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Advanced BMW ABS hints and tips
ENGINE APPEARS TO MISFIRE OR STUMBLE INTERMITINTLY
MODELS AFFECTED: 5 Series(E34), 7 series(E32), 8 series(E31) all equipped with ACS.
FAULT: Under certain specific conditions an apparent engine misfire or bucking may occur. This is not 
an engine misfire.
CAUSE: Short (less than 100 milliseconds) fuel injection cut-off, as a result of MSR (engine drag torque 
control) regulation. This is a normal ASC function that may occur under these conditions:
   -The vehicle is equipped with ASC
   -Vehicle speed between 45 and 60 MPH
   -A rough road surface (e.g. potholes, railroad tracks)
   -Light throttle(accelerator pedal only depressed 1/8)
   -ASC not switched off.
SOLUTION: Replace the ASC control unit. no further diagnosis of the ABS/ASC system should be 
necessary.
ABS WARNING LIGHT ON
MODELS AFFECTED: 3 series (E36) and Z3 produced up to 5/96
FAULT: The ABS warning lamp is on in the instrument cluster, and fault code 145 (pump inoperable) 
stored in the ABS control module memory.
CAUSE: Faulty relays produced prior to may 1996.
SOLUTION: Use the DIS tester to confirm that fault code 145 is set in the ABS control unit. Work 
through test instructions in DIS confirm that the fault is not caused by any other components. Then 
replace the gray ABS pump motor relay, witch is located in the power distribution box, rear left side 
of engine compartment.
MICROPROCESSOR CONTROLLED ABS(uC-ABS)STORES ERRONEOUS INTERNAL DEFECT FAULT 
MODELS AFFECTED: 7series(E32)-vehicles produced 06/91 and later, equipped with M30 engine. 
5 series (E34)-vehicles produced 9/91 and later.
FAULT: Increasing number of uC-ABS control units are being returned for showing internal defect during 
troubleshooting and readout of the fault memory. In most cases the fault is erroneous.
CAUSE: If the ignition is switched on with the cap of the D100 diagnostic connector removed, the erroneous 
fault can be set by a low voltage condition on the TTD lead to this control unit.
SOLUTION:
   -Erase the fault in the uC-ABS fault memory, while the diagnostic module is still connected and the 
    ignition is switched on.
   -Before disconnecting the diagnostic cable, switch off the ignition
   -Reconnect the cap for the D100 diagnostic connector, then switch on
    the ignition again.
   -Do not replace control unit.
ASC AND/OR ABS WARNING LAMP ON
MODELS AFFECTED: 3 series (E 46), vehicles produced up to 9/98
FAULT: The ASC and/or ABS warning lamps are on, with fault code 31 or 41(rear wheel speed sensor) set 
in memory.
CAUSE: Faulty rear wheel speed sensor.
SOLUTION: Replace the wheel speed sensor with a sensor with production date 22/08 or later. 
ASC LAMP ON, FAULT CODES
MODELS AFFECTED: E38(7 series), E39 (5 series) with M62, or M73 engine.
FAULT: The ASC lamp is on and no fault codes are stored. If the under hood diagnostic connector is 
removed the ASC lamp goes off.
CAUSE: Incorrect under hood OBD cap fitted.
SOLUTION: Install correct OBD connector cap (part number 12 52 1 703 202).The part number is inscribed 
into the OBD cap moulding
ABS WARNING LIGHT COMES ON
MODELS AFFECTED: All with ABS
FAULT: ABS warning light comes on intermittently. Normal troubleshooting procedures find no defect.
CAUSE: If cars have recently had two new tires, or snow tires put on. Sometimes when the car is driven 
over 50 MPH.
SOLUTION: Check all four tires on the car, make sure they are the same brand, style, and size. Check if 
any of the new tires have substantially more tread than the rest. These differences may cause enough 
variance in rolling diameters to confuse the ABS control unit, which intern gives a false signal to the ABS 
warning light.

ABS WARNING LIGHT GLOWS
MODELS AFFECTED: 3 series (E 36)-vehicles produced 1/96 to 3/96 without ASC.
FAULT: On rare instances the ABS warning may glow slightly after other electrical consumers have been 
switched on. No fault is stored in the ABS control module fault memory.
CAUSE: Hardware fault in the ABS control module.
SOLUTION: If this is encountered replace the ABS control module.

