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ABS Control Module - Ford Escape - bayouwxman - 06-01-2016 06:03 PM

(2009 Ford Escape XLT, 2.5 L, 93,000 miles, Automatic. Gulf Coast)

Good Afternoon,

The other day, my display started showing, "Check Brake System" in addition to the ABS and brake lights illuminating on my dash. After having a mechanic scan my vehicle, he said the ABS control module needs to be replaced.

I'm being quoted $763 for the part and a little over $200 for labor. I hate to dump $1,100 (with tax) on a 7 year old car. Any recommendations on whether a used or aftermarket part is OK to use? I'm having a little bit of a tough time finding used parts, but I think this *could* be what I'm looking for:

Appreciate any advice!

RE: ABS Control Module - Ford Escape - Rupe - 06-01-2016 06:37 PM

The module is what controls the ABS pump / valve assembly so if the code came up for Pump relay, module relay, etc (I forget the exact code) then that's likely what you need.

Personally if you can't swing the new unit I would go with a rebuilt or remanufactured part. At least that way you have some sort of warranty beyond the normal 30 days on used items. You can also search for remanufactured modules, which are generally $100 cheaper than your local parts store. The price you mentioned sounds about right for a new part from the dealer so shop around. You might be surprised at the difference.

The next question is about your shop installing parts you buy elsewhere. Many facilities WILL NOT do that.

Let us know how you make out as it may help others reading here.

RE: ABS Control Module - Ford Escape - bayouwxman - 06-01-2016 06:50 PM

I've got a $25 code reader from Amazon that didn't turn up anything when I ran a scan. The shop mechanic did his own scan and told me it was the ABS control module.

Any idea on installation difficulty? I see it's fairly accessible after looking under the hood today. One shop mentioned that it might need to be programmed before installation?


RE: ABS Control Module - Ford Escape - Rupe - 06-01-2016 10:47 PM

The problem with the DIY code readers is most only read driveline codes, and the really inexpensive units will only read engine codes. You'd need a reader from the high end market or maybe even one specifically for brakes to get ABS codes, and the bottom of that scale only reads the codes, without the ability to reset them after a repair, or read the various input sensors.

Not saying you must spend a fortune on a code reader and I have one that will do ABS codes only that was under $100 on sale. OTOH, for that money I got one that will read maybe 10 years worth of vehicles then tell me if the code is history or current. It's served me well for the small fleet I have but will need replacing as I purchase newer vehicles. For the average guy it doesn't pay to go out and spend much over $100 - $200 unless they have a half dozen cars and they are handy enough to use it several times a year.... THEN... realize it will only give you a direction, not an absolute fix. The direction is only about where to start diagnosis and experience plays a big role here. As I mentioned before, a code for the pump relay (mentioned earlier) tells me (from experience) there's probably an issue with the control module because the relay is not a service item, it's part of the controller assembly. This is kinda like an oil pressure light, where we all know it's an oil pressure problem and we have to start with checking the oil level, then possibly using a gauge to get an actual reading, then deciding if it's a mechanical or electrical problem depending on what we find. I'm trying to keep it simple but you get the idea. The bottom line here it there are times when it's worth a few bucks to get an expert opinion and let them use the fancy tools to get a proper diagnosis.

As for changing the part yourself, sure it's possible, and might even go without any trouble at all. OTOH, there have been times when even the simple jobs go to hell in a hand bag with rusty screws, frozen bolts, and bad connections. In your case, I would try to remove all of the screws / bolts / plugs and if that goes well then order the part on-line. (Amazon, etc) There should be no programing necessary and pretty much nothing else to do beyond disconnecting the battery while you work. Heck, you may not even have to open any of the brake lines if the unit is under the hood. If you finish the job and the light stays off then you are done!