1994 GEO PRIZM STRUTS, DIFFERENTIAL FLUID, ABS WHEEL SPEED

  • Tiny
  • BLUMONSTER
  • 1994 Geo Prizm

Suspension problem
1994 Geo Prizm 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Automatic 117k miles

Hi,

I have a few questions:

There is no leak on the struts, but the ride is not smooth, kind of bumpy. Can an alignment/balancing tires help solve the problem or do we need a replacement of struts?

A couple of months ago I took the car to a mechanic for transmission service (draining the fluid, changing the filter). Not sure it is because of this but probably after the service I notice that a vibration/noise/humming is felt but almost disappears as I put the gear in 'Drive' from 'Park' and the car acts as if it wants to move forward. That is first I feel a vibration/noise/humming sound when I am changing from P to drive but once it is drive it disappears. Is that normal? Can it be caused by low transmission fluid level? Is it possible that they forgot checking the differential fluid level? How do I check this?

The yellow ABS light came on a few months ago while driving after I felt some pulsation on the brake pedal. The first mechanic I took the car to said my car did not communicate with their 3 different readers, they could not find the reason with scanner tests. The dealership I took the car next says it is open in left front wheel speed sensor. Does that mean it needs to be replaced? Can it be a result of dirty sensor, a wiring problem and if so how to spot and solve it? Is changing the sensor a difficulty task for an amateur?

Thank you for reading and replying in advance.

Thursday, January 8th, 2009 AT 2:40 PM

5 Answers

  • Tiny
  • mmprince4000
  • Expert
  • 8,715 posts

Have the alignment checked if the struts are not leaking, make sure they are tight (no loose bolts).

Differential fluid is checked from behind (firewall), remove bolt stick you finger in and you should feel ATF.
If he drained the differential fluid and did not refill, get the differential checked ASAP. If it is dry or close to dry, it will sieze and you will be replacing the trans.

Open means that the circuit is not complete, can be a cut, short in the wire.

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Friday, January 9th, 2009 AT 8:46 AM
  • Tiny
  • BLUMONSTER
  • Member

Thanks for your reply : )
So 'open' does not necessarily mean a dysfunctional wheel speed sensor? Is there a way to find out without having to pull out the sensor itself?

Thanks again : )

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, January 10th, 2009 AT 12:30 PM
  • Tiny
  • mmprince4000
  • Expert
  • 8,715 posts

You would have to get the ABS system scanned to find a specific error code. Since this is an OBDI ECM, you will probably have to have Toyota do it, or find a local garage that can scan OBDI.

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Sunday, January 11th, 2009 AT 7:14 AM
  • Tiny
  • BLUMONSTER
  • Member

Thanks for the reply.

I paid 95 dollars for a scan at Chevrolet dealership and they said ' open in left front wheel speed sensor, code 27 (although later I found out from reading factory service manual that code 27 is left front wheel speed sensor but they said they made a mistake but it is still front wheel sensor), many history codes, could have other problems'. I would like to see if it requires a replacement of the costly speed sensor or if there is another way of completing the circuit, like cleaning. And how do I clean the sensor with as less work as possible?

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Sunday, January 11th, 2009 AT 8:52 AM
  • Tiny
  • mmprince4000
  • Expert
  • 8,715 posts

Buy some electronics cleaner from any autoparts store. It looks and smells like brakeclean.

Spray the connector (male and female) to clean the connections, also make sure the connector locking tang is intact and not broke.

Check the wires for any missing insulation.

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Wednesday, January 14th, 2009 AT 7:37 AM

Please login or register to post a reply.