Q: DSC, ABS, Handbrake Light Stays On

asked by on March 08, 2017

Hi! Sometimes when I start my car, it throws up the DSC, ABS, Handbrake lights. If I recalibrate the system by turning the steering wheel from lock to lock and restart it, the lights disappear. Same happens sometimes when I'm braking to stop at a light or when going 0-5 km/h in a traffic jam. I noticed that, sometimes the lights come up when the rev drops (pushing the clutch in a lot of times and the engine tries to compensate or when turning the steering wheel on a 90 degree turn and the power steering lowers the rev). This winter the lights came up only 1-2 times in 3 months... now in the spring, the weather is good the lights are coming up every 1-2 days on start and sometimes in the city while driving.
My car has a manual transmission.

Based on your description of the problem, I would guess that you have a bad wheel speed sensor or a tone ring that is jammed up with rust. The tone ring is a ring on the wheel hub with slots cut into it that the sensor reads to determine wheel speed. The signals are not as strong at low speeds, so when the sensors fail, of the rings get dirty, the problems first show up when you are moving slowly. It shouldn’t be hard to find the culprit. When the controller for the ABS and other systems sense a fault, a code is stored in the controller, even after the light goes out. So it’s a simple matter to scan the controllers and retrieve the codes to get a factual account of the problem(s). But It will have to be a BMW capable scanner. The Generic ones they use and sell at auto parts stores won’t do the trick when it comes to ABS and DSC systems. To have the system scanned at your convenience, you can contact Your Mechanic. They will send a technician with the proper equipment to your home or office to scan your BMW and let you know what it needs to fix it.

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