ABS and ESP inoperative - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-02-2018, 08:01 PM Thread Starter
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ABS and ESP inoperative

Hey guys I've got an 08 S550 and absolute mint condition. However was driving the other day and the brakes actually went completely out and I darn near rear-ended somebody. I shut the car off and restarted and then the dreaded ABS and ESP inoperable light came on the dash. Looking for ideas and suggestions I have heard everything from Bad consumer battery too bad wheel sensors to a bad ABS module which is about 3 Grand! Any help or guidance would be greatly appreciated before I have to take it to the dealership and really get screwed. I did remove and inspect each wheel sensor and they were clean as a whistle. Thanks in advance. I am considering replacing the consumer battery in the trunk just on principle but I don't think that's the problem as there is no voltage issue or no battery light on the dash.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-02-2018, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by polo35 View Post
However was driving the other day and the brakes actually went completely out and I darn near rear-ended somebody.
Please expand on this.

Did the pedal hit the floor? Power assist was out? Are brakes still out?
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-03-2018, 03:27 AM
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The loss of braking you describe would not be due to a bad battery; and illumination of ABS and ESP warnings can occur from loss of sensors, but they would not cause loss of braking. There is a far more serious cause behind this, and I don't know what it is. If you lost brakes because of another problem, then illumination of those warnings would be normal. More info, if you have it, would be helpful; and I would definitely have the dealership check this with DAS - your life could be at stake. Plus, trying to fix this by throwing part at it is not only risky, it can be expensive.

If it turns out the be the ABS module, you may be able to have it repaired MUCH less expensively than replaced; see http://mandbspecialist.com (the Component Level Repair link from our DIY & FAQ stickies in the blue backgrounded area toward the top of this page). The company has gotten good reviews from our members, and it is located in Florida. If an electronic component is determined to be at fault, give them a call.

Warren

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Formerly:
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2005 S500 4-Matic
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1978 450SL

Last edited by Skylaw; 09-03-2018 at 03:32 AM.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-03-2018, 06:18 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for all the great replies. I should have clarified a little better when the brakes went out the abs did its normal rapid pulse thing, the pedal did not go to the floor but it was not stopping the car and I luckily coasted to a stop. After I shut the car off and restarted brakes feel and seem to be normal however ABS and ESP inoperable light is now permanently on. I will check the sticky for info again I appreciate all the responses
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-03-2018, 06:25 AM Thread Starter
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Just to clarify further. The brakes seem to be working normally right now however I do not know what they would do if the ABS was reacted for example on a wet Road. I'm planning on taking the car to a wet parking lot and trying to lock them up to see if the ABS functions or not. I will report back
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-03-2018, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Just an update. I tested the brakes on a gravel driveway and the ABS is definitely not functioning as the car skidded like an old fashioned muscle car! Just on principle I cleaned each ABS wheel sensor as well as blue out each hole to remove any built up brake dust and that did not help at all either. I have red on some other posts that sometimes unplugging and reconnecting the ESP module can reset things. Does anyone know where the ESP module is located on this vehicle?...08 S550... That is my last ditch effort and then it's off to the dreaded dealer..... Thanks in advance
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-03-2018, 04:22 PM
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Best thing to do is have codes read with a scanner (ABS/ESP capable).

Last edited by 260e crusier; 09-03-2018 at 04:25 PM.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-04-2018, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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I appreciate all of the replies and advice. I broke down and took the car to the dealer today. They initially ran codes and said all four wheel sensors needed to be replaced at a cost of $1,800. I told the service guy how could four wheel sensors possibly go bad simultaneously all at once and even he agreed that it sounded ridiculous. I made them clear the codes test drive the car which then promptly threw a code of the front right wheel sensor so I had them replace it and the car is perfect now. What a rip-off... $480 to replace one wheel sensor!!!!! A sensor which can be purchased on eBay for $22! I guess it's probably time to consider purchasing the star diagnostic system which would pay for itself in one repair.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-05-2018, 04:56 AM
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Thank you for the update, and good call on suspecting it wasn't all four sensors!
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Formerly:
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2005 S500 4-Matic
2000 S500
1978 450SL
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by polo35 View Post
I appreciate all of the replies and advice. I broke down and took the car to the dealer today. They initially ran codes and said all four wheel sensors needed to be replaced at a cost of $1,800. I told the service guy how could four wheel sensors possibly go bad simultaneously all at once and even he agreed that it sounded ridiculous. I made them clear the codes test drive the car which then promptly threw a code of the front right wheel sensor so I had them replace it and the car is perfect now. What a rip-off... $480 to replace one wheel sensor!!!!! A sensor which can be purchased on eBay for $22! I guess it's probably time to consider purchasing the star diagnostic system which would pay for itself in one repair.
The speed sensors work off of measuring resistance, and three old well used sensors could likely report a signifiant value difference. If so, replacing one would cause the ESP/ABS warning messages to reappear after 16 mph.

In some cases, however, replacing one is sufficient as they are very close to reporting the same values.
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