Anti-Lock Brakes


Is there any way to disconnect the ant-lock brakes on my 2001 gmc pickup? Without losing something I really need.I’m sick and tired of these brakes going on at totally unexpected and unneeded times.It’s worse when pulling a trailer.Any tiny bump in the road and I’m stuck with a pulsating pedal that’s not stopping me.

This post has been moved to the new Car Talk Discussion Area, by a Car Talk Lackey. The original poster is Gmdan.


Instead of getting the system disabled, get it looked at. The system should only activate when wheel lockup is imminent. The pedal should stop pulsating as soon as the wheels are rotating normally again. You can try quickly removing your foot from the brake and reapplying it. But ultimately you may have a problem. If the ABS is working correctly, then if you feel the pedal pulsating it is not activating “unnecessarilly” as you assume.

Stopping a trailer requires additional stopping power. There’s two ways to generate that stopping power: either brake over a longer distance, or increase your braking force. While your brakes themselves may have additional braking force available, your tires only have so much traction. If you do not change your stopping distance adequately when towing a trailer then you’re bound to exceed your traction limitations occasionally if not frequently, in which case the ABS is going to step in and involve itself.

Either way, have it checked out. If it is really activating without good reason then it needs to be fixed, not deactivated. Many of the members of this forum are anti-ABS, and some even extremely so. While I respect all of their opinions (these guys are smart, lemme tell you!), I am a firm beleiver in the usefulness and near-necessity of ABS. That is because I’ve been in a few situations where the ABS got involved and allowed me to stop in time to avoid a crash, whereas a non anti-lock brake system would not have given me the same stopping distance, and I would have been in a wreck (and in one case, by wreck I mean sliding into the middle of an intersection of two busy 50MPH highways.) So from my point of view, you should consider it worth getting fixed.



These trucks are known for defective front wheel speed sensors that will cause the ABS to activate at low speeds. The wheel speed sensors need to be monitored with a scanner to see if one of the signals is dropping out. I suspect that is what is happening.


Wow! I am not smart enough to evaluate your answer, Willey, but it has me convinced you know what you are talking about. Great answer!


I don’t believe the answer is to disable ABS. When working correctly, it is an invaluable safety feature.

I believe that either your ABS is in need of repair or your driving style is too aggressive.

I would get the system checked before I would disable the ABS.