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"TCS OFF" "ABS INOP" lights come one for no reason...?

This is a discussion on "TCS OFF" "ABS INOP" lights come one for no reason...? within the Firebird / WS6 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; I have a 1999 Trans Am auto. When I first start up the car there are no lights or any ...

  1. #1
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    Navy Blue Metallic
    1999 Trans Am Formula

    "TCS OFF" "ABS INOP" lights come one for no reason...?

    I have a 1999 Trans Am auto. When I first start up the car there are no lights or any issues that come on. I'll get down the road a little ways and all of a sudden, my TCS OFF and ABS INOP light up on my dash. Any suggestions where to start diagnosing a problem?

    BTW... i push the TCS button and it will not respond and the light is off.

  2. #2
    Just me Y2KPewterSS's Avatar
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    Pewter metallic
    2000 Camaro SS

    Have you changed tires recently?

  3. #3
    Yeah baby! Yeah! silverWS6's Avatar
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    Silver 2002 WS.6
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    Check the wheel speed sensors ( I think that's what they are called), small sensors behind the wheel/brake caliper area. One of the wires might be torn or almost tearing and that's when the pcm doesn't read it then it sends off the signal and those lights come on.

  4. #4
    Senior Member 98maro's Avatar
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    It could be a speed sensor. Or the ABS block. Mine had both problems.

    If you are running bigger tires
    Or you went for gears on the rear end.
    That could be the reson,
    00 ss blk m6 " STOCK" strano springs, slp bilstein shocks, adj LCA, adj panhard bar, relocation brackets, 2 point SFCs welded,OEM zo6 rims black, magnaflow exhaust, CME exhaust,E/cutout, slp grille, custom front plate mount, HIDs, whistler mod, side moldings delete, slp air lid, ported and polished TB, strut tower brace, 3.73s gears, and some other parts to list!
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  5. #5
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    It was ran off the road and could have had something pull or tear the sensors. I will check tomorrow and see if anything looks unusual.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Too Fast's Avatar
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    Wheel speed sensor/wiring is the vast majority of this cause. Just have to find out which one. Should be a relatively easy fix.

  7. #7
    Member laserredgt's Avatar
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    99 T/A A4

    on my last car i had the brake inop light come on and it turned out being a brake hose that was torn and leaking...

  8. #8
    Senior Member Too Fast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by laserredgt View Post
    on my last car i had the brake inop light come on and it turned out being a brake hose that was torn and leaking...
    And you didn't notice anything bad with the brake pedal? Must've been a real small leak.

  9. #9
    Military Police FutureWS6's Avatar
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    it means go fast.....right now

  10. #10
    autoconnectionllc.com 02transamce's Avatar
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    mine came on today after going over a rough patch of asphalt.i guess i should check the rear wheels first or does that not matter?

  11. #11
    now greybat66
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    navy blue metalic
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    i had my abs lights go on and i spent a fortune on a 1997 transam convertible that i had.The problem was the wire of the speed sensor please check that before anything, good luck.

  12. #12
    REAPER Z28 reaper ws6's Avatar
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    mine does the same thing. i just both a 01 trans am and wen i drive for a bit out of nowhere my tcs light comes on and the brake light and abs light. Also wen this happen's my tcs button does not respond. If you find the problem please let me know what it was.

  13. #13
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    Has anyone had their car checked with a brake scanner? The codes will not report on a regular scanner. I would head to the local parts store while the light is on and see if a code has been set.

  14. #14
    autoconnectionllc.com 02transamce's Avatar
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    I scanned it with my basic scanner and got no codes.advance and the zone use the same scanner I have so I didn't bother with them
    Posted via Mobile Device

  15. #15
    dbl clutch'n like i shld WICKEDLS1's Avatar
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    had the same problem a few days ago it ended up being that the bolt that holds the ground down on the dr. side front fender was loose. i tightened it up and havent had a problem since

  16. #16
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    Mine did this intermittently for the entire time I owned the car... I never did figure out why it was doing it. Didnt really bother me though. No codes with a scanner here either. And even though my ABS light was on the ABS still worked.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 02transamce View Post
    I scanned it with my basic scanner and got no codes.advance and the zone use the same scanner I have so I didn't bother with them
    Posted via Mobile Device

    A regular scanner does not read brake codes.

  18. #18
    Visualize°Design°Create SSwt00SS's Avatar
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    check the speed sensors. the dealership has a scan tool specifically to read them. it will tell you which one(s) are bad.

    since the speed senors are discontinued, you will have to splice in the new connector to the one that came on the car. the guy at the parts desk can help you with that. take in the entire connector for reference. costs like $20 per connector (so no more than $80 if all 4 are bad). i had to do this to my '98 Ws6 that I used to have (passenger side front was bad).

    it's pretty simple and straight forward.

  19. #19
    Member bberretta's Avatar
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    One thing to check is how much brake dust is built up on the sensor. Pull the 10mm bolt holding the sensor in and pull the sensor out. Clean it up and stick it back in. Too much interference with the magnetic sensor will cause it to misread.

    Mine now trips only when I'm going down the interstate over long distances but that's because I've changed the rear, upped the gear, and put bigger tires on it. Tried my damndest to keep it close but evidently its just enough to trip both lights.
    2000 Pontiac Firehawk #0041 of 742

  20. #20
    Next... MrKid's Avatar
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    Mine comes on and off. I read the codes with HPT and got 4 "restraint" codes. I can't remember what they all were, but one was a l/f speed sensor. Hasn't come on in three days, so not really concerned.

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