How to Bleed Your Shimano Brakes for Optimal Stopping Power

Brakes are designed to stop your bike from moving forward, but they don't always work perfectly. Breathing your brakes is necessary if you notice them not working properly, or if they start to wear out.

Bleeding brakes is a simple procedure that involves pumping brake fluid into the reservoir at the back of the caliper. This helps clear air bubbles and other contaminants from inside the system."Bleeding" refers to removing air bubbles and moisture from the brake system. When air bubbles get trapped inside the brake pad, they cause friction between the pad and rotor, and this causes heat buildup and premature wear of the brake pads.

Shimano brake pads are designed to last longer than other brake pads and provide better stopping power. Bleeding your brakes regularly will extend their lifespan, and this article will show you how to bleed Shimano brakes.

What happens if your brakes won't bleed?

If your brakes don't bleed, there could be a problem with the master cylinder. You can check this by looking for leaks around the master cylinder. It may also be possible that the bleed screw has been damaged during installation.

Check the following areas for signs of damage:

  • Master cylinder cap
  • Bleed screw
  • Bleed line
  • Caliper body
  • Piston
  • Reservoir

Check the following areas for signs that the brake lines have been cut off:

  • Master cylinder
  • Bleed screw hole
  • Bleed line hole
  • Reservoir

By bleeding your brakes regularly, you can prevent brake damage.

How Can I Bleed a Shimano Brake?

Shimano brakes are a great option for those who want to take their mountain biking to the next level, but they are not super simple to bleed.

Bleeding brakes is easier than it seems and can be done with the same tools to bleed front brakes.To avoid introducing air bubbles, use a syringe instead of a tube if bleeding the rear brakes.

Remove the cotter pin and bolt using an Allen wrench, and set the brakes out of the way so as not to contaminate them with mineral oil.

  • Bleed Block (if applicable) must be installed before proceeding; 
  • adjusting level brakes helps increase air bubbles that rise to the top;
  • remove the bleed fitting screw with 2 5 mm Allen wrench;
  • thread Shimano brake bleed funnel into bleed nipple;
  • fill the syringe with mineral oil and place on the bleed nipple;
  • open bleed fitting using 7 mm box wrench;
  • remove the plunger from Shimano bleed funnel and push fluid through the system while closing off bleed fitting;
  • add suction to syringe to avoid splashing.
  • To bleed the brakes, remove the brake pads and plunger; bleed the Brake Lever and Caliper.

Install the Bleed Block

To bleed your Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, you will need to install a Bleed Block.Depending on your brake type, the Bleed Block is secured with a cotter pin or bolt.To adjust the brake lever level and clear air bubbles from the system, remove the bleed fitting screw and thread in the Shimano bleed funnel.Put the syringe on the bleed nipple after opening the bleed fitting with a 7 mm box wrench.

Remove remaining air bubbles by alternately pulling and flicking on the brake lever while filling up the syringe as needed until all gas bubbles are gone.Replace bleeder screws at both lever and caliper sides, and clean brake lever and caliper with isopropyl alcohol.

Take Out the Bleed Fitting Screw

Also known as the bleed port screw, the bleed fitting screw holds the bleed fitting in place.Using an Allen wrench and syringe, remove the bleed fitting screw.

Remove the syringe from the bleed nipple and close the bleed fitting at the lever reservoir.To prevent sudden damage, you will need to replace the Bleed port screws at the brake lever and caliper sides with clean threads.

Introduce the Shimano Bleed CupThe Shimano bleed cup is essential to bleeding your brakes.

The syringe is the easiest way to do this, but other tools are available if needed.Make sure to get all of the necessary tools before starting.Remove the wheel from the caliper you plan to work on.Leave the brake pads in when pushing pistons back.Remove pad retaining pin.Insert pad spacer and secure with a pin.

Level brake lever to avoid unwanted air bubbles entering the system.Carefully insert bleed bucket ensuring not to over tighten bucket.Remove any air bubbles from the syringe.Depress syringe while watching bucket until mineral oil runs clean and bubble-free.Clean and insert new brakes pads.Remove air bubbles by alternately pumping and flicking the brake lever.

Replace the plunger and funnel.The lever and caliper should be fitted with bleed fitting screws.Use a rag to clean brake levers and calipers with isopropyl alcohol.Brake pads should be reinstalled with a cotter pin or bolt after removing the Shimano brake bleed block.Reinstall the rear wheel if needed; repeat for the front-wheel if necessary.

How to bleed Shimano slx brakes40480

Shimano brake bleeding instructions vary depending on the type of brake system.

Shimano has a few different brake systems, so the bleeding instructions vary depending on the type of brake. Generally, the steps are to remove the cap and bleed screw from the caliper, fill a syringe with brake fluid, and insert the needle into the bleed screw. Pumping the syringe will push fluid through the system and out of the bleed screw.

Bleeding Shimano brakes usually require a special funnel or syringe.

The brake fluid must be transferred from the reservoir to the caliper to bleed Shimano brakes, and this is usually done with a special funnel or syringe. The process can be tricky, but following these instructions should help you get the job done.

Be careful once you're done, and make sure to unscrew the syringe from the bleeding port.

Once you've finished bleeding the brake, be very careful. Ensure to unscrew the syringe from the bleeding port and put everything back in place. Congratulations - you've successfully bled your Shimano brakes.

How to bleed Shimano road brakes

Hydraulic disc brakes can be serviced by following these steps:

  • bleed the system
  • adjust Brake Levers and Cables
  • check for wear and tear on braking surfaces

How to bleed Shimano mineral oil brakes?

