Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: ABS not working

asked by on

When I was driving in the rain I ran into a traffic jam going 70mph. I hit my brakes and felt my front wheels locking up. I heard my tires screeching up front and the car was sliding! But luckily I didn't hit anyone. The Anti-lock braking system wasn’t activated on the dash and there were no pulses in the brake pedal. They definitely were not working. I took it to the dealership and they said everything was fine. But I've driven cars for years with anti-lock braking systems, and know what they are like. What do you think about this?

A: Hey there, thanks for writing in about your...

Hey there, thanks for writing in about your 2010 Lexus HS250h. The anti-lock braking system (ABS) is designed to prevent wheel lockup during emergency braking. The ABS control module monitors the vehicle wheel speed sensors to determine when lockup may occur. If the module detects a lockup event, it will operate solenoid valves to hold, release, and reapply pressure to the brakes. This is the pulsation that is felt in the brake pedal during ABS operation.

If the ABS did not engage during your incident, it's because the control module did not sense a lockup event. This may or may not have been the correct conclusion for the module to come to. Also, the ABS light should only come on when there is a problem in the ABS system, not during emergency braking. If you feel there is something wrong with the ABS system, I suggest having a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, inspect the brake system in order to have the correct repairs made.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Wheel bearing noise, already changed both the drum due to same problem in the space of 8 months.

Hello, thanks for writing in. If the ABS light is on and the bearing is making noise, then I would recommend replacing the bearing as soon as is convenient. If possible, replace the hub assembly and ABS sensor together. If...

Q: Air conditioning flow problem

Hi. Your Lexus uses an electric actuator to move the air doors inside your HVAC system. It sounds like you may have a problem with the blend door actuator or it's circuit. To diagnose this problem, first make sure there...

Q: Put new brakes on, car feels like its in park when in drive/reverse

Hello. I will try to assist you with your 1999 Jeep. Remove the two wheels you worked on. Apply and release the service brakes several times and return to the wheel positions (with transmission in neutral, block rear wheels and...

Related articles

P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...