Fixing Ford F-150 ABS Module Problems

The most common F-150 ABS module problem is that the dashboard may keep displaying the ABS light or give multiple warnings on startup. Other problems include noisy pumps, blown ABS fuse, wheel speed sensor failure, and reduced braking performance. The reasons why these happen are damaged or dirty sensors. The computer may also have crashed or become unresponsive, which will cause the entire system to fail.

Join me as I explore the notorious Ford F-150 ABS module problems. Discover the root causes, symptoms, and possible solutions in this content.

Ford F-150 ABS Module Problems, Symptoms, And Solutions

The following table will give you a brief idea of the list of common F-150 ABS-related problems, the symptoms, and the solutions.

ABS module light is onDisplay warning lights such as traction control, brake, and ESP lights on the dashboard.Use a diagnostic scan tool to read the error codes stored in the ABS module to determine the root cause of the problem.
ABS control module failureThe ABS system may stop functioning altogether, resulting in decreased braking performance and increased stopping distance.Replace the faulty ABS control module with a new unit.
Multiple ABS-related warningsThe ABS may give multiple warnings on start up such as:
1. Park Brake Malfunction Service Now
2. Hill Start Assist Not Available
3. Check Brake System
4. Service AdvanceTrac/Stabilitrack/Traction Control
1. Reset the ABS by disconnecting the battery.
2. Inspect the ABS control module and replace if it is necessary. 
ABS system engages at low speeds, during normal braking or during accelerationThe ABS system may engage even when the vehicle is moving at low speeds, such as during parking maneuvers causing the brake pedal to pulsate or vibrate.Check the sensors and wiring connecting to the ABS module to ensure they are properly installed and functioning correctly.
Noisy ABS pumpThe ABS pump may make a grinding or metallic noise when coming to a stop.1. Diagnose the issue by connecting a scan tool.
2. Otherwise, disconnect the pump and turn off the traction control to determine if the issue is with the ABS pump. If so, repair or replace the pump.
3. Reprogram the ABS. 
Blown ABS fuse1. Illuminated parking brake light, no cruise control, and no reverse light.
2. Plugging in the blown fuse with an OBD II scanner will read that it’s unable to communicate with the ABS system or give an error code for a bad rear ABS sensor.
1. Inspect and fix the short circuit causing the fuse to blow.
2. Replace the ABS fuse if the problem still persists.
Low brake fluidThe dashboard will display a Low brake fluid warning light even after filling it and even though there aren’t any leaks1. Check the fluid level 
2. Remove dirty fluid
3. Bleed the cylinder with the engine running
4. Refill the cylinder with clean fluid.
Wheel speed sensor failure1. Loss of traction control
2. Decreased fuel efficiency
3. Decreased drivability
4. Wheels may lock up or skid during hard braking.
1. Check wiring connections
2. Replace the faulty speed sensor to restore proper ABS functionality.

Problem 1: ABS Module Light Is On

When there is a problem with the ABS module, the ABS light on the dashboard will stay turned on. This indicates that there is an issue that needs attention. 


Your dashboard will display several warning lights, including ESP, brake lights, and traction control light. 


If the ABS module light on your Ford F-150 is on, one of the first things you can do is use an OBD II (On-Board Diagnostic) scan tool. It will help retrieve the error code and diagnose the issue. Here are the steps you can follow.

Required tool: OBD II scan tool

Step 1: Plug the OBD II scan tool into the diagnostic port located under the dashboard on the driver’s side of the vehicle.

Step 2: Turn the ignition on and allow the OBD II scan tool to establish a connection with the vehicle’s computer system.

Step 3: Select the “Read Codes” option on the OBD II scan tool to retrieve the error codes stored in the vehicle’s computer system.

Step 4: Identify the error codes associated with the ABS module.

Step 5: Use the OBD II scan tool to clear the error codes from the vehicle’s computer system.

See if the ABS module light has turned off after restarting the engine. If it has, then the issue may have been a temporary glitch or a minor problem that has been resolved.

If the ABS module light remains on, it may indicate a more serious problem with the ABS module itself or the wheel speed sensors. In this case, it’s best to have the vehicle inspected and repaired by a certified mechanic.

Problem 2: ABS Control Module Failure

The second most common ABS module problem faced by F-150 owners is ABS control module failure. The ABS system may stop functioning altogether, resulting in random clicking noises, decreased braking performance, and increased stopping distance.

But how to be sure that the ABS module has failed? Here are some sure signs and symptoms.


Some of the most common symptoms of F-150 ABS control module failure are an unresponsive brake pedal, lost traction control, and loud knocking noises coming from the front or rear wheels.

You may also notice that the Check Engine Light keeps coming on when you are driving with the engine running but not in a park or neutral position.


If the ABS control module in your F-150 fails, consider replacing it with a new unit. This is because the ABS control module is a critical component of the vehicle’s safety system.

