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ABS / Traction Control Problems / Wheel Alignment

I had my ABS and Traction Control system checked a few times for buzzing sounds and ABS warning light coming on occasionally. My mechanic assured my all the speed sensors and connections were good. I recently noticed there was uneven tire wear on the right front tire. Could a severe misalignment of the front wheels cause the ABS warning light to come on?

Yes, a very poor alignment can cause an ABS cycle, especially right at the very end of your stop.

A broken front spring can cause both of the problems you are having. Have the front end checked for alignment and wear.

+1 to Mustang’s post.

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Whatever’s causing the misalignment could have damaged the gadget the wheel speed sensor senses too. In other word the sensor & wiring is ok, but the thing it senses could be damaged. I think that gadget is called a “reluctance ring” or something like that. It could get damaged for example if you hit a rut at high speed or drove over a curb, etc.

Yup, that’s the term. A reluctor stores magnetic energy.
Good comment, by the way. :relaxed:

I’m reluctant to speculate further … lol …

LOL, thanx for the chuckle, George! :smile:

My mechanic told me my reluctance ring and sensor are both located in a sealed hub. They’re not separable components. Is it possible the reluctance ring inside the hub can get damaged?

I personally have not seen a sensor as part of the entire assembly.

More often we see the reluctor ring as part of the wheel bearing assemble and the sensor as a separate part.

I have found a few where the reluctor ring weld was broken from the hub assembly, allowing the ring to spin at a slightly different speed than the hub and setting the ABS light.

As others have said, you should have the suspension looked at by a competent alignment shop.


I’ve no experience w/that particular configuration, but it is definitely possible the sensor and reluctance ring are indeed part of the hub ass’y and can’t be replaced separately. The hub ass’y, being where the hub is located there next to the wheel, gets a lot of abuse, road debris flung at it, slamed by potholes, the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune raining down upon it and all, so both the sensor and/or the reluctance ring could easily get damaged during driving. The manufacture’s scan tool can usually confirm that it is sending out pulses when the wheels are being spun on the lift, but to determine the pulses are all exactly correct, with no missing segments, that’s a tough row to hoe.

If the reluctance-ring or the sensor were suspect based on using the scan tool process, they’d probably have to replace the entire hub ass’y as an experiment to determine/confirm the actual cause of the problem. Hopefully one of the experts here has some experience w/the Buick hub/sensor design and can offer up something more helpful.

You may not have personally seen it . . . but that’s the way things have been heading, for a few years now

The Buick Century wheel speed sensors are an integral part of the hub and are not separately serviceable.

A wheel bearing going bad can cause ABS symptoms and unusual tire wear, though for the tire wear the bearing would probably have to be really bad and would be making noise.

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