Brake Fluid for Cleaning Bolts?

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Any reason not to soak old bolts in used brake fluid, wipe them with a rag, apply, say, anti-seize, then re-install?
My concern would be the water absorbing properties of brake
fluid. But if others routinely do this, then I won't be concerned.
TIA
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The biggest reason is WHY. Brake fluid is not particularly good for this anyway. You could use a regular degreaser or kerosene. I'd just spray them with Liquid Wrench or something similar. People have used all sorts of things including vinegar, but I prefer regular old petroleum distilates.
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Because (1) it's darn effective at removing, for example, paint; and (2) presumably it has some lubricating properties; (3) beats just throwing out old brake fluid.

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Actually, it is not very good at removing paint...at least, not most paint. It might damage auto finishes, but without a little caustic added to it, it isn't a powerful paint remover.
It slicks up bolts, but - as mentioned earlier - picks up water and could promote rusting, I guess.
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snipped-for-privacy@nospam.nix wrote:

Is there any other chemical that will remove paint from plastic without damaging the plastic? Brake fluid did a good job stripping the paint form my ABS/polycarbonate wheel covers.
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Depends on the plastic, and on the type of paint. Brake fluid is not normally a good paint remover for GOOD paint.
Acrylonitrile/Butadiene/Styrene is a pretty tough polymer. Used in athletic helmets and a number of other high impact applications. Although it is not impervious to solvents, it often tolerates them pretty well without softening.
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Elle wrote:

I'm confused. Are you really looking for information or just looking for someone to justify what you have already decided to do. Someone gives you several well thought out reasons why it isn't a good idea and you respond with your own pre-conceived justifications.
If you want to use brake fluid as a cleaner then go ahead but it is a poor choice. Just don't ask for opinions if you don't want to hear them.
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Because?
This thread is beyond your reasoning abilities.
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Elle wrote:

berrymans chem-dip is much better. takes off *everything*
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snipped-for-privacy@nospam.earthlink.net says...

do you have paint on the bolts that you want to remove?

Regular motor oil is a better lubricant.

What were you planning on doing with the fluid after you soaked the bolts in it?
Makes no sense. -------------- Alex
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Elle wrote:

I'm not sure why you'd want to do this; brake fluid also eats paint which is not a concern on bolts, but can be a concern if the parts the bolts connect are painted. Also there are better parts cleaning solutions available, kerosene works well and is cheap although it is more easily flammable so more care should be taken.
nate
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Bad idea if you ask me. If you want to soak them in something, use old motor oil. Personally, if the bolt is that far gone, I replace it. I always use Anti-Seize on most of my bolts.
G-Man

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Don't even bother. He wants to use brake fluid and that's what he will use. He only wanted us to tell him how great it would be. He knows everything and simply wants validation.
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Er, "he" is a she...
JT
Al Bundy wrote:

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I won't be using brake fluid if no one else uses it, because of concerns about the water absorption. I really don't know.
Congratulations, anyway.

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Time for my 0.02 ...
Yes, water absorption IS the problem, as this causes the normally inert fluid to become contaminated with acidic compounds. Leaving a residue of brake fluid will cause rust to start in double quick time as the acidic compounds expose raw iron to oxygen. If you doubt this, look what happens to, say, a cast iron clutch slave cylinder that leaks: it gets covered with a layer of rust.
Much better to replace a rusty bolt with a new one, and use an anti-sieze compound. If you must wipe bolts with something, use WD40 or engine oil.
--
Stewart DIBBS
www.pixcl.com/lancerproject.htm
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I think you are misinterpreting the question. She is asking: "is this idea going to do something bad rather than the good I am hoping for?" and seeking the experience of others. I believe learning from the experience of others is a good thing and the main reason we are here - most of us, anyway.
For myself, I've never tried it and am curious how it works out. Since Elle doesn't know everything, and knows she doesn't know (thus the question) but has a good reputation here it has my interest.
Mike
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Yes, that's precisely it.

Thanks. But on this one, I am not inclined to experiment. It just seemed like people would do it a lot, or they never do it. In which case I don't want to be the guinea pig. :-)
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Brake fluid acts as a great penetrating fluid in a pinch. I have had to take some out and trickle into a rim's holes to get the rim to come free from the hub. Driving on it with loose lug nuts and using the back end of a log splitter maul didn't budge it but a soak in brake fluid let it pop loose.
It seems to eat rust, never thought of using old fluid on my old rusty nut and bolt collection that got caught in a rainstorm. I think I might try it and see. I will post back about it.
Mike 86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG Muds, 'glass nose to tail in '00 88 Cherokee 235 BFG AT's Canadian Off Road Trips Photos: Non members can still view! Jan/06 http://www.imagestation.com/album/pictures.html?id !15147590 (More Off Road album links at bottom of the view page)
Elle wrote:

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Lots of folks report similar stories to yours, but no one talks about routinely using it to clean old rusty bolts. So I'm hesitant, like maybe I'm missing something.
Maybe the stuff is so hard on the hands that people avoid it. Dunno. Just thought I'd ask, since I'm in the middle or a suspension renovation job and have come across some pretty beat up nuts and bolts (many of which I'm replacing).
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