While you drive a vehicle, you frequently use brakes. So a driver must ask yourself how to tell which abs sensor is bad? Brakes are essential while you drive a vehicle as it helps you prevent accidents while driving.
A vehicle’s Anti-Lock Braking System or ABS found in numerous vehicles today. Particularly, it helps you reduce your vehicle’s speed without jamming the wheels. Hence the accidents are fewer, and you can stop your vehicle quickly.
One must know that these ABS brakes operate under a system. However, wherein the ABS sensors transmit signals to your vehicle’s computer. As well as, the computer then decides whether the ABS function needs to be activated or not.
ABS sensors are found near your vehicle wheels and consist of two significant components: magnetic sensor and tone ring.
Both these components run together to ensure your vehicle’s ABS system functions efficiently. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these components are subject to wear and tear.
As a driver, there are a few indications or symptoms that help determine the functionality of an ABS sensor. Also, it helps to let you know if the sensor is malfunctioning. So, let’s get deep into it.
How to Tell Which ABS Sensor is Bad: Symptoms & Solutions
#1. ABS Light Keeps on Glowing
As far as malfunctioning of the ABS sensor is concerned, this is the most common symptom. Whenever there is the slightest issue in your vehicles’ ABS sensor, your car’s computer will immediately detect it and turn the ABS light on.
What Exactly Happens?
Such light is similar to the check engine light that turns on your vehicle dashboard when any issue arises with your engine. Whenever you detect such a flashing light, you must consider paying a mechanic visit without wasting time.
The more time you take to resolve such an issue, the more risk you take of facing an accident.
What to Do?
As soon as you locate such an issue, locate a safe place for your vehicle as soon as possible and stop your vehicle from taking it there. After this, you can shut it and restart your vehicle.
Doing so will enable your vehicle’s computer to check all the unusual issues of the sensor. However, most of the time, the sensor issue may not be resolved in this way and would need professional attention.
Therefore, always take the help of a licensed expert who has the necessary tools to troubleshoot the sensor’s codes and fix the issue for you.
Always remember that your vehicle might be O.K. to drive even if your ABS lights are on. Maybe the brake will function, but it won’t help you if your vehicle skids.
Therefore, always be extra cautious while driving in such situations.
#2. The Issue with the Wheel Seed Sensor
One other major reason for the ABS light to enlighten and remain on is the wheel speed sensor. Such sensors are situated inside the wheel’s center and within the transmission (under a few cases).
The ABS mechanism relies upon the data that the wheel speed sensor sends to it. Sensors (wheel speed) determine the rate at which your vehicle wheels are moving.
Such sensors send that data to the Ant-Brake System, which, after getting it from at least one wheel, discovers that at least one wheel is moving more slowly when contrasted with the others, and it releases the brake fluid’s pressure.
As a result of this, the wheels continue to move. Whenever the wheel speed sensor experiences any issue, irrespective of it being due to regular driving or harmed somehow or another, no data will be delivered to the ABS from the sensor for controlling the wheel’s movement.
Such a sensor is located very close to the braking mechanism, and hence it can be susceptible to damage because of the brakes’ high warmth.
Such damage to the wheel speed sensor could also be why you can find the ABS light being switched on.
What to Do?
Once you have turned the sensor off and restart your vehicle, chances are the issue might be fixed. For a more complicated problem, always visit an expert technician.
#3. Brakes are Locking up
What is the function of the ABS system? It prevents the brakes from getting locked in extreme conditions, thereby offering traction to a great extent.
Once you have located that your brakes are getting locked while you are driving normally, the ABS pump is at fault.
Once you notice some unusual behavior from your brakes and clicking sound at random or the brake pumping vigorously, then it means you have a serious problem that needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
What to Do?
In such cases, the issue arises to such an extent that the brakes might lock your wheel while driving. If it happens, the best thing to do is to take the vehicle to the garage.
There might be a case that the ABS pump is at fault as indicated by the sensor and would need to be replaced.
#4. Brake Paddle Issue
Whenever are you thinking on the lines of how to tell which abs sensor is bad? Check the brake paddle.
A low brake pedal or pounding clamor could be a symptom that the time has come to replace the rotors or the brake pads.
Cautiously check to see that there are no frozen brakes at one place so that they keep on dragging all the time and won’t function as brakes at all.
A less jostling throbbing sensation underneath the brake may be coming from the distorted rotors, especially if the rotors haven’t been changed for a while.
An unreasonably soft brake pedal usually implies that air is flowing in your brake lines, and you might require either bleeding your brake fluid entirely or bleed your brake system.
Even if you have found out that you need to replace your brake fluid, try your best to ensure that air doesn’t flow into the ABS controller.
One can find it hard to bleed and would, more often than not, need the utilization of a unique ABS code reader to bleed it at all.
Such a code-perusing instrument has a capacity that helps in cycling the regulator’s siphon and valves to move air out of inner entries that can’t be drained appropriately in any case.
