Abs brakes problems

abs brakes problems

Anti-lock braking technology has been around for nearly a century. Since World War II, aircraft have had anti-skid braking systems, and the earliest anti-lock braking systems on automobiles date back to the s. Anti-skid or anti-lock braking first became more commonplace on cars and trucks in the s as a positive step toward improved safety and vehicle control during hard braking in slippery conditions.

If you encounter a skid while braking, the ABS control module senses a slowdown or pause in wheel rotation, modulating brake application to help you steer out of trouble. In a conventional skid, steering control is lost and the vehicle continues to travel in the direction of the skid.

Then, anti-lock braking pulses the brakes, which results in an improved measure of control out of the skid. A typical ABS consists of four wheel sensors sometimes two or threean anti-lock electronic control module and a hydraulic control unit. Under normal conditions, this system applies master cylinder hydraulic pressure to all four brakes, and pulsing pressure to each brake when a skid is detected. Early anti-lock braking systems were non-electrical, hydromechanical models.

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They were mechanically controlled to modulate brake application. Contemporary anti-lock braking systems are computer- controlled, electrohydromechanical brake hydraulic systems. The ABS electronic module or controller can be integral with the hydromechanical braking controller or it can be separate.

Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) problems?

There can also be electrical relays that fire when the system is called to duty. Anti-lock brake sensors are typically magnetically triggered. It is when the reluctor speed across the sensor changes dramatically wheels slow down or stop that the ABS will pulse brake application. When the ABS pulses, it pumps hydraulic pressure to the brakes in rapid-fire succession, sometimes as rapidly as 15 times a second depending on the system.

This function produces intermittent braking and some level of steering control. The best option is the four-channel system because it can micromanage brake action in a skid by pulsing only the affected wheel or wheels.

A three-channel system has two ABS sensors in front and one in the rear. The rear ABS sensor is located in the axle housing and affects both rear brakes. The one-channel system is rear anti-lock brake only with a single ABS sensor in the rear axle housing.

Generally, one-channel systems are common on trucks with rear anti-lock brakes. The proper way to use anti-lock brakes is to never pump the brake pedal during an abrupt stop.

How to Troubleshoot ABS Brake Problems

Instead, apply a solid, steady pedal and let the anti-lock braking system do what it was designed to do. Rarely is a malfunction the module or ABS itself. It is often one or more sensors, or the wiring to the sensors. The most common ABS problems occur when sensors become contaminated with debris or metal shavings. Malfunctions also occur when sensor wiring becomes damaged, resulting in intermittent or no continuity.

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In more corrosive environments or serious brake system neglect, brake fluid can become contaminated and the hydraulic control unit fails to function. If you have a malfunction in the ABS, physically check all wiring and the brake sensors first.To check for brake problems, you step on the pedal and press it down while paying attention to how the pedal feels under your foot and evaluating the sensation.

abs brakes problems

The following steps tell you what to feel for. Start your engine, but keep it in Park with the parking brake on. Does it feel spongy? If so, you probably have air in your brake lines. Does the pedal stay firm when you continue applying pressure, or does it seem to sink slowly to the floor? Release the parking brake and drive around the block, stopping every now and then. Notice how much effort is required to bring your vehicle to a stop.

If your vehicle has power brakes and stopping seems to take excessive effort, you may need to have the power booster replaced. If you feel that your brakes are low, pump the brake pedal a couple of times as you drive around. Check the fluid level in the cylinder again in a few days. Disc brakes self-adjust and should never need adjusting.

Drum brakes also have self-adjusting devices that should keep the drum brakes properly adjusted. As you drive around, notice how your total brake system performs, and ask yourself these questions:. Does the vehicle travel too far before coming to a stop in city traffic?

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If it does, either your brakes need adjusting or you need new brake linings. Does the vehicle pull to one side when you brake? On vehicles with front disc brakes, a stuck caliper and brake fluid leak can cause this problem. Does your brake pedal pulsate up and down when you stop in a non-emergency situation? A pulsating brake pedal usually is caused by excessive lateral run-out, which can happen because your brakes are overheating from overuse. Does your steering wheel shake when you brake?

