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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #626  
Old 10-04-2012, 09:23 AM
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severe530i severe530i is offline
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Bluebee,
I didn't even look at the unit, just installed it and went on my way. It was starting to rain and just wanted to get it on and drive. (No garage).
I've had no problems so far and expect everything to be fine.
Inspection is due in December so there should be no issues.
Will keep posting to this thread if anything new comes up.
Thanks again!
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  #627  
Old 12-23-2012, 02:14 PM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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The Trifecta Is Back!

Itís been just under a year since I successfully replaced my DCS module with a new one (not a repaired or rebuilt one) and the trifecta is back.

The original module lasted 11 years so I can't imagine the new module has failed after only 11 months (I don't want to believe it anyway). I hope there are other things at fault. I'll have to reread the various threads to find out what else causes all three lights to come on.

Has anyone else had the trifecta return within months of a successful repair? What was typically the problem?
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  #628  
Old 12-23-2012, 03:00 PM
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540iman 540iman is offline
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a wheel speed sensor
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  #629  
Old 12-23-2012, 04:08 PM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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Thanks. That would be great if it's just a wheel speed sensor. The problem is the lights come on shortly after turning on the ignition before I ever start moving the car. Wouldn't the car need to be moving before it knew a sensor wasn't reporting wheel speed? Unless it can tell based on simple continuity. I'll have to read more about the speed sensors.
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  #630  
Old 12-24-2012, 12:17 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
Has anyone else had the trifecta return within months of a successful repair?
Not many. Most of the repairs seem to work (whether they be the 'rebuilt' module or the brand new modules). The rebuilders generally give a decent warranty; not sure about the new modules (I'm not a big believer in warranties - but if you have one - make use of it).

Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
Wouldn't the car need to be moving before it knew a sensor wasn't reporting wheel speed?
Dunno. I could imagine, say, a shorted wheel speed sensor (or an open, or anything in between) delivering the wrong signal input to the initial test routine of the ABS control module - even without the vehicle moving.

The wheel speed sensors and the ABS control module are the two fragile components of the ABS system, but, as you know, there are over 20 sensor inputs to the system which can go bad.

Most of the time though, it's either the wheel speed sensor (rarely, if ever more than one at a time), or the module itself.

Details in post #48 of this thread:
- E39 trifecta diagnostic DIY
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  #631  
Old 12-29-2012, 11:27 PM
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In the E38 forum, this highly pictorial 2012 DIY for replacing wheel speed sensors may come in handy:
- DIY Wheel Speed Sensor Replace

Quote:
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DIY Wheel Speed Sensor Replace


Hi there....


Does your "DSC" , "ABS" and/or "Brake" Light illuminate ???

Do you feel a funky motion on your brake pedal????

Chances are...you Wheel Speed Sensor Needs replacing.


& Today I will teach you how to do so...

So lets get started!


You Will Need:

Some Hex wrenches, Some Dielectric Grease....and of course some Wheel Speed Sensors!







* Alright...so when your cluster looks like this..its time to do something about it.



* Pop the wheel of your choice off...For TODAYS example....we will be doing BOTH FRONT wheel sensors... Jack the car up....and turn the wheel FARTHEST to the side you will be working on. This will give you the ULTIMATE clearance you need to work!



* BEHIND the wheel hub...you will find ONE, 5mm Hex bolt. Undo the bolt....and you might have to wiggle the sensor a bit to ajar it loose...No pressure...just take your time. You some pliers if you have to!





* Next......Follow the sensor wire up a bit..you will find that is its snuggled into place out of harms way...simply remove from the holding bracket.



* Once you remove the sensor from below....you will find that YEARS of road grime have accumulated. REMOVE will wire brush.





( So fresh and so clean clean! )



* Once you have taken care of down below. Its time to TOTALLY remove the sensor. Locate the junction box housing BOTH the Brake Sensor AND Wheel sensor plug. Pry the tabs to open the box.



* Locate the DARKER colored connector. THAT is your wheel speed sensor.



* The connection is held in place by a REALLY small tab. Chances are..after YEARS of road grime..and water..and dirt...it will prolly just CRUMBLE away like mine did. So PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE be gentle. Worse case scenario ....You will have to order NEW connectors all around. ( Like someone else I know! )



* Simply disconnect...and insert the NEW sensor. Make sure you have a good connection with a "SNAP" Then before you replace the sensor on the bottom..place a dollop of dielectric grease to smooth things over.





