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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings to all, I have an 06 Ridgeline and my problem started with the brake pedal going almost to the floor when braking. Once you pumped it up it would stay up but then it would start to sink, the vehicle braked and stopped ok even with the low pedal. After doing my homework and reading the forums I went ahead and flushed out the brake system with Honda fluid with 2 quarts of fluid just to make sure I got all the air out. I used a vacuum operated system flusher. Sadly I still have the same problem. All the brake pads, lines and calipers are ok and no leaks are found, I never lost any fluid. My last option was to replace the master cylinder with a OEM part from Honda. Well, I'm still having the same problem. I've run out of options and my last hope is you guys before I take it to my local dealership and get totally screwed by their shop rates. Thank you very much for all your help in advance.

Best Regards, Joseph in Miami. :crying::crying::crying:
 

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2006 Ridgeline RTS in Steel Blue
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First off, some have had issues with vacuum operated brake fluid extraction methods. Personally, I'd take one more crack at that with a second person to assist, get all 4 wheels off the ground, someone in the drivers seat, then crack open the first brake bleed screw on the drivers side front, if you get any air bubbles in the first bleeder, you more than likely have air in the line. Once in, it can be a PITA to get out. Also the order of operation for the Ridgeline, and most Honda's is different than other vehicles, Drivers Front, Passengers Front, Passengers Rear, then Drivers Rear. Although never confirmed, it's believed the order is different, because of the ABS

For me it took about 5 trips around the vehicle, to get the air out, once it was introduced. Have atleast a quart or maybe more to keep the master cylinder full at all times, if it runs dry at all or the brake pedal slams into the floor, you can inadvertently introduce air. Also, I believe the containers of Honda Brake fluid are only a pint or about 500ml.

I'll check the FSM, and see if there is any thing which is applicable
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
First off, some have had issues with vacuum operated brake fluid extraction methods. Personally, I'd take one more crack at that with a second person to assist, get all 4 wheels off the ground, someone in the drivers seat, then crack open the first brake bleed screw on the drivers side front, if you get any air bubbles in the first bleeder, you more than likely have air in the line. Once in, it can be a PITA to get out. Also the order of operation for the Ridgeline, and most Honda's is different than other vehicles, Drivers Front, Passengers Front, Passengers Rear, then Drivers Rear. Although never confirmed, it's believed the order is different, because of the ABS

For me it took about 5 trips around the vehicle, to get the air out, once it was introduced. Have atleast a quart or maybe more to keep the master cylinder full at all times, if it runs dry at all or the brake pedal slams into the floor, you can inadvertently introduce air. Also, I believe the containers of Honda Brake fluid are only a pint or about 500ml.

I'll check the FSM, and see if there is any thing which is applicable
Thank you so much for your suggestion. I'll go to Honda and purchase about 6 bottles of their fluid and get me a helper and do it the old fashion way. The unit I was using is the MityVac kit that you use with a compressor. http://www.mityvac.com/hq_images/MV6830.jpg

Thank you again !
 

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2009 RTS
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From 09'-12' FSM, but should still apply for common brake systems. Hope it helps.

Brake System Test


1. Start the engine, and let it warm up to operating temperature.
2. Attacha 50 mm(2 in.)piece of masking tape along the bottom of the steering wheel, and draw a horizontal reference mark across it.
3. With the transmission in the P or N position, press and hold the brake pedal lightly (about the same pressure needed to keep an A/T-equipped vehicle from creeping), then release the parking brake.
4. While still holding the brake pedal, hook the end of the tape measure behind it. Then pull the tape up to the steering wheel, noting where the tape measure lines up with the reference mark you made on the masking tape.
5. Apply steady pressure to the brake pedal for 3 minutes.
6. Watch the tape measure.

• If it moves less than10 mm(3/8 in.), the master cylinder is OK.
• If it moves more than10 mm(3/8 in.) replace the master cylinder.

NOTE: If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles onandoff is normal. (The A/C compressor load changes the vacuum available to the brake booster.)

Brake Booster Test

1. Withthe engine stopped, press the brake pedal several times to deplete the vacuum reservoir, then press the brake pedal hard, and hold it for 15 seconds. If the brake pedal sinks, either the master cylinder is bypassing brake fluid internally, or the brake system(master cylinder, lines, modulator, or caliper)is leaking.

2. Start the engine withthe brake pedal pressed. If the brake pedal sinks slightly, the vacuum booster is operating normally. If the brake pedal height does notvary, perform the leak test.

3. With the engine running, press the brake pedal lightly, and shift the transmission to the D position. Apply just enough pressure to hold back automatic transmission creep. If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in 3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles on and off is normal. (The A/C compressor loadchanges the vacuumavailable tothe booster.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
From 09'-12' FSM, but should still apply for common brake systems. Hope it helps.

Brake System Test


1. Start the engine, and let it warm up to operating temperature.
2. Attacha 50 mm(2 in.)piece of masking tape along the bottom of the steering wheel, and draw a horizontal reference mark across it.
3. With the transmission in the P or N position, press and hold the brake pedal lightly (about the same pressure needed to keep an A/T-equipped vehicle from creeping), then release the parking brake.
4. While still holding the brake pedal, hook the end of the tape measure behind it. Then pull the tape up to the steering wheel, noting where the tape measure lines up with the reference mark you made on the masking tape.
5. Apply steady pressure to the brake pedal for 3 minutes.
6. Watch the tape measure.

