Parking Brake Malfunction

Parking Brake Malfunction [Audi A4, A5, A6 & A8 Meaning & Reset]

Audi cars are known for luxury and tech, speaking of tech Audi is one of the first manufacturers to put Electronic Parking Brakes (EPB) on their vehicles replacing the regular manual handbrakes.

This system is designed to prevent the car from rolling away when parked on an incline or any surface for that matter, but if it malfunctions means the car won’t be able to hold its position when parked on an inclined slope.

In this article, I am going to explain to you what “parking brake malfunction” means on an Audi, the common causes, and how to reset it.

What Does Parking Brake Malfunction Mean on an Audi?

In simple terms, this is a warning that appears on the dashboard that indicates that something is wrong with the parking brake system.

The car’s ECU will test the brakes and if it senses a problem, then this warning light will come on.

Audi “Parking Brake Malfunction” Main Causes

1. Damaged Rear Calipers:

The brake calipers are located on the rear of the car and help to stop it when you apply pressure to them. If they are damaged in any way, then this warning may appear.

The rear handbrake calipers work hand to hand with the electronic parking brake system. If there is a problem with either of these, then the warning will come up on the dashboard.

2. Faulty Wheel Speed Sensor:

The Audi’s ECU is able to tell when there is a problem with the parking brake system by monitoring the wheel speed sensors. If there are any issues with these, then the warning light will come on.

The fastest way to tell if the fault is caused by a bad wheel speed sensor is to check if the ESP light also comes on when you get the “parking brake malfunction” message on your Audi.

3. Low/Bad Battery:

A car battery is responsible for managing a lot of electronics on your Audi, if the Battery voltage is low it can cause a lot of electronics to malfunction, including the EPB system.

Audi Battery’s low voltage can be caused by a bad battery which I recommend you change it every 3-5 years or the Battery lost charge due to lack of use, or you may have a bad battery connection or cable.

4. Bad Wires:

Corrosion on the cables can cause them to break, this is especially common in areas that have a lot of salt on the roads during the winter months.

On some occasions, rodents will chew on the wires and cause them to break. A torn wire can cause a number of problems with your car’s electronics, including failure of the electronic parking brake.

How to Reset Audi Parking Brake?

To reset your Audi parking brake, do the following:

  1. Step on the brake
  2. Shift to Neutral
  3. Pull the Parking Brake Up two to three times
  4. Push the Parking Brake Down
  5. Pull it up again two times more.

Other Things to Do in Order to Fix the Parking Brake Malfunction on an Audi

Disconnect & Reconnect the Battery:

If you are having problems with your parking brake, the first thing you should do is disconnect and reconnect the battery. This will reset all of the electronics in your car, including the parking brake.

Get OBD11 or take the car for Diagnostics:

As you can see, a lot of things can go wrong with the parking brake. If the problem persists after you reconnected the battery and tried all of these tricks, then it is time to take your car for diagnostics tests or get OBD11.

The data from these tools will tell you exactly what is going on with your Audi’s parking brake system.

Can You Drive with a “Parking Brake Malfunction” Message?

The answer is yes, you can drive with a “parking brake malfunction” message. This will not affect your car’s performance in any way.

The only thing that may happen is that the message will keep popping up every time you start your car and the Parking brake won’t work properly.

However, I recommend getting it sorted, hopefully now that you know the main causes of a “parking brake malfunction” message, you can take the necessary steps to get it fixed.

3 thoughts on “Parking Brake Malfunction [Audi A4, A5, A6 & A8 Meaning & Reset]”

    1. Followed the manual steps and it worked a charm. Got myself some Wurth Disc Cleaner and Shield Disk cleaner. Combined the 2. Sprayed it on. Let it sit and pressure washed. Running like a charm and the engage to disengage audible is much smoother. Took it to the dealer thereafter and the malfunction was already removed on error codes strangely enough. I found that engaging in Neutral has less pressure.

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