1997 Pontiac Bonneville ABS and Trac light on

Tiny
TDEVINE15@YAHOO.COM
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 PONTIAC BONNEVILLE
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 73,000 MILES
I am looking at a used car for my son. The car seems very well maintained and the mileage is low. The ABS and Trac control dash lights are on. The seller believes that the car needs the ABS sensor replaced on the front driver's side. Is this an expensive repair? Is this something that could be completed by a shade tree mechanic? I have tackled projects like head replacement and valve adjustments in the past. (On older vintage cars 1963-1972 Austins, Toyotas, and Mustangs)
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Sunday, July 20th, 2008 AT 8:42 PM

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Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Have the car scanned with a chassis scanner. This will give you the correct "C" code and tell you what is wrong.
Normally, I would suspect a wheel sensor, but it could also be Traction Control Module or ABS computer, which are very expensive to replace.
If it is a wheel sensor, they are can be replaced easily.
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Monday, July 21st, 2008 AT 4:37 AM
Tiny
FIGHTFIREMOM2
  • MEMBER
I have the same problem. Both the ABS Light and traction control light are on after I replaced the engine at 130,000 miles. I had the car scanned but the scan would not read the codes. I also took the car to a GM Dealer for the second scan and it still won't read the codes. Any idea what to do now?
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Wednesday, March 8th, 2017 AT 7:37 AM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
You should start a new question, and please be sure to list the engine size and mileage. This post is nine years old and was a private conversation between just the two people. None of the other experts will see your addition or have the chance to reply. That does you a disservice.

You need to use a regular scanner to read fault codes in the Anti-lock Brake Computer. If a common, inexpensive code reader is used, those can only read codes in the Engine Computer. Also check the fuses. There are going to be two for this system. When one blows, the second circuit is needed to run the warning lights.

By far the most common problem with the ABS on GM front-wheel-drive cars is the front wheel bearings. Due to the design of the wheel speed sensors, they develop real wimpy signals to begin with. At around 15,000 miles, a little normal play develops in the bearings, and that lets the tone ring move away from the sensor, so the sensor develops an even weaker signal. Eventually it gets so weak that the computer can't read it. This is a mechanical problem that is solved by replacing the bearing. It comes with the speed sensor attached. The clue this is not an electrical problem is that would be detected as soon as you turned on the ignition switch, and that's when the warning light would turn on. When the bearing is causing the problem, the light will turn on for its six-second self-test sequence, then turn off. It won't turn on again until the car is moving, often as much as a few hundred feet or more.

If your light does stay on right away, you're going to need the diagnostic fault code to know where to start the diagnosis.
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Thursday, March 9th, 2017 AT 11:53 AM

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