A failure of the system can result in reduced braking efficiency and dangerous driving conditions. That is why you must contact a technician to either replace it with a new unit or repair the unit.

Problem 3: Multiple ABS-Related Warnings

The ABS warning lights may illuminate during startup. These warning lights indicate that the anti-lock brake system is not functioning properly

Let’s go through some of the warning lights related to the ABS system.

Brake System Warning Light – This pops up whenever there is any problem with the brake system. This is related to the ABS system and we recommend consulting a professional as soon as possible.

Traction Control Warning Light – Although not exactly related to braking, traction control warning light comes on whenever there is any problem with the traction system. This is important because the traction and braking system share the same module.

Whenever the system detects that the wheel is losing its grip i.e losing traction, it applies brakes. But the traction control system coming on means there can be problems with the ABS system. So, get it checked and fixed as soon as possible.

Electronic Stability Control Warning Light – This light can also come on if there is any problem with the braking system. Get it fixed as soon as possible.


When starting up the engine, the dashboard may show multiple warnings such as Pre-collision, E-brake, and Brake warning lights.

Solution 1: Reset the ABS by Unhooking The Battery

Consider unhooking the battery and letting it sit for about ten minutes. Doing so can sometimes help to rest the system and clear any stored fault codes that may be causing the multiple ABS-related warnings.

This is because disconnecting the battery will cause the vehicle’s electronic control module to reset. This, in turn, can help to clear any glitches or errors in the system.

Solution 2: Check The Battery Voltage.

Check the battery voltage and replace the battery if it is weak or failing.

To check your car battery voltage, you’ll need a multimeter.

Follow these steps to check the battery voltage:

Step 1: Make sure your car is turned off and the ignition keys have been removed.

Step 2: Open the hood and locate the battery.

Step 3: Power on the multimeter and select DC voltage measurement mode.

Step 4: Connect the multimeter’s red probe to the battery’s positive terminal (+).

Step 5: Connect the multimeter’s black probe to the battery’s negative terminal (-).

Step 6: Read the voltage displayed on the multimeter. The voltage of a fully charged battery should be around 12.6 volts or higher. If the reading is below 12 volts, the battery may be discharged or weak and might need charging or replacement.

Note: Be careful not to touch the probes together or any other metal while measuring the voltage, as this can cause a short circuit.

Solution 3: Inspect the ABS control module.

The ASB control module is responsible for monitoring and controlling the ABS system. If the module is malfunctioning, it can cause ABS-related warnings to appear. Inspect the module for any signs of damage or corrosion and replace it if necessary.

Problem 4: ABS System Keeps on Engaging

The fourth common problem is that the system may keep engaging. It’s a common occurrence for Ford F-150 owners to experience the ABS system engaging during normal braking or when city driving.

The issue isn’t necessarily with the system itself but with how it is programmed or configured. This can also happen if your vehicle has been sitting in an unrepaired accident, which will cause damage to your ABS system.


The ABS system may keep on engaging when the vehicle is moving at low speeds, such as during parking maneuvers causing the brake pedal to pulsate or vibrate. 


If the ABS system keeps engaging, don’t panic. There are ways to fix the problem so that you can get back on the road as quickly as possible.

This issue happens mostly because the sensor is going bad. So, you will require an OBD II scan tool to diagnose the issue. If you don’t have a scan tool, check the sensors and wiring connecting to the module to ensure they are properly installed.

Problem 5: Noisy ABS Pumps

If you’re a Ford F-150 owner, you’re probably familiar with ABS pumps. These pumps are responsible for controlling the braking power of your vehicle and can be noisy—but only if they’re not working correctly. This is a very common problem with F-150, and it can be quite annoying. 


The noise is usually caused by either a loose or worn belt or bearing. You might not notice any noise from the pumps until you start driving on the highway or if you’re driving for long periods of time at high speeds.


The first step would be to diagnose the issue by connecting a scan tool. Here’s how to test an ABS pump: ABS Pump Failure Symptoms – How To Test And Fix!

If the problem is with the pumps, then you’ll need to replace them. Some owners have had success replacing the pumps with quieter units. Here’s how you can replace the ABS pump: 2001 Ford F150 ABS Pump & Module Replacement (Spongy Sinking Brake Pedal Fix)

Problem 6: Blown ABS Fuse

If you’re reading this, then you’ve probably experienced the nightmare that is a blown ABS fuse in your F-150. It’s a really common problem! More than half of all F-150s ABS module problems are related to blown ABS fuses.


If you’re driving a 2015 or newer model and your ABS light comes on, there’s a good chance that the fuse blew. The truck may also experience a loss of braking power or increased stopping distance, especially during hard braking or on wet or slippery roads. 

Some owners also plugged in an OBD II scanner with a blown fuse. However, doing so didn’t help as the scanner can’t read that.