* Now route the cable accordingly..Place your Wheel back on....and guess what....




You DONE!!!!!!


The OLD Sensors....CRACKED and brittle EVERYWHERE. No wonder the ABS light kept flickin on and off!





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  #632  
Old 12-31-2012, 07:54 PM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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Thanks. It will come in handy when I get to it this week.
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  #633  
Old 01-01-2013, 05:11 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
It will come in handy when I get to it this week.
I debated opening a new thread on just replacing the wheel speed sensors for that - but it wasn't my material - so I didn't think it fair.
So far, 250K people have found this thread (have viewed it anyway) - so - if they get this far, they'll get all the information.
With almost 650 posts and that many eyeballs, pretty much all the garbage ideas have been weeded out by now.

To my knowledge, NOBODY has failed to solve their trifecta or bifecta, and, if we have to pick one person we owe a major share of the credit to, it's Bill - aka 540iman - who gave us the original quick test for the wheel speed sensors AND the ABS control module autopsy AND the rationale why the fancy schmancy diagnostic tools seem to almost always fail when it comes to the trifecta.

Thank you Bill! And Happy New Year to all!
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Last edited by bluebee; 01-01-2013 at 05:19 AM.
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  #634  
Old 01-03-2013, 11:58 AM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
To my knowledge, NOBODY has failed to solve their trifecta or bifecta, and, if we have to pick one person we owe a major share of the credit to, it's Bill - aka 540iman - who gave us the original quick test for the wheel speed sensors AND the ABS control module autopsy AND the rationale why the fancy schmancy diagnostic tools seem to almost always fail when it comes to the trifecta.

Thank you Bill! And Happy New Year to all!
Well thanks to bluebee and Bill, I'm getting closer to resolving this. I really hoped it wasn't the ABS module since I just replaced it last year and it seems it's not the module.

The quick test with a DMM set in diode mode shows a bad left front wheel speed sensor. A carsoft test showed a similar code (it said "left or right wheel speed sensor").

The diode test showed about .38v in both directions (pins 28 and 12). I'll checkout the wiring at the sensor and repair or replace as required. Thanks for all the help. Happy New Year. I'll post again when it's fixed.
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  #635  
Old 01-03-2013, 01:09 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
The diode test showed about .38v in both directions
Thanks for keeping us in the loop. It seems as if you have enough information to assume a bad wheel speed sensor circuit, since this one of four tested inconsistently.

The hall effect sensor isn't a diode, of course - but it does act similarly to a diode, so having the same voltage drop in both directions does indicate a failure of the circuit.

If you're still in doubt, and, since you've isolated it to one axle, you 'could' swap wheel speed sensors on the same axle, and see if the indications are any different.

In addition, you could run one of the other six or so tests on the one suspect wheel speed sensor - but - most people would buy a new one. Bear in mind the caveats about OEM:
- What BMW E39 parts & supplies are most often recommended to buy OEM from a dealer or sponsor (1)
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  #636  
Old 01-03-2013, 01:37 PM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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I'm convinced it's a bad sensor. I just measured it at the sensor connector near the wheel and it measures pretty much the same. It's 0.287v each direction but that should be expected when measuring closer to the wheel. It's a shorter wiring path with less resistance so there's less voltage drop. The important thing is that it's the same in both directions.

I'm wondering if people typically buy more than one. If one failed, should I assume the rest will also fail soon?
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  #637  
Old 01-06-2013, 12:27 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
I'm wondering if people typically buy more than one. If one failed, should I assume the rest will also fail soon?
I had asked that question (buried somewhere in this monumental thread), and the answer came back from a sponsor that people buy 4 of them all the time.

However, the common consensus is that it's a waste of time to replace anything but a bad one (just as it is with a bad coil). If it were a five-dollar part, easily replaced, I'd do all four - but given it's not a cheap part, spend your money on getting the right one.

