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DSC/traction control light always on

2135 Views 26 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Chedley
I have a North American 2000 BMW 528iA with the sport package. Normally I’m just a lurker who figures everything out by reading old threads, but this issue has left me scratching my head so I had to make a post. I recently had the ABS module rebuilt, and after putting the original wheel speed sensors back on (and throwing the Amazon ones in the trash) I fixed the “ABS light trifecta” and all the other associated problems. With that being said, my DSC/traction control light is still constantly on. It is the only light on the dash. I am getting error code 52 “rotation-rate sensor, line” from the ABS module. (I am using a BMW specific scanner and adapter to the 20-pin connector in the engine bay) I believe it is talking about the YAW sensor under one of the front seats (I cannot get a straight answer on the location). I have done the steering angle reset and when reading live data, all is good. I’m fairly certain it’s not the steering angle sensor. The manuals all say code 52 is for a wheel speed sensor, which I know is not my problem since the ABS still works. It seems that the YAW sensor location can very widely depending on the year, can anyone tell me where it is on my car and if that might be my issue?
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Which BMW specific scanner are you using to get the "rotation-rate sensor" error and to read live data ?? And how did you reset the steering-angle sensor after installing the rebuilt ABS ??
And yes, error code 52 from the ABS module indicates a bad rear-left speed sensor or bad inlet valve.
FYI, IIRC, the yaw sensor is located under the driver seat. And I do not think it is your issue..
Code reader is a BMW specific Creator C310+ with a round 20 pin adapter. I am able to talk to every module in the car. It’s cheap, but it works. I do not believe my steering angle sensor ever needed reset. I just did it because another thread suggested it. I did the simple “center wheel, turn to the left, turn to the right, back to the left, and re-center” method. When I view the live data for the sensor, it reads accurately. It’s at 0° when the wheel is straight. Angle changes accordingly when I turn the wheel. All is good there. If it were the rear-left wheel speed sensor, I would not have a speedometer and my ABS light would be on. I just got done getting rid of those problems so I know the sensors are good. I have seen one other thread where someone had code 52 and it also saying “rotation-rate sensor, line”. The OP ended up finding something must have shorted on the YAW sensor circuit and the connector was melted. Replacing the YAW sensor fixed his issue. Only problem is, that car was a 2003 530i and I’m not sure if my 2000 528i has the same DSC system. See the other thread I’m talking about here
Which BMW specific scanner are you using to get the "rotation-rate sensor" error and to read live data ?? And how did you reset the steering-angle sensor after installing the rebuilt ABS ??
And yes, error code 52 from the ABS module indicates a bad rear-left speed sensor or bad inlet valve.
FYI, IIRC, the yaw sensor is located under the driver seat. And I do not think it is your issue..
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Well, may be you have the same problem as in that thread.
But,
Can you have access to or borrow INPA and its K+DCAN cable ?
It can directly connect to and read the status of the ABS (DSC57 for your car), the steering-angle-sensor, the yaw-sensor and all other sensors/modules on this car.
If so, run Tool32's test_lenwinkel job : it recalibrates all the steering-angle and yaw sensors, and resets the ABS/DSC errors. Then test again.
Maybe that is all what is needed to fix your DSC error light. It has been the cure for many other bimmers with similar problems.
So, why did you rebuild the ABS module ? What was the problem with it anyway ??
Maybe it was not rebuilt right, hence the DSC error light ?
.... I recently had the ABS module rebuilt, and after putting the original wheel speed sensors back on...