ABS, ASC, AND ASC+T MALFUNCTION 
MODELS AFFECTED: All models equipped with ABS,ASC OR ASC+T
FAULT: Any of the ABS ASC and ASC+T systems inoperative, intermittently inoperative, or illuminating 
the warning lamp.
CAUSE: All BMW'S with slip control systems use 4 wheel speed sensors which monitor each wheels 
speed of rotation with a high accuracy. The system control unit uses this information to calculate a 
vehicle speed. In this way it detects wheel speed variation. If the inputs vary from each other by a certain 
amount, the control unit is not able to do the calculation reliably (plausibility fault) and takes its self 
off-line as a safety precaution(fail-safe).This can be because the wheels and tires are non-approved parts
and therefore do not agree with the system.
SOLUTION: Make sure the vehicle is fitted with BMW approved wheels and tires. Then do further diagnostic testing to check if fault is resolved.
EXCESSIVE NOISE FROM ENGINE COMPARTMENT AFTER FIRST STARTING OFF(ABS SELF TEST)
MODELS AFFECTED: 3 series (E 36)- four door models only
FAULT: A noise(described as a rattle, groan or growl) occurs only after the engine is started and the 
vehicle is put into motion. The noise is heard in the first 30 feet and only last a second.
CAUSE: Most of the time the noise is from the pump activation portion of the ABS self-test.
SOLUTION: The self test noise cannot be eliminated, can only be reduced, and even then not in all cases. One way is to install insulated brake lines (only on vehicles produced before 03/92). ABS, ASC/DSC, ECM FAULTS
MODELS AFFECTED: E38(7 series) FAULTS: The wire harness can get damaged. ABS, ASC/DSC ECM faults show:
- 66 wheel sensor signal supply voltage
- 67 intermittent interference
- 5,6,7 wheel speed (plausibility)
- 30 left rear wheel sensor
CAUSE: The sharp edges on the tilt sensor(NAG) bracket damage the wire. The leak diagnosis pump(LDP) and the wire harness from the left rear wheel sensor is routed through the slot in the tilt sensor(NAG) bracket. SOLUTION: Remove the tilt(NAG) sensor, located behind the wheel arch in the left side of the trunk. Tape the sharp edges of the tilt sensor bracket with electrical tape to prevent further damage to the wire harness. Repair the wire harness and reinstall the tilt sensor. Using the DIS tester clear the fault codes.
BREAK INDUCED STEERING VIBRATION
MODELS AFFECTED: E46 and four door models produced prior to 10/99.
FAULT: Steering vibration when breaking, usually in the 50 to 60 MPH range.
CAUSE: The front axle on some cars is extremely sensitive.
SOLUTION: Remove front brake rotors and pads, also replace steering coupling and torx bolts with new 
parts. Make sure the front wheel assemblies are balanced before re-installing. If the vehicle has dampened 
hydraulic lines they need to be removed and replaced with original lines.
TWITCH FELT IN STEERING WHEEL ON RAPID BRAKE APPLICATION
MODELS AFFECTED: E46 not equipped with DSC.
FAULT: When the steering   wheel is held very lightly with one hand and the brakes given a quick tap, it 
may twitch slightly once. There is no disruption of stability of the car and doesn't pull to either side.
CAUSE: Could be from having unequal amounts of toe-in on each front wheel or because of a very slight time 
difference in the build up of pressure in each front brake caliper.
SOLUTION: If the alignment has been corrected, you can install a dampener to modify the brake pressure 
build up curve.(If the vehicle is equipped with DSC a dampener can't be installed because it will affect the DSC 
operation).

ABS REAR WHEEL SPEED SENSOR
MODELS AFFECTED: 3series (E36)- 1992 models
FAULT: After diagnosis of a ABS system using the BMW service tester the following faults may be set:
- 84 or 88 wheel speed sensor missing or defective, left rear/right rear.
- 100 or 104 wheel speed signal not plausible, left rear/right rear.
CAUSE: The ABS wheel speed sensor at either rear wheel have poor solder connections at the coil connections.
SOLUTION: The solder connections were improved in production from date code 0811(81st day 1991). If the date code of the failed sensor is 0801 or lower, both rear wheel speed sensors need replacing.
ABS HYDRAULIC UNIT
MODELS AFFECTED: 1993 318 is, 1993 325is, 1994 345 ic.
FAULT: It's possible that during the assembly of the ABS hydraulic units of these vehicles, the six bolts which 
fasten the bottom cover of the unit to the housing were not tightened properly.
SOLUTION: All affected vehicles(identified by the DCS inquiry) hydraulic units need to be checked by torquing one bolt on the bottom cover to 15 Nm. If it turns the unit must be replaced.
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LIST OF COMMON FAILURES