By almost all accounts, the 'right one' is OEM:
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  #638  
Old 01-06-2013, 12:29 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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For the record, the E46 team found out that the pinout isn't exactly the same on their version of the ABS control module harness.
EDIT: So I opened this thread for them:
- E46 ABS control module harness wheel sensor pinout for the ABS/BRAKE/DSC bi trifecta


I'll let them give the details to help other E46 owners, but here's how I found out:
Quote:
Originally Posted by richterbmw View Post
Pins 30 and 31 are specified in the DIY diagnosis which weren't the correct pins for my rear right sensor. The other pins are correct. So after testing the other points and getting a reading from the DMM I assumed the right rear was the culprit because I wasn't getting a reading from it... Which wasn't the the problem.
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Last edited by bluebee; 01-06-2013 at 01:24 PM. Reason: Added pic
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  #639  
Old 01-08-2013, 07:50 PM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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I just replaced the front left wheel speed sensor and the trifecta is gone. Thanks to everyone who provided all the great wheel speed sensor diagnostic techniques. I'm glad it wasn't the DSC module since I just replaced and recoded that last year (see the several posts I provided on that subject about a year ago - it's nice to occasionally see some of my photos being used when bluebee posts updates and responses to people new to the trifecta issue).
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  #640  
Old 01-18-2013, 05:11 PM
BlackMagic BlackMagic is offline
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ABS Wheel Speed Sensor -CONFIRM Left Side Linked to Tranny Shift Issues

I've read through hours worth of these ABS Sensor threads and have never noticed that anyone positively confirmed whether the front Left or Right side sensors impact the Auto tranny no shift issue. I can CONFIRM that a bad sensor in the front left (driver's side in US) will cause the transmission to fail to shift properly. Note that I am not saying that the front right side will not cause the problem. I just replaced the front left and the ABS lights on the instrument panel immediately went out without any sort of computer reset and the trans began shifting properly. By the way this is a simple DIY job that takes 10 minutes and require only a 5mm allen wrench. I used a $44 sensor made by PEX and it looks indistinguishable from the Siemens OEM I pulled out. Hope this answers many questions from this continuing saga with E39s.
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  #641  
Old 01-22-2013, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geobrick View Post
I just replaced the front left wheel speed sensor and the trifecta is gone.
Thanks for the update - and thanks for the wonderful pictures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackMagic View Post
I can CONFIRM that a bad sensor in the front left (driver's side in US) will cause the transmission to fail to shift properly.
Thanks for updating the thread. With over 250K visitors, this thread has the most visitors of any non-sticky thread on the forum, so that is indirect proof that these pages have saved users more than a hundred-thousand dollars (assuming dealer prices) in parts costs alone!

That's a hundred thousand dollars Bosch & BMW does NOT get to make, for creating such a lousy control module and placing it in such a styupid location in the first place (just to save money on wiring costs!).

In addition, this thread today has interesting information for the often-reported brake pressure sensor (red herring?) fault codes that the scanners often report (erroneously?):
-> E39 (1997 - 2003) > Brake Pressure Sensor (DSC/ABS/BRAKE Trifecta)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Microflight View Post
I have a 2003 e39 530i. The three lights come on 5 - 10 minutes. ...

I had an auto-logic scan that repeatly sourced the error to the brake pressure sensor. ... I suspect that the error count reaches a threshold and throws the fault.

I back probed the three wires going to the sensor. Violet/black measures 4.36 against Blue/Black and 5 volts against the strut tower nut. The Violet/Black measures 0.64 volts against the strut tower nut. (Interestingly the net voltage of the two wire is 5 volts.)

I measure the White/blue with no brake pressure and the reading was .64 volts. With some brake pressure the reading was 1.25 volts. And with a lot of pressure the reading was 2.5 volts.
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Last edited by bluebee; 01-22-2013 at 05:28 AM. Reason: Added information about testing the brake pressure sensor ...
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  #642  
Old 01-22-2013, 09:49 AM
geobrick geobrick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackMagic View Post
I can CONFIRM that a bad sensor in the front left (driver's side in US) will cause the transmission to fail to shift properly. Note that I am not saying that the front right side will not cause the problem. I just replaced the front left and the ABS lights on the instrument panel immediately went out without any sort of computer reset and the trans began shifting properly.
BlackMagic, It's interesting that you say that they're related because In my case the 2 problems didn't overlap but happened a week or 2 later.

1) 1 year ago I had the trifecta and had to replace the module.
2) 2 weeks ago the trifecta lights came back and I isolated it to the front left wheel speed sensor. I replaced the sensor and the trifecta was gone (no need to erase the error codes)
3) 2 days ago the Automatic Transmission warning light came on and the car went into the mode you described with the hard shifting etc.
4) I checked the error memory and found some codes but also had what seemed to be the remnant wheel speed sensor errors in memory.

