There is a problem with the airbag system if the SRS airbag light illuminates. The question is: Is it safe to drive a car with the SRS airbag light on? Well, read more to know. The SRS is a passive restraint system, which means that activating it doesn’t require any action on your part. It is made to supplement the seatbelts’ primary purpose.
The system automatically detects factors like acceleration, braking, collision location, and if the passenger seat is occupied. The information the Airbag Control Unit gets is used to determine which seatbelts must be buckled and which airbags should inflate. Some vehicles use the acronym SRS to indicate an issue, while others use an airbag symbol.
When the automobile is first started, the SRS light should stay on for a duration of one to five seconds while the system runs a number of tests independently. If the light goes out, the system is ready. If the light keeps flashing, there is a problem with the SRS airbag system. The system is currently turned off. In the event of a collision, the seat belts won’t fasten, the airbags won’t inflate, and none of the other features will operate.
Well, in the article, you’ll get to know if it is safe to drive a car with the SRS airbag light on. You’ll also get to know why the SRS airbag light is illuminating and what to do if your SRS airbag light is illuminating.
Let’s get to it
Is it safe to drive a car with the SRS airbag light on?
No, driving while the airbag light is on is not safe. When the airbag light comes on, the vehicle’s airbag system is defective. Due to this defect, the airbag is unlikely to deploy in the case of an accident.
Therefore, it is not advised that you drive the vehicle until the issue has been fixed. However, the warning light should never be disregarded. The light does show that the SRS system is not functioning properly. This may potentially indicate that the airbags won’t deploy in the event of a collision.
Driving with the airbag light on doesn’t mean your car is unreliable, but if the airbags don’t deploy when you need them to, that will indeed be a serious problem. If you want to be able to rely on your car to be safe to drive, fix the problem as soon as the airbag light comes on.
Reasons why the SRS airbag light is illuminated
Your car will notify you by turning on or flashing the dashboard or computer-display airbag warning light. This light indicates that your airbags are deactivated while it is on. Therefore, if you are involved in an accident, they won’t deploy properly. Well, below are a few reasons why your airbag light is flashing:
Faulty airbag sensors
Numerous sensors are attached to various parts of your car. They connect directly to the computer system of the vehicle to identify and alert the driver of any potential problems. The airbag warning light could come on as a result of a sensor failure or an accidental trip. It will be necessary to reset the system and examine the sensors.
Read more: Understanding Airbag Sensors
The backup airbag battery is down
The backup battery that powers the airbags may have also run out if your car’s main battery recently drained. If the battery is fully charged again, it could automatically correct the issue, but if not, the sensor will need to be reset and the backup battery recharged.
A broken clock spring
The purpose of the airbag clock spring is to keep the electrical connection between the car’s electrical system and the driver-side airbag intact. As the steering wheel is turned, it coils in and out. Over time, it may naturally wear out, resulting in a poor connection and potential airbag failures.
Anything electrical in your car, including the airbag module, could be harmed if it has suffered water damage. The light will turn on when it stops functioning due to corrosion or shorting out. While the broken item can be replaced, if water keeps getting into the car, it will still happen again.
Your airbag warning light is illuminating or flashing for a reason, whether it comes on mistakenly or due to one of these typical causes. You should get your airbag system and sensors repaired immediately if the SRS airbag light comes on.
What to do if your SRS airbag light is illuminating
Here’s what you do when the SRS airbag light stays on:
First, turn the ignition switch on. After seven seconds, the airbag light should start to illuminate; it will stay on until it turns off on its own. Turn off the ignition switch immediately after three seconds have passed.
Repeat the basic steps a few times before starting the engine. If everything is done correctly, your car’s airbag light should flash for seven seconds before permanently going out.
Restart your ignition, then take a test drive. If the airbag light eventually stops flashing permanently, the issue has probably been resolved. One of the things you should also check when trying to turn off the airbag light is the passenger seat airbag on/off button, which is only present in some vehicles.
It’s possible that someone accidentally switched it off, leaving the airbag light on. This button can be typically found on the passenger side dashboard, but It can occasionally be seen by opening the glove box or passenger door.
