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Anti-Lock Control Relay Replacement Cost Estimate

Worried you might overpay for your anti-lock control relay replacement? Use Jerry's GarageGuard to get fair cost estimate for your anti-lock control relay replacement.
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John Davis
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Reviewed by Kathleen Flear, Director of Content
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Edited by Jessica Barrett, Senior Car & Insurance Editor

How much does it cost to replace an anti-lock control relay?

For an anti-lock control relay replacement, you can expect an average total cost of $200 to $1,500.
How long does it take to replace an anti-lock control relay? It typically takes around 1.5 hours for a professional mechanic to completely replace an anti-lock control relay. This timeframe might include an initial inspection and diagnostic to ensure the replacement is necessary, followed by careful replacement. 
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How did we estimate these prices?

Jerry's experts researched and collected data from 2500+ real repair shops in all 50 states in the US, including everything from the total cost of repair services to the hourly labor cost for mechanic labor in each shop. We combined that data with our expert database of hundreds of real repair jobs, thousands of real cars, millions of real car part prices in order to best estimate the cost of each repair service. Our labor cost estimate is calculated by taking the average hourly labor rate for a certified mechanic in the US, times the number of hours it takes on average to complete a repair. We recommend you compare your local shops with Jerry and contact those shops directly to get final pricing for your vehicle.

What parts do I need for my anti-lock control relay replacement and how much do those parts cost?

Your car may require specific parts for its anti-lock control relay replacement, so you should check your owner’s manual or ask the mechanic for guidance. In general, you’ll need the following parts:
  1. Anti-lock control relay: The anti-lock control relay is the main part involved in the replacement process. The control relay is responsible for supplying power to the anti-lock brake controller, which aids braking. As an individual part, an anti-lock control relay costs anywhere from $20 to $100 depending on the vehicle.
  2. Removal tools: To remove the old control relay and install a new one, you may need crimping tools, wire cutters, needle nose pliers, and more. A wiring tool set can cost anywhere from $95 to $1,000.
  3. Connector/socket: Each anti-lock control relay is designed uniquely, but most require a connector or socket to install and connect the wiring of the new relay to the vehicle itself. Connectors and sockets can cost anywhere between $9 to $50 or more.
  4. Electrical tape: Electrical tape can help secure any exposed wiring connections during the replacement process. Electrical typically costs $15 to $25.
  5. Protective gear: Gloves and safety glasses can keep you safe while working on the electrical components of an anti-lock control relay replacement. Gloves can cost up to $100 while glasses typically cost $10 to $15.
Pro tip: Review your vehicle’s owner’s manual or talk to a mechanic before purchasing parts or working on the replacement. This way, you’ll be sure you have the right parts to correctly replace the control relay.
We recommend purchasing these parts and tools at local auto parts stores like AutoZone, Advance Auto Parts, and O'Reilly Auto Parts, as well as online retailers like Amazon. We also recommend trusted brands such as Bosch, ACDelco, and 3M are recommended for these components for their quality and performance. However, like price, recommended brands may also vary depending on your vehicle’s specific year, make, and model.
You can use OEM (original equipment manufacturer) or aftermarket parts to replace your anti-lock control relay, but keep in mind that OEM parts are designed to fit the standards of your vehicle. While aftermarket replacement parts may be cheaper, OEM parts can typically last longer, are more compatible, and may come with warranties.
You can buy anti-lock control relay parts at your vehicle’s dealership, an auto parts shop like AutoZone, Advance Auto Parts, and O'ReillyAuto Parts, or a mechanic’s repair shop. Parts are also usually available online from providers like Amazon.

Where can I get my anti-lock control relay replaced?