I started this thread "http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=671522" to help me troubleshoot. I did not see the issues as being related.

Did you also have the Automatic Transmission warning light at the same time as the trifecta? It's hard to say that the Automatic Transmission issue is related to the front right wheel sensor because when I originally had the trifecta, I drove the car without the module and had no transmission issues. On the other hand, is it too much of a coincidence that I had the Automatic Transmission problem 2 weeks after replacing the front left wheel speed sensor. Maybe the EGS is looking at the stored code and if it's not cleared after x miles, it sets its own error (just speculating).

Last edited by geobrick; 01-24-2013 at 05:30 PM.
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  #643  
Old 02-06-2013, 12:22 PM
BMR01530 BMR01530 is offline
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Trying to diagnois 3 brake lights on

I am trying use the 2009 i540 diode test process for the wheel sensors... dont know if I am doing this correctly, because I dont seem to be getting any readings.

I have a Sperry DM 350A with a diode setting on it. I am not familiar with using this device.

but it starts at 1 when set, and goes to 0.00 when the ends are put together.

When I put a lead in the DSC harness, it doesnt change.. the pinouts have two rows and I am using the bottom hole of each row , with a 20 AWG low voltage wire.

Dont know what to do, to see if any thing is right.. Thanks
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  #644  
Old 02-06-2013, 02:35 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMR01530 View Post
dont know if I am doing this correctly, because I dont seem to be getting any readings
About 10% of the people have trouble with the diode test, and almost all of them find out that it's either the meter or the connection.

So, first debug the connection.

Make sure you can get ANY readings (at any of the 8 sensor connections) for resistance. Or, check voltage (key in ignition) at the power pins. Check SOMETHING to prove that you're actually making contact.

Only AFTER you're sure you're actually making contact (by getting any reasonable reading any way you can), then proceed to the diode test.

Remember, the hall effect sensor isn't a diode - it just acts like one to the meters most of us use - so - once you're sure you have connections, try out your meter on a real diode. You can get them at radio shack for pennies - or take apart any piece of electronics and you'll find them in there (older stuff will have bigger easier to test diodes).

Once you're sure your meter can handle a 'real' diode - and you're sure of your connection, then (and only then) you should attempt the diode test.

If that STILL fails, then you pretty much have to try a different meter. I know my Fluke 75 works well - but I can't vouch for any other meter.
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  #645  
Old 02-19-2013, 09:45 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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ABS control module harness location & sensor DMM test pinout for older E39s

This post just now by Flybot from this thread is a fantastic wealth of information for those with the older E39s such as Flybot's 1998 528.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flybot View Post
One month follow up on the intermittent ABS/ASC light.

I was initially getting the two mentioned lights and they would go out either at random, or sometimes if I turned the wheel from lock to lock. This degraded in to the transmission not automatically shifting in to 3 or 4. If this happens, you can manually shift up by clicking the shifter from D to 3. Down shifting is still automatic. Anyway, I thought initially it was the steering angle sensor because it could sometimes get it to go away by turning the wheel. I wanted to do the diode check on the wheel speed sensors using Bluebees thread http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...1&postcount=48 but I have the older ABS System ('98 528) and the pin outs don't match up. I found this thread with the pin outs for the older ABS system: http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=341672

Anyway, I changed out the left front sensor, which was literally crumbling apart. When tested, I got zero volts on the diode test and 3k ohms. It was supposed to be .5-2M ohms, according to the M3 thread. I cut the cable of the old sensor to do some further investigation and found that it had a small cut in the outer black insulation. The inner yellow/red wires were crumbling apart just touching them, and the copper was actually green from corrosion.

So as with all intermittent issues, it is fixed- until it isn't. The left front sensor was without a doubt bad, and I haven't had any errors since changing it out. I still don't see how the one sensor went from ABS/ASC error to then later include the transmission. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

This wheel speed sensor clearly gave its all and will receive full honors as it is laid to rest in the trash can.

Wires corroded 6" from the end of the sensor cable?


Crappy pic showing the wheel sensor and not showing the two bolt holes for attachment because they crumbled apart when removed??
Here is the pertinent information from Flybot's m3forum.net reference:
- The definitive guide to self diagnosing your ABS/ASC light.

