Wheel Bearing & ABS Light


frehleycomet
03-15-2009, 07:50 AM
I replaced the driver's side wheel bearing on my 2001 venture and now the ABS light goes on about 5 to 10 seconds after starting the car. It stays on throughtout the drive. Before the light goes on I get a sound as if passing your fingers up and down an old fashioned washboard. I have read throughout these threads to replace the bearing but I don't forsee that happening. How can this bearing be bad when the car feels great driving now. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

Loonylani
03-15-2009, 12:12 PM
I am not sure how much you know about the ABS and wheel bearing so I'll start with saying the ABS sensor is inside the wheel bearing and all one piece. I replaced my wheel bearing last year for two reasons; the ABS light was on and the bearing was starting to make noise. There is a white wrapped wire going from the wheel bearing assembly to a clip and connector on the hub area. Make sure the wire is tight but also not making contact with the axle as this will ground it out after rubbing on it and baring the wire. Your bearing is new so it's probably not the wire being bare. Check to make sure this connector is plugged in and tight (on both sides) as this will cause the light to come on. It could also be that it is a defective wheel bearing and the sensor is not working correctly. Was the ABS light on before you replaced the bearing or was the bearing just bad? The only other easy to check connector I know of is under the body of the van on the driver's side behind the driver's seat area. 2 connectors there and one is for the fuel pump (larger) the other has a rubber boot and is for the ABS. Check for connectivity. Let us know, thanks.

frehleycomet
03-15-2009, 03:57 PM
I checked the plug at the bearing and it's tight and secure. I looked underneath the driver's side seat and noticed a few plugs but none with a boot like you said. Could I be looking at the wrong place, please explain. Thanks.

Loonylani
03-16-2009, 08:38 AM
The plug with the boot is under the body of the van, not inside the van. If you lay on the ground under the driver's side of the van there will be 2 plugs. The smaller is the ABS plug. Don't unplug the larger unless you plan on cleaning the corrosion out before plugging it back in (or it may not start again). The larger is for the fuel pump and it's kind of cranky.

frehleycomet
03-16-2009, 02:12 PM
Ok thanks I will get to that as soon as I can and I will give you some feedback on the results. Thanks again.

merc81
03-16-2009, 05:10 PM
I replaced the driver's side wheel bearing on my 2001 venture and now the ABS light goes on about 5 to 10 seconds after starting the car. It stays on throughtout the drive. Before the light goes on I get a sound as if passing your fingers up and down an old fashioned washboard. I have read throughout these threads to replace the bearing but I don't forsee that happening. How can this bearing be bad when the car feels great driving now. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

OK, I've never seen what I'm about to say on any forum before, and I'm ignoring your comment about the washboard sound, but consider this carefully. :eek7:
I replaced my driver's side wheel bearing on a 99 olds a couple years back. I purchased a lifetime bearing from NAPA for this job. Once the bearing was replaced, the ABS light came on and stayed on every time I reset it and drove down the road. This was not a problem before the replacement so clearly the new bearing wasn't delivering a signal to the ABS system for some reason--or, and this is the point--it wasn't sending a signal the ABS system could use.:nono:
I used a fluke 179 meter to measure the output from the sensor in the bearing. The voltage looked to be almost (ALMOST) the same as the passenger side bearing sensor. I destroyed the old bearing taking it out so couldn't compare the sensor in it to the new one.
I used an oscilloscope to view the output pulse coming from the new bearing and compared it to the pulse from the passenger side. Both bearings gave the same pulses per turn (sorry don't recall how many there were) but the replacement bearing gave shorter duration pulses than the original on the other side. I called Napa and they told me it happens, bring it back and exchange for another.
The 2nd bearing worked at once and I've never had an ABS problem since. The pulse from the 2nd bearing looked much closer to the original but still a bit shorter.
Its my view that the magnet or gap spacing in some of the replacement bearings are just not close enough to tolerance for the ABS system to work--or possibly the ABS system is too picky about pulse width. In any event, you need to change out the new bearing again if you have determined there is no cable problem. :banghead:
You can best test the cable harness by removing the large connector from the computer module and testing the pins directly at that location instead of trying to measure down under the wheel. Better scan tools will show you the pulse count directly as you spin the wheel as well.
I don't have access to that good of a scan tool but my very affordable fluke voltmeter can easily show the pulses from the wheel sensor when set to DC volts and measured at the connector end of the ECM inside the air scoop. You need a book or pin numbers to know where to measure.
Let me know if you are interested and I'll look up the pin numbers and post 'em. That gets tricky due to orientation confusion so I'll leave it for another post if desired.

