An airbag is a lifesaver in any vehicle. In case of a traffic collision, airbags inflate and act as cushions to lessen the impact. Because of this, it is a car feature that you should never take for granted. Before you drive off, take a look at your dashboard and see if that airbag light is on.
Why Does the Airbag Light Come On?
If your airbag light is on, it is a warning that your safety might be at risk. You see, airbags are deployed through sensors that detect the occurrence and severity of a crash. However, if your airbag light is on, this quick reaction will not happen.
So, if that little icon of a person with a circle is flashing on the dashboard, your car might need some major repairs. Here’s what you must do to fix the issue in an hour or less:
Check the Airbag Switch
One of the first things you can do to know why your airbag light is on is to check the passenger airbag switch. Some cars have a “passenger seat airbag on/off button,” and the light will turn on if this switch is turned off by mistake. You can usually find this button on the dashboard on the passenger side.
Use an OBD2 Scanner
If you can’t tell what the problem is, try using an OBD2 Scanner to read trouble codes. Simply put, an OBD2 scanner allows you or your mechanic to access vehicle data. With this tool, you would be able to know where to start troubleshooting. You can also read the codes and get information about what can cause the problem. From there, you can continue the diagnosis and work on fixing your airbag.
Fix the Problem
Once you have figured out what the problem is, go to a professional mechanic. But if you are not sure how to fix the issue, let them replace the faulty airbag parts for you. Never reset an airbag light without repairing the problem fully because this may result in your airbag not working in the case of an actual accident. In some cars, the airbag light will often go away by itself after the problem is fixed.
Clear the Trouble Codes
After the repair has been done, get your OBD2 scanner again. If you are completely sure that all parts are installed correctly, reset the engine light using the scanner. Then, reset the airbag light and make sure that it disappeared from the dashboard. In case it does not disappear, check the codes once again and check for any trouble codes.
Go for a Test Drive
If the airbag light has turned off, it is time to restart your car and go for a test drive. In case it comes back on after the restart or while you are doing your test drive, there might still be some problems that were not completely fixed. If this happens, get your scanner once again, reread the codes, and continue with the procedure.
What to Do If You Don’t Have an OBD2 Scanner?
It is impossible in many car models to reset the airbag light without a scanner. However, in most car models, basic troubleshooting can let the light turn off on its own. If you have an older car model, you can reset the airbag light by removing the car battery terminals. You can also check the wiring underneath the driver and passenger seats and look out for faulty, loose wires in the connector plug, fix the problem, then restart your car.
Accidents can happen anytime. So, as a driver, safety must always be your priority. Also, never skip any precaution when it comes to your car. When it comes to problems with your airbag, the OBD2 scanner is the most reliable tool. Yet, if you do not know how to do it on your own, you can always go to professional mechanics for help!
At Safety Restore in Westfield, MA, we specialize in airbag module resets. We accept all types of SRS airbag control modules and restore them to factory settings. We also provide seat belt repairs, webbing replacements, and instrument cluster repairs. If you want to know why the airbag light comes on, visit our website for more information today!