Even though the airbag system is a relatively small portion of an overall vehicle, it plays a huge role in the overall functionality and safety of it. Many people know what airbags are but don’t know what the other different components of the system are and what they do.That is why it is important to learn about every component and what it is important for.
One of the main things that people find difficult to understand is why an airbag light stays on. This is a great thing to start with when learning about the airbag system. If you are facing this problem yourself, let me tell you what this might mean.
Typically, the airbag light turns on initially after an accident occurs. It tells you that you need to have your airbag system fixed, or else the airbags will not deploy in a future accident. As you can imagine, this can be very hazardous to your safety and should prevent you from delaying the repairs. An airbag light that stays on can also indicate an issue with your seat belt system.
One of the most frustrating things that can happen is to see one of the lights on your instrument cluster turn on, or even worse to continue blinking. If you are experiencing this problem yourself with the airbag light, let me tell you what you can do to have the dang thing stop.
First of all it is important to know why the airbag light came on in your car in the first place. There are a number of reasons. It could mean that your battery backup is drained, that you have a worn out airbag clock spring, or that your SRS airbag control module is faulty. It can also mean that something is wrong with your seat belts or impact sensors. Whatever the issue behind the airbag light, the main thing you should be worried about is the fact that your airbags will not deploy in future accidents until you get the issue fixed. That means you are subjecting yourself to possible injury or even death every time you take your car out to drive!
You should take a look at your SRS airbag module first, as this is the most common way to fix the problem. You can purchase a scanning tool that will be able to detect any codes your vehicle has and the reason behind them. This can also be done at your local body shop. The next step would be to remove the unit from your vehicle. You can then either purchase a brand new one at the dealer or reset the unit to remove the stored crash data and hard codes. Of course, this would require additional software and tools, but the job is doable. If you are scared you will mess something up, you always have the additional option to send your SRS airbag module to Safety Restore. The company also repairs safety belts if you find that the issue in your vehicle is partially due to faulty belts.
The instrument cluster is one of the things that drivers constantly look at when driving a car. It displays everything from the gas gauge to the temperature to even the functionality of the airbags. One of the most annoying things that can happen to an instrument cluster is having one of the lights turn on and stay on. The immediate reaction of most drivers is to find out what is causing the light to turn on and then proceed in fixing it. That is how it should be. Below I will explain what you should do to turn off your airbag light if you find it lighting up on your speedometer.
To begin with, when you see the airbag light turn on, you should know what the light indicates. An airbag light means that something is wrong with your supplemental restraint system, or SRS. The SRS warning may arise due to a faulty seat belt switch, a defective crash sensor, or a damaged clock spring.
There is no reason to panic, as it is quite simple to turn off the airbag light. First, you should bring your car to a local automotive shop and have the mechanics diagnose the SRS airbag module computer crash codes. They will be able to find the exact reason for the codes and what repairs you should proceed with. You also have the option of buying your own scanning tool so that you don’t have to pay a mechanic to do it for you. The actual resetting of the SRS airbag control module is something you can do on your own too. You just want to make sure to have the proper software and tools for the job. Any and all instructions you need to reset the unit can be easily found online. The great thing is that you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to get a brand new module at the dealer by going this route. However, if you don’t trust in your own abilities to repair such a key component in your vehicle, and still don’t want to pay the steep prices at the dealer, you can send your module in to the company SafetyRestore.
If you have educated yourself on the different safety components in your vehicle, you likely learned about the SRS airbag module. If you have not, I cannot stress enough to you the importance of it for the overall functionality and safety of your vehicle. Even though it is a small component in your vehicle, it plays a big role. Let me tell you just how it does that.
To start off, the SRS airbag module is a computerized system in your car. What it basically does is control the entire airbag system in your vehicle. Everything from the airbags themselves, the impact sensors, and even the seat belt pre-tensioners—relies on the module to properly function. During a sudden stop or collision, where the airbags deploy, the airbag module stores a ton of information in the form of crash data and hard codes. This information includes seat belt use, the vehicle and engine speed, seat belt pre-tensioner deployments, impact speed change, throttle position, airbag deployments, and brake light switch position. Interestingly enough, this type of information is almost always admissible in court and usually trumps other physical evidence or verbal explanations.
