2002 Ford Windstar Check Traction Control, ABS, Brake Light

  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • 61,250 MILES
I recently bought a 2002 Ford Windstar that has an intermittent problem. A "Check Traction Control" message appears in the message center, and at the same time the amber "ABS" and red "Brakes" warning lights illuminate on the instrument panel. The indicators appear to clear when I shut the engine off for 15 seconds or longer.

I took the van to a garage and had the computer scanned. Three codes appeared: C1404, C1410, and C1185.

Is this problem related to any of the Ford recalls related to the ABS and speed control issues? What corrective actions need to be taken?
Do you
have the same problem?
Monday, March 15th, 2010 AT 3:38 PM

1 Reply

When they read the codes, they should have told you or documented what they refer to.

The "traction control" light is on in response to the anti-lock brake light because the traction control uses the ABS functions to operate. The yellow ABS light is on in response to the red brake warning light. The ABS system requires the base brake system to be working properly for it to work properly.

Start by looking for the cause of the red "Brake" warning light being on. Three switches / circuits are involved. Check the brake fluid level in the master cylinder reservoir. If it's real low, add a LITTLE clean brake fluid. Don't fill it. Alternately, temporarily unplug the connector on the side of the reservoir.

Second, pull up on the parking brake pedal. If the red warning light goes off, suspect a sticking rear parking brake cable that isn't fully retracted, (a real common Ford problem), or the main cable is stretched and must be adjusted. An applied parking brake, (or switch that's turned on), will set a fault code in the ABS computer if you drive the vehicle that way.

Third, and least likely, if there was recently a leak in the hydraulic system, or the brakes were recently serviced, the "pressure-differential" switch may be the culprit. We'll cover that later if necessary.

If the first two suggestions don't help, you will need to find out what the fault codes refer to. The mechanic who read them should be able to help.

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Monday, March 15th, 2010 AT 4:03 PM

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