Mixing Brake Fluid And Bleach: A Dangerous Combination

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Brake fluid and bleach are two common household items that should never be mixed together. In this article, we will explore why mixing these two substances can be dangerous and potentially deadly.

What is Brake Fluid?

Brake fluid is a type of hydraulic fluid that is used in the braking system of a vehicle. It is a critical component that helps convert the force applied to the brake pedal into the pressure that stops the car. Brake fluid is typically made from glycol ether, polyglycol, or silicone, and it is designed to withstand high temperatures and pressure.

What is Bleach?

Bleach is a common household cleaning agent that is used to whiten and disinfect surfaces. It is typically made from sodium hypochlorite, which is a highly reactive chemical compound that can cause chemical burns and respiratory problems if it comes into contact with the skin or is inhaled.

Why is Mixing Brake Fluid and Bleach Dangerous?

Mixing brake fluid and bleach can be extremely dangerous due to the chemical reaction that occurs between the two substances. When bleach comes into contact with brake fluid, it can cause a violent reaction that produces toxic fumes and heat. This reaction can quickly escalate and lead to a fire or explosion.

What are the Symptoms of Exposure to Toxic Fumes?

If you are exposed to toxic fumes from the reaction between brake fluid and bleach, you may experience symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, nausea, and vomiting. In severe cases, exposure to these fumes can lead to respiratory failure and even death.

What Should You Do if You Accidentally Mix Brake Fluid and Bleach?

If you accidentally mix brake fluid and bleach, you should immediately evacuate the area and call for emergency assistance. Do not attempt to clean up the spill or dispose of the mixture yourself. You should also seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms of exposure to toxic fumes.


Mixing brake fluid and bleach is a dangerous combination that can have serious consequences. It is important to always handle these substances with care and to never mix them together. If you are ever unsure about how to handle a chemical mixture or spill, it is always best to seek professional assistance.