Quote:
Originally Posted by [URL="http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/member.php?u=83609"
WRXEATR[/URL]]
yes, 97, BG93 build date 10/96


Look familiar?

If you're like me, one of your biggest pet peeves is a Christmas tree dash. Some people don't mind trouble lights on; I am not one of those. I cant stand the feeling that something is wrong with my car.

A BMW dealer will quote you anywhere between 1-2 hours of diagnoses charges (@ ~$120.00/hr) to read your ABS/ASC faults for you. If you are all about saving money, and learning something at the same time, you may find this useful. I will show you how to find the faults in your ABS/ASC system using a simple multimeter without being at the mercy of the dealer.

To start off, download the proper ETM for the year of your vehicle from TIS online. In this you will find the proper pin out info for your year. Use this link:

http://www.bmwtechinfo.com/etm/data/e36/e36_97.pdf

Change the year in the above link to match your vehicle. Example: if you are working on a '99 change it to: "http://www.bmwtechinfo.com/etm/data/e36/e36_99.pdf"

You will need to remove your glovebox to access your ABS/ASC computer connector. Here they are:

Computer:



Connector:



Here is how the pin numbers are laid out in the connector:



I ignored the assignments off to the left, they're wrong as far as my '97 was concerned. Use the ETM you downloaded for the proper pin assignments for your vehicle.

For a '97 we refer to the following assignments for reference:



Some of the most common things that will cause an ABS fault in your system are amongst the following:

1. A faulty wheel speed sensor
2. A bad ABS relay
3. A bad pedal travel sensor
4. A stuck/clogged solenoid valve
5. A faulty ABS pump motor
6. A bad brake light switch

Testing your wheel speed sensors.

Perform all of these tests with the ignition in position 3.

Our cars use Variable Reluctance type wheel speed sensors. In the tip of the WSS is a magnet and a coil that produces an AC voltage proportionate to the rotational speed of the wheel. This signal is sent to your ABS computer where it uses it to monitor the speed of your wheel rotation to decide when to activate/deactivate the ABS solenoids.

Test the sensor for proper resistance:

The specification for resistance of the sensors per BMW is between .5 -2 Ohms. Test this by identifying the proper pins in your connector that apply to that sensor. Let's use the rear Right for example. Using the above pinouts we see that pins 10, 45 are the 2 pins for the sensor. To measure the resistance over the WSS, apply your black multimeter probe to pin 10 and the red on pin 45. With your multimeter set on ohms you will get a reading. Do this on all 4 sensors. If the sensor is out of spec for resistance, replace it.


Test the sensor for proper function:

With your multimeter set to read AC volts, remove the wheel, then unplug the sensor from the harness. Probe the + pin in the connector on the harness side with red, and the ground pin with the black and spin the wheel. You should see your voltage produced increase with speed of the rotating wheel. Do this for all 4 sensors. If the voltage is not consistent with wheel speed replace the sensor.


Verify proper power supply to the ABS computer.

The ABS computer gets numerous 12V inputs from different areas all pretty much through the ABS relays/fuses. Using your multimeter set to DC volts, connect your black probe to pin #1 on your connector and leave it there while you perform the following tests. Referring again to the above pinouts, we see that we should have a 12V supply to the ABS/ASC computer at pins: 3,16,33,35,51 with the ignition in pos. 3. Using your red multimeter probe, touch all of these (may be different for your year) pins and verify that there is voltage there. If there is not, you have a bad power protection relay (stuck open) and/or fuses, and your ABS computer is not getting power. Make sure that your ABS computer is getting power by checking all the necessary pins for 12V. Your actual voltage will vary but it should be close to the measured static voltage of your battery which is close to 12V but could be as low as 11 or more in some cases depending on your battery. A voltage below 7 volts will trigger a fault code and turn your ABS/ASC light(s) on.



Test your ABS power protection relay.

Your abs power protection relay is an internally fused relay that is designed to blow and open when subjected to over voltage protecting your ABS computer from damage. If the relay is bad you will not have any power at the pinouts outlined above in the 12V power tests. If you do not have power in the previous test at the specified pins, this relay has tripped. If this is the case, remove the relay, and test the pins again; you should have full power everywhere with the relay removed. If you have power again after removing the relay; replace it.

