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DIY brake lines help #5291686 12/11/19 04:20 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
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LeakySeals Offline OP
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Lost the brakes in the 05 Classic yesterday. Fortunately it was just after driving my 8 month old grand son home and a mile from the house. Its a rear brake line. The replacement has been discontinued. I need help figuring out what I will need to DIY new brake lines, and if its something I can do.

Heres a video.


Here are some pics of the location. It goes behind some connectors and I think the breather for the charcoal canister. The prior owner had it sprayed with some type of oil for years, so Its hard to tell whats what under there.
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]


What type of line should i use? NICOP?
What size line and fittings will I need?
What flare does this car have?
Can I rent or buy a flare kit for a reasonable price, which one?

Any guidance would be helpful, thanks.


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 170k M1 5w30
03 Maxima 3.5L 170k Maxlife HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 2.2 111k M1 5w30
06 Altima 2.5L 167k unk
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291700 12/11/19 04:38 PM
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vw7674 Offline
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HF has a cheap automotive double flare tool, & that is the type of flare required for automotive use: 'double-flare'.
There is a fixture that 'upsets' the end, included with the flaring kit, with out that it's not suitable for vehicle usage. YMMV.

Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291705 12/11/19 04:46 PM
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ford46guy Offline
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I can answer some questions based on experience.
Autozone rents both the metric and SAE flare tool. It is not the best but it always worked for me. Try to get one that is close to new as possible. Practice on some scrap line.There are some very nice flare tools on Amazon, but they are very expensive, more for a pro.

Likely they are the 3/16" brake lines. You can buy a 25" roll or pieces and join them together. You want to check if you want to repair a section or replace the entire line. Usually the entire line rots away.

As for type, I used the coated polyarmour AGS lines, they should be good for 10 years of more. They will not rot out, but get tiny rust specs where the coating rubs off.

If you want to spend more money, get the NiCopp, it is supposedly lifetime, if you plan on keeping it forever. I don't suggest uncoated steel lines (I don't even see them in Advance Auto).

The only difference is one can bend tighter than the other, I don't remember which. I think the nicopp has more of a tendency to crush from the way it is manufactured (I talked to AGS about it). I had to make a very tight PS rack line, I think the PA line worked better.

Last edited by ford46guy; 12/11/19 04:47 PM. Reason: (not so dirty word!)

95 Tbird V8 240K PP SYNTH ULTRA 5W30
98 MGM 160K M1 HM 5W20
96 Explorer EB V6 159K PP SYNTH HM 5W30
95 Conti 155K MC 5W20
11 GS350 90K PP HM 5W30
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: ford46guy] #5291726 12/11/19 05:08 PM
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Trav Offline
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NiCopp is by far superior (unless you 4 wheel then stainless is the preferable) and can be bent almost in half using common bending tools and springs and sometimes even sand. Most of the time I bend over a piece of plastic pipe and never kinked one.
It is also far easier to flare.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291770 12/11/19 06:31 PM
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MasterSolenoid Offline
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I have always oil-undercoated my current vehicle.
With it being a pickup, I can easily get under it and check any oil spray and touch-up.
It's a bummer your Brake Line rusted, probably the last thing you expected.

Although it's ideal to route the 'new' brake line where the old one was, is it necessary to do so ?
Could you make things easier for yourself and NOT go behind the bracket and canister ?
If you do, just make sure the brake line is fastened to avoid flexing.

Years ago my Brother put a new brake line on my car and had (2) loops in it (line was way to long) / worked OK.

OP - Good luck.
I would still Oil Undercoat when your done.


Last edited by MasterSolenoid; 12/11/19 06:32 PM.

2002 Ford Ranger / bought new
2 Wheel Drive
3.0 Liter Engine
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Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291790 12/11/19 07:01 PM
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Posts: 4,196
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JC1 Offline
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You can borrow a flare tool from the Auto parts store or buy a cheap one at HF.

https://www.harborfreight.com/double-tube-flaring-tool-kit-62814.html

Watch a video or two on how to properly flare the lines and then try on some scrap.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtdZ8DMy9Bw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqyoTWFZ5K4&t=9s

It will be a bit of a pain if you need to flare the lines underneath the car on your back.


2015 Grand Caravan SXT Plus 0w-20 Pennzoil Ultra/Fram Ultra Filter
1997 Honda Civic CX 5w-30 PPPP/Fram Ultra Filter
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: MasterSolenoid] #5291797 12/11/19 07:17 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,599
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LeakySeals Offline OP
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Posts: 7,599
Originally Posted by MasterSolenoid
I have always oil-undercoated my current vehicle.
With it being a pickup, I can easily get under it and check any oil spray and touch-up.
It's a bummer your Brake Line rusted, probably the last thing you expected.

Although it's ideal to route the 'new' brake line where the old one was, is it necessary to do so ?
Could you make things easier for yourself and NOT go behind the bracket and canister ?
If you do, just make sure the brake line is fastened to avoid flexing.

