ABS code C1225 and C1232

Tiny
GTBBACKYARDMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 CHEVROLET IMPALA
  • 110,000 MILES
I replaced wheel bearing assembly two months ago along with wire harness. Solved the problem. Now it is back. Found moisture around the splice in the harness so I replaced harness and spliced further upstream. No luck. Could the wheel sensor have gone bad in two months?
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Saturday, April 27th, 2013 AT 2:18 PM

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Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Yes it could. I do not know what those codes are related to but GM has had a huge wheel bearing problem for a long time. Due to the poor design the ABS wheel speed sensors develop very wimpy signals to start with, then the wheel bearings develop a little play, which is normal, but in this case that's enough to let the speed signal drop out and set a fault code. That play can develop in less than 15,000 miles. You'll find the dealer's scrap metal bins are full of them. If you installed a bearing assembly from the dealer you might want to try one from a local auto parts store. The aftermarket industry does a good job of addressing common recurring problems with factory parts and producing improved versions.

There is two other related problems. There are some aftermarket scanners that had a software glitch that caused them to mix up the speed sensors. If the left one was missing the signal the code reported it was the right one that had the problem. If the warning light comes back right away after a bearing is replaced and it's for the same wheel, try installing the old bearing on the other side.

The second issue is in how the problems are detected. In the case of wheel speed sensors the computer compares them to each other while you're driving. When a code is set for one of them, the computer knows it can't rely on that as an accurate reference for the others, so it won't run tests on them, and it won't set a fault code if a second problem occurs. Once the mechanic reads the only stored code, he makes his diagnosis and repair estimate based on that. Once the repairs are completed and he goes on a test drive the tests resume running and if there's another problem, that's when it will be detected, a new code will be set, and the warning light will come on again. That is frustrating for mechanics because they have to start their diagnosis all over and they have to tell you more parts and services are needed. It's frustrating for owners because they are incorrectly convinced the mechanic didn't diagnose the problem correctly the first time.

A lot of DYI increase the chances of a new bearing developing the same problem when they do not torque the axle nut to specs. That must be done with a click-type torque wrench before any vehicle weight is put on it. The value is critical too. All wheel bearings call for at least 180 foot-pounds but some GM cars and trucks call for up to 240 foot-pounds. The correct value will be listed on the sheet that comes with the bearing.
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Saturday, April 27th, 2013 AT 2:59 PM

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