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How to Check CRT Codes to solve ABS Light & Electrical Warnings


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Were  you able to get the ABS wheel sensors out of the knuckle?  Your photos don't show much rust around them.

 

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Studebaker

Ronnie......Thanks for asking.  I had cleaned around all the sensors and sprayed some PB Blast around them, but have not yet had time to remove them.  Just got the vinyl tubing to cover the brittle/cracking sensor wires on the front.  I noticed that the front "toothed gear" that spins below the sensor is pretty clogged up with years of crap, and I want to do a thorough cleaning of them also when I remove the sensor (sensor magnet may also have some crud on it).  Since the computer codes were pointing at the front driver's side sensor as having a problem, perhaps a good cleaning and a new cable wrap will make a difference.  I will take some pics as I dig into it and post soon. 

 

The pic you posted above is of the rear speed sensor, and from my reading of the manual these are fully enclosed, and should be pretty clean on the inside where that sensor toothed gear spins around.  But I will remove them and use a light to inspect that toothed gear (and spin the wheel to check out the entire gear).  Do they recommend spraying anything into that sensor hole while spinning the wheel as a way of cleaning it?  If no drain hole on the bottom, then probably a bad idea.

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2 hours ago, Studebaker said:

But I will remove them and use a light to inspect that toothed gear (and spin the wheel to check out the entire gear).  Do they recommend spraying anything into that sensor hole while spinning the wheel as a way of cleaning it?  If no drain hole on the bottom, then probably a bad idea.

I would concentrate on the front first.  They are probably the cause of your problem. If the leads on the rear sensors look good I would leave them in place and just clean the teeth pm the reluctor ring. If the ABS light is still coming on after repairing the front leads you might need to check the rear closer.

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Studebaker

Ronnie......Yep, makes sense to do the front wheel sensors first (clean reluctor ring and wrap the cables), and then see if the ABS light stays off.  Do you think I should go into the CRT screen settings and delete all the old ABS/Brake codes before giving the car a test drive?

 

I also want to use a syringe to suck out all the fluid in the master brake reservoir, and pump fresh fluid down to all 4 brake calipers while I have her jacked up and wheels off. 

 

(By the way, since I got the new pc with Windows 10, I no longer get notices of comments to my email.....is there something I need to do to allow this again?)

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Not sure why you aren't getting the emails with  your new computer. If you are following a topic you should be getting the emails. I get them so I think the forum is sending them out as it should.

 

You can't clear codes with the CRT. The ABS controls are a different system from the onboard diagnostics.  The ABS codes will clear automatically after you drive the car over about 15 MPH if the EBCM doesn't still detect a problem

 

1 hour ago, Studebaker said:

I also want to use a syringe to suck out all the fluid in the master brake reservoir, and pump fresh fluid down to all 4 brake calipers while I have her jacked up and wheels off. 

I don't know what you mean by pumping fluid down to the calipers unless you mean using the systems brake pump to do it. Follow these instructions for flushing and bleeding the brakes and you will be doing it the best way : How To Flush & Bleed Brakes

 

I use a vacuum pump with a tiny tube on the end to get the fluid our of the reservoir.  It's hard to get anything very big down in there.

 

brake_flush-1.jpg

brake_flush-2.jpg

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Studebaker

Ronnie......Thanks for the input.  Great, I dont need to clear those ABS codes, and if the problems get fixed, then the lights will go off after driving over 15mph for a bit.

 

Brake Reservoir.....There is quite a bit of fluid, so you inspired me to forget the syringe and pull out my vacuum pump, which has the exact same fill cup that you have.  I like your idea of downsizing the suction end to get every drop out.  I will definately read the "How To" you posted about bleeding the brakes the correct way....that will be a big help.

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Studebaker

Update on the ABS Wheel Sensors:

 

Today I wanted to remove the front wheel sensors so I could inspect the tips and clean them properly.  It took a T30 to remove the sensor screw, but then the actual sensor had no desire to move up and out of its location.  Pic:

STA75728.thumb.JPG.d9c7ecdf0b6e4f09b5ef611a57a2ea26.JPG

 

I sprayed penetrating oil around the sensor, and tried prying a bit with a screwdriver to help "suck" the fluid down and around the sensor base.  I was able to slide a razor blade behind the sensor at the top, but cant find a safe (non-destructive) way to pull that sensor out.  I dont want to crack that old plastic where the cable comes out, and vice grips will tear up and crack the black plastic encasing the sensor.  Is it safe to pry from the inside side (where the pick-up magnet is sticking through and lies close to the gear "teeth")?   Any other tips on getting the sensor out?

