I just found out about the recall on ABS chip and resetting of the
algorithm. I was wondering if it really does help reduce stopping distance?
I came down my icy street last night and hit my breaks to test it but the
ABS would not stop the car at all. It just kept rolling forward at about 3
MPH!! I almost killed myself on the highway last year (driving at 50 MPH)
when the ABS would not even slow the car down (on the icy road I had come
across) after over 200 feet when a car stopped in front of me!! I had to
drive off the road and around the stopped car to avoid a crash. Is there
any was of just disconnecting the damn ABS system. I think all these
systems give a false sense of safety. I would rather go into a controlled
slide with wheels locked than wonder if and when the ABS will stop the car!!
ABS in general doesn't really work on ice.
Also in off-roading it might give some problems.
Make it switchable from the dash or take the fuse out.
In other circumstances it will work though.
I called the dealer. They said that I already had the recall done a long
Is the fuse located in the engine compartment fuse box? I could not find
any labeled ABS in either fuse box areas?
Is it labeled something other than ABS?
ABS is not intended to reduce stopping distance, but rather to allow the
driver to maintain control. This is a great idea for those who can't drive,
but if you have some advanced driving knowledge, it won't really do you any
good to have ABS.
Just take it to the dealer for the recall. It helps quite a bit.
As for stopping on a slippery surface - ABS only prevents the wheels from
locking up. When the wheels lock up, you have no control. With the ABS
working correctly, you can avoid hitting an object that would otherwise be
in your skid path.
Not sure what you are expecting. If you're on an icy surface then
you're gonna have trouble stopping with or without ABS. ABS does not
increase traction. It prevents the tires from locking up. It
essentially does the same thing as the driver pumping the brakes.
Either way if you lock up the tires you increase your stopping distance
and limit the ability to control the vehicle. I am not a fan of ABS on
snow or ice. I find it does not pump the brakes with the same level of
control I can obtain myself.
But the question is, are you skilled at driving on icy roads? If you
pull the fuse to disable ABS, do you know how to pump the brakes
affectively to maintain control? The other issue is that your stopping
distance can easily be 2 to 10 times normal and in some cases even more.
I have been driving for a long time (just turn 50). One of the benefits of
disabling the ABS is that when I purposely make the wheels lock up on
snow/ice combo, from sliding forward - the tires push snow in front of
themselves and THAT slows the car down much faster than ABS does. It is
like driving on the sand dunes. Of course if I were driving on pure Ice -
nothing much helps - except if while the wheels are locked up and sliding,
the tires may hit a dryer / or saltier spot - which would again slow the car
more than with ABS. With ABS, the tires roll over the dryer parts as well
as any accumulated snow in front of the tires. I drove all day in 6+ inches
of snow and ice today with the ABS fuse pulled. I can tell you without a
doubt that I had 100% more control over the vehicle than when the ABS was
working. By pumping the breaks at my choice - I have always had better
control of my vehicles - including the big trucks that I had driven for
years. One of the most important things to learn in winter driving is that
sometimes it is imperative to take the car out of gear!! Most people have
no clue about this so the rear wheels keep pushing their cars forward until
they end up someone's rear or though an intersection! Although I have to
say that the ABS system works much better on my Toyota Sequoia! I did not
have to disable it on that vehicle yet and probably won't. The ABS system
on my '98 Rodeo is dangerous at best - even with the recall fix. ABS does
not stop the car from rolling - going down any snowy/icy hill. While using
ABS, going down hill at 20 MPH - applied the break without pumping it - the
car slowed to about 6 to 10 MPH but could NOT STOP at all - it just kept
rolling forward for over 500 feet!! With the ABS disabled on the same hill,
I pumped the break a few times, went into a few controlled slides - pulled
up the park break a little - came to a stop in 1/2 the distance - in most a
straight line! If ABS is not useful in snow and ice (I have never seen snow
without ice!) - only on wet roads (as long as their is no oil, leaves or
mold on the wet roads - of course) - then just how often can we really
benefit from it? Under ideal test conditions, I agree that ABS will be of
benefit - but how often do we drive under the same ideal conditions? I
wonder just how many serious accidents were caused partly by ABS systems?
How would we ever know?!!
That is the point. You had control of the car because the wheels didn't
lock up. Without ABS, you either would have slammed into the car as your
brakes locked up, or would have driven off the road at an even faster speed,
which can't be good.
You are correct. There is no technology that can make rubber and ice work
Just how does one go into a controlled slide with wheels locked? The wheels
are the ONLY control you have between the vehicle and the pavement. When
they lock up, they don't spin, thus becoming nothing more than friction pads
over which you have NO control.
Whatever adjustments you make to your ABS, the only real solution is to slow
the fuck down on icy roads.