If it does and you have disc brakes, your front brake discs need to be professionally machined or replaced. Do your brakes squeal when you stop fairly short? The squealing is a high-pitched noise usually caused by vibration.

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Squealing can occur when the brake linings are worn and need replacement, the brake drum or disc needs to be machined, the front disc brake pads are loose or missing their anti-rattle clips, the hardware that attaches the brake calipers is worn, or inferior brake linings are in use.

Do your brakes make a grinding noise that you can feel in the pedal? If so, stop driving immediately and have your vehicle towed to a brake repair shop. Further driving could damage the brake discs or drums.

Grinding brakes are caused by excessively worn brake linings; when the lining wears off, the metal part of the brake pad or brake shoe contacts the brake disc or drum and can quickly ruin the most expensive mechanical parts of the brake system. Does your vehicle bounce up and down when you stop short? Your shock absorbers may need to be replaced.

Never put off brake work. If this check shows that you have a problem, take care of the situation immediately. If your brakes fail, you and other people may be in serious trouble. Other kinds of automotive trouble may keep your vehicle from moving, but brake trouble keeps it from stopping. How to Troubleshoot Brake Problems.If the vehicle's wheels stop moving while brake pressure is being applied, but the vehicle itself is still moving, the system identifies this as a skid and automatically releases brake pressure to prevent the brake system from locking up.

Instead, the ABS system will pump the brakes to provide better control over the vehicle for the driver. If you suspect you are having trouble with the GMC ABS brake system, you should troubleshoot the problem to verify whether there is a failure in the system. Remove the fuse for the ABS system with the fuse puller located on the dash panel lid.

abs brakes problems

Inspect the fuse. If the fuse is popped, then you'll need to replace it. If it is not popped, then put the fuse back into the ABS fuse slot. Check behind the wheels on the ground with a flashlight. Check to make sure that the wires running to the wheel hub assembly these are the ABS wires are not damaged in any way.

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us. Step 1 Open the fuse panel underneath the dash. Step 2 Remove the fuse for the ABS system with the fuse puller located on the dash panel lid.

Step 3 Turn the steering wheel all the way to the right. Step 4 Check behind the wheels on the ground with a flashlight. About the Author This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.One increasingly common issue that Harley Davidson owners have been facing is ABS module and modulator failure. Dot 4 brake fluid will absorb moisture over time.

If your Harley is stored outdoors or in a humid environment, contamination of the fluid may happen even sooner.

The moisture will eventually contaminate the internals of the ABS modulator. When this occurs, the front or rear brake lever becomes rock hard and actual brake function is nonexistent. It is unsettling to us why Harley Davidson is, seemingly, the only vehicle manufacturer failing in this area. We realize that Dot 4 attracts moisture, but what is the engineering flaw that allows moisture to breach the sealed brake system?

If you think about it for a minute, the answer is in a flawed brake modulator design.

ABS Brakes & More : How to Repair an ABS Brake System

Harley was using Dot 4 in their brake systems, without issue, for years before Harley ABS models were produced and released to the public. When ABS was added, a module and modulator were added.

Being that the modulator is the only added component in contact with the brake fluid, it has to be the culprit. The letter stresses that owners have their brake fluid changed right away if it has not been changed within the last two years.

Then, the fluid needs to be changed every two years after. If HD has not yet engineered and manufactured a correct Harley ABS modulator to replace the failing unit, it might be good business to change brake fluid for free until a recall can be issued and a replacement unit can be installed. That is, obviously, just our opinion.

We have empty oil cases, with bad ABS modulators spilling out of the tops. Discussion Click here to cancel reply. I had my brake fluid changed twice and brake system checked several times on my Ultra before they finally replaced the the rear brake pads and the pad material was a bit soft and spongy. The people at the dealership said they had never seen this before and that the pads must have got something corrosive on them that did that.

