Brake Fluid for RAM 1500 Models

As you shop for RAM 1500 brake fluid, you’ll notice many options to choose from. How do you select the best one for truck? This short guide explains brake fluid types, plus what you need to know about changing your own fluid. 

A Quick Overview of Brake Fluid

Four types of brake fluid are on the market today: DOT 3, DOT 4, DOT 5 and DOT 5.1. The “DOT” in these designations refers to the Department of Transportation, the government agency that develops regulations concerning brake fluid specifications. Each type has a precise composition deigned for certain conditions:

  • DOT 3: Glycol ether
  • DOT 4: Glycol ether and borate ester
  • DOT 5: Silicone
  • DOT 5.1: Glycol ether and borate ester

 Most vehicles on the road today use DOT 4 brake fluid. DOT 4 has higher dry and wet boiling points than DOT 3: 446°F and 311°F respectively for DOT 4 versus 401°F and 284°F for DOT 3. Higher boiling points translate to better performance, especially considering how hot your brakes get with heavy use. 

Many Dodge RAM 1500 vehicles use DOT 3. However, most brake fluids are downward compatible. You can use DOT 5.1 in vehicles that normally take DOT 4 or 3, and DOT 4 in vehicles that typically use DOT 3. You cannot do the reverse — use DOT 3 in a DOT 4 vehicle, for instance.

You’ll note that DOT 5.1, 4 and 3 fluid types have a glycol ether base, thus having the ability to absorb water. DOT 5 is silicone based and cannot absorb water, so it can’t be used in systems taking DOT 5.1, 4 or 3. Always consult your owner’s manual and confirm the specific type your vehicle needs.  

Shop Pro DOT 4 Brake Fluid

Several manufacturers have developed their own brands of brake fluid. Shop Pro produces both DOT 3 and 4 types of fluid. Since glycol ether-based fluids are downward compatible, you can use DOT 4 in your RAM 1500 even if it normally calls for DOT 3. In fact, your truck may benefit from Shop Pro DOT 4’s boiling points. Riding or pumping the brakes, or during strenous tasks like towing, your brakes could generate higher temperatures. DOT 4 is less likely to vaporize, which maintains optimal performanc.e  

Change It Yourself Vs. Service Charges

Are you wondering about the cost of changing your brake fluid? While pricing varies among service providers, most charge around $100. Between 80 and 90% of this price consists of labor costs. You’ll pay significantly less changing it yourself than taking it to an automotive service shop. 

Brake fluid usually costs between $5 and $20 for a 32-ounce bottle, while brake cleaner will run you about $5 for a 14-ounce spray can. You’ll maybe spend $25 tops, assuming you already have cleaning supplies and tools needed to perform the job.  

Where To Get Your Brake Fluid

Changing brake fluid is a necessary part of periodic maintenance. Most drivers should do this every three years or 30,000 miles. If you’re confident DIYing this task, you can buy your brake fluid and cleaner from a trusted retailer. Just search for “AutoZone near me,”

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