Here it is:



Some more in depth testing info:

The way this relay works is; when power is applied over pins 85, and 86 you energize the coil magnet and it closes the relay. The closing of the relay is what completes the circuit and allows current to flow through it.

Make sure the diode in the relay works. A diode is a one way valve for electricity; only letting it flow one direction. Put your multimeter on resistance. Put the red terminal on pin 30a, and the black on 30. You should see a resistance reading between 50-100 Ohms. Now reverse your probes, putting the black probe on pole 30a and red on 30, you should now see infinite resistance. If neither of the above cases is false, the diode is bad and warrants replacing the relay entirely.

Test the continuity of the inner circuitry. Before energizing the relay, put your multimeter on continuity test. Red on pin 30 and black on 87a, you should register contact and hear a beep and/or signal that your multimeter makes to signal continuity.

Power up your relay by adding 12v across pins 85/86. you should hear a click. If so, the circuits are closed. Verify that they work by testing again for continuity, this time red on 87, black on 30. 87a no longer applies when energized because it becomes disconnected when the relay closes.


Test your ABS pump inlet/outlet solenoids.

Do this with your ignition in pos. 3. Our ABS systems are 4 circuit systems. Each hydraulic circuit to each wheel has 2 solenoids. 1 to modulate inlet pressure and 1 to modulate outlet pressure. Referring to your proper pin out, select which valve you want to test. Example, lets pick the inlet valve from the rear right. According to the above pinout, the pin to control it is pin #39. Set your multimeter to measure resistance. Connect your black probe to ground (pin 1 or any other ground pin) and the red one to pin 39. Specs for resistance for the valves are:

Inlet: 2-9 Ohms
Outlet: 2-7 Ohms

anything out of spec is likely a stock/clogged solenoid and would warrant a replacement abs pump.


Test your brake light switch

With multimeter set on DC volts, probe pin 1 with black, and 32 with red. Push your brake pedal. With the brake pedal pushed, you should have 11+ volts displayed. With the pedal at rest with no pressure you should have 0 volts.

Test your hydro pump motor for operation.

Do this with accy pos. 3 on. Measure the resistance between the 2 ABS pump sensor signals; pins 49, 50 in this case. BMW spec is 10-40 Ohms for the connection. Out of spec means new ABS unit. Within spec = continue reading. If resistance checks out, go to your fuse box and pull your abs pump motor relay. Its the 5 pole relay, not 6 pole. Jump the always hot pole to your pump supply line. (ID this by looking at the diagram on the side of the relay.) You should hear the pump start up, if not, its nad.
Note in post #50 of that thread, the following potential correction:
Quote:
Originally Posted by hencini
> Originally Posted by WRXEATR
> The specification for resistance of the sensors per BMW is between .5 -2 Ohms.
Just FYI, these specs are NOT right. Wheel speed sensors should be around ~1000. On the relay, I got ~1.7Mohms on the first (red 30a/black 30) test and nothing/open on the second (red 30/black 30a).
EDIT: I received the following related PM, which I include here to leverage, as always, the answers to all who follow:
Quote:
I have recently bought BMW 1998 740iL Sedan E38. I have problems with ABS Module & Wheel Sensor. I read your post http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...1&postcount=48 but I have different ABS Connector it has 15 holes. Where can I find which hole are for which wheel sensor? I don't know which connector should I test. one connected to ABS? or one behind glove box (ABS/ASC computer connector) describe in http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...&postcount=645. My model is E38 I hope if I will take glove box out it wont turn out there are different connections.

here is how my connector looks like:
My answer was as follows:
Quote:
I think everything you need is already in the referenced thread.
Remember, 200,000 people (views anyway) have visited that thread, and there are about 650 posts - all containing great information and lots of photos and diagrams.
So - by now - almost all the possible questions have been asked and answered already.
For example, this is the same 15-pin connector you have which was already shown long ago in post #498
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...&postcount=498


But more importantly, you should scroll to post #333 which shows in detail the right connectors for your style of ABS control module setup:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...&postcount=333



More information is in post 341
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...&postcount=341

And, more information is in the next half dozen posts after that.