I've seen too many people try to drive when it was just plain foolish to do
so. A guy goes to the parking lot and literally slides to his car, arms
waving about to keep his balance. Sprays a little de-icer into the lock so
he can get in, and on the windshield so he can see. Starts the car and
starts spinning the wheels. Throws some sand behind the tires to get some
traction. Pulls out and slams into a curb on the other end. Keeps going.
What does a guy like this think is going to happen when driving around on
icy roads? If he couldn't even get his car going without the comical slip
and slide routine, he is he going to manage making a turn or slowing down
Now I've driven when it was so cold that the tires were out of round where
they sat all night, and felt the thumping which turned into a horse's gallop
the first time I turned the wheels, but although the roads weren't icy at
that time, it was still exceedingly wise to take it REAL slow, because you
never know where ice will form. Never had an accident nor even a close
call, and this was in an old heavy car and military vehicles without ABS.
You don't read very well? I said that I could NOT stop in time WITH ABS
doing 50 MPH. I was forced to drive on the medial strip around the two
vehicles to avoid crashing into them (I had given myself about 300 feet to
slow down and stop) . I had atwo cars to my right so I could not go around
the stopped cars that way. What would have happened if I did not have
frozen / snowy grass to my left - but instead maybe a concrete barrier? I
would have crashed into the stopped car or the concrete or both - thanks to
the ABS system!! Bottom Line: ABS - on my '98 Rodeo is not well engineered
system and is dangerous.
Problem 1. 50mph on icy roads is just plain stupid.
If your tires were locked up you would most likely not have been able to
manuver around anything.
> Bottom Line: ABS - on my '98 Rodeo is not well engineered
Problem 2. Lack of understanding of what ABS does. Your complaint is
that you couldn't stop. The reason you couldn't stop is because you
were driving 50mph on icy roads. ABS is not some sort of electronic
gizmo that magically increases traction between rubber and ice so you
can stop. Not intended for that.
Problem 3. Not understanding how to drive on icy roads. Even with ABS
you can still pump the brakes if you do not like how ABS behaves.
Several years ago I was driving down highway 550 towards Durango. It
was windwhipped hard packed ice. I noticed about 1 mile ahead there
were emergency vehicle lights all over the highway. I was traveling
30mph in my 4x4. I began pumping the brakes and felt little braking
action. Finally about 100 feet before the road block (accident scene) I
was down to about 5mph and gained traction. It took almost a full mile
to slow from 30mph to a stop. Understanding just how slick ice and snow
can be is essential to learning how to drive on it. ABS will never
allow you to drive 50mph on ice and stop easily.
If conditions had allowed 60 MPH, I would have gone faster!! What make you
so certain that under conditions that you have not experienced 50 MPH was
"stupid" - are you a psychic?
You guys have stock in ABS? Ya must! I am not asking for anyone to agree
with me that my '98 Rodeo's ABS system sucks. If 50 MPH driving is plain
stupid than I am sure that I share that stupidity with lots of other
people - especially all my buddy skiers - we do not have 4 hours to take
what normally takes 2 hours to drive. Roads are not snow and ice covered
everywhere, sometime we just come up on black ice (clear ice) and you have
to react - which was the case with me.
But when one needs to stop - one should be able to stop, don't you agree.
Even if I were driving
at 30 MPH - One Whole Mile is just a wee bit more than expected to stop with
or without ABS!
Just what is ABS intended for - RAIN only? So Unless you live in Oregon or
London - it is useless - right?
Unless there were white out conditions (which obviously there weren't since
you saw 1 mile ahead) and there was traffic, I am sure you were getting lots
of people pretty pissed off at you for holding up traffic in the middle of
nowhere. Taking one mile to stop - GREAT ABS system!! If you are such a
good driver how come you were driving at 30 MPH without any traction. Were
you exceeding conditions also? You should have had more control over your
car so that it did not take ONE MILE for it to come to a stop! If I were
driving a big truck in front of you, I bet I would have stopped faster and
you would have been up my rear looking at my rear axle and undercarriage.
Finally - as I said, my Toyota Sequoia has much better ABS system and
handles better in the snow especially since it is heavier. Either way,
knock on wood (or Formica) I have a pretty darn good driving record for
being an old fart - maybe I guess I do know a little about how to stay safe
and be in control?
This is not to say that I will be getting rid of my Rodeo. It is one of the
most cost effective cars I have owned. Yes, it rides like a truck and has
some minor electrical short issues sometimes, but it has been good to me for
more than 130,000 miles now. Does not even burn oil! I am enjoying it much
more now that I have pulled the fuse on the ABS and have total control over
No. But your whole issue is about ABS on an icy road you said you were
doing 50mph on. Doesn't take a psychic to know thats plain stupid.
