ZOOM Brake hydraulic mineral oil?

Robbie_D

New Member
I have a question.

I bought some mineral oil for my hydraulic brake. It was the last bottle on the shelf and it is less costly than at another store. However, on the label it says "heavy mineral oil". Should i use this heavy mineral oil or is there a "regular" mineral oil?
Both pharmacies i went to sold only heavy oil.

I hear (un)scented baby oil can be used, too. Is the heavy oil okay or should i use a regular mineral oil...or maybe the baby oil is best?

I can return the unopened heavy mineral oil to the store if another type of oil is best.

I have Tektro brakes and it's written "mineral oil, on the lever.
When my brake housing broke open, a clear oil came out...there was no color to the oil.
I hope a response comes quickly because i've been riding around the city with only the front brake since a couple of weeks, already.

Thanks for any advice.
 

theemartymac

Well-Known Member
I have a question.

I bought some mineral oil for my hydraulic brake. It was the last bottle on the shelf and it is less costly than at another store. However, on the label it says "heavy mineral oil". Should i use this heavy mineral oil or is there a "regular" mineral oil?
Both pharmacies i went to sold only heavy oil.

I hear (un)scented baby oil can be used, too. Is the heavy oil okay or should i use a regular mineral oil...or maybe the baby oil is best?

I can return the unopened heavy mineral oil to the store if another type of oil is best.

I have Tektro brakes and it's written "mineral oil, on the lever.
When my brake housing broke open, a clear oil came out...there was no color to the oil.
I hope a response comes quickly because i've been riding around the city with only the front brake since a couple of weeks, already.

Thanks for any advice.
Heavy oil has a higher viscosity, and that "might" have an impact, but I've seen the argument made by a number of riders that use drug store oil with no issue. if you ask Shimano, I'm sure they will say to only use approved Shimano oil. The heavy oil is medical grade for internal consumption, so I'm sure it's pure enough and won't wreck anything, and there "shouldn't" be any issue with general compatibility of mineral oils like there would be with DOT fluids. They may or may not mix anyway, and you get a product viscosity somewhere in the middle. Just make sure it's a pure oil with no additives/scents/etc..

Just don't mix/cross the Min Oil and DOT Fluid, as the seals are designed for either min oil or the proper DOT fluid. You can definitely get premature seal leakage or failure with the wrong product.
 
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Timpo

Well-Known Member
Well this guy was using Tektro fluid for Zoom brake.
As long as you're not using motorcycle brake fluid, DOT 4, DOT 5.1 or whatever they call, I think you're fine?

 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I have seen tests using drug store mineral oil in brakesets and it works fine. With that said, you use so little of the proper fluid, why screw around with it? I have six sets of Magura brakes and I have bought two 4 oz bottles of 'royal blood' (blue mineral oil) over the last 5 or six years, and one of them is still 3/4 full.
 

rich c

Well-Known Member
Not a place to pinch pennies in my opinion. $9 a small bottle is cheap money compared to the price to replace Shimano components.
 

Robbie_D

New Member
With that said, you use so little of the proper fluid, why screw around with it? I have six sets of Magura brakes and I have bought two 4 oz bottles of 'royal blood' (blue mineral oil) over the last 5 or six years, and one of them is still 3/4 full.


120 ml of proper brake fluid will cost me CAD $20.00 +tax.
500ml of the heavy mineral oil will cost me CAD $7.30 + tax.

Plus i can use the mineral oil on other things.
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Yeah but you only buy that $20 bottle once in a year or two. If that. Brakes don't 'use' fluid that needs replenishment. You only need more if somehow something goes wrong and you have a leak. Or you change cables or something and lose a lot of fluid in the change. If you were buying it monthly I'd see some sense in it, but hey its unlikely you will harm anything I guess.

Its unlikely you get your brakes to boiling point of the fluid so the undoubted lower boiling point of the drugstore fluid will probably not matter.

The tests I have seen are all with mineral oil, not baby oil.
 

Robbie_D

New Member
Yeah but you only buy that $20 bottle once in a year or two. If that. Brakes don't 'use' fluid that needs replenishment. You only need more if somehow something goes wrong and you have a leak. Or you change cables or something and lose a lot of fluid in the change. If you were buying it monthly I'd see some sense in it, but hey its unlikely you will harm anything I guess.

Its unlikely you get your brakes to boiling point of the fluid so the undoubted lower boiling point of the drugstore fluid will probably not matter.

The tests I have seen are all with mineral oil, not baby oil.

Ok cool.
So, i will try the mineral oil instead of the costly brake fluid. But i am still curious about it being labelled "heavy". I suppose i could google it but maybe you can tell me if there is another type of drugstore mineral oil beside "heavy" that is better?
Is the higher viscosity heavy mineral oil better than a lower viscosity drug store mineral oil, if another type of drugstore mineral oil exists? I have no idea.

Also, i am using a brand new housing.


Thank you
 

theemartymac

Well-Known Member
The heavy oil. I also have seen comments about baby oil being a little thin and leading to spongy brakes - especially when hot. And the introduction of additives like fragrances, aloe, etc, might also be a slight concern.

The only time that might be flipped, is if you run in very cold temps where high viscosity (Heavy) oil won't flow well, and that might mean reduced brake pressure. Then a thinner oil like a pure baby oil might work better.
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Ok cool.
So, i will try the mineral oil instead of the costly brake fluid. But i am still curious about it being labelled "heavy". I suppose i could google it but maybe you can tell me if there is another type of drugstore mineral oil beside "heavy" that is better?
Is the higher viscosity heavy mineral oil better than a lower viscosity drug store mineral oil, if another type of drugstore mineral oil exists? I have no idea.
oh hey whoa there. Lets make sure we are talking about the same thing. Your brakes are specifically made to use 'mineral oil' right? They don't use 'brake fluid'? There is a specific difference between those two terms. I think Tektro always uses mineral oil but I could be wrong and this is something we gotta get right.

This is not something I have fooled with personally. But here's one test that uses 'baby oil'. Looking at it... it doesn't look highly viscous at all.

 

TrevorB

Active Member
I'd stay with factory oil given choice. While other oils might work initially in long run, chemicals in them could damage brake seals etc in which case you are up for totally new set of brakes.