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How to reset ABS system on an 04 Ford Escape

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How to reset ABS system on an 04 Ford Escape
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Ironmike replied 3 years ago.


If the ABS light is on we need to check for any trouble codes in the system. An advanced scanner or a scanner that is specific for checking ABS codes. Let me know what codes you find and I will look up the pin point tests and possible causes.

These can have a broken tone ring on one of the axles.

lets start here

good luck

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
When I first scanned it, I had two LF wheel sensor faults and something about power loss. I don't have the car here right now or the scanner to give you the specific codes. However, I suspected a faulty wheel sensor as I didn't immediately see another problem and the ohm value on it was different for the RF. Anyhow, upon further investigation, I discovered a broken tone ring just as you said. I changed the axle and the sensor but could not get the light to reset at all. It's still showing the same codes as before, so I don't think it's anything additional.
Expert:  Ironmike replied 3 years ago.

we can make sure we have no other broken tone rings . And we can make sure we have good power and ground to the ABS module. The newer Ford ABS systems use active sensors, they cannot be tested by ohming them out. There are special testers or plugs that go in place of the sensors when testing them. I usually just verify the tone rings and then drive the vehicle with the IDS watching each wheel speed on live data.

You can disconnect each sensor and make sure you are getting power with key on.

let me know what you find

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


What the heck is an IDS? Do you actually think I have one? How 'bout you come down and we'll use yours..... Mike,.... I just need to know how to reset the bastard. I'm pretty certain I found and fixed the problem with the tone ring, I just need a reset.

RESET....PLEASE!! Thanks, jim

Expert:  Ironmike replied 3 years ago.

I am sorry. IDS is Fords advanced diagnostic tool.

I am not expecting you to use one, just letting you know how we do it, how important watching live data is when you have active wheel speed sensors.

I wish you could come down and I could look at the wheel speed data.

with active wheel speed sensors the ABS module does a test as soon as the key is on, checking the circuits before even moving. If the light goes on or stays on the problem is not fixed. There is no need to reset the ABS module, when a fault is found and fixed the light will go out. The fault codes will stay in the system as a history fault but will not cause the light to go on. We clear the codes and test drive to make sure there are no other issues.

Let me know if the tone ring hit the sensor, you may have replaced the tone ring but the sensor is bad.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Mike.....I replaced the defective tone ring AND the sensor, as I have already said. The code reader is still saying the SAME thing, there is no signal from the LF wheel. What else could it possibly be? There are no other components on the left front wheel. Now, it's not that I'm doubting your expertise, but this causes me to believe that there is some other way to reset this thing. Chances are it's not going to make a difference to you because you are in love with your IDS, but there is something I forgot to tell you: the red brake light AND the ABS light were on before I changed the parts, now only the ABS light is on.

Expert:  Ironmike replied 3 years ago.

If we still have the same code and both the tone ring and sensor have been replaced we either have a circuit problem for the L/F wheel sensor or the ABS module is the fault.

I will open the question for another expert, maybe someone else has seen this exact issue.

Please wait for another expert to respond, if you reply back to me it will stay locked on me.

good luck

Expert:  EricFromCT replied 3 years ago.
Hi. The first way to reset the module would be to use your scan tool and try clearing the codes. If that doesn't work, then I suggest you disconnect the battery for 10 minutes and then drive the car and see what happens. If that doesn't work then I will need to know the code number. Thanks, Eric
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Unfortunately, my code reader does not have a code reset option on it. I did also disconnect the battery for an extended period of time with no change. The ABS light is off when first starting out then after about 30 seconds it comes on, just as it did before changing components
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 3 years ago.
Have you inspected all the tone rings?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Can you read the previous interaction between Iron Mike and myself? All the information about the tone rings etc. is contained therein. If you can, please go over it so I don't have to start at the beginning again.

Thanks, jim

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Did I make you mad or did you merely go to bed?....OR, do you not know the answer. Please let me know, so, if need be, I can go elsewhere for a solution.
Expert:  Eric replied 3 years ago.

your first expert was correct when he explained to you that the ABS light shuts itself off when the problem is correctly diagnosed and repaired. Since the abs light is still coming on, then either the new sensor is defective, a short in the wiring harness to the sensor, or the abs control module is faulty.

Eric, Automotive Repair Shop Manager
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 29555
Experience: Automotive Repair Shop Manager, Technician
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