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I am having an ABS issue where I can feel the system working when I am on dry pavement as if it is sensing a slip. After about 5-10 mins of driving the ABS light will come on and the system stops trying to work. It drives fine after the light comes on, I assume because the ABS system has given up trying to work.

I am thinking that a sensor is bad, but on visual inspection of all sensors and leads with the wheels off I can’t find anything.

I have a lot of time before the winter comes and I will need the ABS system. Is there a safe way that I can disable the system until I have time to track down the problem?

Thanks in advance.

2003 Dodge Grand Caravan
4 Wheel Disc Breaks
52,000 miles
 

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Get it fixed. Disableing ABS is NOT a good idea.
 

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Sound like one bad sensor.
It should have set a Chassis or Body code, not a P code.
I doubt it will show up if you do the key dance.
Get it scanned at your local parts store.
 

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Sound like one bad sensor.
It should have set a Chassis or Body code, not a P code.
I doubt it will show up if you do the key dance.
Get it scanned at your local parts store.
That is unlikely to work either... most parts stores (at least the ones around here) can't scan ABS codes.

I find it odd that the light isn't on ALL the time if it's truly a bad sensor. It shouldn't take 10 minutes for the CAB to figure out that a sensor is bad.
 

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When the ABS light is on the ABS is disabled and the brakes function like non-ABS brakes. I agree with the posts above that the best thing to do is to get it fixed.
 

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There's a lot of variables for ABS failure. 4 wheel speed sensors, HCU, CAB and much more. Until someone actually puts a scanner to this vehicle, we can all continue to speculate. But disabling the ABS really doesn't affect braking. It would be no different than having a van that didn't come with abs.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
no fix yet

There's a lot of variables for ABS failure. 4 wheel speed sensors, HCU, CAB and much more. Until someone actually puts a scanner to this vehicle, we can all continue to speculate. But disabling the ABS really doesn't affect braking. It would be no different than having a van that didn't come with abs.
I tested all four speed sensors according to jgiurleo's post:
http://forum.chryslerminivan.net/showthread.php?p=89005#post89005
It was a super helpful link, but I didn't find the problem. The specs weren't exactly the same, but their was always a 1 volt fluctuation between on/off.

Is my only next option the dealer ship for the ABS codes? I am broke right now. I need to drive to Maine from Minnesota and I can't afford a lot of work. I know that I won't hit ice this time of year. I am going to try and pull fuses to disable the ABS system. The van runs great as long as the ABS isn't trying to work when it shouldn't.

I think that the Chrysler Dealership in my area is belly up.

phillip

phillip
 

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el conquistador is correct, the default setting (if ABS goes out) is exactly the same as driving a non-ABS van and will not create any greater safety issue than that. That being said, driving with an ABS fault could do more potential damage to the ABS system if you cant disable it but you should be able to find the ABS fuse...

Thank God for good old fashioned hydraulic brake systems, at least they'll work with no power or any of the ABS googahs running..... anybody here interested in some of those new cars with the electronic brakes that don't have a hydraulic system failsafe????

Good Luck on your trip!
 

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Quite likely true that you will not have rear proportioning but other than some nosedive attitude he may not be accustomed to, it would not be undriveable. You should of course not drive an ABS model with the ABS disabled "except in an emergency" which seems to be his intention. Our idea of an emergency may be more urgent but his road trip home should be uneventful if he keeps in mind the van's limitations.
 

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Well.. it's unfortunate that the wheel speed sensors checked out OK.. because that was the easy part. But I'm glad the post was helpful.

You would really benefit from the right scan tool (DRB-III). It will tell you WHY the light is on. If you don't have a dealer nearby who can help, try calling some local shops on the off-chance that they have it.
 

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If you can speak to a friendly tech, or an old mechanic with a good relationship with the dealer, they might scan it free. I had it done in a small GA town through a local mechanic. Faulty sensor that the standard code readers don't pick up. The Chrysler dealer spotted it immediately and I got a new sensor, plugged it in myself, no problem. But without ABS, if you have 4 wheel discs, you still have better braking than anything prior to the 90's, practically, but you do lose positive traction too, if you are headed into ice. You do the best you can with what you have, I have been there (most my life) and my 2005 is the first with 4 wheel discs and ABS, so anything is an improvement for me. Hope you get it fixed. First cheap check is any mud, debris in the gear like part of the axle that the ABS reads from, clean it and see if that improves. Look for ground connections to the system, plug and unplug things checking for corrosion. Free stuff. Check a worn wheel bearing, could cause erratic operation I suppose. Hope that helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
First cheap check is any mud, debris in the gear like part of the axle that the ABS reads from, clean it and see if that improves. Look for ground connections to the system, plug and unplug things checking for corrosion. Free stuff. Check a worn wheel bearing, could cause erratic operation I suppose. Hope that helps.
After I tested all the sensors with a multi-meter (and they check out OK) I cleaned the sensors, added dialectic grease to the connectors, and reassembled. The system is better than before, as in I don't feel the ABS trying to work all them time when I put on the brakes, but it tries to run 30% of the time and eventually the light comes on the the system stops trying to work. Of course then the van drives fine.

After looking at the price I am not about to by a DRB-III scan tool. What do you guys think about the Actron CP9449 scan tool? Would that do the trick? My van is one of the covered models.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000YJ053O?tag=autofacts-20&camp=14573&creative=327641&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=B000YJ053O&adid=1SC0G1S3YW03FEM33A4W&

http://www.actron.com/product_detail.php?pid=16349

I believe that it hooks up to the OBDII port. I have also been looking at a laptop based solution. There are lots of softwares that read engine codes via the OBDII port. Does any computer software read ABS codes?

Thanks for all of your input!
 
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