07 Mar, 12

BMW Common ABS Pump (ESP Fault) – Brake Pressure Sender / Sensor Switch Failure

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BMW BRAKE PRESSURE TRANSDUCER FAULTYou might have heard about the common BMW Brake Pressure Sensor fault, which is a fault within the ABS Pumps’ ESP system or even, you may be experiencing this type of fault with your own unit. The Brake Pressure Sensor (ESP fault) is not restricted to just BMW’s, in fact we are seeing customers especially from the VAG group (Volkswagen, Audi, Seat & Skoda) and also customers with Mazda’s and Ford cars.

If you own a BMW you will notice that you don’t actually have an ESP button or ESP light on your dash (instrument cluster), you’ll have a DSC or ACS light which will stay on. DSC stands for “Dynamic Stability Control” but retains the same functionality of ESP.

What is DSC & Why Do I Need It?
The DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) system is an additional function to the commonly known ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System) & TCS (Traction Control System). Many 2000+ BMW’s are fitted with the DSC system. ABS prevents the wheels locking up under harsh braking / emergency braking, TCS will prevent the wheels from spinning when accelerating hard. DSC is much more advanced and is constantly working, calculating every corner you take to ensure you’re safety. The DSC system will use accelerometer sensors around the vehicle, to detect when the vehicle is likely to loose traction whilst cornering or sudden turning to avoid a collision at speed. If there is excessive longitudal or lateral acceleration/deceleration it will be detected & by sudden steering at speed, the DSC system will instantly apply the brake to one of the opposing wheels, preventing excessive lateral movement that causes loss of traction to the road and loss of driver control of the vehicle.

How To Know If You Have The BMW ESP/DSC Fault “Brake Pressure Sensor”
If you have got this fault with your car then you’ll notice that the DSC / ACS light will stay on and pressing the DSC / ACS button will have no effect. Common to BMW’s you may also hear the double-tone alarm when you turn the ignition on, this is the on-board computer system advising you that there is a fault with the system.

When plugging a diagnostics machine or even a small code reader that will read ABS fault codes, you will see the fault code & description as follows:


This is referring to the Brake Pressure Sensor inside the ABS pump and unfortunately cannot be purchased as a separate part, you are required to purchase a complete new unit direct from BMW at a cost of £1700.00+ (+vat, programming & labour). We can supply these units at a fraction of the cost and guarantee NO Programming will be required.. that’s right – PLUG & PLAY!

Most Common BMW’s Affected 
BMW 1 series    2004-2006
BMW 3 series    2000-2002
BMW M3              2002-2006
BMW MINI           2003-2006
BMW Z4              1999-2002

Common BMW ABS Pump Part Numbers Affected

*This is just a list of the common part numbers affected.

BMW Brake Pressure Transducer ABS Pump FailureWhy You Should Choose Sinspeed To Replace / Remanufacture Your ABS unit
The ABS pump will have failed due to a manufacturing defect and replacing it with a new unit or even a second hand one does not necessarily prevent this from happening again. In fact, if you was to replace it with a working second hand unit, then you will be waiting for the day for it to fail because they are all failing at one point or another. The problem is with the Internal Brake Pressure Sender Sensor Switch. Once this fails, the DSC system is no longer working. There are other companies that will simply replace this part and return it to you, but that will not prevent it from happening again in the future.

Quiet recently some dealers have brought out “Repair Kits” for this fault but again, it’s simply to repair the existing part by replacing the sensor with a like-for-like part.. it is in no way superseded and will carry the same design fault.

What we do is completely different. We bypass the original Brake Pressure Sensor Switch and fit our very own custom manufactured External Brake Pressure Sender Switch and calibrate it so that the manufacturing defect is no longer existing. This is the only way to completely remove all risks of the unit failing again and this is why we are confident enough to offer a full LIFETIME warranty on the unit.

Why Modify The Unit? – Why Not Just Replace The Damaged Part?
All other cars without the MK60 ATE ABS Control Module have the Brake Pressure Sensor fitted externally to the ABS Pump and guess what, they never fail!

Having the Brake Pressure Sender Sensor Switch fitted internally to the ABS Pump is a new space-saving idea which has gone terribly wrong and unfortunately dealerships are yet to recover from this outbreak of faulty units as they have not yet released a modification. Replacing the internal switch for another one will not permanently cure the problem as it will remain a manufacturing defective unit. In order to safe-guard the future of your ABS unit, you have to modify it to match it’s predecessors. All the older versions of the ABS units come without internal brake pressure switches and the DSC never failed because the switches were mounted externally. If something isn’t broken.. why try to fix it? The external switches were great and never failed, the internal brake pressure switch was a bad idea from the start.

There have been rumours of people and/or companies trying to repair these units and in some cases imitate our work. Please understand that although the DSC system is not absolutely crucial, modifying the ABS controller/pump in any way (without superior extensive knowledge) in the technology of advanced braking systems and electronic control modules, you will be risking the life of others. Please do not attempt to repair these units yourself and please do not offer such services to trade or the general public. We have been in business since 1972 as a group company and all our parts, services are fully tested before leaving the workshop. All units are thoroughly tested on specific specialist equipment to ensure maximum quality. Our DSC Fault Modifications come fully approved and as far as we’re aware, there is no other company out there that can successfully repair these units and completely remove the defective state.

If you’ve got a car with a Brake Pressure Sensor fault relating to the ABS unit or have the DSC light lit up on your dash, then call us today and we’ll give you an instant quote. The number to call is 0871 2887 666.

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146 thoughts on “BMW Common ABS Pump (ESP Fault) – Brake Pressure Sender / Sensor Switch Failure
  • Hi got a problem with my 2005 e46,

    Dsc and amber handbrake warning light on,after small amount of time sterring wheel starts to shake side to side due to driver front wheel brake binding.had Fault code 5e21 abs pressure sensor 2 fault so Replaced sensor then fault remained but code change to 5e20 so also replaced that but now code will not erase and problem persists.any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hello Rick

      Thanks for getting in touch,

      We have sent you an email with full details and pricing.

      Kind Regards


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