• If it moves less than10 mm(3/8 in.), the master cylinder is OK.
• If it moves more than10 mm(3/8 in.) replace the master cylinder.

NOTE: If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles onandoff is normal. (The A/C compressor load changes the vacuum available to the brake booster.)

Brake Booster Test

1. Withthe engine stopped, press the brake pedal several times to deplete the vacuum reservoir, then press the brake pedal hard, and hold it for 15 seconds. If the brake pedal sinks, either the master cylinder is bypassing brake fluid internally, or the brake system(master cylinder, lines, modulator, or caliper)is leaking.

2. Start the engine withthe brake pedal pressed. If the brake pedal sinks slightly, the vacuum booster is operating normally. If the brake pedal height does notvary, perform the leak test.

3. With the engine running, press the brake pedal lightly, and shift the transmission to the D position. Apply just enough pressure to hold back automatic transmission creep. If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in 3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles on and off is normal. (The A/C compressor loadchanges the vacuumavailable tothe booster.)
Wow, thank you so much for that info ! As soon as it stops raining I'm going to try those steps and see what happens. One thing I've notice is when the engine is off and I deplete the vacuum from the booster, The pedal gets nice and hard and won't sink even after leaving my foot on it for a while. Once I start the engine, that's when the pedal almost goes down to the floor. This problem is really making me get more gray hair then I already have, lol.
By the way as I mentioned before. I installed a brand new factory OEM MC purchased from my local Honda dealers parts dept.

Thanks again my friend for all your help !
 

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Just checking....

Did you bench bleed the master cylinder?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Absolutely performed that procedure before installing the MC. Got my problem solved today ! Bottom line was air in the system. Went to Honda and purchase 8 bottles of brake fluid and got my buddy to help me bleed it the old fashion way that was way more efficient and successful then using the Mityvac vacuum system. I used 2 bottles of fluid per wheel and managed to remove all the air in the lines and now the pedal is nice and firm. Another member here also mention that some folks aren't too successful in getting all the air out using the Mityvac vacuum pump. He was absolutely correct. My wife drives a 2009 Civic SI which has a very firm and high brake pedal. I wish the RL was like that. Thanks to all of you for your help and hope my experience helps another member in the same situation I was in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
From 09'-12' FSM, but should still apply for common brake systems. Hope it helps.

Brake System Test


1. Start the engine, and let it warm up to operating temperature.
2. Attacha 50 mm(2 in.)piece of masking tape along the bottom of the steering wheel, and draw a horizontal reference mark across it.
3. With the transmission in the P or N position, press and hold the brake pedal lightly (about the same pressure needed to keep an A/T-equipped vehicle from creeping), then release the parking brake.
4. While still holding the brake pedal, hook the end of the tape measure behind it. Then pull the tape up to the steering wheel, noting where the tape measure lines up with the reference mark you made on the masking tape.
5. Apply steady pressure to the brake pedal for 3 minutes.
6. Watch the tape measure.

• If it moves less than10 mm(3/8 in.), the master cylinder is OK.
• If it moves more than10 mm(3/8 in.) replace the master cylinder.

NOTE: If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles onandoff is normal. (The A/C compressor load changes the vacuum available to the brake booster.)

Brake Booster Test

1. Withthe engine stopped, press the brake pedal several times to deplete the vacuum reservoir, then press the brake pedal hard, and hold it for 15 seconds. If the brake pedal sinks, either the master cylinder is bypassing brake fluid internally, or the brake system(master cylinder, lines, modulator, or caliper)is leaking.

2. Start the engine withthe brake pedal pressed. If the brake pedal sinks slightly, the vacuum booster is operating normally. If the brake pedal height does notvary, perform the leak test.

3. With the engine running, press the brake pedal lightly, and shift the transmission to the D position. Apply just enough pressure to hold back automatic transmission creep. If the brake pedal sinks more than10 mm(3/8 in.)in 3 minutes, the master cylinder is faulty. A slight change in pedal height when the A/C compressor cycles on and off is normal. (The A/C compressor loadchanges the vacuumavailable tothe booster.)
Got my problem solved today ! Bottom line was air in the system. Went to Honda and purchase 8 bottles of brake fluid and got my buddy to help me bleed it the old fashion way that was way more efficient and successful then using the Mityvac vacuum system. I used 2 bottles of fluid per wheel and managed to remove all the air in the lines and now the pedal is nice and firm. Another member here also mention that some folks aren't too successful in getting all the air out using the Mityvac vacuum pump. He was absolutely correct.
 

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2008 Ridgeline RTS in Billet Silver Metallic
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Glad you got your issue resolved. I've used various vacuum sources (MityVac to air compressor) and have had so much air leakage around the bleeder screw threads that the brake fluid exchange takes f o r e v e r.

I'm starting to think I'd have saved a bunch of money and time had I simply installed speed bleeders in the first place... except it would be hard to watch the fluid exit the system while doing the job solo.
 
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