When the airbag module is not up to par—or has all this data stored—the airbags cannot deploy in an accident. This, as a result, can potentially lead to serious injury or even death. That is why you should have the unit replaced immediately. You do not want to be endangering your own life or that of your passengers.
If you have read up on the different things you need to do after an accident, especially if your airbags have deployed, you most likely learned that your SRS airbag module either needed to be completely replaced or simply reset. If you went ahead with the latter option, good for you! The prices at the dealer for a brand new unit are outrageous and it is much more practical—and equally safe—to just have your original module reset. The one thing you may be struggling with, however, is how to replace the SRS airbag module back into your vehicle. For that I am able to help.
Before you begin the re-installation process, make sure all the airbag SRS components such as the air bags, seat belt, clock spring, and impact sensors are initiated and connected properly.
Then, you can begin by disconnecting your battery terminals—negative first and then positive. After that you will be able to bolt down the airbag module into its place.
Once you see that it is secured, connect it to the wire harness and re-attach all the wiring that you disconnected in the initial disassembly process. It is very important that you make sure all wiring from the horn and the radio as well as all the other controls is hooked up properly before you connect the battery again.
You can finally attach the cables back onto your battery once all of these steps have been completed. Connect the positive first, followed by the negative.
You may know by now that after a vehicle has been involved in a crash and the airbags have deployed, the SRS airbag module has stored crash data and hard codes. You may also already know that nothing but purchasing a brand new module or having the module reset manually can restore it to its original condition. However, you may not actually know the step-by-step instructions on fixing the airbag module. Read below to find out.
To fix your SRS airbag module and restore it to factory condition, you first want to locate the unit in your vehicle. Generally, airbag modules are found below the driver or front passenger seat. Sometimes, though, they can be found below the radio, behind the steering wheel, in the center console, or in the kick panel. The next step before disassembly would be to disconnect your battery. Make sure to disconnect the negative first followed by the positive and let the backups drain. Then, move your steering wheel and take out all the hardware on your driver airbag module. Disconnect the wiring and horn wiring, the grounding strap, radio wires, and the airbag connectors. If deployment has caused the connectors to be melted down, cut the wires that lead up to the coil. The clock spring will need to be replaced. Then, remove the computer. Open it up and look for the 8-pin SMD EEPROM chip. Solder some 32-gauge hookup wire to connect the SRS airbag module to a serial port EEPROM reader. The crash data can then be analyzed using specific software. There are several software you can purchase to fulfill this step. You should replace all the values from the crashed chip with the values on the virgin chip. Rewrite it into your computer so that the hard codes can be wiped out. After all of that is set, you can replace the module back into your car. When reinstalling the unit back into your car, make sure to disconnect the battery like you had initially done. To ensure that you followed the steps correctly, check to see that your SRS light turns off. You can also check your car’s tech-stream software to make sure that there aren’t any more hard codes or faults present.
If you haven’t yet heard about the airbag control module in your vehicle, there is a lot for you to learn. This unit—though small compared to other parts of your vehicle—serves a crucial role in preserving your safety and operating your vehicle.
Basically put, the entire airbag system runs through and operates by the airbag control module. Without the module, the airbags in your vehicle would not work, or would deploy, during a sudden stop or collision. As a result, driving without a properly operating airbag control module can serve as a giant safety hazard. During a collision, airbags are what prevent occupants of a vehicle from colliding into other objects or people inside the vehicle or from completely projecting through the windshield. Without an airbag control module present, both drivers and passengers alike would not have such protection.
What is also important about the airbag control module is that it stores crash data and hard codes. This information is what courts sometimes retrieve and use to decipher the events leading up to and during a crash. The unit can store vehicle and engine speed, throttle position, brake light switch position, seat belt use, impact speed change, and airbag and pre-tensioner deployments. This is quite a bit of useful information stored in one simple module.
Heavy-duty vehicles such as trucks and buses are equipped with something similar to an airbag control module—an engine control module, or ECU. ECUs actually record a lot more information than airbag control modules do—they can store information up to 60 seconds before a crash!