A week later someone traveling through from out of state stopped at this same dealership to have the brakes checked. He was saying that they just all of the sudden would not work.

His rear pads were soft just like mine. Has anyone else seen this problem and have any advice on how to prevent it. It is very scary when your rear brakes start to grab and just let loose and you continue to roll through intersections.

Actually, the best way to avoid such a problem is by doing just that. By following the factory maintenance schedule, you can avoid this, and many other expenses along the way. I reported my crash due to loose of brakes to National Highway safety.

Harley dealer charged for changing fluid. This might be my last Harley. Thanks for your info. Looks as if Harley has decided not to do us owners any favors.

Same old song, Harley will never admit to responsibility for their failures. Happened to me on a three year old Ultra.This is especially important when you must put on the brakes suddenly to prevent an accident or crash. The ABS control module ensures that you drive safely and securely on the road.

The worst thing that can happen is to have a bad control module and then find out about it on the road. Below are five of the most common symptoms that will let you know that your ABS control module is failing. Once you find this out, get to a mechanic and have the module replaced right away. The whole purpose of an ABS control module is to prevent locking of the wheels. Do not wait to fix this problem because it will only get worse and cause a lot more locking on the road as time goes on.

If you have a newer car, then it should have an ABS light on the dashboard. If your ABS control module were to go bad, this dashboard light should come on. The light will likely be an amber color so it will be easy to recognize.

If you put your foot on the brake pedal and the car does not slow down at all as it normally does, this is obviously a sign that there is a problem.

abs brakes problems

In the beginning, the symptom will start out gradually where you will have to press your foot down on the pedal a couple of times to get it to work. But then as time goes on, you will have to press down more times just to perform one braking function.

It will eventually get to the point where it stops working altogether. You may be in a situation where the brake pedal of your vehicle works, but it requires a lot more pressure on your part just to perform a simple braking function.

A brake pedal should not require this much pressure. You should be able to just lightly press your foot down on the brake pedal for the braking to work. If you have to increase your effort just to do this, then your ABS control module may be bad. Either it will show you an incorrect speed or the needle will just rest at 0 mph. This will usually be followed by the ABS or check engine light coming on. The exact price of the replacement job will greatly depend on the type of car you have and the prices charged by the mechanic who works on your car.

This happened while I was idling at a dead stop in a parking lot. As I depressed the pedal with constant pressure for a minute or so, it simply collapsed suddenly! The rear axle grease seals had also ruptured so when I checked the brake lines and changed the rear pads the next day, I also replaced the grese seals and changed the differential fluid.

After all that, the brake pedal remains at that same halfway height to which it had collapsed!! It is not spongy, In fact it is solid, and pumping the pedal it does not have any effect on its height or effectiveness. The mechanics at car X have a confirmed there is no leak in the lines or the master cylinder.

Yet the pedal remains at half its normal height. Any ideas?? Breaks still mushy. My mechanic thinks its the abs control module ,but the abs light is not on? Any air in the system can cause a mushy brake pedal, and the ABS sensors may not detect this. If the brakes were not bled properly, it is possible there is still some residual air left in the ABS module.The anti-lock braking system on a vehicle is an additional safety feature found on many modern vehicles.

The ABS system is designed to help prevent wheels from locking during heavy braking situations, preventing the vehicle from skidding or hydroplaning.

The sensors detect wheel speed, and will send a message to the ABS module to rapidly pump the brakes when it is detected that the vehicle is skidding or has lost traction. When the ABS system is not functioning then loss of traction, skiddingand hydroplaning are far more likely to occur under heavy braking conditions. The ABS system on most vehicles is usually designed to give you plenty of warning signs when there is any trouble with the system. Being aware of these warning signs, and addressing the problem as soon as they arise will help ensure that your ABS system and vehicle remains functioning for maximum safety.

In certain cases, depending on the model of vehicle, when the ABS module fails, the brake pedal may become unresponsive. This is an obvious problem, as an unresponsive brake pedal will not stop a vehicle, or will not be able to do so in an adequately safe manner. In most cases, this will happen slowly, over time. Usually the brake pedal will become increasingly hard to press until it is no longer responsive.

