September 19th, 2020 by Fix Auto USA
If your car’s antilock brake system (ABS) light illuminates, you need to know how to respond. If you ignore your ABS light, it may become exceedingly difficult or impossible to stop your car safely.
Is It Safe to Drive with the ABS Light On? Here’s What You Need to Know
When your car’s ABS light comes on, it means there is a problem with your vehicle’s braking system. You need to address this issue; otherwise, it could make your car unsafe to drive.
ABS is a type of braking system used in all cars produced since Sept. 1, 2011. It restores traction to a car’s tires and helps prevent the tires from locking up. As such, ABS can help drivers safely apply the brakes and steer their cars during an emergency.
There is an ABS light on a car dashboard in most vehicles equipped with this braking system. The light is typically yellow, orange, or amber, and it illuminates as part of a system check any time a car with ABS is turned on.
If a car’s ABS indicator light stays illuminated after the system check, there is a problem with the vehicle’s brake system. At this point, the ABS is malfunctioning or has been shut down
Is Your Car’s ABS Light Turned On? Here’s What You Need to Do
If your car’s ABS light comes on, don’t panic. In this instance, there may be several reasons why the light is active, such as:
- There is a blown fuse in your ABS
- An ABS wheel-speed sensor has been damaged or covered by dirt or other road debris
- A wire broke between your ABS sensors and controllers
- Your ABS controller is no longer working
Do not ignore an ABS light that remains illuminated; instead, take your car to a trustable auto repair shop. There, technicians can use a special code reader to determine the reason why your ABS light turned on and address the issue.
Warning Signs of ABS Issues
In addition to the ABS light illuminating, there are many signs that your ABS may be malfunctioning. These include:
1. Brake Pedal Is Unresponsive
When a car’s ABS starts to fail, the brake pedal may gradually stop working. As this happens, you’ll need to increasingly press down harder on the brake pedal over time to get your car to stop. Eventually, you won’t be able to press down on your brake pedal to safely stop your car, which means your ABS no longer works.
2. The Brakes Lock Up
A car’s ABS is designed to prevent the brakes from locking up during heavy braking. But, if you notice your car’s brakes begin to lock up in typical driving conditions, the ABS may need to be replaced.
3. The Check Engine Light Is On
Older cars sometimes do not have an ABS warning light. In these cars, the check engine light will turn on if the ABS system is defective.
It is often beneficial to learn about your car’s ABS light, check engine light, and other warning lights. Any time these lights turn on, you should address the associated problem right away.
Additionally, you can read your car owner’s manual to find out how frequently you should have your ABS inspected and receive other regular vehicle maintenance. With a proactive approach to ABS maintenance and other car repairs, you can prevent issues that otherwise can hamper your vehicle’s performance.
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This blog post was contributed by Fix Auto Chino, a leading industry expert and collision repair shop servicing the San Bernado County and surrounding communities.