#5. More Effort is Required to Push the Brake Paddle
Needless to say that if the braking system is running fine, you won’t need to put additional effort into pushing the brakes.
Once you have pressed the vehicle, it will be very noticeable to you that the vehicle slows down immediately without any trouble whatsoever.
Once you have put on more pressure on your brakes and you would need more force for the brakes to work and stop the vehicle, it means your ABS module has come up with an issue.
What to Do?
Although the fix appears to be simple, like you may need a flush of fluid, usually when the paddle stops to work, it signals a more serious issue, leading to more severe problems in the future.
Therefore it’s advisable that whenever you get the signal that the brake seems to have a problem, get it checked through an expert.
An expert check will ensure that you avoid those potential fatal on-road accidents that you may encounter when your brake fails to work on hazardous roads or harsh weather.
#6. Failing Speedometer
Not only the brakes that experience problems when there is an issue with the ABS sensor, but the speedometer also faces issues.
Under certain circumstances, whenever there is a problem in the ABS; especially the pump, your vehicle’s speedometer can stop functioning suddenly.
Your speedometer might either display incorrect speed or display 0 miles per hour. Alongside this, you might also find check engine lights or ABS is activated.
What to Do?
However, irrespective of the light being turned or not; it’s always recommended that you get your vehicle inspection done through an expert vehicle technician.
Diagnosing the ABS Sensor
Just to remove the wheel hub to detect the ABS sensor isn’t sufficient to find out whether the system is really bad or not. However, if the sensor is enduring physical damages, such injury can surely be identified.
Conversely, when there is no physical damage to the ABS sensor; there arises a need for a troubleshooting-specialized gadget for running diagnostic testing to decide whether there is any real issue with the sensor.
To determine whether really such an issue exists, something like a scanner (for instance, an Autel Scanner MaxiCOM MK808) is ideal to use.
Such a scanner is a complete OBD2 scanner with a lot of advanced features. With this, you can distinguish the specific ABS sensor(s) that is creating irregular issues on your vehicle.
Therefore, utilizing this OBD2 examine the instrument, you can find the solution you look for.
The Most Effective Method for Testing
- Connect a scanner (or some other auto analysis device through which you can diagnose the ABS) to your car.
- The scanner needs to be booted, and you should adhere to the guidelines in the manual to let the scanner identify the vehicle you are testing on.
- For a scanner like the Autel MaxiCOM MK808, tap the “Auto Identify” button at the upper left. By doing this, you’ll let the scanner to auto-detect the VIN of your vehicle, and afterward, you can continue.
- Once the scanner instrument can disentangle your car’s VIN and interface with your car’s PC, tap the “Control Unit” option.
- On the following page, click “ABS” to load the data about your vehicle’s ABS system.
- Now, “Read Codes” is the option you should tap on. By doing so, you will trigger a scanning interface. Now wait for some time (a few seconds or minutes)
- Once the scanning is done, the scanning tool would show the error codes recovered from your vehicle. From here, you can detect the defective wheel speed sensor(s).
- However, to be more exact and get the specific result you look for, re-visit the past interface where you tapped on “Read Codes.” However, “Live Data” is the option you should choose now.
- With the “Live Data” option, you will be able to see data (real-time) in regards to a few parts that make up the ABS.
- Continue scrolling and move down to find out data about “Wheel Speed Sensors.” At this point, you should understand that Wheel Speed Sensors are equivalent to ABS sensors.
- The Wheel Speed Sensor should indicate “ZERO” since the vehicle isn’t moving. Any of the wheel speed sensors that indicate a number underneath or over “ZERO” while the vehicle is in stable possible is the one having issues.
Whenever you detect that your ABS is malfunctioning, always check the brake sensors and the wiring initially. Different types of trash and metal shavings can make the sensors become defiled.
Bringing about a malfunctioning ABS (switching off when it needed to be turned on and switching on when it doesn’t need to be). As discussed above, an ABS filter tool is quite useful during the diagnosis of damage that isn’t physical.
A scanner identifies the fault code. Which will demonstrate what the fault is, and in this manner, you will realize how to proceed with fixing it. However, the main point that should be highlighted here is that very few individuals have the tool all the aptitude for fixing ABS-related issues.
Hence, it is a lot more secure and smarter to permit your valuable Mercedes, Audi, BMW, or Porsche repair to be attempted by legitimate experts.
Expert supervision will guarantee the task is finished appropriately and securely, which will give you significant serenity.
So, here is all about how to tell which abs sensor is bad? Always keep in mind that brakes determine your safety whenever you are driving.
Therefore, whenever you find any issues with the ABS system through the sensors. Therefore, don’t hesitate to address the problem as soon as possible.
Always ensure you are taking the necessary steps to avoid accidents or significant damages. That will keep you safe & helps to always be in a peaceful mind as far as your vehicle is concerned.