When all components of the braking system are working properly, the pedal should require very little effort. It should be very easy to press down on, and once pressed should have an immediately noticeable effect in slowing the vehicle down. If you start to notice that over time the pedal requires increased effort in order to achieve the same amount of braking force, then that may be a sign of a possible issue with the ABS module.

When it is functioning correctly the ABS system is designed specifically to prevent the wheels from locking up during heavy braking, preventing loss of traction. However, there can be certain instances where a faulty ABS module can behave erratically, causing your brakes to lock up even under normal driving conditions. The most popular service booked by readers of this article is Brake System Inspection.

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2, U. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair. Schedule Brake System Inspection. Service Area. Average rating from customers who received a Brake System Inspection. Unresponsive brake pedal In certain cases, depending on the model of vehicle, when the ABS module fails, the brake pedal may become unresponsive.

Brake pads require more effort to push When all components of the braking system are working properly, the pedal should require very little effort. The brakes are locking up When it is functioning correctly the ABS system is designed specifically to prevent the wheels from locking up during heavy braking, preventing loss of traction.

Home Articles. The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details. Related Articles.Ford Fusion owners have reported 36 problems related to abs brake fail under the service brakes category.

The most recently reported issues are listed below. Also please check out the statistics and reliability analysis of Ford Fusion based on all problems reported for the Fusion.

5 Causes of an ABS Light to Come On in Your Car and What to Do

I was driving about 5 mph on a street when my brakes failed and the control panel started blinking about abs failure. I was able to stop the car using the hand emergency brake. I turned off the ignition and restarted the car and drove maybe feet when the same problem occurred--brakes failed and control panel started with warning. I was able to stop car again with emergency brake. No damage to anything or anyone. This same problem happened about 4 years ago with this car--I took to a Ford dealer who could not find anything wrong with my brakes or the computer software for the abs.

I feel lucky I have not been injured because I was driving slow and could use my emergency hand brake, otherwise I would have hit another car or object without brakes. See all problems of the Ford Fusion. When driving over rough road or when its raining and applying the brakes, the pedal goes to the floor. It seems as when the abs system activates it causes the brake system to lose stopping power. After awhile the brakes seem to reset. I have taken it to numerous mechanics and they cannot duplicate the problem.

An internet search, which I'm sure you're aware of, has documented numerous cases of this possible abs pump failure.

5 Symptoms of a Bad ABS Control Module (and Replacement Cost)

This has been an ongoing event for the past year. In motion: brakes stopped working properly while driving modulator for abs failed and power steering locked up the steering wheel to the point that it required significant effort while driving which created a dangerous situation for my 17 year old daughter who had to stop in the middle of the street.

After driving on slippery roads on a city street, the brake pedal became soft and we could not stop. We had to pump the brakes many times. The local Ford dealership says the abs hcu has failed. I am experiencing intermittent failure of the abs control module, essentially causing a loss of braking capability when driving. This occurs without warning. Brakes return to normal operation after shutting the vehicle off, and restarting. The abs fails while driving at normal operating speeds.

Both occurrences that I have experienced to date have occurred in residential zones traveling at 25 miles per hour. The dealer has diagnosed it as an abs failure with a repair cost of dollars.

My vehicle has less than 45, miles and has no history of accidents or major repair. I was driving about 45 mph, approaching a stoplight when I went to press the brakes and the car didn't slow down.

I had to push the brake pedal completely to the floor and narrowly missed a semi that was turning at the moment. There was no warning light on the dash or anyting to indicate that the abs failed. It takes a longer distance to stop the car, there is little to none brake pressure and I can not make sudden stops. I was told it was the abs module and it failed. I researched and this seems to be a standard problem for the Fusion. An investigation was opened earlier this year into Ford due to the many abs complaints.

They have known about this for years and have yet to issue a recall. There should be a recall before someone gets seriously injured or worse.