How to Use Brake Cleaner – Top 8 Picks To Get Shiny Brakes

Everything you need to know about how to use brake cleaner for getting spotless and shiny brakes. You can’t expect to run your vehicle smoothly if you’re not taking care of it. Similarly, a certain maintenance regime may not seem as important, but in the long run, a heap of benefits can be reaped out of it. Brakes are one of the essential parts of any vehicle and they need to be taken care of. However, getting the best brake cleaner for your brake can really prolong the life of your brake.

It isn’t something to brag about, but in fact, brake cleaners have proven to be worthy and cost-efficient products that can ensure the brake’s condition. They usually work by removing the dirt and dust particles, debris, grease, and all other different kinds of contaminants that can severely reduce the brake’s efficacy and life.

CRC 05089 BRAKLEEN Brake Parts Cleaner – Non-Flammable -19 Wt Oz – Best Brake Part Cleaner

CRC Brakleen is one of the most renowned brands in the market that has been used for quite a long time. However, to survive the competition, the product really needs to be up to the mark. Fortunately, the CRC brake cleaner covers all the bases to be called the best brake part cleaner.

In fact, it is a chlorinated product and it is non-flammable as well. In addition to such aesthetic features, it fulfills all the basics of the best brake cleaner. Since it can easily eliminate the dust particles, debris, waste materials, and other containment with profound ease. However, you need to be clear that since this is a chlorinated product, it can’t be sold in New Jersey, California, and Catalina Island.

In addition to that, CRC Brakleen is a powerful brake cleaner that can be easily applied to any kind of brake system. While the process of removing grease, dust, or containment with this brake cleaner surely exceeds others due to its fast action nature that can clean quickly and dry as well.

If talking about the availability of this product, it usually comes in a 20-ounce size.


  • It works like magic when comes to cleaning
  • It is suitable for any kind of brake systems
  • It leaves no residue on the surface


  • It usually ran out of pressure before fluid run out
  • There are some aerosol issues

3M 08180 High Power Brake Cleaner – Mid-Level VOC – 14 oz – Best Brake Dust Cleaner

To join the list, another celebrated brand 3M brake cleaner is here. Undoubtedly, automotive products from 3M have earned huge praise among its valuable customers. Therefore, we’re adding this amazing 3M brake cleaner to our list that is capable of cleaning off any kind of dirt or containment.

It is a high power brake cleaner that works amazingly with three varying levels on Amazon. It is a high-pressure product that generates a flushing action that can wash off any kind of dirt. Therefore, this product is widely regarded among its users as a multi-purpose formula that can work for any kind of brake system.

In addition to these features, its versatile cleaning application allows it to work on any brake part like shoes, drum, caliper units, disc brake pads, and other related parts. In short, the product has actually decoded the formula of being a versatile product that not only helps in cleaning the brake system but it can also reduce the squeaking and chattering sound from brakes as well.

With all such amazing features, it still has much to offer like it has a negligible odor and it dries really quickly. Consequently, making this product everyone’s favorite. 


  • It has high pressure with flushing action
  • It has the ability to dry very quickly leaving no residue behind
  • It also has the ability to reduce chattering and squeaking noises from brakes
  • One of the most celebrated brands in the automotive industry


  • There’s velocity lacking in this 3M product

VHT SP700 High-Performance Caliper Cleaner – 11 oz. – High-Performance Brake Caliper Cleaner

If you really want to ensure that the battery life should be prolonged, then you’re reading the description of the right product. Since this cost-effective product has been used by many for their brake’s maintenance. However, if we dissect deep into the anatomy of the product, we can easily decipher the working formula which is almost the same as its contemporaries. In addition to that, the general features it offers are also likely to be the same.

However, certain features make it outshine its other rival products like it has been termed as the first step product that’s applied before repainting any brake caliper. Astoundingly, the product works leaps and bounds to create that magical effect of cleansing.

Needless to say, this product works wonders and light-medium coats will surely give that aesthetic factory look to your calipers. In short, it sprays out really well and the coverage provided by the product is the most noteworthy part. So, not being skeptical but this product is surely the best when it gets to stick up on the metal.

This product is best for cleansing and removing dirt and it is also able to dry up really quickly by not leaving any kind of film. However, this product isn’t on sale on Catalina Island.


  • It has great cleansing action properties
  • It dries up really quickly
  • It will give factory-like look to your caliper
  • It widely promotes paint adhesion to maximum


  • It is not for sale on Catalina island
  • It has low pressure 

Permatex 82450 Non-Chlorinated Brake and Parts Cleaner, 14.5 oz. 

A non-chlorinated product that has really given the other products a run for their money. Why not be? The amazing and spectacular features and widely regarded applications offered by this product has surely won many hearts. Therefore, we can easily call this product the people’s favorite.

With different features that may be the same as other products like cleaning off the dirt and rinsing the excess debris, oil, or grease from the metal surface. But what makes it special is its formulation, in fact, it is formulated in a way that it penetrates deeply to rinse off any containment. 