Years ago my Brother put a new brake line on my car and had (2) loops in it (line was way to long) / worked OK.

OP - Good luck.
I would still Oil Undercoat when your done.


I keep the brakes well maintained on my vehicles so yes I was surprised. Complete loss of braking at speed has never happened to me before. Scary. Its very hilly around here. My street has 20% grade so it was a challenge just getting into the driveway. You always think about what you might do if something like that happens. But when it did happen there was a lapse in time where I was in disbelief. I was picking up speed so instinct said partially deploy ebrake and let the engine push against the resistance. But it almost took too long to do that. Phew, that was close!!


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 170k M1 5w30
03 Maxima 3.5L 170k Maxlife HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 2.2 111k M1 5w30
06 Altima 2.5L 167k unk
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: JC1] #5291801 12/11/19 07:21 PM
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LeakySeals Offline OP
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Originally Posted by JC1
You can borrow a flare tool from the Auto parts store or buy a cheap one at HF.

https://www.harborfreight.com/double-tube-flaring-tool-kit-62814.html

Watch a video or two on how to properly flare the lines and then try on some scrap.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtdZ8DMy9Bw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqyoTWFZ5K4&t=9s

It will be a bit of a pain if you need to flare the lines underneath the car on your back.

Thanks. What you said about flaring on the car. Would this be a good option for that? https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XPRVCPV/ref=psdc_15707271_t1_B01DO9142G


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 170k M1 5w30
03 Maxima 3.5L 170k Maxlife HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 2.2 111k M1 5w30
06 Altima 2.5L 167k unk
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: Trav] #5291805 12/11/19 07:23 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 7,599
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LeakySeals Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Trav
NiCopp is by far superior (unless you 4 wheel then stainless is the preferable) and can be bent almost in half using common bending tools and springs and sometimes even sand. Most of the time I bend over a piece of plastic pipe and never kinked one.
It is also far easier to flare.

How about this kit. Do i need bending pliers, or just wrap it around something? https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01801G45A/ref=psdc_15722391_t1_B07BMZ5FV2


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 170k M1 5w30
03 Maxima 3.5L 170k Maxlife HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 2.2 111k M1 5w30
06 Altima 2.5L 167k unk
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291838 12/11/19 08:01 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 4,196
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JC1 Offline
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Originally Posted by LeakySeals
Originally Posted by JC1
You can borrow a flare tool from the Auto parts store or buy a cheap one at HF.

https://www.harborfreight.com/double-tube-flaring-tool-kit-62814.html

Watch a video or two on how to properly flare the lines and then try on some scrap.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtdZ8DMy9Bw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqyoTWFZ5K4&t=9s

It will be a bit of a pain if you need to flare the lines underneath the car on your back.

Thanks. What you said about flaring on the car. Would this be a good option for that? https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XPRVCPV/ref=psdc_15707271_t1_B01DO9142G



Wow that is a nice tool! If you want to spend that much money on the tool, it looks like it will do the flare right the first time, then go for it! I would Still practice the flare on a scrap piece of tubing first.

Read the reviews, one guy wasted some time finding the correct way to flare the lines.

As for bending the lines, As Trav said the NiCopper is easier to bend.

You can buy a cheap bender a HF as well.
https://www.harborfreight.com/tubing-bender-3755.html


2015 Grand Caravan SXT Plus 0w-20 Pennzoil Ultra/Fram Ultra Filter
1997 Honda Civic CX 5w-30 PPPP/Fram Ultra Filter
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291843 12/11/19 08:05 PM
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bullwinkle Offline
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NiCopp FTW-I had to replace the rear line on the GMC in my sig, from the rear brake hose up to the junction by the front crossmember. The stuff is easy to bend by hand, lasts virtually forever. Not sure why GM didn't use them in the first place!


06 Ram 3500 CTD 4X4(FG Venturi), 93 GMC C3500 6.2, 89 F-450 7.3, 98 XJ 4.0(XG8A), 05 xB(XG3600), 18 Transit 3.7, 03 Merc Grand Marquis 4.6 2V(XG2)
Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291864 12/11/19 08:29 PM
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Driz Offline
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Posts: 724
You can just go buy a roll of line and the ends at an autozone. See if they have a double flare tool on their tool loan program otherwise HF works well enough. Cut out a piece and take it with you to get the right size. If you don’t need a lot of tight radius bends it’s not that hard. Double flaring steel tubing is one of the 🤬🤬🤬🤬 things you’ll ever do so expect a few🤥 screw ups. YouTube and patience is your friend here.

Re: DIY brake lines help [Re: LeakySeals] #5291880 12/11/19 08:48 PM
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HangFire Offline
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I'm thinking there are ISO Bubble flares in there, perhaps a Chevy expert can weigh in?


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