 

In this pic, you can see the crud that has built up around the sensor gear teeth.

 

STA75722.thumb.JPG.d822724f2d61669cc941f442c440e152.JPG

 

This pic shows the passenger front sensor, and you can better see where the sensor sticks through and is almost touching the gear teeth.  Is it safe to do some gentle prying against this inner side of the sensor?

 

STA75720.thumb.JPG.c611400818146b396431ef258d9e211e.JPG

 

As you can see, I can easily get to the "gear teeth" and thoroughly clean them without removing the sensor....so, if these sensors are not wanting to come out, its not mission critical.  I would hate to break one in the process of just removing to clean the tip of it.

 

STA75715.thumb.JPG.17e8b19355355f556366e435f6fdee36.JPG

 

 

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I wouldn't remove the sensors just for the purpose of cleaning them.  I would just run a cloth or something between the sensor and the reluctor ring to make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the sensor. I would clean the reluctor ring good. Dave may have some ideas on getting the sensor out. He has worked with the sensors a lot.

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If the sensor doesn't come out with your fingers it's in good. The only way to get it intact is to buy another hub assembly ans swap it in. Then take your existing one and cut it up to free the sensor.

Edited by DAVES89
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Studebaker

Ronnie......Glad you posted those last comments.......if the sensor does not want to come out, then  I will just leave it alone.  I will just clean the teeth (Reluctant Ring), and like you said, just use a cloth between ring and the sensor to make sure it is clear of any crap.  These sensors are hard to find, and "if it aint broke, then dont fix it" really applies in this case.

 

If I were to ever replace these sensors, I would definitely want to put anti-seize on it before pushing back into that tight-tolerance hole.

 

Is the business end of the sensor a magnet, or is it fairly durable metal......and a bit of prying with a screwdriver between the Reluctant Teeth and the sensor tip would not "kill" it?

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3 hours ago, Studebaker said:

Is the business end of the sensor a magnet, or is it fairly durable metal......and a bit of prying with a screwdriver between the Reluctant Teeth and the sensor tip would not "kill" it?

The first photo (of a rear sensor) shows what the sensor looks like if you had it out of the knuckle.  It isn't a solid magnet.  It appears to have a metal "can" that covers the internal parts. I doubt it is durable enough to use a pry bar on. 

 

The other photo (of a front sensor) shows what is inside the can which appears to be a magnet with a coil of wire surrounding it.   I can't find, or don't have, the can that goes with that sensor. The reluctor ring passing by that coil and magnet is what generates the small voltage sent to the EBCM.

 

Thanks to Dave for providing me with spare sensors so I could take these photos.

abs_sensor-1.JPG

abs_sensor-2.JPG

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Studebaker

Ronnie/Dave.....Great pics of that wascully sensor.  The sensor "can" must be stainless steel.  In my case, I bet that there is built-up crud on the "can" which is preventing the "can" from sliding through the hole.  I will first try using a brush/solvent to clean the "can" and then try more penetrating fluid, and some gentle prying.  Will try using a needle nose vice grip to grab the top end where the screw hole is, but dont want to snap off that weak corner.

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5 hours ago, Studebaker said:

The sensor "can" must be stainless steel. 

It probably is stainless since it's not rusty but I don't think it is very thick.  I don't know how much prying it can withstand before it bends. You can try it but be prepared to replace it if you screw it up.  Keep in mind that wheel sensors are no longer available new and good used ones are getting hard to find...

 

 

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How hard was it to pull the guts out? I believe I had one that came apart that way on my neglected '89. The can stayed in place but it went right back together and appeared to function fine, at least no codes. I am sure you are right about the stainless steel, high grade stuff being non magnetic, or I wouldn't think the sensor would work properly. Prying on it would likely mushroom the end and it actually kind of looks that way in the photo or maybe a trick of the light. Maybe factory that way.

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1 hour ago, 2seater said:

How hard was it to pull the guts out? I believe I had one that came apart that way on my neglected '89. The can stayed in place but it went right back together and appeared to function fine, at least no codes. I am sure you are right about the stainless steel, high grade stuff being non magnetic, or I wouldn't think the sensor would work properly. Prying on it would likely mushroom the end and it actually kind of looks that way in the photo or maybe a trick of the light. Maybe factory that way.

2seater, put some caulk under the head of the sensor and then slide it back in. Then put another bead of caulk around to protect any water from working its way in. I did that on both the Red and Black years ago and they still work.

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3 hours ago, 2seater said:

How hard was it to pull the guts out? ...... Prying on it would likely mushroom the end and it actually kind of looks that way in the photo or maybe a trick of the light. Maybe factory that way.