If you don’t already have a trusted mechanic, finding the right shop to get your anti-lock control relay replaced may seem like an onerous task. Fortunately, Jerry's
GarageGuard™
can connect you with up to 2,500 vetted repair shops in the US. 
Jerry's GarageGuard™ compares fair price estimates* from repair shops in your area by using their real hourly labor rate. With Jerry's GarageGuard™, you can look through real reviews and find out if a diagnostic fee is included in the service cost or charged separately.
Take a look at some of the shops we work with below and download the app to compare anti-lock control relay replacement quotes in your area.
163 Reviews
Kerry's Car Care - Peoria
address
8294 W Lake Pleasant Pkwy, Peoria, AZ
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$0
115 Reviews
On The Go Tires
address
(Mobile repair service), Fort Myers, FL
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$75
131 Reviews
Harrell's Auto Service - Owen
address
140 Owen Dr, Fayetteville, NC
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$129.99
183 Reviews
Lopez Express Auto Service
address
542 White Horse Ave, Princeton, NJ
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$40
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How did we vet these shops?

Jerry experts researched 2500+ real repair shops across the US. We talked to real shop customers, and analyzed both real shop pricing data and thousands of real customer reviews from each shop to verify them individually. We do not partner with the shops listed above, and our analysis is always unbiased.

How will a mechanic replace my anti-lock control relay?

Replacing your anti-lock control relay shouldn’t take long, but it does require a fair understanding of the engine’s electrical components. If your vehicle is showing signs of a bad anti-lock control relay, your mechanic will go through the following steps for a successful replacement: 
  1. Inspection: To test the anti-lock braking system and your anti-lock control relay, your mechanic may take your car for a test drive. The test drive will include hard braking to feel for controller engagement or skidding. Additionally, if the ABS light is on, this will signal an issue with your control relay. 
  2. Preparation: Your mechanic will park the vehicle on a flat surface and place wheel clocks around the rear tires to keep it from moving. They will also connect a nine volt battery to your vehicle from inside to keep the computer running, and they’ll disconnect your vehicle’s battery. 
  3. Removal: The anti-lock control relay will be located in the fuse box in the engine compartment. After removing the fuse box cover, your mechanic will unscrew any additional components to release the anti-lock control relay. In some older vehicles, the control relay may be located by the firewall rather than in the fuse box—your mechanic will hold down tabs around the relay to release it. 
  4. Installation: Your mechanic will install the new anti-lock control relay into the fuse box and re-install any components that were also removed or unscrewed. The fuse box cover will also be placed back, and your battery will be reconnected.
  5. Test: To verify that your anti-lock control relay is working properly, your mechanic will turn the vehicle on and take it for another test drive. If the brake pedal pulsates and there is no skidding present during hard braking, your new control relay is working properly. Additionally, any dashboard lights should be gone.

What happens if I don’t replace my anti-lock control relay?

If you notice issues with your braking system or your ABS light is on, you’ll want to get your anti-lock control relay inspected immediately. If you do not replace a faulty anti-lock control relay, you could encounter the following problems:
  • Complete anti-lock control relay failure: If your control relay fails, the brake fluid pump will stop working. Without brake fluid pressure from the pump, the ABS system will also stop operating. 
  • Skidding and sliding: If your anti-lock control relay is not operating your brake fluid pump and your ABS system fails, you could experience skidding and sliding, and your system may only work with extremely hard braking.

What is an anti-lock control relay?

An anti-lock control relay is a part of your vehicle’s anti-lock braking system (ABS). 
The control relay adjusts brake pressure for each wheel by relaying information from the ABS wheel speed sensors. The anti-lock control relay also sends power to the anti-lock brake controller, which signals the pulsation of brake fluid to the wheels. 
In short, your anti-lock control relay is responsible for sending cues that help your braking system do its job.

When should I replace the anti-lock control relay on my car?

There are a few key signs that something may be wrong with your ABS control relay: 
  1. ABS light comes on: If the ABS light or check engine light on your dashboard comes on when you start your car, something may be wrong with your ABS system, including control relay failure. Your ABS light could also indicate low brake fluid, a faulty ABS speed sensor, or a worn down ABS pump.
  2. Brake pedal responsiveness: If you notice reduced brake performance, or if you need to press down on the brake pedal several times to get the desired result, this could indicate a faulty control relay. A lackluster brake pedal can also result from air in the brake line or worn out brake pads.

How often should an anti-lock control relay be replaced?