If you have a vehicle with a faulty SRS airbag module, you might know that it needs to be replaced. You may be thinking that you do not have enough money to buy a totally new SRS unit at the dealer. Lucky for you, that is okay. There are plenty of instructions online detailing how you can remove the unit from your vehicle and reset it back to factory condition yourself! You just need to have the proper tools and software to do so.
Let me fill you in on the process. First, you should remove the unit from your vehicle. Most likely, it is located underneath the driver seat or the front passenger seat. You can then begin disassembly of the module. You should open up the module and search for the 8-pin SMD EEPROM chip. This is what stores all the crash data. You then need to solder some 32-gauge hookup wire to connect the airbag module to a serial port EEPROM reader. After that, you can analyze the crash data. Different types of software are available to read the EEPROM chip, but all essentially do the same job. At last, you can finally replace the airbag module computer. Replace all the values from the crashed chip with the ones from the virgin chip and rewrite it into the computer. That way, the hard codes that were present can be cleared. The final step would be to replace the module into your car and check if you were able to successfully reset it. Within 6 seconds, your SRS light should go off. Your vehicle’s tech-stream software can also be checked to see that there are no more codes or faults present.
The airbag module is a key component of a vehicle. It controls the supplemental restraint system in your car including the airbag sensors, seat belt pre-tensioners, and the inflators. In addition, it acts as a storage box for hard codes and crash data when your vehicle is involved in a collision.
When a vehicle is involved in a crash that deploys the airbags, crash data and hard codes are automatically stored in the unit. Only a reset or buying a brand new unit will allow a driver to have a properly functioning airbag module. Many people choose to purchase a new module at the dealer, but this comes with a hefty price tag. Others choose to reset it at home. You certainly can remove the SRS airbag module from your vehicle and reset the unit to factory settings, you just need to have the right tools and follow the steps correctly in order to succeed in resetting it properly.
To begin the process, you need to remove the SRS airbag module from your vehicle. Generally, it can be found underneath the driver’s seat but sometimes its location varies to underneath the front passenger seat, in the center console, kick panel, behind the steering wheel, or under the radio. To access the module, the bottom half needs to be removed. After it has been removed, the disassembly process can begin. When you open up the unit you need to look for the 8-pin SMD EEPROM chip that stores all the crash data. You should then solder some 32-gauge hookup wire to connect the unit to a serial port EEPROM reader. The next step would be to analyze the crash data. There are different types of software available that can read from the EEPROM chip. After analyzing, you can finally replace the airbag computer. Replace all the values from the crashed chip with those from the virgin chip and rewrite it into the computer so that the hard codes can be cleared. The final step would be to place the unit back into your vehicle and check if the reset was a success. Within just 6 seconds, your SRS light should go off. You can also check with your vehicle’s tech-stream software to see that there aren’t any faults or codes present.
When resetting their SRS airbag module, many people run into the issue of their airbag module not communicating properly. This can happen for a number of reasons. Read below to find out a few of those reasons.
One reason your SRS airbag module may not be communicating properly is because it is improperly grounded. This simply means that it needs to be bolted down completely in the reinstallation process. Believe it or not, this issue is pretty common.
Another reason may be because of the communication pins at the plug. To make sure this isn’t the reason you are having communication issues, make sure to inspect the communication pins where the harness connect into the front of the airbag module. Look out for any damage or corrosion present. Sometimes, the pins can push back, bend, or even break off.
A third cause of your airbag module not communicating may be because of problems with your scanner, and not the actual module itself. To scan your airbag module, make sure that the scanner you use is able to properly read the airbag diagnostic codes. The scanner should access your airbag system and support your vehicle make and model. A lot of scanners are just set to read the basic engine codes so you want to make sure yours is set to read your codes. Also, if you have a newer car you want to make sure you are not using an outdated scanning tool.
The wiring or harness can also be the reason for the issues you are having. Make sure to check that the harness or wiring surrounding the SRS airbag module isn’t cut or otherwise damaged anywhere.
If you determine that all the above issues aren’t the reason for your communication problems, you may want to send your SRS module to a professional company like Safety Restore.