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I'll probably end up selling my daughter's '93 325is. She heads off to college this evening and she says she's done with it. First I need to try to extinguish a couple minor MILs: The brake pad light and the ABS light. The pads are recent but the light has always been on. Won't know if the ABS works or not until it snows. Where do I start?
 

· BMWCCA HPDE Instructor
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The brake pad light is easy. There is a pad wear sensor on the driver side front and passenger side rear brake caliper. When the pads wear down, it rubs off the tip of the wear sensor, thus tripping the pad warning light. They are one-time-use only, so if you replace the pads but not the sensor(s), the warning light will remain illuminated. New pad wear sensors cost about $5.00/ea and only take a minute to replace. They are part number 34351181338.

The ABS warning light could be more significant. You could have a faulty ABS unit, or perhaps more likely is that you have a bad wheel speed sensor, which isn't too hard to replace.
 

· D'oh, You Kids!
1984 633CSi, 1985 635CSi, 1985 325e, 1987 325is, 1993 325is, 1995 318is, 1995 M3, 2003 F150
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You can pull the wear sensors off the pads and look at them. the damaged one will be pretty obvious, since it will have the end worn off. Be aware that the sensors frequently break when you remove them. Don't worry about figuring out which one is bad, just replace both of them.

All four wheels have speed sensors.
 
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