Parking brake malfunctions are a common and costly problem for motorists. Your vehicle’s parking brake prevents your car from moving forward or backward when parked on an incline.
But what happens if you see the service now message? What does it mean? You will find out shortly. Keep reading.
What is Ford Park Brake?
The park brake is a safety feature that is designed to keep your vehicle from rolling away. It is similar to the emergency brake, but it is designed to engage only when you are in park.
If your vehicle rolls away even when the transmission is in park, then this indicates that there may be an issue with your park brake.
The exact location of your car’s park brake varies from model to model, so make sure to consult your owner’s manual for specific instructions on how to release it on your particular model of car vehicle.
What Does Park Brake Malfunction Service Now Mean?
The park brake service message is a reminder that your vehicle needs to have its parking brake checked as soon as possible. The purpose of the park brake is to hold your vehicle in place when it is parked on a hill or incline.
If you have this message, it means that you are at risk of rolling away if the parking brake fails while the car is parked or unattended.
This can be dangerous, so it’s important to have the parking brake checked by a professional technician as soon as possible.
What Causes “Park Brake Service Now” Message?
When the Park Brake Service light comes on, it means that your vehicle has a problem with its parking brake. However, this is not necessarily the case. The park brake system, which is different from the regular brakes, may fail for several reasons:
- The parking brake switch – This sensor detects when the driver has applied or released the parking brake. When you apply the parking brakes, this switch sends an electrical signal to the ECM/PCM (which is also known as BCM in some vehicles). If there is an issue with this sensor, it could cause the service light to illuminate.
- The parking brake actuator – The actuator provides hydraulic pressure that applies force against one side of your rear brakes. The actuator may be located either behind or underneath the glove box in most vehicles. In some cases, it may be mounted at other locations depending on your make and model of vehicle.
- The cable – Cables are used to connect your foot-operated emergency brake pedal (or handbrake) to one side of your rear brakes while driving forward; they also connect the parking brake handle to one side of the rear brakes when you are parked.
How do you reset the parking brake on a Ford?
If you’re driving a Ford, chances are you’ll have to reset the parking brake at some point in your ownership. This is a simple task, but one that may not be as obvious to some drivers.
To reset the parking brake, keeping your foot firmly on the gas pedal, turn the EPB switch to the RELEASE downward position. Holding both the EPB and the accelerator pedal continues. After turning it off, wait few seconds before turning it back on.
If you do not want to do this yourself, you can also take your vehicle into an auto repair shop and ask them to reset the parking brake for you.
Can you drive with the park brake malfunction?
You can drive your car with a malfunctioning park brake, but you must be cautious.
If the parking brake does not work properly, your vehicle may roll away if you leave it unattended on an incline or decline.
When driving with a malfunctioning parking brake, you should take extra care when approaching an incline. If the parking brake does not hold your car in place, then you should use caution when driving over hills.
What to do if you get park brake malfunction service now message
In the event of park brake malfunction service now message, the best thing to do is to take the vehicle to a mechanic for further inspection.
The park brake malfunction service now message does not necessarily mean that there is something wrong with your brakes. It could also be an indication that you need to replace your brake fluid or have your parking brake adjusted.
The problem with not addressing this issue right away is that it may lead to more serious problems in the future, such as an accident or damage to your vehicle. If you find yourself getting this message often, it’s best to get it checked by a mechanic as soon as possible.
The park brake can malfunction, although it is rare. If this occurs, you should act quickly and safely to handle the emergency.
Robert Anderson is a world class motorhead who rebuilt his first carb at age 10, his first engine at age 15, and completed his first full hotrod build when he was just 18! Previously, he has ran a part warehouse, delivered pizzas, and managed the service department for a $20 million/year revenue dealership. Robert knows cars like few others and he is passionate about sharing his knowledge.