Anti-lock control relays generally last up to 10,000 miles if the ABS system is correctly maintained. Replacement intervals also depend on the vehicle’s make and model, so it’s best to check your owner’s manual or consult with a mechanic or dealership. 
Pro tip: Keep an eye on the electrical wiring around your anti-lock control relay, which is usually located in the engine compartment’s fuse box. If your wires and connectors are secure and free of corrosion, your control relay is likely in good condition.

Can I replace my anti-lock control relay myself?

Replacing an anti-lock control relay is fairly straightforward and doesn’t typically require any heavy lifting, so you could replace this part on your own. That said, there are a few tricky steps involved in the process, so you may be better off letting a certified mechanic replace your anti-lock control relay. 

FAQs

It is essential both for your car’s ABS functionality and for your own safety that you replace a failed control relay as soon as possible, as it is the central nervous system of the ABS.
A malfunctioning ABS system can put you, your passengers, and other drivers on the road in grave danger.
Yes. Even if your ABS system goes down, your vehicle’s regular brakes will still work. However, without ABS, your brake system will be prone to locking if you slam on the brakes, and you can lose control of the vehicle.
You will know that your anti-lock control relay is bad if you notice any of the following symptoms:
  • Your ABS dashboard light is on
  • Your brake performance is reduced and you have to brake hard
  • Your brakes lock up when you apply significant pressure
Using the car’s battery, the anti-lock control relay is responsible for controlling the ABS power supply.
It costs approximately $320 to $1,000 to fix or replace an anti-lock brake system. The exact cost depends on your vehicle’s make and model.
An ABS control model typically costs around $1,100 to $1,300. The precise price for an ABS control module will depend on your vehicle’s make and model.
On average, it costs a total of -- to replace an ABS relay, with -- for parts and -- for labor. Your ABS control relay replacement cost will vary depending on your exact vehicle.
You can drive with a faulty ABS system since your normal brakes will still work, but you won’t be able to brake abruptly in case of an emergency.
Yes, there are usually two fuses associated with the ABS system:
  • ABS fuse 1: Activates and closes the relay. 
  • ABS fuse 2: Allows power flow to the rest of the ABS system.

Meet Our Experts

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John Davis
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Car Expert
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Certified mechanic with 10+ years of experience
John Davis is an expert automotive writer and former automotive mechanic. John's work spans multiple categories, and he relishes the opportunity to research a new subject and expand his area of expertise and industry knowledge. To date, John has written more than 200 articles covering car maintenance and care, car advice, how-to guides, and more.
Prior to joining Jerry’s editorial team, John worked as a mechanic and freelance writer, creating content for clients including HotCars and SetPower.
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Jessica Barrett
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Car Expert
Jessica Barrett is a senior insurance writer and editor with 10 years of experience in the automotive and travel industries. A specialist in car insurance, car loans, and car ownership, Jessica’s mission is to create comprehensive content that car owners can use to manage their costs and improve their lives. As a managing editor for a team of writers and insurance specialists, Jessica has edited over 2,000 articles for Jerry on topics ranging from local insurance shopping tips to refinancing car loans with bad credit.
Before joining Jerry as a senior content editor in 2021, Jessica created visual content for clients such as Expedia, Vivid Seats, Budget Direct Car Insurance, Angie’s List, and HomeAdvisor. Her content was published in Business Insider, Forbes, Apartment Therapy, and the BBC.
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Kathleen Flear
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Car Expert
Kathleen Flear is an expert insurance writer and editor who heads up Jerry’s editorial team as director of content. Kathleen empowers drivers to make smart car ownership decisions through  best-in-class articles on insurance, loans, and maintenance. Prior to joining Jerry in 2021, Kathleen served as managing editor for a team of SEO content marketing professionals at Article-Writing.co and worked as a freelance writer and editor for a range of digital publications, including Chicago Literati magazine and Golden Words. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature from Queen’s University, and a master’s degree in creative writing and fiction from Sierra Nevada University.
*The price information provided on our car repair webpages is intended for general informational purposes only. Actual prices for car repair services may vary based on various factors, including but not limited to the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of repair required, and the prevailing market conditions. All prices for real repair shops are estimations based on our research only. Therefore, the prices listed on our webpages should not be considered as final quotes or binding offers.