Brake Line Hose Replacement Costs
The moment you press the brake pedal, hydraulic pressure forces the brake caliper to close, clamping brake pads against the rotor. Likewise, on drum brake systems, the wheel cylinders extend to press brake shoes against the inner surface of drums. To move brake fluid from the brake reservoir to each wheel, your vehicle uses rigid steel brake lines and flexible hoses.
Like other rubber parts, brake hoses will typically break down with usage and exposure to the elements outside. Most brake hoses range from around $10 to $50, and while they don’t break the bank, a bad brake line hose can be a safety issue.
If you have a cracked brake hose, the exterior layer has contact wear, or the hose’s connectors are stripped or seized to the caliper or the brake line, you’ll need to replace it. Find out what factors impact the replacement cost, the average price for different types of vehicles, whether it’s a DIY job or not, and ways to keep the costs down.
What impacts the cost of brake hose replacement?
Virtually all brake hoses have a similar design. There’s an exterior protective cover made from natural or synthetic rubber, a reinforced outer layer, a bonded adhesive layer, a second reinforced layer, and an inner lining that’s made of EPDM or Teflon. The connector ends are crimped onto the hose. Some high-performance hoses also have braided stainless steel layers for added strength and style.
What affects the price of a brake hose often comes down to a handful of factors:
- Hose type – Depending on the type of vehicle, certain types of hoses may be required for replacement. For example, steel-braided hoses are more expensive than traditional rubber hoses. If you purchase higher quality hoses such as stainless steel or Kevlar reinforced, these will also come with an additional cost associated with them.
- Vehicle make and model – The make and model of your vehicle can also influence the overall cost of replacing your brake hoses. Some models may include longer hoses or unique connections and routing which involve extra labor time, and therefore cost more to replace.
- Location – The hose location can also have an impact on the overall price you pay for replacement. For instance, a brake hose that’s integrated with a steel line might need to be snaked into a tight spot, adding cost for materials and extra labor.
- Installation – Generally speaking, it’s always recommended to use a professional mechanic when replacing or repairing brake components. It’s not only because they understand the safety considerations involved but also due to their expertise when dealing with brake systems which ultimately reduces installation costs. You can, however, do it on your own with the right tools.
Average brake hose replacement costs
Brake hoses aren’t universal, and the part you need for your vehicle will depend on the size, bore, burst strength, and connections, not to mention the materials used to make them. In most situations, these variables don’t offer more choice; rather, they’re specifications for making hoses that work for your vehicle. It does, however, affect the price you pay, whether you drive a passenger car, a truck, or an SUV.
The average light-duty passenger car might have a smaller bore of hose, and they’re often relatively short sections. Access is easy to change them too. A brake hose replacement cost might range from around $65 to $250 between parts and labor per hose.
With heavy hauling capabilities, trucks will often have thicker hoses, and often they’re slightly longer. It’s not uncommon to pay between $107 and $380 per brake hose including installation costs.
In the middle of the range, SUVs need to be more robust than small cars but not necessarily at the same level as trucks. Pricing often ranges between $95 and $315.
DIY vs professional brake hose installation costs
Naturally, if you’re a DIYer, then you could consider doing the work yourself to save on brake hose replacement cost. With only a connector at each end, the job isn’t overly complex on its own. But aside from swapping out a brake hose, you’ll need to add brake fluid and bleed the brakes, getting out any air that got into the system. Otherwise, the brakes will be inconsistent and spongy, and they might not stop your vehicle like you expect them to.
If you decide to change the hose on your own, ensure you have a second person on hand to help with bleeding the brakes, or purchase a brake bleeder kit. And always use the same type of brake fluid that your owner’s manual specifies for top-ups.
Typically, labor is the largest component of the job, and there’s a level of confidence and peace of mind you’ll get from having a professional technician install the hose. Labor costs range from around $60 to $190 or so per hose, but you can save on those costs if you do it yourself.
Tips to minimize the cost of replacing brake hoses
If you’re trying to minimize brake line replacement cost, here are a few tips:
- Shop around for a competitively-priced mechanic, but always ensure they’re ASE-certified.
- Install the brake hose yourself.
- Find an aftermarket hose instead of buying the OEM replacement part.
- Route and secure your new hose carefully, otherwise it could rub through and need premature replacement.
- Replace a worn or cracked brake hose before it leaks. That way, you’ll have more control over the replacement part selection and pricing.
Shop at AutoZone for brake line replacements and brake hoses to fit virtually any make and model. Ask an associate for help, or shop online with convenient delivery methods to get your parts when you need them.
FAQ/People Also Ask
It’s unsafe to drive your vehicle with a leaking brake hose. Have your vehicle towed to the mechanic or, if you’re a DIYer, change the hose and bleed the brakes before using the car again.
Yes, brake hoses are relatively simple to replace with common tools. Make sure you bleed the air out of the brakes afterward.
On average, a brake hose will last around 100,000 miles, but they should be inspected once or twice per year to check their condition.
Most brake hose failure comes down to either cracking due to weather or from rubbing.
Deep cracks in brake hoses and rubs through the protective exterior cause most brake hose leaks.