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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 10-03-2012, 03:46 PM   #1
madskilz2106
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Fault Code Problems

A few weeks ago, I got the fault code that lit up the "e-brake" light orange and turned the DSC light on as well. It seemed random, so I plugged in my fault code reader and cleared the code to see if it would come back on. However, when I did that, it cleared the code but did not turn the lights off. I've scanned it multiple times over the last week, and the car still shows no fault codes, but the ebrake and dsc light stay on constantly. Any idea how to turn these off? It's not a really big deal, but I just don't like looking down and seeing all these error lights when the computer shows nothing is wrong.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:50 PM   #2
white46
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Since they are not engine related lights, OBD reader will not do anything.

Most likely rear wheel speed sensor.
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Last edited by white46; 10-03-2012 at 03:53 PM.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:51 PM   #3
jdstrickland
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Cleared WHAT code?

HINT
The DSC does not talk to the OBD II scan tool.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:01 PM   #4
madskilz2106
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In that case, how can I get them to go away? Specifically if its the rear wheel speed sensor. Changing fluids etc etc.....

Be easy on me, this is my first BMW so that's just a shot in the dark.

Thanks in advance

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Old 10-03-2012, 04:24 PM   #5
jdstrickland
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There is no such light as the E-Brake Light.

There is a brake wear warning light that comes on when it is time for brake work. You get two of the sensors for brake wear, one on each axle. There is one on the left front and another on the right rear. The same light comes on for both of these sensors. The sensor is basically a small metal band wrapped around a block of plastic that is fitted into a brake pad, as the pad wears thin the metal band comes into contact with the brake rotor which breaks the band and turns the light on. You have to remove the tires and look at the brakes to see which axle needs your attention.

The DSC light uses inputs from lots of places, one of them is the right rear wheel. Since you have a brake wear warning and a DSC, I'd suggest you take the right rear tire off and inspect the wires to the two sensors to see if there is any damage that causes the two lights to be on.

How do you know it is the right rear wheel sensor? Do you have the ability to get the code for this? Have you pulled the tire off to see what the trouble is? There is a brake wear sensor on the same tire, perhaps you ran over a coat hanger or something, and ripped the wires out by their roots.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:39 PM   #6
madskilz2106
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When I say ebreak light, I mean the red light that comes on when you engage the parking brake, not like the break wear light. Except now the light is orange instead of being red.

Last edited by madskilz2106; 10-03-2012 at 04:43 PM.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:47 PM   #7
MrAdventure
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The e-Brake light is tied to a simple switch at the e-brake mechanism in the center console. The light stays on until the emergency brake is fully disengaged. If it is misaligned, say, after being bent while working in or removing the center console, the light will stay on, and, in my 328Ci, will cause beeping if it is lit and you're moving at any speed. The beeping stops after a few seconds. Ask me how I know.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:49 PM   #8
jdstrickland
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Pull the parking brake handle, does another light come on?

Have you looked into the brake fluid reservior to see if the fluid level is low? The lid to the brake fluid reservior has a swtich that is used to detect low fluid, have you looked to see if this switch is causing the light to be on. On my car, this switch triggers a light that says BRAKE FLUID, but it could trigger a symbol on your car. Take the cap off and move the float up and down to see if the lights change. On my car, the switch is an open circuit to hold the light off, so if you unplug the connector then the switch is open and the light should go off. The light should go off when the switch is lifted -- as it is lifted when the fluid level rises.

The Parking Brake Switch is a pretty simple thing to look at, although unless you have had the boot over the brake handle off for some reason, the switch shouldn't be a problem. But, if the light on the dash does not change when the handle is pulled, then the next step is to peel the boot away from the base of the handle and find the switch, then deal with whatever you find. You should be able to see how it is actuated, and then operate the linkage with a screwdriver or other suitable instrument to force the light to go on and off.

If you pull the parking Brake handle, and a different light comes on, then the Parking Brake Switch is working correctly.

The Parking Brake warning is the word PARK BRAKE on my car, but I've got an E36. I have a symbol that looks like (O) (where the () parts are dashed lines, not solid ones) that is used to indicate the brakes have worn out. You said that you do not have the Brake Wear light, but there is a brake wear sensor on the same corner of the car that has a speed sensor that you said has gone out. This brings me full circle, take the tire off and see what you can see.

One last thing, have you looked in your Owner's Manual to see what the lights mean? This is usually a good place to start because knowing what makes the light turn on goes a long way in turning the light off again.
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:24 PM   #9
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Mine was low brake fluid. result after I replaced the brake booster. So I would definately say check the fluid level!
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:38 PM   #10
madskilz2106
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdstrickland View Post
Pull the parking brake handle, does another light come on?
Another light doesn't come on, but the brake light changes from orange to red. Then when I disengage it, it turns back to orange. I will check the fluid levels today and make sure that is not the problem.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:43 PM   #11
jdstrickland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madskilz2106 View Post
Another light doesn't come on, but the brake light changes from orange to red. Then when I disengage it, it turns back to orange. I will check the fluid levels today and make sure that is not the problem.
That is the problem.

The same indicator does double duty, it tells you the parking brake is applied when red, and the fluid level is low when yellow.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:18 PM   #12
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Lol @ people not believing the brake light turns yellow. If your speedo works it probably was a fault with the steering angle position sensor. When was your last alignment?
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:49 PM   #13
madskilz2106
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Originally Posted by illestminimike View Post
Lol @ people not believing the brake light turns yellow. If your speedo works it probably was a fault with the steering angle position sensor. When was your last alignment?
So I checked the brake fluid level and it is completely full.

I only bought the car about 6 months ago, so I have never aligned that. Can I do it DIY and if not how much does it cost?
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