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ABS doesn't work, no light at startup

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  • ABS doesn't work, no light at startup

    At an autocross event this weekend, I discovered that my ABS doesn't work. I had never noticed it before, but my light doesn't even come on at startup. I know when most people say that their ABS doesn't work, they say that their light comes on while they're driving. However, my problem doesn't follow these symptoms.

    Any ideas what could be the culprit?


  • #2
    1,ABS circuit fuse + burned out ABS lamp.
    2, One or more bad sensors +Burnt ABS lamp.
    3, Faulty ABS unit + bad ABS lamp.

    Based on what we don't know.
    Has the system worked in the past?
    Have you recently aquired the car?

    And the big question:
    How low is your ///M3?
    Last edited by Mmark; 05-01-2005, 09:45 AM.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Mmark

      And the big question:
      How low is your ///M3?
      HAHAHA Priceless.

      On a side note, my ABS doesn't work in reverse (havn't got to test it going forward). Is it supposed to work in reverse?
      "It is needless to say that self-propelling vehicles, like other machines, will never do as much for one who does not understand them as for one who does."


      • #4
        I've had the car since March of 2003. The car is stock height...stock suspension except Koni shocks in the rear. I've never really tested the system in the past. I always figured it worked, but yesterday I found out that it does not. I had never known that the "anti-lock" light was supposed to illuminate when you start the car and then extinguish. In other words, I'm not sure how long the system has been inoperable.

        Thanks for any advice.


        • #5
          The *Anti-Lock* lamp should glow amber along with the other warning lamps which are red when you switch the key to "ON".
          Are you are able to lock either the rears, the fronts or all four wheels under heavy braking?
          The ABS on this car cuts in very late (Much later than any other car I've driven except the Elise) if you have high performance tires.
          So it is possible to brake quite hard and if you have the habit of threshold braking, you may be staying out of the ABS.
          You'll need to check fuses. Make sure there are connected sensors at each wheel and make sure the sensors have not been contaminated with ferrous pad residue.
          It is likely you will have to take it in to a shop to get it fixed If you want ABS.

          Forget about the Low M3 bit. There was an earlier thread which seemed to indicate to me that if the car has been lowered, then functional brakes are not necessary due to the enhanced cornering prowess of the lowered car.


          • #6
            Are you certain the ABS does not work - try braking with 2 wheels on pavement and 2 on the grass (obviously watch what you are doing, you should not have to brake hard or go fast to lock up the wheels that are on grass)

            I think if your light does not come on it's because it's burnt out it should be on all the time if the system is fu-bar. You can go ahead and replace the light anyway...check the fuses...check the sensors...

            I think you can find a shop around Va beach that can fix this if the simple stuff does not fix it.


            • #7
              Good news...I had already tested the sensor connecters with an ohmmeter and they checked out fine, but I also went ahead and pulled out the overvoltage protection relay under the dash. I pryed that thing open and sure enough, the little wire was broken. Today I picked a new one up from the dealer (I was surprised they actually had one in stock) and put it in this evening. Took the car out for a spin, nailed the brakes, and felt that sweet sweet pulsing of the brake pedal.

              Granted, the light still doesn't work, but I'm assuming that replacing the bulb will take care of that little issue.

              Many thanks to all that provided advice.

              On a side note, anyone know the part number of the ABS indicator bulb (or at least the wattage)?

              Thanks a lot.


              • #8
                Great, good news. I dont' have specific information on the bulb but I think it's the same as all the other "idiot light" bulbs, dealer should have.

                You might want to replace all the idiot light bulbs while you have the cluster out (IIRC you will need to pull the cluster to do this). You could go totally nuclear and do the SI board or at least the batteries if you don't know how old it is as well...just a thought.

                I didn't know about the overvoltage relay, that's good info for me as well, so thank you too!