Other things you should do if the SRS airbag light is still illuminating
The airbag light may activate if the SRS detects loose or poorly fastened seatbelts because it is concerned with the safety of the vehicle’s occupants. If the seatbelt is not utilized, the airbag may potentially deactivate automatically. So be sure to add checking on the proper operation of seatbelts and seat belt sensors to your list of things to do.
If you are mechanically skilled, you can consider buying an OBD-II scanner with SRS capability to reset the airbag light. Just keep in mind that not all OBD-II devices can instantly fix the airbag light. It is a good idea to do some research before purchasing an OBD-II scanner with the features you need. Check out the list of best OBD2 scanners.
However, the majority of cars have a sensitive passenger weight sensor. The problem with these particular cars is that placing a heavy container or box on the passenger seat can easily trip the sensors.
As a result, the airbag light turns on. To solve the problem, either take the item out of the passenger seat or buckle the seatbelt. If this resolves the problem, it will show that the sensor was utilized and that the airbag light was activated as a result.
How long can you drive with the airbag light on?
The answer is no because, even though there is a chance that the airbags could still inflate with the light on, doing so poses a great risk in the event of an accident. We advise getting a professional to examine it and determine the problem so it can be fixed right away.
What can cause the airbag light to come on?
- The airbag has to be reset.
- Damage wiring.
- Defective seatbelt.
- Damage sensors.
- Drained battery.
- A faulty airbag clock spring.
Should I be worried if my airbag light is on?
A problem with the seatbelts or airbags is indicated by the airbag light. Therefore, it’s usually not a good idea to drive when the airbag light is on. We advise having it towed to the dealership rather than driving it yourself if it continues to illuminate in your car.
How do I turn my airbag light off?
The ignition switch should first be turned on. Wait for the airbag light to turn on next; it typically illuminates for seven seconds before automatically turning off. After waiting three seconds, immediately flip the ignition switch off. Before starting the engine, go through the initial steps two to three times.
Can the airbag light be turned off?
An airbag light indicates a problem with your SRS or supplemental restraint system. The seat belt switch, crash sensor, or clock spring are all potential causes of the SRS warning. There is no need to be worried because it is very easy to switch off the airbag light.
How much does an airbag sensor cost?
Replacing airbag crash sensors costs, on average, between $373 and $390. The cost of labor is expected to be between $65 and $81 while the cost of the parts is $309. Taxes and other costs are not included in this range, nor are your particular vehicle or geographic area taken into account. There might be additional repairs required.
Will the airbag light cause the car to not start?
Hello, when the key is turned on and the engine is off, the airbag light will illuminate as it would normally in a restraint system to “prove out.” You shouldn’t worry about this. If the car won’t start, check the battery’s capacity to withstand a load and its level of charge first.
Can mechanics fix the airbag light?
Yes, of course, a mechanic can help you fix your airbag light. A mechanic can assist you in dealing with the airbag light by inspecting the system using the internal diagnostic system of the car. The airbag sensor will then be adjusted, or he will check for any more potential airbag system issues.
Can I replace the airbag sensor myself?
Fortunately, replacing faulty airbag sensors isn’t too difficult and is possible if you adhere to a few simple guidelines.
Can a scanner reset the airbag light?
No, scanners are not capable of clearing these codes. These codes, which are also known as crash data, are kept after a car accident.
How do you know the airbag system is malfunctioning?
Your car will notify you by turning on or flashing the dashboard or computer-display airbag warning light. This light indicates that your airbags are disabled while it is on. Consequently, if you have an accident, they won’t deploy properly.
How much does it cost to reset an airbag sensor?
The ECU or airbag module will at the very least need to be reset, which will cost between $50 and $150. Expect to pay between $400 and $1,200 for a new airbag control module if you need one.
That is all for this article, where we discussed if it is safe to drive a car with the SRS airbag light on. We also looked at the reasons why the SRS airbag light is illuminating and what to do if your SRS airbag light is illuminating.
I hope you learn a lot from the reading. If you do, kindly share it with others. Thanks for reading; see you around!