How to Clean a Chevy Silverado ABS Sensors

Written by alibaster smith
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On your Chevy Silverado, the ABS (anti-lock brake system) sensors constantly monitor wheel speed. This information is relayed to a computer that will automatically pump the brakes if the sensor "sees" the wheels locking up. Over time the sensors can become dirty and cause your ABS to function only intermittently. To fix this, you need to clean the ABS sensors.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Jack
  • Jack stands
  • Impact wrench
  • Socket wrench
  • Socket set
  • Zip-ties
  • Brake parts cleaner

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Raise the Silverado onto jack stands. Jack up on the front crossmember using a floor jack and place jack stands under the front pinch welds (or the ends of the crossmember support) under the driver and passenger side doors. Then, lower the truck onto the stands.

  2. 2

    Remove the lug nuts on the wheels using an impact wrench and pull the wheels off the hub.

  3. 3

    Remove the upper and lower caliper mounting bolts and slide the brake caliper off the rotor. Then secure it to the coil springs with zip-ties.

  4. 4

    Pull the brake rotor off the wheel hub.

  5. 5

    Locate the ABS sensor on the wheel hub behind the brake rotor. Alternatively, you should be able to see the sensor and pump from the backside of the wheel hub. The front of the sensor, however, is facing the back of the rotor. The ABS sensor looks like a small "L" shaped black or silver box (depending on your model year). The box will have one electrical connector plugged into the bottom of it (on the back of the sensor).

  6. 6

    Spray the sensor with brake parts cleaner until there is no more dirt or debris on the sensor. You should spray the backside of the wheel hub and clean the area around the sensor as well as the front of the sensor. Brake parts cleaner is a powerful solvent that will remove the debris on and around the sensor. While brake parts cleaner is not safe for painted surfaces and some electrical components, it is perfectly safe to use on the ABS sensor.

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