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Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Wheel Speed Sensor Problems - How To Troubleshoot and Fix

Your Mercedes-Benz Sprinter's wheel speed sensor, also known as the ABS sensor, is the electrical connection between your wheels and braking system. A sensor passes axle speed data back to your braking system. This, in turn, helps manage the amount of pressure placed on the axle to prevent damage or stop the car too abruptly or slowly. This process usually starts once a wheel speed sensor reads travel speeds anywhere between three and five miles per hour.

In addition to recording wheel speed, wheel speed sensors interact with anti-lock braking systems and traction control mechanisms.

On occasion, your Mercedes-Benz Sprinter's wheel speed sensor may suffer from heavy wear and tear, in part due to its placement near your vehicle's wheel hub. Hard terrain and road chips can fracture and rough up the sensor over time. Too much damage and your brakes may no longer respond favorably to foot pressure.

Keep reading below to understand what the wheel speed sensor does, common issues that can happen with it, and solutions to those issues.

What are Some Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Wheel Speed Sensor Symptoms?

It is very easy to tell when there could be a possible issue with your Mercedes-Benz Sprinter's wheel speed sensor. Here are some symptoms that may indicate a potential problem.

Dashboard ABS Light Turns On

When your sensor becomes damaged, disconnected, or fails to operate, your ABS light is likely to turn on. Also responsible for monitoring your vehicle's anti-lock braking system, an activated ABS light is not the end-all, be-all. Other reasons your ABS light may turn on include faulty brake pressure levels, low brake fluid, and other structural issues that are unrelated to a defective wheel speed sensor.

Front Tires Locking Up

A defective anti-lock braking system could also be a sign of a defective wheel speed sensor. If brake fluid no longer engages your brake calipers and pads, your wheel speed sensor will not send wheel speed data to your vehicle's computer. At worst, your faulty wheel speed sensor may need a replacement.

How Do I Go About Fixing Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Wheel Speed Sensor Problems?

Let’s focus on troubleshooting and fixing other common problems with Mercedes-Benz Sprinter wheel speed sensors.

One way to confirm your wheel speed sensor is defective is by checking for its electronic pulsing power using a multimeter, which measures electrical voltage, expressed in ohms (resistance), voltage (volts) and current (amps).

To diagnose, perform the following steps. For this procedure, you will need your owner's manual, floor jack, jack stands, a multimeter, and a torque wrench.

  1. Park your vehicle on a flat surface, leaving it in 'Park'.
  2. Find your ABS fuse block by removing the fuse block lid in the engine compartment.
  3. Use a floor jack to lift the front of your vehicle and use a tire iron to loosen the lugs on each of your four wheels. Remove all wheels.
  4. Setting your gearshift in neutral, look for the wheel speed sensor's wire under your front wheel well.
  5. Disconnect the jack wire and locate the two-pin connector.
  6. Take a multimeter and set each probe alongside each of your connector's pins and conduct an ohm reading. Spin the wheel hub as you conduct your read and note any change in the ohm reading. If you do not see any change on ohm reading, it may be a sign your wheel sensor wire is defective.
  7. Repeat the procedure with each of the other wheels. For safety, ask someone else to spin the wheels while you conduct the readings.
  8. Once you finish conducting ohm readings for each wheel, reconnect all wheel speed sensor jacks, add the wheels back, and tighten the lug nuts before using the floor jack to level the vehicle back on the ground. Be sure to tighten the lug nuts per your owner's manual.

While performing this procedure, be sure not to damage components nearby. You can easily got all the OEM Mercedes-Benz ABS system parts you need right here on the Mercedes-Benz National Store.