Best Brake Bleeder Kits: Get on the Pro Level

Your helper's calves will thank you

Best Overall

OEMTools One-Man Brake Bleeder and Vacuum Pump Test Kit

Best Value

HTOMT 2-in-1 Brake Bleeder Kit Handheld Vacuum Pump Test Set

Honorable Mention

Mityvac Hydraulic Brake and Clutch Pressure Bleeding System

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It’s easy to develop something of a love-hate relationship with brake bleeding tools. You may find that they work all right, but they can’t quite compare to the old “pump it, hold it” routine. But that’s really a “you” problem as, after all, the pros use brake bleeders every day and seem to make out just fine. 

The problem many struggle with is today’s market being absolutely loaded with options. That’s a great thing in many ways, but it makes it really easy to wind up with useless junk if you don’t know what to look for. To get you onto that pro level and using a brake bleeder properly, we’ve dropped into the murky waters of what’s available to find our favorites and then produce a buying guide to help you find the ultimate brake bleeder for yourself.

Summary List

Our Methodology

There’s no better way to learn about what works and what doesn’t than to go out and turn some wrenches. After having countless blunders and a few success stories, we like to think we know a thing or two about brake bleeders. In fact, a few of our recommendations are based on what we actually own and use. That doesn’t mean we’ve had the opportunity to test them all, though. Therefore, research is a major part of our selection. We take the time to read into the specs and reviews to ensure anything we recommend is truly worthy of your consideration.

Best Brake Bleeder Kits: Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall: OEMTools One-Man Brake Bleeder and Vacuum Pump Test Kit

OEM Tools is known for supplying respectable specialty tools the DIYer can depend on to keep them motoring along safely. This is a vacuum brake bleeder that comes with all the attachments you need to hook up to most bleeder valves or use to perform additional specialty tasks. The large, legible gauge tells you how much vacuum you’re building and if it’s holding, ensuring you won’t let any air contaminate your work. We should point out that it’s also much more robust than many cheaper alternatives, and you can count on this pump for years to come. On top of that, it also builds approximately one inch of vacuum with each pump, minimizing the amount of work you have to put in.

As great as this pump is, there are some weak points. Quality control seems to be an issue, as faulty units can show up. Also, it does have fittings that work with most applications, but it does fail to create a seal on some, even with all of the included attachments, and it’s worth reading to ensure this will work with your car.

Best Value: HTOMT 2-in-1 Brake Bleeder Kit

Saving money doesn’t mean you need to get ripped off. This set from HTOMT is an excellent example of what we’re talking about. It includes the vacuum brake bleeder, along with a decent combination of attachments that allows you to hook up to various bleeder valves and use the tool for other special purposes. As if that weren’t enough, it also comes with a nice storage case to help you keep track of all the parts. The various tube lengths included also give you the means to work under the wheel of virtually any application without worrying about snags or the line being too short to work properly. You get all of that at a fraction of the cost of a lot of other kits that have similar features and functions.

Being an affordable kit you can expect some drawbacks. In this case, durability is a concern. You’ll need to be mindful of that in storage and while working. Leaks can also be a real nightmare, and it is relatively limited when it comes to the number of attachments included for bleeding brakes.

Honorable Mention: Mityvac Professional Hydraulic Brake and Clutch Pressure Bleeder Kit

This bleeder from Mityvac taps into the master cylinder to pressurize it, allowing you to quickly move from wheel to wheel to remove air from the lines much more quickly than you could with a vacuum bleeder. It is extremely easy to use, and the range of attachments included allows you to hook up to many different applications. On top of that, you also fill the reservoir with fluid as you work. You don’t need to continuously return to the master cylinder to ensure you’re not bleeding the system dry. Also, coming from Mityvac, you can count on the quality beyond cheap competitors.

Is this for everyone? Yes and no. While it does cover a wide range of applications, it’s priced a little too high for many. So, unless you’re working with many different vehicles, this kit hardly seems worth it. Also, there are more moving parts and connections on this type of bleeder than others. Setting up and chasing down leaks can be more time-consuming than with alternatives.

