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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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  #1  
Old 04-28-2015, 12:13 PM
gvelco gvelco is offline
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What brake sensor(not abs speed sensor)actually does?

What brake sensor(not abs speed sensor)actually does?black one along with blue abs sensor near wheel hub.
my car doesn't have it.at front right wheel isn't nothing,front left exist but unconnected see pic below
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  #2  
Old 04-28-2015, 01:27 PM
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540iman 540iman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gvelco View Post
What brake sensor(not abs speed sensor)actually does?black one along with blue abs sensor near wheel hub.
my car doesn't have it.at front right wheel isn't nothing,front left exist but unconnected see pic below
It tells the ECM when your brake wear has become excessive and that sensor touches metal meaning your brake pads are worn to what BMW considers to be the minimum. You have one at left front and one at right rear.
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Old 04-28-2015, 01:47 PM
JKRIT JKRIT is offline
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It is not the sensor wire "touching metal" that sets off the warning light on the dashboard; It is when the wire is worn through (by the brake rotor) and breaks the electrical circuit to set off the warning light. If OP's dash light is not on with the wire looking like it does, someone may have intentionally short-circuited the wire to keep the light from turning on. This is not necessarily unsafe: It just means that unless the owner inspects the pads occasionally, they may wear down completely (metal-to-metal) without any warning.
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  #4  
Old 04-29-2015, 03:03 AM
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Flybot Flybot is offline
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^^^ True statement.

They are also "one-time-use". Thats why some will remove them from the brake so they are never activated. It adds about $20 to the bill if you wait till the sensor is called to duty.
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Last edited by Flybot; 04-29-2015 at 03:06 AM.
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  #5  
Old 04-29-2015, 05:02 AM
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540iman 540iman is offline
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Yes, I stand corrected on the mechanism of the brake pad sensor. I had the right description of what it does, but I assumed it went to ground with wear. The explanation the others gave you makes much more sense. Anyway, you do now know what it does and why and where.
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Old 04-29-2015, 05:45 AM
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FWIW, it's pretty easy to code off the brake linings warning using a $30 BMW scan tool.
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  #7  
Old 04-29-2015, 05:49 AM
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we can always short it at the junction box in the pic n call it a day.

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Old 04-29-2015, 11:12 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moots View Post
we can always short it at the junction box in the pic n call it a day.
Lots more information here...
- Do the brake pad sensors come with the pads or are they a separate item (1) & how far you can go once the brake wear sensor trips (1) & how not to remove a brake pad wear sensor (1) & how to clear the check brake lining warning the right way (1) and how to hardwire the sensor (1)

See also:
- What brake pads are most often recommended (1) & what brake rotors are most often recommended (1) & how long do rotors last (1) & how to measure runout (1) & should you just turn the rotors (1) & what's the real difference between drilled, slotted, and solid rotors (1) & what's the difference between various brands of solid rotors (1) & what is different about BMW M5 brakes and our stock brakes (1) & how to diagnose brake-related vibration (1) & the truth about so-called rotor "warp" (1) & what friction grade (e.g., EE, FF, EF, etc.) does BMW recommend (1) & how to bed your pads to your rotors and why (1) & what brake parts suppliers are most often recommended (1) & what brake specifications you must know (1) including minimum specs for the brake shoes (1) taking care to measure torque accurately (1) & one user's pictorial example of a complete brake job with all torque figures, specs, measurements, fluids, decisions, tools, tricks, mistakes, suppliers, costs, etc., that it entails (1) & how to replace and adjust the parking brake drum shoes (1) & what six brake hoses to check for wear (1) & how to do a preventive brake system & caliper rebuild (1) & how to change brake & clutch hydraulic fluid (1) & what is the recommended brake and clutch hydraulic fluid (1) & what are all the recommended brake job greases (1) & how to properly bleed your brakes (1) & how do you measure physically deformed rotor distortion often incorrectly termed "warp" (1) & where is the published brake disk/disc lateral runout rotor specification for the BMW E39 (1) & how to remove stuck rusted-on brake rotors (1) & how to remove a stuck 6mm brake rotor set screw (1) & what to do about unsightly rotor or caliper rust (1) & how to replace the anti-rattle spring (1) & do the brake pad sensors come with the pads or are they a separate item (1) & how far you can go once the brake wear sensor trips (1) & how not to remove a brake pad wear sensor (1) & how to clear the check brake lining warning the right way (1) and how to hardwire the sensor (1) & how to identify and replace all E39 brake hoses (1) & brake pipes (1) & what specific tools are needed or recommended for a typical four wheel front and rear brake job, including disc pads, sensor, rotors, and rear brake drum shoes (1) & why does the average moron consistently spell brake as break (1) & published tests of BMW E39 brake braking stopping distance (1) & what to check if your cluster indicates a rear brake lamp out (1) & how to remove a melted center brake light (1) & how much will a brake job cost if you do not DIY (1)
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Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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