ABS & Integrated Brake Controller - FordTough.ca - Home of Canadian Ford Truck Enthusiasts
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:09 AM Thread Starter
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ABS & Integrated Brake Controller

For all you 2007 and earlier Super Duty owners with a factory-installed Integrated Brake Controller you may have a major potential safety issue. I recently had an ABS warning light appear on the cluster and to my amazement when I pressed on my brake pedal I had no indicators on the Integrated Brake Controller. When I grabbed it and squeezed manually I had full braking to the Trailer Braking System but off the brake pedal there was nothing. Upon further investigation I was able to determine that when the ABS warning light is on the power to the Trailer Braking System is cut from 12 volts to 3 volts. Clearly not enough power to properly engage that system. This "design" was confirmed by Ford and all they had to say was that it was "operating to spec". This design was apparently changed in 2008 so that the Integrated Brake Controller did not get wired through the ABS computer. Unfortunately Ford is standing pat that it is operating as designed and is not seemingly concerned that the design itself may be flawed.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 01:08 PM
 
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Welcome to fordtough.ca....interesting first post.

I don't have the system, but just so I'm clear on what you're saying...

When the ABS Warning light is on, you have no Trailer Brakes? Unless you grab it and squeeze manually ?

So, otherwise, everything is good, working like it's supposed to, but if the ABS Warning Light comes on for some reason, you have no Trailer Braking.

Isn't the ABS Warning light normally off ???

Anyway, good heads up.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 03:19 PM Thread Starter
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You're correct. The ABS light is normally off. When the ABS system engages the light will flash on while it is engaged but then go off. But there can be a number of things that can happen which will throw a code to the ABS computer. A faulty ABS sensor or in my case a problem with the speed sensor in the rear diff will cause the ABS light to come on and stay on. While it is on the ABS computer will cut the power to the Trailer Braking System when the brake pedal is depressed. This is probably a fine idea when you are in a situation where the brakes are locking up and the ABS system is engaged. But when there is something else causing the ABS light to trip this lack of power from the brake to the Trailer Braking System is now prolonged. Now you must steer with one hand, brake and reach over and manually brake the Integrated Brake Controller. Call me crazy but I don't think this is what Ford had in mind and likely why they changed it in '08. Also to be clear I am not suggesting that one continues to operate the vehicle for a prolonged period when the ABS warning light is on. But don't put the entire tow vehicle and trailer in jeopardy due to an ABS code.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 03:38 PM
 
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Got it - thanks for the explanation. Good info to get out to other owners, hopefully no one finds this out the hard way when they're in a critical braking situation.

Any info out there on a fix ? Would it be that difficult/involved to retrofit the 2008+ design and correct the problem do you think ?

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