In addition to that, it is widely regarded as one of the safest product for application on any kind of brake system. Consequently, making it a household item of any vehicle lover. Moreover, it is termed safe for use on aluminum surfaces as well. Consequently, resulting in the elimination of every kind of containment.

It is usually available in single units or a pack of 12.


  • It is non-chlorinated
  • It is safer for use on aluminum surfaces
  • It leaves no residue by cleansing any kind of containment


  • It is a bit on an expensive side
  • Comparatively, it doesn’t dry as quickly as other products

Gunk M720 Chlorinated Brake Parts Cleaner – 19 oz. – Best Brake Duster Cleaner

Gunk is one of the most popular names in the automotive industry and if we’re compiling any list of automotive products, Gunk’s product will surely fall into it. A renowned brake cleaner that will surely not disappoint you in many regards.

The product is suitable for any kind of cleansing action ranging from dirt removal to any kind of containment elimination. The product has surely proven its mantle to work in the harshest of conditions to produce the best results. It can easily wary of any kind of containment and work with high efficacy.

In addition to its cleansing properties, it also dries up really quickly by leaving a film behind that’ll ultimately help the brake system to be intact. Moreover, it is a chlorinated product with nonflammable properties, so before any kind of its purchasing, validate its availability in your town.

Although, it isn’t really famous among the new automotive products aspirants still the old school lovers are still into it. As it is one of the most popular brands of cleaners and degreasers.


  • It is a chlorinated brake cleaner
  • It is one of the most popular cleaners and degreaser brand around
  • It is ideal for cleaning brake parts and C.V assemblies
  • It is non-flammable


  • The spray pressure is uneven
  • You can’t move the sprays too much from their spraying positions otherwise they may lose their power

CRC 05084 Brakleen Non-Chlorinated Brake Cleaner-14 oz – Best Brake Cleaner for Motorcycle

Another CRC brake cleaner to be on the list is this heavy-duty product. So, if you need a CRC Brakleen product but a non-chlorinated one so this is the product you must go for. An all-rounder that’s what we call it because it seems to us a cleaner that can clean off any kind of containment with its improved formula.

Therefore, it is widely regarded as the best non-chlorinated product around. It is capable of cleaning any kind of dirt from any part of the brake system. Since it is particularly designed in a way to clean off any kind of dirt, debris, waste material, or any containment. 

It contains less than 45% VOC. While the availability of this product is 14-ounce size. In short, if you’re looking for a non-chlorinated brake cleaner then this may prove to be the best choice you’ll ever make.


  • It cleans and dries really fast
  • It is a non-chlorinated cleaner
  • It is capable of removing any kind of containment with profound ease


  • The design is a bit cheap and not durable
  • It isn’t a really powerful spray like others

Johnsen’s 2417-12PK OTC Compliant Non-Chlorinated Brake Cleaner – 14 oz. – Best Brake Cleaner For Rust

Another non-chlorinated brake cleaner to make on our list is the famous Johnsen’s brake cleaner. Undoubtedly, the manufacturer of this product is in this field for quite a long time to build up its reputation. However, if we dilate the characteristics and general features of the product, so even the product lives up to the reputation of its name. Since the product is a delicately designed non-chlorinated formula that can wear off any kind of dirt.

In fact, this premium aerosol product works with such astounding strength that its sheer power is enough to clean off the containment. While the product is undoubtedly a miraculous one when it comes to its action but the best part is the safeness of using this product. Consequently, making it a safe product to use on any kind of drum, disc brakes, or ABS.

Johnsen’s offers other different varieties of products to complement their reputation. While the fast-acting cleansing formula has the ability to dry as quickly as any brake cleaner can. Consequently, leading to no residue left behind. Moreover, the product is even allowed to be sold in areas that even restrict the content of VOC.

However, this 45% VOC (volatile oil concentration) basically works as a catalyst to remove the waste from your brake system after cleaning off any kind of dirt. 


  • It is suitable for all ABS
  • It removes any kind of containment in a blink of an eye
  • It leaves no residue behind


  • Ingredients quality used in the spray aren’t market competitive

Denco #1930C Brake Cleaner – 13 OZ Cans – Pack of 12 (12) 

Another notable company’s product to make on our list is this product. It doesn’t contain any kind of harmful ingredient that may damage anything. This product has given even the best products the run for their money due to their competitive performance.

In fact, the formula of this product is really an aggressive one that helps this product to act as a very strong cleaner. Unrelated to its strong and aggressive formula, it is one of the safest products in the market and doesn’t contain dangerous ingredients like toluene and methanol.

Moreover, it is a multi-purpose brake cleaner that can be used for several purposes such as cleaning and degreasing. In fact, in performing these actions, this product is surely the best one. 

It can be safely applied to different parts of the brake system, calipers, pads, all types of ABS, and rotors, etc. In short, making it a valuable choice for the amount of money you spent.


  • It is really safe to use
  • It is regarded as a multi-purpose solvent
  • It can clean off any kind of dirt with its aggressive formula


  • Sometimes it is unable to remove grease
  • The design of the product is not aesthetic

What Is Brake Cleaner?