Doubting your own analysis work? Take a look at our rogues gallery of common failures

Fault codes for Bosch and Simtec Mpi main engine ECU

ALFA  ROMEO
156 Tiptronic gearbox actuator problems *Failure on early type Motronic ECUs due to on board amplifier failure

AUDI

Audi A4 throttle body failing
Audi A4 & A6 96-01 ABS Pumps commonly failing
Audi Quattro ABS Pump - 0 265 220 408

Audi TT dashboard failing
Bosch 0281 diesel ECU prone to causing lack of turbo boost
Audi Zexel aircon compressor failing

Detailed list of Audi faults

Audi idle speed problems

Audi strange vibrations and noises

Audi A4 fault codes

*2.6 and 2.8 litre cars with twin cat system, passenger side cat failing (probably due to thermal shocking from puddles)

BMW

Light control module on new shape 3 Series failing leaving only 1 headlight
BMW Diesel EDC pump problems
Faults on BMW engine management
Faults on BMW ABS systems
Faults on BMW wiring harnesses
Faults on BMW sensors
Faults on BMW electrical systems auxiliary equipment
Faults on BMW starter motors Faults on BMW alternators *Distributorless systems are suffering failed coil packs. This burns out drive components on the ECU. It is essential to replace offending coil pack before replacing ECU! *Failure on early Bosch ABS Controllers
*Failure on Teves type ABS pump/modulator/Controller, 93 on
*Failure on early type Motronic ECUs due to on board amplifier failure

CITROEN

Citroen Saxo electronic power steering failing
Citroen Saxo 1.1 96-03 SPi throttle body failing
Citroen ZX 1.1 96-97 SPi throttle body failing
Citroen Berlingo 1.1 96-02 SPi throttle body failing
Citroen Saxo ECU's failing - IAW8P80, IAW8P81 Common rail diesel technology - new problems
Sagem SL96 ecu - coil pack failing leading to damage to ecu. Citroen Common Rail HDi in tank fuel pumps failing Citroen Airflow meters prone to throttle potentiometer problems. *Xantia ABS ECU failure. This may be caused by over voltage. ABS light comes on and stays on. Citroen Synergy Bendix Anti Lock Braking (ABS) system is now a part of BBA-reman's remanufactured range Citroen Xsara ABS ECU fault codes Citroen Saxo ABS ECU fault codes Xantia 1.8 Cat failure Marelli IAW8P series of ECUs causing erratic tickover and stalling. BBA always supply latest generation software to rectify problems

FORD

Ford Probe 4 Cylinder Distributor Failing - T6T57871
Ford Probe 6 Cylinder Distributor Failing - T0T57071
Ford Probe distributors failing...BBA now supply new and reman
Ford Scorpio 95 ABS system failing due to faulty controller
Mondeo Bendix Mecatronic ABS system
Bosch 0281 diesel ECU prone to causing lack of turbo boost

Detailed hints and tips for Fords

Information on Ford ABS systems

Ford Probe air mass meters
Ford Galaxy suffering air con compressor failures
*Early Granada 88 on ABS Pump/Modulator problems
*Later Scorpio ABS Controllers 95 on
*Many EEC IV generation ECUs suffering driveability problems . BBA always supply latest generation software to rectify problems
*Ford Probe suffers from immobiliser problems, taking out ignition module on distributor. Occasionally leads to ECU failure.
*Any Ford Cat prior to 95 (possibly just due to shear volume of Fords & poor servicing)

FIAT

Punto/Brava/Bravo power steering suffering motor problems             
Fiat Seicento Citymatic Clutch Actuator failing
Fiat Punto 1996 onwards ECU failing
Fiat Ulysees Bendix Anti Lock Braking (ABS) system is now a part of BBA-reman's remanufactured range Fiat Marea ABS have a Lucas ABS system and are beginning to fail.

