I'm not sure if this is true but I've heard that in order to fix my ABS light, they have to remove the module and send it out to reprogram. Is this true?

  • 2
    I guess it would depend on why the ABS light is on... In my VW, the ABS controller has fault codes that can be cleared just like the OBDII fault codes for the engine. You need a special VW scan tool, but it certainly doesn't have to be removed and sent off somewhere.
    – JPhi1618
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 15:12

3 Answers 3


The ABS light is an indicator of an error caught by the ECU. It usually is an error for a defective ABS sensor or a related brake issue. It's difficult to tell what exactly it is without reading the error code. Some specific problem might be fixed by reprogramming the ABS module, others won't. Depends on the issue and the year of your 528i.

Once you get the issue fixed the light will either go off by itself, or will go off when the related error will be cleared from the ECU memory with a dedicated scan tool.


If this is an E39 or E60 chassis, you should be able to use GT1/DIS or INPA to probe the computer and figure out what is setting the ABS light.

There are a bunch of possibilities that might cause this, including:

  • lack of wheel speed sensor signal
  • failed seals in the ABS unit
  • failed solders (usually microscopic cracks) that prevent the solenoids from actuating

You need to read out the ECM/ECU for the trouble codes from the OBD interface.

The ABS light will go on for the following reasons:

  • Defective ABS module
  • Defective ABS sensor on a wheel
  • Low battery power(this will cause the weirdest error codes)
  • Brake pad sensors defective or worn brake pads
  • Wiring harness problem. Corroded plugs
  • Read error(probably fixable by resetting the fault codes)

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