Hope this helps but it's best to post your question to the forum and not in a PM simply because that will help others also.
Good luck.
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Last edited by bluebee; 02-21-2013 at 12:39 AM. Reason: Attached and combined pdfs and pics for posterity
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  #646  
Old 03-06-2013, 06:23 AM
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Flybot Flybot is offline
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It should be noted that there are two different wheel speed sensors on our E39s, and they have two different testing procedures. Both noted in this thread. I didnt really catch that detail when I first read through this thread. Then when I did note it, I wasnt sure if there was a difference between a hall effect and variable reluctance type of sensor. But it turns out, they are two different things. The old sensors were used from '97 through 8/98 and are variable reluctance sensors. The newer ones are Hall effect sensors. Obviously, you need to use the correct test procedure for your year car. But that can get confusing on these huge threads.

The old sensors pretty much just have a resistance test. The newer ones include, among other things, a diode test.

Just for clarification and for future DIYers-

According to the M3 thread (post #645 above) the test for the Variable Reluctance Sensors is:

Perform all of these tests with the ignition in position 3.

Our cars use Variable Reluctance type wheel speed sensors. In the tip of the WSS is a magnet and a coil that produces an AC voltage proportionate to the rotational speed of the wheel. This signal is sent to your ABS computer where it uses it to monitor the speed of your wheel rotation to decide when to activate/deactivate the ABS solenoids.

Test the sensor for proper resistance:

The specification for resistance of the sensors per BMW is between .5 -2 Ohms. Test this by identifying the proper pins in your connector that apply to that sensor. Let's use the rear Right for example. Using the above pinouts we see that pins 10, 45 are the 2 pins for the sensor. To measure the resistance over the WSS, apply your black multimeter probe to pin 10 and the red on pin 45. With your multimeter set on ohms you will get a reading. Do this on all 4 sensors. If the sensor is out of spec for resistance, replace it.


Test the sensor for proper function:

With your multimeter set to read AC volts, remove the wheel, then unplug the sensor from the harness. Probe the + pin in the connector on the harness side with red, and the ground pin with the black and spin the wheel. You should see your voltage produced increase with speed of the rotating wheel. Do this for all 4 sensors. If the voltage is not consistent with wheel speed replace the sensor.

But for the newer Hall Effect Sensors the test is (Post #48)

TEST WHEEL SENSOR CIRCUIT FROM THE ABS CONNECTOR (also checks wiring circuit):
OPTIONAL: Jack car up (so that all four wheels can be spun to test voltage & resistance fluctuations of the hall-effect sensors)
- Turn the car off and remove the key from the ignition.
- TEST 1: Switch the DMM into the diode test position
- Wrap a stiff 20AWG wire onto the ends of your DMM probe for sticking into ABS-connector pins
- Label the positive 20AWG wire with white tape so that you won't get confused as you switch back and forth
- Stick the ends of the wire into the appropriate female holes of the ABS connector (13-29, 30-31, 28-12, 15-16)
- In one direction, you should see 1.7 to 1.8 volts (note the pinouts mentioned are in order, positive to negative)
- In the other direction, you should see OL or some other infinite reading (open circuit)
- TEST 2: Switch the DMM into resistance checking mode (optional)
- You should see around 3.3 Mega ohms in one direction & approximately twice that in the other direction (but some say more)
- TEST 3: If desired spin the wheel at about 1 revolution per second, by hand (the resistance should fluctuate as the wheel spins)
- TEST 4: Switch the DMM into millivolt mode (optional) & again spin the tire & wheel assembly by hand (test-lead polarity won't matter)
- You should read between 1 and 5 mV when you spin the hub (no voltage implicate the sensor or circuit)
- OPTIONAL TESTS BELOW REQUIRE FLYING LEADS WITH THE IGNITION SYSTEM ABS SYSTEM CONNECTED & POWERED UP:
- TEST 5: Swith the DMM into the 10v and attach flying leads to the sensors with the power on
- You should see the voltage going to the sensor and the return signal
- Expect a baseline voltage of about +5 to +12 volts depending on the ABS system (does anyone know this value?)
- Expect that baseline voltage to the sensor to change (by how much?) as you spin the wheels
- TEST 6: Hook an oscilloscope with "flying leads" to the ABS sensors (notice that the ABS system must be powered)
- You should see nice clean square waves generated as you hand spin the wheels at about 1 revolution per second.
Note: The oscilliscope can detect problems that can't easily be found with a DMM (A scope pattern for a wheel speed sensor should show a classic sine wave alternating current pattern that changes both in frequency and amplitude with wheel speed. As the wheel is turned faster, signal frequency and amplitude should both increase. Damaged or missing teeth on the sensor ring will show up as flat spots or gaps in the sine wave pattern. A bent axle or hub will produce an undulating pattern that changes as the strength of the sensor signal changes with every revolution. If the scope pattern produced by the sensor is flattened (diminished amplitude) or is erratic, it usually indicates a weak signal caused by an excessively wide air gap between the tip of the sensor and its ring, or a buildup of metallic debris on the end of the sensor. A weak signal can also be caused by internal resistance in the sensor or its wiring circuit, or loose or corroded wiring connectors.)