HONDA

Honda Civic 1.5 distributor TD40U
Honda Civic 1.6 distributor TD42U
Honda Accord distributor TD31U
Honda Accord distributor TD58U
Honda Concerto distributor TD02U
Honda Accord/Civic/Legend distributors failing...BBA now supply
Honda Accord/Concerto/Legend/Prelude ABS pumps/Modulators
Honda Diesel EDC pump problem

*Common 4 wheel steer ECU failures
Honda Civic ABS ECU fault codes

Honda ALB2 ABS computer fault codes

Honda ALB2 ABS pump, testing & bleeding


HYUNDA

Mitsubishi type idle control valves failing
*Early type KEFICO ECU failures on S coupes
*Lantra 1.8 Cats breaking up

ISUZU

Isuzu diesel ECUs

JAGUAR

Jaguar XK8 and XJ8 ABS + ETCS failing
Jaguar XK8 Throttle Bodies failing
Jaguar XJ6 ABS Controller
*Early Bosch type separate controller "0 265" type failing
*Early Teves type separate controller failing
*Early ECUs prone to rusting on pins

LANDROVER

Air suspension modulator for Classic and Vogue SE
Range Rover booster block problem
Range Rover 4.6 HSE ABS pumps failing
Range Rover ABS pump problems
Land Rover Discovery BeCM failing Land Rover Freelander SRS controller problems Freelander L series diesel ECU problems after jump starting WABCO ABS system failure as fitted on Discovery and FreeLander LandRover ABS ECU fault codes *Common ECU and Air Flow Meter problems resulting erratic tickover and poor starting *ABS Pumps and Booster Blocks.Often caused by a pump relay sticking on, eventually wrecking pump and making brakes almost impossible to use. *Twin down pipe Cats on all 3.5 and 3.9 Models *BECM body control and auxiliary controller. Can cause incorrect operation of Suspension, Lights, Wipers etc

MAZDA

Mazda 626 2.5l 6 cylinder distributors failing
Mazda Sumitomo ABS system as fitted to Mazdas since 1987

MERCEDES

Mercedes A Class electric hydraulic power steering failing
Mercedes A Class combined air mass meter and ECU
Merecedes A Class air flow meters failing
Mercedes 111 16v engine throttle body failing
Mercedes C and E Class ABS pump failing
Mercedes C/E/S Class, CLK/SLK throttle bodies failing
Mercedes CL and SL class soft top convertible roof controllers failing

Mercedes 280/300/350 ECU
Mercedes 300/AMG 300 ECU
Mercedes CLK 320, SL 280, SL 320 ECU
Mercedes VDO ecu systems being damaged by harness overheating

Mercedes Seimens and Bosch ignition modules failing

Mercedes E Class ABS ECU fault codes

*Common Ignition ECU failures
*C Class & E Class Cats rattling from 93 on

MITSUBISHI

Mitsubishi SpaceWagon distributors failing...BBA now supply
Mitsubishi Gdi throttle actuator

Mitsubishi Shogun 3.0 litre V6 ECU failing
Mitsubishi GTO ECU failing
Common ECU failures resulting no spark or fuel
Mitsubishi type idle control valves failing

Mitsubishi FTO ECU controlled alternators failing

Mitsubishi Carisma ABS ECU fault codes

Mitsubishi V6 petrol engine throttle position sensor failing
Mitsubishi GDI engines injector drivers failing
*Distributors failing on all models

NISSAN

Nissan Micra throttle bodies are a now a big request at BBA.
Nissan Micra Bosch type throttle bodies fitted to newer Micra's failing.
Nissan Micra distributors failing...BBA now supply reman units
Nissan Sunny / Primera throttle bodies commonly failing
Nissan Airflow meters prone to throttle potentiometer problems. Nissan Almera and Primera ABS ECU fault codes *Micra and Primera ECUs
* Maxima V6 ECU failing due to water ingress. Heater matrix above ECU must be replaced!

PEUGEOT

Peugeot 307 electric hydraulic power steering failing
Peugeot 106 1.1 96- SPi throttle body failing
Peugeot 306 1.1 96-97 SPi throttle body failing
Peugeot Partner 1.1 SPi throttle body failing
Peugeot 106 and 206 ECU's failing - IAW8P80, IAW8P81 Common rail diesel technology - new problems Sagem SL96 ecu - coil pack failing leading to damage to ecu. Peugeot Common Rail HDi in tank fuel pumps failing Peugeot Airflow meters prone to throttle potentiometer problems
Peugeot 405/406/806 Bendix Anti Lock Braking(ABS) system is now a part of BBA-reman's remanufactured range Detailed list on Peugeot faults Peugeot 106, 306, 406, 605 ABS ECU fault codes Peugeot 106 electronic power steering failing *Marelli IAW8P series of ECUs causing erratic tickover and stalling. BBA always supply latest generation software to rectify problems *106 Cat failure due to rusting *406 Cat breakup