My scanner can already read the status and values of all the sensors. However, I’m not entirely sure if it is able to run Tool32’s test_lenwinkel job. (I’ve read about this, but don’t really know what it is). My code reader lets me read the status/live data of sensors and modules, read codes from individual modules, and clear those codes, but not too sure if it can preform recalibrations or resets. I don’t have access to any other diagnostic software without taking it to a shop. I’ve only had a shop work on my car once and it was a nightmare.
To answer the question about the ABS module, it was rebuilt earlier this summer. The car was purchased earlier this year with the ABS, DSC, and check engine lights on. Shortly after getting the car, the “trifecta” and my speedometer would come and go with the weather. Replaced the wheel speed sensors with some cheap Amazon ones, which did nothing. After having the ABS module rebuilt, still nothing worked. I put the original sensors back on and all but the DSC light went away. That’s where I currently stand. I suppose the module rebuild could’ve been botched, but I’m hoping not. Thankfully there is a warranty.
Well, may be you have the same problem as in that thread.
But,
Can you have access to or borrow INPA and its K+DCAN cable ?
It can directly connect to and read the status of the ABS (DSC57 for your car), the steering-angle-sensor, the yaw-sensor and all other sensors/modules on this car.
If so, run Tool32's test_lenwinkel job : it recalibrates all the steering-angle and yaw sensors, and resets the ABS/DSC errors. Then test again.
Maybe that is all what is needed to fix your DSC error light. It has been the cure for many other bimmers with similar problems.
Well, you have many variables for this problem : a correctly rebuilt ABS ?, old and new speed sensors, and a questionable OBD2 scanner.
Tool32 is a software tool part of the INPA suite ("Mike's easy BMW Tools"). But that is not the scanner you have.
Not sure why my scanner is questionable. Just because it’s not name brand, doesn’t mean it doesn’t work. It was recommended to me by the ABS module rebuilders to help troubleshoot the other issues I was having. I would assume they are knowledgeable on this sort of stuff. My wheel speed sensors are all OEM. The junk Amazon ones were discarded. The ABS works, therefore the wheel speed sensors must be good. Again, every system works besides the traction/stability control.
Well, you have many variables for this problem : a correctly rebuilt ABS ?, old and new speed sensors, and a questionable OBD2 scanner.
Tool32 is a software tool part of the INPA suite ("Mike's easy BMW Tools"). But that is not the scanner you have.
Well, forget the -Creator C310+ OBD2 scanner- for a moment. You can check its technical specs later.
But,
You do have the DSC light on, and an error code 52 that does not want to go away. Yes ??
If so, this points to an ABS (DSC57 for this 2003 E39 car) that is disabled , presumably because of a bad rear-left speed sensor (code 52). That is all I can say.
What I was suggesting with the Tool32 test-lenwinkel trick is to clear the DSC light and the errors codes. Then see if they come back again.
I have cleared the error code before, but it always comes back. Not sure if clearing the code is resetting the sensor like it might need. Before I put the original wheel speed sensors back on, the ABS module was giving me 5 error codes, one for each wheel speed sensor, plus the one code I still have. Once I put the original sensors back on, those four codes went away and everything started working again (except for the DSC)
Well, forget the -Creator C310+ OBD2 scanner- for a moment. You can check its technical specs later.
But,
You do have the DSC light on, and an error code 52 that does not want to go away. Yes ??
If so, this points to an ABS (DSC57 for this 2003 E39 car) that is disabled , presumably because of a bad rear-left speed sensor (code 52). That is all I can say.
What I was suggesting with the Tool32 test-lenwinkel trick is to clear the DSC light and the errors codes. Then see if they come back again.
So, the persistent error is code 52. The ABS list of errors says : "Code 52 : Wheel sensor rear left or inlet valve rear right".

