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5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

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Old 09-04-2006, 09:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Brake pad wear sensor wire?

To my knowledge the last guy that did my brakes didnt install new ones. I am going to replace all of them to be sure. Part number 34 35 1 180 432. bavauto.com says "One required per set of pads - Installs in left front or right rear pad. " How many of these do I actually need, 2 (LF and RR) or 4 (all 4 corners)? Thanks E34 peoples....

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Old 09-04-2006, 09:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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BTW, does anyone have any extra ABS sensors lying around? Part # : 34 52 1 178 981.

Scenario: Every time I turn my key on, everything is fine. I leave my house and the first time I step on the brake pedal it pulses the ABS like I am skidding or something. It will do this for 1/2 to 1 mile. I notice in the morning with my lights on they dim ever so slightly every time it pulses. After the mile or so, the "Anti-lock" light will come on, they will quit pulsing, and everything seems to be normal, except I am not sure if the ABS will actually work like they are supposed to. I am assuming a lot here, but I am thinking the guy that did it, may have damaged the abs sensor wires on one of the front calipers (not sure which side yet). Is there any way to test mine before spending the 130 bucks per corner?

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Old 09-04-2006, 09:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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dB - On the E39, there is only one sensor per axle. So on my 540 there's one sensor in teh right front and one in the right rear. I bet the E34 is similar. That's about all I got. Wish I could help more...
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Old 09-05-2006, 07:48 AM   #4 (permalink)
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One sensor per axle as well on the e34 as each axle's pads should wear down evenly.
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Old 09-05-2006, 01:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by da_bull
BTW, does anyone have any extra ABS sensors lying around? Part # : 34 52 1 178 981.

Scenario: Every time I turn my key on, everything is fine. I leave my house and the first time I step on the brake pedal it pulses the ABS like I am skidding or something. It will do this for 1/2 to 1 mile. I notice in the morning with my lights on they dim ever so slightly every time it pulses. After the mile or so, the "Anti-lock" light will come on, they will quit pulsing, and everything seems to be normal, except I am not sure if the ABS will actually work like they are supposed to. I am assuming a lot here, but I am thinking the guy that did it, may have damaged the abs sensor wires on one of the front calipers (not sure which side yet). Is there any way to test mine before spending the 130 bucks per corner?

Thanks again...
hey you know what I might have an extra ABS sensor - I bought two when I had an issue with one, but replacing the front fixed it. Let me check when I get home and I'll see if its the same part number. Mine was for 97 e39.

Also my ABS sensor wires were not that expensive... was like $50 a peice or something. Its been a while so I'm not positive. I got them through a mechanic buddy who got them for me at cost.
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Old 09-05-2006, 01:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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come to think of it, that might have been a brake sensor wire... but I will check anyway..

i did replace both sensor wires on my front driver's side wheel...
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Old 09-08-2006, 01:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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There is only 1 brake pad wear sensor for front and one for the rear.

As for ABS, it MAY be a bad abs sensor / wire, but they are generally pretty tough and hard to break. Sounds more like an abs module failure... but I could be totally wrong. Has there ever been major suspension work done to the car?? That's really the only way you'll damage a sensor wire.
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Old 09-11-2006, 05:22 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Major suspension, not really. I had a guy do brakes a few years a go, and had Import Specialists here in town do the 7-series control arms. A friend and I replaced the strut inserts (no fun BTW), sway bar ends. I cant think of anything else off the top of my noggin. I'll have to go through the records the guy before me kept. I am betting on the sensor/wire as I dont know know if the brake guy dropped a caliper or something in doing the brakes, and my buddy that helped me do the strut inserts, he is, well a, lets just say hes about 6'7" and about 300 pounds, he's thick (ex-bouncer). I'm glad he's my freind, I'd hate to be on his bad side :P . He may have gotten a little rough with something. Back on track, is there a way to test them? I'd hate to spend 130 bucks for each side not knowing if thats the problem.
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Old 09-12-2006, 12:10 AM   #9 (permalink)
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The abs sensor wont break from dropping a caliper, etc... its mounted the the inner side of the hub area. It's not a common part to touch during a break job.

Working with control arms / strut inserts is a common way to ruin them as they may have to be removed. I don't know of a way to test them, but maybe you could get under there and have a look. It is the sensor directly behind the rotor that is held in by 1 allen screw. Look at it and follow the wires.

good luck.
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Old 09-12-2006, 05:01 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the info. I am going to do brakes this weekend so I'll dig around in there to see what I can find.

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Old 09-18-2006, 10:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'm late to this thread, but ... there are 2 sensors for the pad wear.

as for the abs thing ... not a clue, but in case you need a abs control unit, i have one, and i'll literally give it to you for whatever the shipping + a few bux to cover gas for the trip to the post office.
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Old 09-19-2006, 05:00 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Sounds good to me, I can test it out/replace it to see. Shipping is to 65803. You have a PM.
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