1.Remove the brake pads from the bike

If you're having trouble removing the brake pads from your bike, it might be helpful first to remove the caliper. It is necessary to unscrew two bolts which hold the caliper in place in order for it to be removed from the car.

Once the bolts have been removed, the caliper can be removed from the rotor by sliding it off. Care should be taken not to spring the brake pads off while doing this.

2. Cut a small hole in the center of each pad

If you're bleeding your brakes, you'll need to make a small hole in the center of each pad. By doing so, you'll be allowing the brake fluid to escape and stopping the bleeding.

3. Squeeze the brake pads until the bleeding starts

If you are experiencing brake bleeding, the first step is to squeeze the brake pads until the bleeding starts. This will help get any fluid trapped between the pads and rotors released.

After doing this, you can then use a plunger or a vacuum cleaner to suction onto the pads and pull them off of the rotor.

4. Replace the brake pads and bleed them again if necessary

If your Shimano brakes are not bleeding properly, you may need to replace the pads and bleed them again if necessary.

How to bleed Shimano Deore XT brakes

  1. Remove the wheel 
  2. Remove the brake caliper 
  3. Loosen the bleed screw 
  4. Pump the brake fluid until it is coming out of the bleeder screw in a steady stream 
  5. Replace the bleeder screw and tighten

How to bleed Shimano Deore brakes?

Your Shimano Deore brakes need to be bled if you are experiencing a problem. Bleeding the brakes will help clear any air or fluid that may be causing the brakes to malfunction. Follow these steps to bleed your Shimano Deore brakes:

  • Remove the brake pads from the wheels.
  • Use a syringe to squirt brake fluid into the calipers.
  • Plunge the brake pads to make sure they are completely saturated.
  • Replace the pads and wheel on your bike.

How to bleed Shimano brakes without a funnel?

If you are looking to bleed Shimano brakes without using a funnel, here is a guide on how to do it. First, remove the brake pads from the rotors. Next, locate the bleed screw on the caliper.

Loosen the bleed screw slightly and allow some fluid to flow into the caliper. Once the fluid is flowing, tighten the bleed screw to stop the fluid flow. If you want to continue to bleed the brakes, repeat the process.

Learn How to Bleed Shimano Brakes Without a Funnel

If you're having trouble bleeding Shimano brakes, there is a workaround that doesn't require a funnel. A tube of air and a set of brake calipers are all you need. Open the bleed screw and hold the air canister beneath the bleed screw.

Pump the canister until the bike stops moving. Once it does, release the air and close the bleed screw. Repeat until all the fluid is gone.

Watch: How to Bleed Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on Shimano brake bleeding.

How Often Should You Bleed Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes?

Shimano hydraulic disc brakes are one of the most popular brakes on the market. They are reliable and offer great stopping power.

However, like all brakes, they need to be bled occasionally to keep them in good working order. Bleeding a Shimano hydraulic disc brake removes the cap and releases the brake fluid.

Bleeding Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes How Often?

If you ride a bike with Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, it's important to bleed the brakes regularly. Bleeding the brakes flushes out any air that may have built up in the system and helps to keep your brakes operating at their best.

Shimano disc brakes need to be bled how often?

Shimano disc brakes are brakes that use pads to stop a bicycle. When you use them, the brake pads will become wet from the fluid used to make them work, and this fluid needs to be bled every so often to keep the brakes working properly.

How much mineral oil to bleed Shimano brakes?

Shimano brake pads use mineral oil as a lubricant. Mineral oil is a petroleum-based product that can be thinned with water or other liquids to create a working fluid.

The amount of mineral oil that needs to be bled from Shimano brake pads depends on the type of brake pad, the amount of wear on the pad, and the temperature. Generally, 1 ounce (30 milliliters) of mineral oil should be bled per quart (1 liter) of fluid.

Can I use car mineral oil to bleed my Shimano mountain bike brakes?

Using different brake fluids can affect your brake's performance in different ways, so there is no definitive answer to this question.

However, it is generally safe to use car or motor oil as a substitute for brake fluid on mountain bike brakes. This is because motor oil is synthetic oil and is not affected by water or moisture like brake fluid can be.

How do you bleed Shimano disc brakes without a kit?

There are a few ways to bleed Shimano disc brakes without a kit. The most common way is to use a hose clamp and a standard bleed kit.

Turn the bleed screw until the disc brake bleeds freely, and clamp the hose onto the bleed screw on the disc brake. Be careful not to over-bleed the brakes, or they may become inoperable.

How do you bleed Shimano brakes without a syringe?

In the absence of a syringe, you can suck out the brake fluid using a vacuum cleaner. Make sure to use a rubber hose to avoid damaging the brake line.


This is an important step because it ensures that your brake pads are working properly. If your brakes are not properly bled, you could damage your rotors or even cause serious injury.Taking care of brake bleeding is a straightforward process that takes less than 10 minutes, although a few tools are needed and practice is required. We have shown you how to bleed Shimano brakes in this guide.Be able to stop a car from moving forward or backward, braking systems are essential parts of vehicles. The braking system consists of brake pads, calipers, and rotors, and these components come together to form a complete braking system.

John D. Archer

John D. Archer is a mechanical engineer and writer based on the area of automotive accessories at, A resident expert and professional, John is passionate about all things automotive and loves to share his knowledge. He has good experience in all kind of automotive accessories. He has worked as a chief mechanical engineer in some reputed automotive garage firm.