If you are adamant that the rear left speed sensor is good, then we are left with the possibility of a bad ABS. Its rebuilding has been botched. Specifically, the rear-right inlet valve in the module is bad or broken.
one thing to try would be to swap the 2 rear sensors across the axle to see if it changes anything, light and/or code.
I’m still confused by this conclusion. If that were the case, am I wrong to assume the ABS would also not be working? My ABS light is not on, if it were an issue with the inlet valve, wouldn’t that light be on as well?

I can try what @mattmar1 suggested by swapping the rear sensors and see if the code changes. If the code doesn’t change, that would mean it is the YAW sensor or the inlet valve. There is a warranty on the module, but hope I don’t have to go that route.
So, the persistent error is code 52. The ABS list of errors says : "Code 52 : Wheel sensor rear left or inlet valve rear right".

If you are adamant that the rear left speed sensor is good, then we are left with the possibility of a bad ABS. Its rebuilding has been botched. Specifically, the rear-right inlet valve in the module is bad or broken.
No, yaw sensor has nothing to do with your prroblem.
could easily be the ABS module as well or wiring. search here in this forum for TRIFECTA by bluebee, rest her soul, there are lotsa posts in the thread, but it will get you thru checking every wire that needs to be checked and how to do it.
curious...does the ABS and DSC light come on when turning the key to pos 2, then the ABS light goes out with DSC still lit, or does the DSC Light go out then return when driving?
when you say the ABS works in your post #8, have you tried to lock the brakes on wet pavement or are you going by what the lights are telling you?
btw, regardless of what you were told by the rebuilder about the creator 310, its a questionable unit, got one long time ago and got thrown down many a hole cuz of it, i ran a screw thru the middle of it and it now hangs on my garage wall.
I’m still confused by this conclusion. If that were the case, am I wrong to assume the ABS would also not be working? My ABS light is not on, if it were an issue with the inlet valve, wouldn’t that light be on as well?

I can try what @mattmar1 suggested by swapping the rear sensors and see if the code changes. If the code doesn’t change, that would mean it is the YAW sensor or the inlet valve. There is a warranty on the module, but hope I don’t have to go that route.
All lights come on when I start the car and then they all turn off after a second or two once the computers do all their little checks. However, only the DSC light stays on. I have felt the ABS kick in a couple times, once on a panic stop because of an accident ahead, and the other for a car that decided to slam on their brakes for a light that just turned yellow.
could easily be the ABS module as well or wiring. search here in this forum for TRIFECTA by bluebee, rest her soul, there are lotsa posts in the thread, but it will get you thru checking every wire that needs to be checked and how to do it.
curious...does the ABS and DSC light come on when turning the key to pos 2, then the ABS light goes out with DSC still lit, or does the DSC Light go out then return when driving?
when you say the ABS works in your post #8, have you tried to lock the brakes on wet pavement or are you going by what the lights are telling you?
btw, regardless of what you were told by the rebuilder about the creator 310, its a questionable unit, got one long time ago and got thrown down many a hole cuz of it, i ran a screw thru the middle of it and it now hangs on my garage wall.
any way you could get the ABS module read with another scanner? a friends or a shop one, no creator 310.
just did a bit of research on code 52 in the ABS. it means either the left wheel sensor is bad (which id kinda think is not the issue here, as the ABS did do its job when you tried it, assuming these happened after the repairs were done) OR inlet valve rear right. gonna do a little more looking in to this when ive the time, maybe tonight.
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now im really confused, might wanna look at the linked thread, post # 48. in there is a list or ABS/DSC hardware application by year and manufacture date. for your year, there is no error 52. however, i am seeing a contradictory statement as to the application of this list. still in seek mode.
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Yeah, now, I really think the Creator-310 may be screwing the diagnostic. Forget it , and try to get hold of INPA . See rant below.

1. First step: read the ABS status and error codes with INPA, and save them.
2. Second step : Reset the whole ABS/sensors/lights/errors with (Tool32, test-lenwinkel job).
3. Third step: test drive again, then scan and tell us what are the new status and/or error codes from the ABS.

Rant: {Heck, buy the $30 inpa K+DCAN cable; then download and install the INPA software ("Mike's easy BMW Tools") on a Windows laptop. You will then have the most accurate BMW specific scanner and coding tool. It is originally the tool BMW engineers use to configure and check test the new car at the BMW factories before shipment. .!. And much cheaper than the creator. }
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