If you notice that your vehicle has blown its ABS fuse, you need to replace it.

However, if the fuse blew for some other underlying issues like a short in the wiring, you need to fix that before replacing the fuse. So, call a mechanic and he will inspect and fix the short circuit causing the fuse to blow.

Problem 7: Low Brake Fluid Warning Lights

Brake fluid is a critical component that prevents your F-150 from skidding, catching fire, and other dangerous situations. But if you have an ABS module problem, your brake fluid warning light will be on. 


One of the common complaints among F-150 owners is the brakes work perfectly, but the brake fluid warning lights will stay on. The dashboard might keep displaying the warning light even after filling it and even though there aren’t any leaks.

Now, this is a serious issue. Because it means that the brake fluid level sensor is malfunctioning or just had turned bad. There is no easy way to crosscheck this and you have to consult mechanic for proper check as we cannot recommend you drive with this warning light.

Just double check everything like brake pads, fluid level, fluid leaking, brake fluid turn bad or there is a DTC that just need to be reset. Having a properly working braking system is important for your car’s safety. 


The first step is to check the fluid level. Next, you shall need to remove dirty fluid by bleeding the cylinder with the engine running. Finally, refill the cylinder with clean fluid.

Problem 8: Wheel Speed Sensor Failure

The ABS module relies on the input from the wheel speed to function properly. If a sensor fails, the ABS system may not work as intended.


One of the most common symptoms of a faulty wheel speed sensor is a loss of traction control. Other symptoms include decreased fuel efficiency and even drivability issues like stalling. The ABS system may also fail to engage or engage intermittently, which can cause the wheels to lock up or skid during hard braking or on slippery surfaces.


The ABS module will read missing pulses if the wheel speed sensor keeps failing. 

The first thing to do is to check the wiring connections to the sensor. If the wiring connection is okay, the issue would be a faulty sensor. In that case, you shall need to replace the wheel speed sensor.

Here’s a video that demonstrates how to diagnose wheel speed sensors:

If you find that the sensor is bad, you need to replace the sensor. The following videos might come in handy to replace a faulty wheel speed sensor:

Rear wheel speed sensor replacement: How To Replace Rear Axle ABS Sensor Ford F150

How to Reset Ford F-150 ABS Module

Resetting the ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) module in a Ford F-150 typically involves using a diagnostic tool or scanner to communicate with the vehicle’s computer and clear any stored fault codes or error messages related to the ABS system. Here are the steps to reset the ABS module in an F-150:

Step 1: Turn the key into ‘ON’ position but keep the engine off. Next, connect the diagnostic tool or scanner to the vehicle’s OBD II port. 

Step 2: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for accessing the ABS module on the scanner or diagnostic tool. 

Step 3: Select the “ABS” or “Brake” option on the scanner or diagnostic tool, and then choose the “Reset” or “Clear Codes” option.

Step 4: Follow the prompts on the scanner or diagnostic tool to complete the reset process. This may involve entering a security code or confirming the reset action.

Step 5: Once the reset process is complete, disconnect the scanner or diagnostic tool from the vehicle’s OBD II port.

Note that the exact steps for resetting the ABS module in an F-150 may vary depending on the specific make and model year of the vehicle, as well as the type of diagnostic tool being used.

It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and only attempt to reset the ABS module if you have the necessary knowledge and expertise to do so safely.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Causes The ABS Module To Malfunction?

The F-150 ABS module is made up of many different parts — including a computer, circuit boards, sensors, and wires. It’s important for them all to work together properly if you want to stop quickly and efficiently. If any one part isn’t working as it should be, then the system may malfunction.

What Happens If You Disable The ABS?

Disabling the ABS can have both advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage of this is that it empowers the driver to have better command over the braking system. With the ABS disabled, the wheels are allowed to lock up during hard braking. This can be useful when driving on loose or gravelly surfaces where the ABS system may interfere with the vehicle’s ability to stop quickly. However, disabling the ABS can also cause problems with the vehicle’s stability and traction control system. This can increase the risk of accidents.

Does The Ford F-150 ABS Module Need To Be Programmed?

Yes, the ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) module in a Ford F-150 does need to be programmed. It needs to be programmed with the correct software and configuration settings in order to operate correctly. That said, the programming process can vary depending on the specific model year and trim level of the F-150, as well as the type of diagnostic tool being used.


Hopefully, this article will have opened your eyes to the world of the Ford F-150 ABS module problems and solutions.

If you find yourself experiencing ABS issues on your own ride, you can rest easy knowing that there are plenty of other car owners going through the same thing. And though it’s always better to avoid potential problems in the first place, if you do find yourself with an ABS issue on your hands, you’ll be glad to know that there are plenty of solutions close at hand.

Stay safe out there!

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William Baldwin

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