toni1595
03-22-2009, 09:44 AM
That's interesting that you posted that Merc81. I had a similar problem on my 99 Venture. I had a front hub replaced and according to the guy that scanned it when the ABS light came on again, it was bad within 4 months. This was a cheaper hub, it wasn't the better one that NAPA sells. I'm beginning to wonder if the hubs are OK, it's just the actual design that's flawed. Probably just off enough on the pulses to cause a trouble light to show up.

merc81
03-23-2009, 05:40 PM
I've changed a few of those bearings and only had the one give me trouble. I think the OEM pulse generator just has a longer pulse width than the newer replacements. That's not because the bearings are cheaper today, I think its just a very close tolerance spec and maybe some computers are pickier than others. This is one of those parts I never order online because of the possibility of having to exchange it as soon as its installed. Shipping would be nasty on this hub!

I had a GM service guy tell me to change both bearings a the same time to avoid the problem, but really, who can afford that?:runaround:

Loonylani
04-01-2009, 01:46 PM
I replaced my bearings about 25k miles ago with Timken brand bearings 98 Venture. Monroe Muffler and Brake where I live use them in their shop. If you can get a hold of a nice manager they will sometimes sell you one for cost and let you install it yourself.
I have not had any problems with my Timken bearings at all. No noise, no lights, very smooth and easy to replace. It cost me $95 to buy ;)

jamx13
04-25-2009, 10:32 PM
http://www.am-autoparts.com/AM/Front-Wheel-Hubs/Chevrolet/Venture/2001/AM-42431274/

Use code C-AM00025 for 5% off = $65 shipped.

toni1595
04-26-2009, 04:31 AM
Are their parts warranteed? I know the cheaper hubs from NAPA are for 1 year. And then they sell the lifetime ones, but they are twice or more the money.

Toni.

merc81
04-30-2009, 09:20 AM
I would NOT get this bearing online! Read my post above. I do get the expensive timkin bearings from NAPA and had to return one once. If you have to return one of these online, the shipping will kill you not to mention the down time. Its not a question of quality. Once in a while you get a sender unit that is not acceptable to your pcm. When that happens, you need to exchange it.

K24Fork
11-23-2013, 12:50 AM
97 Lumina....Went in for a radiator flush and fill and was told I needed ball joints and tie rods so I did that. Then had a bad sound like a helicopter taking off at 30mph and was told right front wheel bearing. Replaced that. As soon as they replaced the wheel bearing, the ABS light came on and now it makes a weird noise when I reverse out of a parking spot. There is no noise from the fixed wheel bearing but it feels like I am driving a boat sometimes. Kind of floating when I steer. They said likely the other wheel bearing. Does this sound right?

Tech II
11-23-2013, 11:27 AM
97 Lumina....Went in for a radiator flush and fill and was told I needed ball joints and tie rods so I did that.

What kind of shop did the work? GM dealership? Non-GM dealership? Used car dealership? Chain? Local garage?

Tie rods and ball joints? Were you feeling/hearing any noise prior to installation? How long after this work was done, did the helicopter sound start?





Then had a bad sound like a helicopter taking off at 30mph and was told right front wheel bearing. Replaced that. As soon as they replaced the wheel bearing, the ABS light came on and now it makes a weird noise when I reverse out of a parking spot.

That sound could have come from a bad bearing....after it was replaced, was the helicopter sound eliminated? How long after replacement, did the ABS light come on(or, was it in fact on, before the bearing was replaced?)? Was this weird noise made immediately after the bearing was replaced?






There is no noise from the fixed wheel bearing but it feels like I am driving a boat sometimes. Kind of floating when I steer. They said likely the other wheel bearing. Does this sound right?


So there is no noise now when going down the road? But a "floating" feeling when you steer? Was this floating feeling there after the BJ's and tie rods were replaced(was an alignment done after this work? Was it recommended if not?)? Or was the floating feeling after the bearing was replaced?

What is the ABS code? Is it for the opposite side circuit, or for the same side that was fixed?

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