Leaking ABS pressure modulator - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old Sep 22nd, 2009, 10:14 am Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 3
Leaking ABS pressure modulator

Hi Everyone
I have 03 RS with 18k miles. I managed to drop the bike on its right side while parking resulting in bending the front and rear brake levers. Few weeks later i straighten the rear brake lever. Immediately after (might be a coincidence) the abs warning lights started to flash. After a short examination I discovered that the front abs reservoir was almost empty and brake fluid was dripping from the pressure modulator. It is leaking from one of the bolts that secure the modulator to the base. In order to get to the bolt you need to disassmble half of the bike.
My mechanic (not a bmw dealer) suggested disassembling, cleaning and reassembling the unit might solve the leaking. But it will take 5-6 hours of labor without any guaranty it will work.
BMW dealer without seeing the bike claims I need a new unit $3k for parts and labor .
Is anyone had a similar problem? I will appreciate any info on this matter.

In addition since the unit is leaking is there any chance I might lose my brakes while riding. I check the repair manual, the ABS and the brake clippers donít share brake fluid.
Katonah , NY
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old Sep 23rd, 2009, 5:57 am
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: , , UK
Posts: 3,750

I wouldn't ride any bike with leaking brake fluid and defective brake parts. I also leave myself wide open to litigation if I had an accident. I mean, since you know about the earlier damage, you can't say brake failure was a chance failure event.

I have the simpler earlier ABS II so I can't say how your system works, but I wouldn't want to put my life just on what I read.

I mean, they might be right unless the ABS pump did try to operate in a system that had leaked fluid, then the point about parts of the system not sharing fluid goes out of the window when you have no brakes.

Just think about your situation:

1. You have bent levers but could also have damage to the master cylinders. If the front lever was badly bent, I wouldn't risk it shearing when I was riding - I'd replace it. Not so bad if it was the clutch lever.

2. The rear brake lever bent and the rear master cyl. pushrod free play adjustment is quite important, so to is the brake light switch function.

3. You have brake fluid leaking from your braking system.

Nothing short of removal and careful inspection of all affected parts off the bike would satisfy me. For the ABS modulator, accept that it will need to be thoroughly inspected with some time off the road. Trust your mechanic and see if he is ok for you to source a boneyard unit if you can find one.

Your modulator is newer but similar to mine, most likely fluid has poured out of the reservoirs and dripped down. If there really is fluid coming out of the modulator casting body, then it could be cracked.

Yes, you have to take off some bits and pieces at the rear, but for a decent workshop it isn't too difficult.

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Last edited by voxmagna; Sep 23rd, 2009 at 6:06 am.
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