INTERPRET DIODE-TEST RESULTS:
- If the DMM, in diode mode, reads infinity ("OL") in both directions, you've got a bad sensor or circuit
- If the DMM, in resistance mode, reads much greater than 7Mohms, you've got a bad sensor or circuit
- If all 4 sensors read OK, it's most likely the ABS control unit.
- If you think you found two bad sensors, you probably messed up.
- Rarely is the cause due to bad steering angle (yaw/lew) sensors
- Rarely is the cause due to a bad hydro unit
- The problem is almost always a wheel rotation sensor or the ABS control unit

Last edited by Flybot; 03-06-2013 at 06:31 AM.
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  #647  
Old 03-06-2013, 07:12 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flybot View Post
It should be noted that there are two different wheel speed sensors on our E39s, and they have two different testing procedures
OMG. (I don't know that I actually realized there was a distinction, and, if I had, I long ago forgot about it myself!)

Thanks for pointing that out, as we direct people to this thread (and, it appears to be one of the most visited thread on the forum (with 265 thousand views), so it's GREAT that you've clarified the sensor testing procedure!

Thanks for taking the time to help others!
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  #648  
Old 03-08-2013, 06:50 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Today, a user reported work had been done on the bimmer and then the ASC/ABS lights lit:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > ASC light and ABS light

Turned out to be they didn't replace the ABS fuse F30 in the prior repair.
So, I guess a standard step in the trifecta is to check ABS fuses F17 & F30.
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  #649  
Old 03-14-2013, 07:49 AM
barcodescanner barcodescanner is offline
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I would just like to point out my procedure for fixing this. I have a 1997 BMW 528i with an automatic transmission and 95,000 miles (I'm including all these details for the sake of search engines). While driving on the highway at about 70 MPH, the ABS & ASC lights came on, the speedometer dropped to zero and the fuel consumption gauge pegged out at max. Everything else functioned normally, including cruise control, odometer and trip odometer. When I was able to slow down, I tested the brakes and the ABS was most certainly disabled, as was the ASC (that poor old lady in the Cracker Barrel parking lot...). When I got home, I did a google search for "e39 abs asc speedometer" and found thousands of results on every forum I had ever heard of. I was quickly able to discern that I should just head to rockauto.com and order the LR speed sensor (because my cruise control was working). Then I happened upon a post (wish I could find it again) where a gentleman said he just took his LR wheel sensor out, cleaned it with carb cleaner, put it back in and it worked. I did the same thing, but I used brake cleaner because I haven't had a carburetor since the mid-80's, so I didn't have any carb cleaner. Once I got everything reassembled and started the car, the warning lights were still on. I decided to test drive any way, and as soon as I made a couple revolutions of the tires, the lights went out and the speedometer sprang to life, once again reminding me that I drive too fast.

The moral of the story is this: clean your sensors before you spend any money. Hope this helps.
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  #650  
Old 03-14-2013, 11:39 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barcodescanner View Post
The moral of the story is this: clean your sensors before you spend any money. Hope this helps.
Thanks for the information.

You didn't mention nor show a photo of how dirty your sensor was prior to cleaning, unfortunately; however, do note that cleaning the sensors is mentioned early on in this thread (post #48 for sure) - but - most of the time - that isn't the problem.

Still ... it could be.

BTW, most people would NOT buy a non-OEM wheel speed sensor (ask Quick99Si why). And most would test their sensor with a DMM before replacing it (ask 540iman why).

Still ... if simply cleaning the sensor worked for you - that's a perfect fix!

Personally, without any diagnostic information to go on, I suspect there is a good chance your trifecta will be back - so keep us informed.
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Last edited by bluebee; 03-14-2013 at 11:04 PM.
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