recent or high-end models will cost more, especially if your service requires a part replacement. Use the table below to estimate the cost for your own vehicle.

What is bleeding a master cylinder?

The brake master cylinder is an essential component of your car’s braking system. When you press your brake pedal, the master cylinder converts that pressure into hydraulic pressure, then transfers it to the brakes on your car’s wheels.
The hydraulic pressure sends hydraulic fluid through the brake lines which will then activate the braking mechanisms on the wheels.
On top of the master cylinder, there’s a reservoir that holds brake fluid. There has to be enough fluid in the reservoir, otherwise excess air can make its way into the braking system. When that happens, it can impact your car’s braking performance.
“Bleeding” a master cylinder is the process of removing air from the braking system.

How to bleed a master cylinder

To bleed your master cylinder, you’ll need:
  • Clear plastic tubing, or a manual brake bleeding kit (available at hardware and auto parts stores)
  • Another person to help you
Here’s how to bleed the master cylinder:
  • Top off the master cylinder with more brake fluid
  • Attach a clear tube to the master cylinder’s bleeder valve
  • Place the other end of the tube in a container partially filled with brake fluid
  • Have a second person pump the brake pedal several times, then hold it down
  • Open up the bleeder valve, then close it before the person on the brake pedal feels it reach the floor
As you’re bleeding the master cylinder, you should notice air bubbles in the clear plastic tube. You’ll want to repeat this process until there are no longer bubbles in the tube.
Once you’ve bled the master cylinder, you’ll need to take steps to bleed the rest of the brake system, which is a separate process.
Pro Tip Throughout the bleeding process, there should always be brake fluid in the reservoir, and the end of the clear tube that’s in the container should stay immersed in brake fluid. Otherwise, you could reintroduce air into the system.

When do I need to bleed the master cylinder?

If your brake pedal feels spongy when you press it, that could be a sign there’s too much air in your car’s braking system.
Since air would require a lot more pressure than braking fluid to properly activate your brakes, you’ll also notice less responsive brakes if there’s too much air in the system. If this is the case, it might be time to bleed the master cylinder.

How to find cheap car insurance

Bleeding your master cylinder when needed is good. Bleeding your bank account by overpaying for car insurance is not. Let the Jerry app help you make sure you have the right car insurance coverage for the right rate!
Here’s how it works: once you download the app, you’ll answer a few brief questions, and then, you can start reviewing competitive car insurance quotes from 50+ top providers to find the best rate for the amount of coverage you’re looking for.
Once you’ve made your pick, Jerry can help you make the switch even easier by helping you set up your new policy and cancel your old one. Later, when your policy’s up for renewal, Jerry can automatically find you quotes again to make sure you’re still getting the best rate for your coverage level.
Getting started takes less than a minute, and the average Jerry user saves $887 per year on car insurance.
Keep in mind that your location is another factor that determines the final cost of repairs. Areas with higher cost of living will usually have more expensive car repair services, especially if there’s less local competition. Check out the table below for an estimate of what Chevrolet drivers pay in different cities.
Jerry doesn’t just offer fair price repair estimates for Chevrolet drivers! Our team of writers has collected everything you need to know for every car. Here’s how much the repair costs for some popular cars:
CarTotal Cost EstimateParts CostLabor CostAverage Dealer PriceEstimated Service Duration
The cost of repairs might vary depending on which Chevrolet you drive, but there’s an easy way to save money for the services you need! Just download the Jerry app for help lowering your insurance premiums. In less than 45 seconds, Jerry collects all of your information from your existing insurer. Choose from competitive quotes from top insurance companies and Jerry takes care of the rest—securing your new policy and helping you cancel your old one upon request.
With an average annual savings of $887, Jerry can help you free up funds for the repairs your Chevrolet’s needs.
The content contained in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be used in lieu of seeking professional advice. We encourage you to consult with a certified technician or mechanic if you have specific questions or concerns relating to any of the topics covered herein. Under no circumstances will we be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on any content.