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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I had my first surprise with my car. I was driving down the road and came to a red light. The car stopped fine, but I noticed the brake warning light came on. I checked my parking brake and it was disengaged. Once I started moving again the light went out. Thid repeated itself at every stop I made. I stopped at a Tim Hortons to grab a coffee and I had a look at the brake fluid. It looked low, but it was hard to tell. I was kind of in jam because I was on my to get my kids, the hostage exchange with the X. The drive was 65km's and I wasn't very comfortable driving the car. I had to go because they would have been half way to the meet point at the time, they live twice as far away. I decided to take it slow and easy and make my way up. Along the way I contacted a Mazda dealer that was close to the exhange location and made arrangements for them to top up the fluid. All the way up the light kept coming coming on and going off as I stopped and started, but the braking seemed fine. The pedal never sunk to the floor, or seemed spongy. After picking up the kids I went to the dealer, which wasn't where I bought the car, and they topped up the fluid. It was pretty low and the service tech felt that the car might have come that way from the factory. He thought that was the case because since the brake pedal felt good it kind of ruled out a leak. I'm not sure if he is correct or not, but that's all I can go by. He also said that the low fluid from the factory should have been picked up in the PDI (really?? *being sarcastic*)...I guess low fluid levels are normal from the factory... The timing of this problem is kind coincedental with my clutch making a squeaking noise yesterday for the first time. A number of people have complained abput this and I think someone had to have some work done to correct the problem. I'm wondering if the sound had something to do with the low fluid level since the clutch uses the same fluid. I also wonder if there maybe a leak in the clutch system. I forgot to mention I got the car at the end of March and I've put 3600km's on it. Since day one the clutch and brakes have felt good. For now I think I'm going to keep a close eye on the fluid level and see if it goes down. Either way someone owes me an explaination. If it goes down then there's a problem with the braking system, which is a pain in the butt on a new car. And, if it doesn't then they never topped it up during the PDI.

BTW how much should the fluid drop between oil changes, in normal service. Should it be a noticable amount?? I'm not a real car guy and have never had problems with my braking systems in the past.

Thanks,
Rich

BTW build date 01/04
 

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You should not loose any brake fluid between service intervals. In fact you really should never loose the fluid unless there is a leak somewhere. If i'm not mistaken, The MZ3 brake system and clutch share a common reservoir and use the same fluid. your sqeaky clutch and low fluid may be related. at the very least i would call the dealership where you bought the car and pay close attention to the fluid level. If it drops at all, you have a problem, take it in, and don't let them simply top it up.
 

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I'm not sure if I understand you 100%, but it seems like you are saying that the parking brake light is coming on. I don't know that the pedal brake system is linked at all to this light. I belive that this light only indicates when the parking brake is engaged. Usually, the parking brake is operated mechanically with a cable that pulls on the rear calipers. The brake fluid has no effect on the parking brake. On older cars, this cable has a tendency to rust and stay either engaged or dissengaged. This probably isn't the case with your car; it's still a baby. If the parking brake is staying engaged, you would feel it. My best guess is that the brake position sensor that is usually located in the center console has a problem. Hope I helped.
 

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The brake light serves two purposes. To let you know the parking brake is on, and the most important reason...to let you know that there's either a problem with the brakes or the fluid is low. Most likely the fluid is a little low, so top it off and the light will go away.
Modern car brake fluid sensors are quite sensitive to low fluid levels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes the fluid level was low and it has been topped up...Question now is why was it low...Is there a problem with the brake/clutch system, or did it get missed in the PDI....Either way someone has some explaining to do...

Rich
 

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What light came on? The red "BRAKE!" light with a "!" in the middle of it or the yellow "ABS" light? The red BRAKE! light (parking brake system) has nothing to do with any fluid. It works by a cable. Only the yellow "ABS" light would indicate that you have a problem with your main pedal brake system. So, unless your YELLOW ABS light is coming on, don't worry about your main brake system. The RED BRAKE "!" is only ever telling you if the parking brake is engaged or disengaged. I think you are making this a bigger deal then it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well I took the car in today and I found my answer to my low fluid level problem. It turns out my master cylinder is leaking. According to the service advisor, this is the first one in Canada to go. They didn't even have a part number in their system. It looks like I will be without my 3 for a few weeks until the part comes in.

It's not too bad, I'm in a 2004 Honda Civic...It could be worse...Like a Sunfire or Cavalier, or Neon for that matter...I must say that I am glad I got the 3...It's a much nicer riding and looking vehicle compared to the Civic...

Rich
 

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Let us know what happens by the end of it. And no brake fluid should not be lost AT ALL EVER.

I cnaged mine at 40000 on the Protege and I checked it yesterday at 79600kms and it's clean and full like it was when I picked the car up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
dinu01 said:
Let us know what happens by the end of it. And no brake fluid should not be lost AT ALL EVER.

I cnaged mine at 40000 on the Protege and I checked it yesterday at 79600kms and it's clean and full like it was when I picked the car up.
Got the car back yesterday....Master cylinder replaced...Everything seems ok right now...I'll keep ya posted...

Rich
 

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rbart4506 said:
dinu01 said:
Let us know what happens by the end of it. And no brake fluid should not be lost AT ALL EVER.

I cnaged mine at 40000 on the Protege and I checked it yesterday at 79600kms and it's clean and full like it was when I picked the car up.
Got the car back yesterday....Master cylinder replaced...Everything seems ok right now...I'll keep ya posted...

Rich
Repair work and labour covered by warranty? Did they offer a loaner car to you?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
wtom said:
rbart4506 said:
dinu01 said:
Let us know what happens by the end of it. And no brake fluid should not be lost AT ALL EVER.

I cnaged mine at 40000 on the Protege and I checked it yesterday at 79600kms and it's clean and full like it was when I picked the car up.
Got the car back yesterday....Master cylinder replaced...Everything seems ok right now...I'll keep ya posted...

Rich
Repair work and labour covered by warranty? Did they offer a loaner car to you?
No cost to me....All warranty work....I had a 2004 Honda Civic rental for more then 2 weeks while we waited for the parts to come in....It's all part of your warranty...

Rich
 

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rbart4506 said:
No cost to me....All warranty work....I had a 2004 Honda Civic rental for more then 2 weeks while we waited for the parts to come in....It's all part of your warranty...

Rich
Heh heh that's all good then. Can't have everything (Honda instead of another Mazda3). :)
 
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