> If 50 MPH driving is plain
Oh, Thats very true. Lots of VERY stupid people on the road.
Especially when they drive 50mph+ on icy roads.
Too bad. Your speed is determined by how much time you have rather than
the highway conditions? Good grief.
Well you should have learned your lesson then. Your lack of stopping
ability was due to a combination of speed and ice. Not ABS.
I have the same system. Its not the best but it did not cause your
problems. Speed on ice did. I do not care for ABS myself but its not
what caused your problems. You caused them and you still have not learned.
Geez...what part of ICE + SPEED = Can't Stop do you not yet understand?
There is no traction in those conditions. What the heck do expect ABS
to do? Magically increase your traction? Amazing, simply amazing.
If I'm on a downgrade on hard smooth ice at 30mph then a mile to stop
can be expected if traction can't be obtained. Better tires, chains,
studs, etc. might have helped but ABS???? You need to understand what
ABS does. You still seem to think it somehow increases traction. IT
It prevents the tires from locking up on icy surfaces. Once the tires
lock up you have almost no control over the vehicle. Before ABS was
invented people pumped the brakes to slow down on slick surfaces. ABS
simply does the same thing automatically. You do understand why you
pump the brakes right???
Um, not true. Anyone behind me could have gone around. Nobody did
because they knew better considering the conditions. I was doing 30mph
on a slick surface where I should have been doing only 10-15. Once I
realize my long stopping distance I learned. You still haven't.
Geezzz!! There ya go again. You have no clue what ABS is. HINT: What
does ABS stand for? You have rubber and you have ice. No electronic
gadget will increase traction. Quit blaming a system that was never
designed for what you clearly expect.
Yep, I was. I hadn't realized how slick it was. My mistake and I
? You should have had more control over your
Not true. Nobody could stop except for a few that had studded tires on.
You have to gain traction in order to stop.
The weight is probably the big factor there. Possibly differences in
tires too. ABS in your Sequoia doesn't make it stop quickly on icy
roads. It doesn't increase the traction.
No, you almost lost it and blame ABS for something it was not intended for.
You could have pumped the brakes manually even with the fuse in. If you
don't then it tells me you don't have proper winter driving skills.
Ya gave me a great idea... I take my S&W 357 Mag with me on an icy morning;
volunteer to drive carpool that day with a car full of passengers; drive
about 120 MPH against traffic; put that snub nose barrel into my mouth and
I'll pull the trigger (while still bitch'n about the ABS technology - of
course). Now that sounds like a GREAT way to go, wouldn't you agree?
You all make it seem like nobody has ANY common sense but you guys. Nobody
knows how to drive better than you guys. Trust me, I would not be alive
today after having driven well over 850,000 miles in my life (mostly in
vehicles without ABS), if I were a total lunatic - like some of you paint me
out to be. Even my Shrink told me that I was NOT a total lunatic - nor
totally stupid! So there! As long as everyone realizes that THEY are not
necessarily the BEST driver out there, they probably will not be
over-confident and put themselves and others into jeopardy.
I have to stop being sarcastic in newsgroups cause most folks take things
way too seriously - then they get all worked up thinking that Everyone, but
them, is a total NutCase!
By the way, I, too, drove under 30 MPH most the way home from work tonight
(for 1.5 damn hours - and it just about killed me - NOT) - and most of the
time I was the only one of the ICY country road and highway! See old farts
CAN learn new tricks!!! ;-)
Maybe it would help if you simply looked at the purpose of ABS.
Questions and Answers Regarding
ANTILOCK BRAKE SYSTEMS (ABS)
When used properly, an antilock brake system (ABS) is a safe and effective
braking system. ABS allows the driver to maintain directional
stability,control over steering, and in some situations, to reduce stopping
distances during emergency braking situation, particularly on wet and
slippery road surface. To gain this safety advantage, drivers must learn how
to operate their ABS correctly.
What is ABS?
An antilock braking system works with the regular or foundation brakes on
your vehicle. ABS simply keeps your base brakes from locking up. In vehicles
not equipped with ABS, the driver can manually pump the brakes to prevent
wheel lockup. In vehicles equipped with ABS, the driver's foot remains
firmly on the brake pedal, allowing the system to automatically pump the
Why is that important?
When your brakes lock up on wet and slippery roads or during a panic stop,
you lose steering control and your vehicle can spin. Rear wheel ABS prevents
wheel lockup so that your car stays in a straight line. If your car has ABS
control on all four wheels, you also keep steering control. If you have
steering control, it is possible to avoid a crash by steering around hazards
if a complete stop cannot be accomplished in time.
How do I know whether my vehicle has ABS?