PORSCHE

*Common Ignition ECU failures

RANGE ROVER

Air suspension modulator for Classic and Vogue SE
Range Rover booster block problem
Range Rover 4.6 HSE ABS pumps failing
Range Rover ABS pump problems
Land Rover Discovery BeCM failing Land Rover Freelander SRS controller problems Freelander L series diesel ECU problems after jump starting WABCO ABS system failure as fitted on Discovery and FreeLander LandRover ABS ECU fault codes *Common ECU and Air Flow Meter problems resulting erratic tickover and poor starting *ABS Pumps and Booster Blocks.Often caused by a pump relay sticking on, eventually wrecking pump and making brakes almost impossible to use. *Twin down pipe Cats on all 3.5 and 3.9 Models *BECM body control and auxiliary controller. Can cause incorrect operation of Suspension, Lights, Wipers etc

RENAULT

Renault Clio electric hydraulic power steering failing.
Renault Megane (new shape) electronic power steering pump failing
Renault Megane Bosch 5.5 ABS vulnerable to water.
Renault Kangoo van air flow meter failing
*Espace ECUs *Auto Gearbox Controllers on Clios and 21's *Laguna Cats

ROVER

Rover 600 distributors failing - TD58U
Rover 600 distributors failing - TD31U
Rover 216 distributors failing - TD02U
Body Control module failing on Rover Mini/100/200/400/25/45/MGF Rover 200 / 400 / 600 diesel ECU prone to failure after jump starting Rover 600 ABS Pumps/Modulators 90 on Rover Diesel EDC pump problems Rover 600 and 800 ABS ECU fault codes Rover engine problems Rover engine management problems Rover distributors failing. BBA supply new and reman. *All Motorola MEMMS units *Cats on Rover 214s, all models, breaking up

SAAB

Tiptronic gearbox actuators on 900 blowing fuses
*Bosch LH Jetronic fuel injection ECU 
*9000 ABS/TRACS Control Computer failure

SEAT

Seat Ibiza electric hydraulic power steering failing
Seat Ibiza 1.4 throttle body failing
Seat Ibiza and Cordoba ABS ECU fault codes
*Cats on 1.4 Ibiza

SKODA

Skoda Felicia 1.3 throttle body failing

SUZUKI

Mitsubishi type idle control valves failing
*ECUs on Vitaras and Swifts
*Cats on Vitaras

TOYOTA

Toyota Avensis power steering failing
*Cats on Previas. Flexi connection rattling.

VAUXHALL(GM)

Corsa power steering pump failure
Astra power steering pump failure
Vauxhall Zafira Electric Power Steering Pump failure
Vauxhall Corsa Throttle Bodies
Vauxhall Astra, Corsa air flow meters failing
Vauxhall Astra 1.7 td Isuzu engine ECU failing
Vauxhall Astra 1.6 8v 1999 onwards ECU problems Omega and Vectra ABS units prone to faults
Vauxhall fault codes for GM Multec SPi *Bosch MOTRONIC ECU common failure *ABS Pump Modulators/Controllers Cavaliers & Calibras Vauxhall Vectra Kelsey Hayes Pumps/Controllers/Modulators a very common failure *Omega and Vectra Cats, 8v and 16v, rusting at join of twin downpipes

VW

VW Polo electric hydraulic power steering failing
VW Polo 1.4 throttle body failing
VW Golf/Passat/Scirocco Teves IV ABS pump failing due to open circuit solenoid and leaking fluid
VW Lupo/Polo/Golf/Bora/Passat throttle body failing
Teves 20 ABS units fitted on a range of VW's failing
Bosch 0281 diesel ECU prone to causing lack of turbo boost

VW Zexel aircon compressor failing

VW Sharran suffering air con compressor failures
Detailed list of Volkswagen faults
Volkswagen idle speed problems

Passat 96-01 ABS pumps commonly failing
*Digifant II ECU, typically in winter. Can be weak battery or engine earth strap removed without disconnecting battery.
*Gti Cats, Especially Passat and Golf 1.8 and 2.0 litre
*1.4 Polo Cats

VOLVO

Volvo 850 93-95 Teves IV ABS pump failing due to open circuit solenoid and leaking fluid
Volvo 850 '95 onwards, Teves 20 ABS unit failures
Volvo 99- Marrelli electronic throttle system

*Common ECU failures on early type "0 280" early type fuel injection ECUs
*Early type ABS Controller Volvo 440/460 91 on

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