Undoubtedly, one of the most important and technical systems of any automobile that requires constant care is the Brake system.  Brakes get dusty and greasy often due to the constant exposure to grease, brake dust, road debris, grime, and petroleum-derived brake fluid.

In order to cleanse and make the brakes effective a special kind of cleaner is used, that is to say, Brake Cleaner. Brake cleaner is also known as parts cleaner is a colorless aerosol cleaning solvent that evaporates, after its application on the surface.

A Brake Cleaner is purposely used to clean all aspects of the brake consisting of drums, linings, pads, discs, springs, and c.v joints. Brake cleaner is quite supreme for eliminating layers of grease, brake fuel, oil, and any other sort of contamination from the particular specimen very shortly and functionally, without leaving any residue behind. When the brakes are cleaned and pristine in their original condition, they are able to run and function much more smoothly and are reliable for a longer-term, accurately offering improved road safety. More effectively, the specially designed degreasing formula in the brake cleaners enables the brakes from the further accumulation of grime and debris collecting in the brake during driving.

What Is Brake Cleaner Used For?

Brake cleaner apart from giving efficacious and worthy effect on the brakes has been very useful in improving braking performance, prolong the life of both brake discs and pads, and rapidly removes grease, oil brake fluid, and grime from brake friction components, also containing the rehydrating formula in order to preserve the braking components. Brake cleaner is very useful in providing minimal preparation and cleans uptime with quick and easy application.

Brake cleaner could also be used on other parts of the automobile such as it can be operative in cleaning off the valve before putting up the new oil in it, or removing grime on the bearing before re-greasing it. More secondary applications of brake cleaner comprise of, a very impressive and worthy stain remover as a chlorinated brake cleaner consist of perchloroethylene that is readily used in laundry, a nice accumulated floor cleaner removing marks and stains, ink and stain remover and a gun cleaner too.

Hence the usage of brake cleaner put not so a good effect on human health, it should be used with particular precautionary methods. However, before using it safely, you should know how to use brake cleaner. They are a reason behind the cause of severe headaches and illnesses. Practically advised to use in an open and well-ventilated environment so as to avoid inhaling the toxic substance.

How to Use Brake Cleaner

When it comes to safety, brakes are considered a very major part of any type of vehicle. Modern vehicles nowadays have a braking system that requires very little maintenance. To clean the brake, we need a brake cleaner or brake fluid. 

Following are the steps to clean your brake.

STEP 1: Your vehicle should be parked in a well-ventilated area.

STEP 2: Now remove the tire and hold the can away from the brakes at least 0.3 to 0.6 meters.

STEP3: Take a spray bottle and insert the brake cleaner tube into the nostril of the spray bottle.

STEP 4: Now take a cleaner and spray it everywhere starting from the top and move towards downward especially on brake drums and disc until all the accumulated dust, dirt, grease and contaminates wash away.

STEP 5: Wipe off all the excessive brake fluid with the help of a clean cloth, allow the brake parts to dry, once they get dried use your vehicle again. Also properly dispose of the used brake cleaner after usage.

In this way, all the dirt, grease, brake loosened up by brake cleaner while some stubborn parts require one more application. There are brake cleaners that reduce brake noise also, the excess noise of the brake is due to contaminants that are present on the brake.

Important Features To Consider Before Buying a Brake Cleaner

A few essential features ought to be considered while selecting a perfect brake cleaner for your automobile, making it work perfectly in the future. Listed below are some important features :

  • Decelerating a vehicle is as important as accelerating it, hence using a brake cleaner that removes the harmful debris that can shorten the lifespan of the brake, thereby selecting a brake cleaner that extends the life of your brakes.
  • While brake cleaners should never be used on plastic, paints, and rubber surfaces, hence remove the old brake dust from the car brake before selling it by choosing a brake cleaner that spruce up your car before you sell it
  • Brake cleaners are very practically used in fixing the brake sequels and other noises in order to prevent the brakes from any further unwanted sounds and to help your car move more effectively and efficiently.
  • Lastly, select a brake cleaner that removes brake dust buildup on your wheels.

A perfect buy for the brake cleaner is also on the aspects of it being chlorinated and non-chlorinated brake cleaners. If you are cleaning a metal part that you plan on welding, using a brake cleaning product then it is not recommended to use a chlorinated brake cleaner as it may create toxic fumes when welded. Non – chlorinated brake cleaners are safer to use on plastic parts. Thereby selecting a perfect brake cleaner according to your needs is very much considered.


In short, we can’t deny the importance of this tiny little product’s significance in the tire’s life. While how to use brake cleaner still holds significance. Since we need to be extra cautious when working with the brake system as none can compromise over the brake’s life of the vehicle. Therefore, brake cleaners are extensively used in every household around the globe to extend the lifespan of brakes. 

The only mystery or question to be answered is what is the best brake cleaner that we can use? Although, we’ve discussed all the major products and dilated their features with the utmost research, still only you can decide what is the best product for you. However, you need to consider the aspect of budget constraints before diving into certain products. In short, our favorite product on the list is the 3M brake cleaner 08180 due to its vast applications, powerful action formula, and affordable price.

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