I think Dave must have pulled the guts out of that one.  I don't remember doing it and I can't find the can.  I'm sure I would have saved it. 

 

As for the can, I put a micrometer on it and it's .705-.708" in diameter any way you measure it. That is way closer tolerances than I expected.  There is an indention  near the end about 1/16" wide x 1/32" deep and about 3/16 long. You can see the indention in one of my photos.  That tells me the can isn't made of very think metal or the process of putting that indention in it would deform it beyond the tolerances described above.  I don't know what purpose that indention serves  I don't think it would be for aligning the sensor. Seems like the bolt hole should be good enough for that.

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Studebaker

Ronnie......Yep, I saw that little groove in the side of the stainless steel "can" when I was cleaning it today.  I thought that maybe that groove went all the way along the can, and so I was spraying lube up at it hoping the penetrating fluid would get up further around it.

 

I put needle nose vice grips on the top side where the screw hole is, and tried prying with a flat screwdriver just a bit on the bottom of the sensor "can" (I did not want to damage it any).  Still could not get that sensor to come out.....I can wiggle it a small amount, and spray lube around it as I wiggle it.....but she doesnt want to come out.  As you said, these sensors are too precious to brake, and hard to find.......so looks like I will just have to leave it in and just clean the best I can from the reluctor "gear teeth" end.

 

I think this thread should lead us to another new topic to talk about.......How to bypass the AntiLock brake system, and make it a standard brake system.  I honestly would prefer not having anti-lock brakes, and with parts being scarce, maybe more of us will have to think about going that route.

 

 

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This isn't really relevant to repairing the ABS light being on but I thought I would post it anyway as info about the sensors.

 

I still had the sensors on my workbench so I took another look at them to see how the can was held in place.  I was surprised at what I found when looking at how the can is sealed to the body of the sensor.  The first thing I saw was a circlip slid down over the can against an o-ring (photo 1 and 2). The o-ring fits in a grove between the body of the sensor and the can. I thought the circlip should be snapped into a grove in the body but it just fits the can snugly and is slid down against the o-ring.

abs_sensor-1.JPG

abs_sensor-4.JPG

 

Oddly enough, when I pulled off the circlip and pulled out the o-ring I discovered there is nothing I could find on the body of the sensor, or the can, for the circlip to snap into.  It appears is is only intended to sit on top of the o-ring.  Maybe it helps compress the o-ring tightly into the grove in the body of the sensor when the bolt is tightened in order to make a good seal against the knuckle.  I tried to get the can out of the body of the sensor after removing the o-ring. It didn't even wiggle with me pulling hard on it trying to get it out.  I believe the can must be pressed into the body of the sensor and isn't intended to be removed.

 

I'm going to clean the sensor up good and put a new o-ring on it before I put it back in storage.

abs_sensor-5.JPG

 

 

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4 hours ago, Studebaker said:

I think this thread should lead us to another new topic to talk about.......How to bypass the AntiLock brake system, and make it a standard brake system.  I honestly would prefer not having anti-lock brakes, and with parts being scarce, maybe more of us will have to think about going that route.

If you want to disable the ABS just remove the fuse or unplug the EBCM.  As long as the yellow ABS light is on the ABS system is disabled. Just put tape over the yellow light and you good to go.  If you are wanting to replace the Teves system that is a different story and a new topic should be started to discuss that.  I personally don't see a reason to do either one as long as you can get parts to repair the stock brake system. 

 

I've had my Reatta about 12 years and only once have the Teves brakes stopped working.  It was when I drove around Cade's Cove Loop in the Smoky Mountains National Park. It is 11 miles of driving about three miles an hour in bumper to bumper traffic. It take 2-3 hours to go around it depending on traffic.  You are constantly going up and down long hills and it requires constant braking to keep from hitting the car in front of you.  I think the pump and/or motor overheated and I lost power brakes just before I completed the loop.  I still had brakes. I just had to stand on the pedal really hard to stop.  I pulled ove and let the car cool for about 30 minutes and everything was back to normal

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Studebaker

Ronnie.....real interesting autoposy of that old sensor carcass.......and patching it up like the crazy doc working on Frankenstein, just in case you need to call it up for service.

 

So, maybe the stainless steel can is pressed on when that black plastic is still soft, and it kinda welds into it? 

 

I was also wondering where the metal of the sensor (where the screw hole is) ends and the bakelite plastic begins......almost seems like it slowly fades from metal to all plastic (where the cable pops out).

Further autopsy needed?  ha ha....pass the scalpal or sledge hammer

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