"Very high [brake] temperatures can also cause the brake fluid to boil with a resultant increase in pedal travel. This should be detected immediately by the driver, as a very small quantity of boiling fluid is enough for the pedal to go right to the floor without any effect; in contrast to the liquid brake fluid, the boiling part is compressible. It is particularly important that when the car has been stopped for a short time -- up to 15 or 20 minutes after a drive in which the brakes have become very hot -- the pedal is depressed for a check. When the car is at rest, brakes act as a heat sink from which heat spreads to the fluid contained in the calipers; brakes which were fully operative when the car was driven may have become totally inefficient after it has stood awhile."
-- Paul Frere, Sports Car and Competition Driving
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