Most newer car models offer ABS as either standard or optional equipment.
There are different ways to find out whether your car has an antilock brake
* Read your owner's manual
* Check your instrument panel for an amber ABS indicator light after you
turn on the ignition.
* When you buy, lease or rent, ask your dealer or rental car company.
Will I notice anything when the ABS is working?
In many vehicles, drivers may experience a rapid pulsation of the brake
pedal--almost as if the brakes are pushing back at you. Sometimes the pedal
could suddenly drop. Also, the valves in the ABS controller may make a noise
that sounds like grinding or buzzing. In some cars you may feel a slight
vibration--this means the ABS is working. It is important NOT to take your
foot off the brake pedal when you hear noise or feel pulsations, but instead
continue to apply firm pressure.
Does ABS change the way I should use the brakes?
You should not pump your brakes if you have ABS. Just hold your foot firmly
on the brakes pedal and remember that you can still steer.
How does ABS work?
What ABS does is similar to a person pumping the brakes. It automatically
changes the pressure in your car's brake lines to maintain maximum brake
performance just short of locking up the wheels. ABS does this very rapidly
Do cars with ABS stop more quickly than cars without? ABS is designed to
help the driver maintain control of the vehicle during emergency braking
situations, not make the car stop more quickly. ABS may shorten stopping
distances on wet or slippery roads and many systems will shorten stopping
distances on dry roads. On very soft surfaces, such as loose gravel or
unpacked snow, an ABS system may actually lengthen stopping distances. In
wet or slippery conditions, you should still make sure you drive carefully,
always keep a safe distance behind the vehicle in front of you, and maintain
a speed consistent with the road conditions.
Are all antilock systems the same?
They are all very similar in the way they control brake pressure, but some
sytems are designed to prevent only the rear wheels from locking up. These
rear-wheel-only systems are found on pickups and sport-utility vehicles.
Rear-wheel ABS keeps your vehicle from spinning out of control, but you will
not have steering control if the front wheels lock up. All other ABS
systems-including those for cars and minivans--are designed to keep all four
wheels from locking up. If you own a pickup or sport-utility vehicle, you
can check your owner's manual to see what type of ABS you have.
How can I familiarize myself with ABS?
Read your owner's manual for more details on the complete operation and
benefits of ABS. The antilock brake system is speed sensitive, and will not
activate at very slow speeds. One way to familiarize yourself with the
operation of ABS is to test drive the vehicle at a speed above which the ABS
activates (usually above 10 mph) in an unobstructed parking lot and apply
the brakes firmly. It is easier to activate the ABS on a wet and slippery
road surface. The antilock system should prevent the wheels from skidding.
Pulsation may be felt in the brake pedal and you may hear a clicking sound.
Avoid pumping the brake, even if the pedal is pulsating.
Where Can I get more information about ABS?
Call the NHTSA Auto Safety Hotline on 1-888-327-4236, 1-888-DASH-2-DOT.
Designed "NOT MAKE THE CAR STOP MORE QUICKLY" - I rest my case! On my Rodeo
the ABS gave me a false sense of security not knowing how long it takes to
stop at any given time.
This unknown COULD cause people to crash into the cars in front of them
since it is hard to know
and judge just how long it will take the vehicle to come to a complete stop!
However, If you are in a
controlled forward slide with wheels manually locked periodically at least
one gets a better chance of sensing
and reacting to the speed reduction! If the speed is not reduced fast
enough, creating an emergency, usually
there is plenty of time to take action to maybe drive off the road into a
field or somewhere safer like onto higher snow on the side of the road to
avoid a bad crash. PLUS as I explained before - in most cases - the snow
in front of each tire during manual wheel lock up will slow the vehicle
Thanks for the links by the way. I did learn something useful. One can
learn something new no matter how much one thinks they know. Like I already
pumping the breaks on ABS systems was not recommended but previous posters
did not know
this. I did not know in general which ABS systems are segregated to which
types of vehicles.
If your wheels lock up you will stop slower, not faster. They lock up
because the friction between the brake rotor/drum and disc/shoe exceeds
the friction between the rubber and ice. Your guess that snow piled up
in front of a skidding tire is absurd but the details as to why would be
too complicated for you! The studies clearly show that if your Rodeo
did not ABS you most likely would have lost control of the vehicle.
Bad idea. Although it looks good in movies, many folks just end up blowing
their faces off, leaving them with no face, no access to guns, and still
alive. The temple is much better. Or a shotgun. ;-)
You see a shrink? That means you ARE crazy! heh
Seriously, after several near misses and didn't-misses, it's easy to take
out that frustration on posters. At least here folks can really dig in,
where as on the street, a well chosen finger just doesn't convey one's true
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