Automotive technology has made significant strides in enhancing driver safety and convenience. Among the advancements, Reverse Brake Assist systems have emerged as a valuable feature, providing an added layer of protection during reversing maneuvers. However, like any intricate system, occasional malfunctions can occur, leading to warning messages that may cause concern for Ford vehicle owners.
One such warning message that Ford owners may encounter is the “Reverse Brake Assist Not Available” notification. This warning indicates a temporary fault or a potential issue with the Reverse Brake Assist system, which may compromise its intended functionality. Although it is important to address this warning promptly, understanding its possible causes and potential solutions can help vehicle owners navigate through the situation with confidence.
What is Ford Reverse Brake Assist?
Ford Reverse Brake Assist is a safety feature that’s designed to help drivers avoid collisions when backing up their vehicle. It works by using sensors and cameras to detect obstacles behind the vehicle, and then automatically applying the brakes if a collision is imminent. This can be especially helpful in tight parking spaces or other situations where visibility is limited.
The system is typically included as part of a larger suite of driver assistance technologies that Ford offers, and it’s designed to give drivers an extra layer of protection when reversing. However, if the system is not functioning properly, it can give you a warning message such as “Reverse Brake Assist Not Available.”
Causes of Reverse Brake Assist Not Available warning
There are several potential causes of a Reverse Brake Assist Not Available warning in a Ford vehicle. Here are a few of the most common:
The Reverse Brake Assist system relies on sensors to detect obstacles behind the vehicle. If one or more of these sensors is faulty or damaged, it can prevent the system from functioning properly and trigger the warning.
Dirt, debris, or other contaminants on the sensors or reverse camera can also interfere with their ability to detect obstacles and trigger the warning.
The Reverse Brake Assist system is a complex network of sensors, wiring, and software. If there’s an issue with the electrical system, such as a blown fuse or a faulty connection, it can prevent the system from functioning properly.
Like any computer system, the Reverse Brake Assist software can experience glitches or bugs that prevent it from functioning properly.
A door, liftgate, or the hood is open
It’s always a good idea to make sure that all doors, liftgate, and hood are fully closed before operating the vehicle. If any of these components are open, it can interfere with the Reverse Brake Assist system and trigger the warning.
Cross traffic alert system is disabled
It’s important to make sure that the Cross Traffic Alert system is turned on, as this system works in conjunction with the Reverse Brake Assist system to detect cross traffic and obstacles when reversing.
If you’re experiencing a Reverse Brake Assist Not Available warning, it’s important to have your vehicle inspected by an authorized Ford dealer to determine the root cause of the problem.
What the Ford Owners Manual says
Ford has listed all the protentional causes for reverse braking assist unavailable warning:
- Make sure that all doors, liftgate and hood are closed. Drive the vehicle on a straight road for a short period. If the message remains, contact an authorized dealer.
- Make sure the cross traffic alert system is on.
- Make sure the rear parking aid system is on.
- Make sure traction control is on.
- The vehicle has sustained a rear end impact. Contact an authorized dealer to have the sensors checked for proper coverage and operation.
- An ABS, traction control or stability control event may have occurred. Reverse braking assist resumes operation when the event is complete.
- Make sure the rear view camera and 360 degree camera are not dirty or obstructed. If dirty, clean the camera. If the message still appears after cleaning the camera, wait a short time and the message should clear. If the message does not clear, contact an authorized dealer.
- Make sure there are no blocked or faulted sensors.
- You recently had your vehicle serviced, or the battery disconnected. Drive your vehicle a short distance to resume system operation.
- Reverse braking assist does not function when you connect a trailer. Operation resumes when you disconnect the trailer.
Is it safe to drive without Reverse Brake Assist?
While Reverse Brake Assist is a helpful safety feature that can provide an extra layer of protection when reversing, it is generally safe to drive a vehicle without it. If the system is not functioning properly and you are unable to resolve the issue, you can still safely operate the vehicle by using caution when reversing and being aware of your surroundings.