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Old 12-18-2005, 07:09 PM   #1
dorqus
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Default ABS light on, 2002 SL1

So the ABS light is on in my wife 2002 SL1 4 door. I reset the battery,and that didn't help, I also used an OBD-II reader and I'm not seeing any codes from the car. Brake fluid is topped off. Only brake related work done to the car recently was I did the front pads and rotors a while ago, nothing got damaged during the install. Any tips would be appreciated, we need to get it inspected by the end of hte month and I don't think it will pass w/the ABS light on.

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Old 12-18-2005, 08:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Have you checked your battery and the output on your alternator? ABS system depends on sufficient power draw and the light can come on when the alternator is on its way out and the power drops. Happened on mine a couple months back. Could be something else but this is where I'd start as it's pretty easy to test.

Last edited by jambra1; 12-18-2005 at 08:35 PM..

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Old 12-18-2005, 08:31 PM   #3
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

You might want to consider bleeding the brakes. It will flush a lot of the crud and moisture that has built up over time. That may be the whole problem..

Make sure to use fluid that is for ABS brakes and flush untill the fluid is clean..

Might want to search the forum, there is probably a good procedure posted, but if not and haynes book will have a generic one you can use if you haven't done it before.

Just make sure you don't run the master cylider dry while bleeding. and start out by turkey basting any old fluid out of the master cylider first and refill it with new ABS fluid out of an unopened bottle... Old fluid tends to pick up moisture even in a tighly closed used container. Old fluid with moisture in it is your enemy, especially in an ABS system. I usually buy a big bottle of it and end up using it all to flush out the old discolored fluid...

This is a cheap and easy thing to start with that you can do yourself.. I have seen this fix an unruley ABS light condition.

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Old 12-18-2005, 08:32 PM   #4
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Quote:
Originally Posted by dorqus
So the ABS light is on in my wife 2002 SL1 4 door. I reset the battery,and that didn't help, I also used an OBD-II reader and I'm not seeing any codes from the car. Brake fluid is topped off. Only brake related work done to the car recently was I did the front pads and rotors a while ago, nothing got damaged during the install. Any tips would be appreciated, we need to get it inspected by the end of hte month and I don't think it will pass w/the ABS light on.
You can not read ABS codes with a generic scan tool. You will need to have the codes read in order to find the fault. Probably a wheel speed sensor. Low brake fluid will not make the ABS light come on, the BRAKE light would come on in that case. In NY state, the car will pass inspection with the ABS light on.

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Old 12-18-2005, 08:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old_Coot
You might want to consider bleeding the brakes. It will flush a lot of the crud and moisture that has built up over time. That may be the whole problem..

Make sure to use fluid that is for ABS brakes and flush untill the fluid is clean..

Might want to search the forum, there is probably a good procedure posted, but if not and haynes book will have a generic one you can use if you haven't done it before.

Just make sure you don't run the master cylider dry while bleeding. and start out by turkey basting any old fluid out of the master cylider first and refill it with new ABS fluid out of an unopened bottle... Old fluid tends to pick up moisture even in a tighly closed used container. Old fluid with moisture in it is your enemy, especially in an ABS system. I usually buy a big bottle of it and end up using it all to flush out the old discolored fluid...

This is a cheap and easy thing to start with that you can do yourself.. I have seen this fix an unruley ABS light condition.
And please don't take this advice. If you didn't open any bleeder valves, there is no way air got into your system, thus no need for bleeding. It is a waste of your time and money. Your ABS system has no idea how old your brake fluid is and it doesn't care.

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Old 12-18-2005, 10:20 PM   #6
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Hrm OK so long as it will pass NYS inspection that's fine. The brakes feel fine otherwise.

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Old 12-20-2005, 07:27 AM   #7
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I had an ABS light on my 2000 SL1. I think when the car was backed into a parking space while shopping the cement "parking stop" came against the one of the radius arms and cut the wires for the left rear ABS sensor. I ordered a new harness assembly from Saturn and spliced it in. All better now - no ABS light. You may want to just do a quick visual to see if any harnesses or wires are cut that go to the wheel sensor.

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Old 12-20-2005, 11:17 AM   #8
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

We have several saturns in our family. The usual cause for the ABS light is the alternator. We had it show up on 2 of our saturns, the ABS light came on, and about a week later the alternator started to really act up....replaced the alternator, and all was fine.

We did have one incident where the abs light came on because a wire connecting one of the sensors was cut for some reason. We took it to the dealer and they fixed it, only cost an hour's worth of labor, so well worth it. Much better than spending all day trying to hunt down the problem.

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Old 12-20-2005, 01:27 PM   #9
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Good tip on the wires, I'll do a visual check this weekend, see if I can figure out if it's just an electrical problem. I don't think it's the battery or alternator, since there are no other signs of those failing - car starts all the time no matter how long it's been sitting, lights are strong, ABS light does *not* go off under higher RPMs, etc.

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Old 12-20-2005, 02:45 PM   #10
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

According to the experts on here. The wire that is most prone to failure is the one to the sensor on the rear passenger side. I'd look there first.

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Old 12-20-2005, 03:49 PM   #11
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Default Re: ABS light on, 2002 SL1

Thanks BarnOwl, I'll check that one first!

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