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How to Bleed ABS Brakes on a 2005 Ford F150

by Justin Cupler

Anti-lock brakes made their first factory-installed appearance in Mercedes vehicles in 1978. This safety feature has increased in popularity to the point that most cars, at the time of publication, come standard with some form of ABS. The 2005 Ford F-150 was one of those vehicles that included standard ABS on even its lowest trim level. Bleeding the ABS brakes on the 2005 F-150 requires that you use a specific sequence in order to perform it correctly. Besides the specific bleeding sequence, the overall process is straightforward, and many F-150 owners can perform it with no problems.

1

Unscrew the cap from the F-150’s brake master cylinder reservoir and add DOT 3 brake fluid until the level reaches the “Max” line, if needed. Tighten the cap onto the master cylinder reservoir.

2

Raise the front of the pickup with a floor jack and slide jack stands under the frame rails. Lower the front of the F-150 onto the jack stands. Raise the rear of the F-150 with a floor jack, and position jack stands on both ends of the rear axle. Lower the rear of the F-150 to the ground.

3

Crawl beneath the F-150, so you are behind the right-rear wheel. Find the bleeder valve – the ¼-inch metal valve – on the top rear of the caliper. Press the end of a 3-foot-long, ¼-inch-diameter rubber hose onto the bleeder and set the other end of the hose in a clean, clear container.

4

Pour DOT 3 brake fluid into the clean, clear container until brake fluid submerges the end of the hose in the container.

5

Instruct an assistant to press and release the brake pedal until it feels firm – typically 5 to 10 strokes – then hold pressure on the pedal. Open the bleeder valve by turning it counterclockwise with a combination wrench and watch the submerged end of the hose for air bubbles. Tighten the bleeder valve and instruct your assistant to release the brake pedal. Repeat this step until no more bubbles come from the submerged end of the hose.

6

Open the brake master cylinder and refill it with fresh DOT 3 brake fluid until the level reaches the “Max” line on the master cylinder reservoir. Tighten the cap onto the master cylinder reservoir.

7

Repeat Steps 3 through 6 to bleed the remaining three wheels, in the following order: left rear, right front and left front.

8

Raise the rear of the F-150 off the jack stands with a floor jack and remove the jack stands. Lower the rear of the truck to the ground. Raise the front of the truck off the jack stands with a floor jack and remove the jack stands. Lower the front of the pickup to the ground.

Warning

  • Brake fluid quickly damages automotive paint, so wipe up any brake fluid spills immediately.

Items you will need

About the Author

Justin Cupler is a professional writer who has been published on several websites including CarsDirect and Autos.com. Cupler has worked in the professional automotive repair field as a technician and a manager since 2000. He has a certificate in broadcast journalism from the Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Cupler is currently studying mechanical engineering at Saint Petersburg College.

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