Braking Rules

by Steve Sturgess

ABS malfunctions can be traced through electronic diagnosis. One maker uses an LED on the ECU to flash a fault code; another flashes a code through a light mounted somewhere inside the cab. Many use or offer the capability of using a handheld electronic tool that plugs into the ECU. The tool in most cases is the same one used to work on electronically controlled diesels, though a unique diagnostic cartridge may be needed. Regardless, your mechanics will need some kind of training on inspection and troubleshooting, which ABS suppliers are happy to provide.

Most problems with ABS stem not from electronic components but from loose connectors, improperly installed wiring, or ignorance. Everyone has to be aware of the new equipment installed as part of ABS. The tire man has to avoid bumping the toothed ring or the sensor when he removes a tire-wheel assembly, and the mechanic doing a brake job must be sure to put the toothed wheels and sensors back in place.

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