Jeep ABS and Traction Control Lights On

Driving a jeep is not an art but doing it safely is!

You need to gain basic knowledge about functions and safety features that will guide you in the long run.

In this blog, I will explain what ABS and Traction Control systems are, why these lights flash, and what quick and permanent solutions are to outdo these issues.

So, if you are struggling to answer why my ABS and traction control lights are on, I will give you the legitimate reasons here.

Also Read: Jeep Grand Cherokee Transmission Over Temp Warning – Solved

Key Takeaways

  • The quick fix for ABS and Traction light on, is to reset the computer (PCM/ECM) by disconnecting the positive terminal of the jeep battery.
  • The permanent fix for ABS and Traction light is to run an OBDII scanner to find the exact root cause.

What are ABS and traction control in the jeep?

Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) is a safety feature specially designed to prevent wheel locking under slippery conditions to restrain skidding. The ABS light appears yellow or orange, which signals an ongoing problem with the braking system. It is essential to consider this light as it notifies when the car enters a skidding zone (like mud or ice) and one of the wheels works more inefficiently than the others. In this case, the ABS intervenes with the regular brake system and provides extra power to the lacking wheel, ultimately giving more steering control.

Similarly, the Traction Control System (TCS) is also a safety feature that often appears simultaneously with the ABS light, notifying the loss of the tire’s grip on the road. TCS keeps track of the vehicle’s performance and stability through speed sensors installed on the wheels.

Jeep ABS and Traction Control Lights On

Reasons for ABS and traction control light on

Knowing these reasons will help you do a self-diagnostic test to troubleshoot the exact cause.

  1. ABS and Traction control Module failure

The ABS and traction control system work on the same module; therefore, if any system components ultimately stop working, both lights start flashing on the dashboard. It could include an unresponsive brake pedal or a malfunction with any sensor in between.

  1. Bad wheel alignment

Wobbling wheels are the most common reason behind the flashing of ABS and traction lights. An unintentional jerk on a bumpy road or driving through a pothole makes the wheel misaligned, causing the ABS and traction light to pop up.

  1. Low tire pressure

Jeep has an Electronic Control Unit (ECU) linked up with the wheel-speed sensors and relays that observe the speed of all tires. When the pressure is low, speed becomes ununiform. Relays and sensors send inadequate information to the ECU, causing ABS and traction lights to pop up.

  1. Dirt and Debris

Due to its excellent steering control, drivers usually prefer taking jeeps to bumpy or sandy roads like icy zones or deserts. These areas cause dirt and debris to deposit in the sensors and ECU system, eventually leading to warning lights. Car washing is the most straightforward answer to outgo these warning signs.

  1. Low or incorrect brake fluid

Brake fluid is responsible for keeping the rubbing parts lubricated, encouraging smooth braking. Suppose the fluid level is low or you use incorrect brake fluid concerning the climatic conditions. In that case, you might feel a delayed braking response. Also, you can see an ABS or TCS light flashing if any brake pipe or lubrication hose is leaking. If this is the reason, do consider it on an immediate basis.

  1. Faulty steering-angle sensor

The steering-angle sensor lies in the steering column and measures speed and turning radius of the wheels. Suppose there persists an issue in the wiring or any programming fault in the sensor. In that case, it will ultimately send false signals to the traction control.

  1. Low jeep battery

The jeep battery is responsible for powering all the sensors, flashlights, computers, and controlling systems. A low-voltage battery will be inefficient in reading correct signals, resulting in false warning lights and inadequate messages.

  1. Computer issues

PCM is the central computer for reading error codes and sending signals as flashlights. If there is any issue with the computer, whether mechanical or in-built, the warning flashlights, including ABS and TCS, will pop up. It can only be solved by reprogramming the computer.

How to turn off the ABS and traction control light? Quick fix

If it is necessary to drive your jeep while the warning lights are triggering, reset the PCM or ECU by disconnecting the positive terminal of the car battery. Press and hold the brake pedal for a few seconds allowing the electric signals to drain off. Afterward, reconnect the positive cable to the battery. This step will temporarily stop the false warning lights from flashing or resolve the issue.

How do I reset my ABS light?

Step 1: Check the ABS sensors. If worn out, try replacing them by dismantling the housing mounted on the wheel hub and restoring the new ABS sensors. Remember to reset the computer by programming codes for the new ABS sensors.

Step 2: If the light persists, call an ABS professional who could run a diagnostic test with an OBDII reader. Since it will promptly trace down the root cause of warning signs, the mechanic can take action accordingly.

Jeep traction control light reset

Do remember that the TCS light remains on in a muddy or icy zone where tires lose a proper grip of the underlying road, but if the warning pops up on a smooth road, follow the below steps for resetting it permanently.

Step 1: Check that all the wheels are of the same size and pressure and are aligned adequately.

Step 2: Traction light denotes the stability of your jeep on the road. So, if you drive too fast or roughly, it will also cause the TCS light to flash. Therefore, make sure you maintain a moderate and smooth driving speed.

Step 3: If the light still flashes, bring an OBDII scanner and diagnose the underlying issue. Suppose you are not an expert or lack this equipment. Give a call to your mechanic.

Is it safe to drive with ABS and traction control light on?

You should not neglect any of the warning lights specially when both ABS and TCS lights are flashing. It notifies you of a severe problem in your braking system that could easily be an error in your speed sensors or any leakage in fluid pipes. You must stop your jeep and run a diagnostic test on a self-basis. If you successfully troubleshoot the cause, watch out for the severity and call the mechanic as per the conditions.

Still, if you feel like that condition is not that serious, try restarting your jeep. If the warning lights go away, take a usual route, but if the issue persists, call the mechanic or take your jeep to the nearby garage. Make sure you don’t overspeed or brake hard because that would cause skidding of tires.

Related: Jeep Quick Order Packages Explained

Final Thoughts

Safety features are installed to protect against all mishaps, so don’t ever neglect these warnings. ABS and traction control are two critical features that tell you about the stability of your jeep. Consider them if any of these lights show up. 

Till then, have a safe drive!


Leave a Comment