Best Pneumatic: Four Uncles 2L Vacuum Brake Bleeder Air Brake Bleeder Kit

Looking for the easiest way to bleed your brakes? This kit from Four Uncles is just what you need. Instead of having to build a vacuum by hand, this system relies on an air compressor to do the work for you. Not only does that cut down on physical work, but it also speeds the process up quite a bit. Don’t worry, the included reservoir helps you to eliminate the risk of sucking the system dry. To make things even better, the quality of this system is surprisingly good for the price, and Four Uncles even throws in the air fittings you’ll need to get up and running in no time at all.

While this is a great choice for those with an air compressor, it’s utterly useless to those without. We should also point out that the number of bleeder fittings it comes with is rather limited, keeping this entry from sitting any higher on our list.

Best for Classics: Motive Products Brake System Power Bleeder Brake Bleeder Kit

This kit from Motive is the best choice for your classic. It does away with everything you’d need to work with modern vehicles, helping to keep the price relatively low. On top of that, the included parts will fit on a wide range of master cylinders from the heyday of Ford, Chrysler, GM, but it does include an attachment for some newer style master cylinder reservoirs, meaning you may be able to use it on your daily commuter. A universal benefit to this type of bleeder is that it cuts down the amount of time you spend bleeding each wheel and the constant introduction of fresh fluid keeps you from bleeding the system dry.

Something to note about using the universal attachments for older vehicles is that setting up can be difficult. You have to make sure a perfect seal is made on the master cylinder, or it will push fluid out all over the engine bay. On top of that, the wing nuts can be somewhat uncomfortable during setup, which adds more to the potential frustrations of setting up.

Best Overall Runner-Up: Orion Motor Tech Brake Pressure Bleeder Kit

Orion’s brake bleeder kit has an excellent entry price for a pressure bleeder and ensures your next brake fluid change is flawless. On top of that, it comes equipped with a brake fluid reservoir cap that fits most European vehicles, though other applications are available.

This type of system is incredibly user-friendly; just ensure the cap is securely fastened. You have the option to either fill the bottle or the reservoir and use the bottle as a pressure source. However, exercise caution as the latter can introduce unwanted air into the system if the reservoir level isn’t high enough.

Our Verdict on the Best Brake Bleeder Kits

At the end of the day, the balance of price and quality puts the OEMTools One-Man Brake Bleeder & Vacuum Pump Test Kit on top of our list. However, the HTOMT 2-in-1 Brake Bleeder Kit Handheld Vacuum Pump Test Set is an excellent option for folks who need to save a few bucks. What are your thoughts? We’d love to know what brake bleeder you’ll be using on your next project!


You Have Questions. The Drive has answers.

Q: Do brake bleeders work?

Brake bleeders work as long as there’s a tight seal and there aren’t leaks in the system. They do a fantastic job of bleeding brakes. It is very important that the kit you use works with your car, though. Otherwise, the seal on the bleeder valve or master cylinder might let air into the system. They are either operated via vacuum, pneumatically or via pressure.

Q: Do I need to bleed all four brakes?

You don’t always need to bleed all four brakes. If a brake line you’re replacing only connects to one wheel or you replace just one caliper, you should only need to bleed the appropriate corner. It’s good practice to bleed the others as it’s the best way to ensure there is no air in the system. 

Q: How often should I bleed my brakes? 

Many people overlook the importance of bleeding their brakes, even if it’s recommended to do so every couple of years. However, it’s a good idea to bleed your brakes whenever you service the pads. We should also mention that you should flush the system every 30,000 miles. 

Q: Will air in brake lines go away?

Air cannot escape your brake lines because the system is sealed. Therefore, you need to bleed your brakes to remove any air. If you can’t afford a tool or don’t have time to wait for one, you can bleed your brakes with the help of a friend and nothing more than a wrench to open the bleeders.


Hank O'Hop Avatar

Hank O'Hop

Associate Editor, Commerce

Hank is an Associate Editor at The Drive. He may be here to recommend tools and parts, but he’s always happy to dive deep into tech discussions, especially when it gives him the opportunity to display his old Dodge.