Service Airbag Light – Meaning, Diagnosis, and Fixes

Did you know that a whopping total of 42,915 people died in the United States due to auto crashes in 2021? This figure surpasses the statistics of road accident deaths in 2020 by 10.5%, according to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

In fact, the report on the 2021 auto crash fatalities ranks the highest since 2005. So, what do the findings reveal? More people are ignoring safety measures in their cars, among other areas of negligence.

The airbag is one of the few components most car owners pay attention to when driving, probably because its impact is only seen during a crash. However, understanding what a service airbag light means is extremely important.

why is my airbag light on

What does it mean when the service airbag light comes on?

The service airbag light means a car’s computer system has detected a malfunction in the airbag system via a sensor that one or more airbags may not engage (inflate) in the event of a sudden collision or crash.

This is a serious safety warning that even the best driver in the world must not ignore. It is a warning that can either save a life when approached with seriousness or result in a fatal injury or death if neglected.

The airbag is one of the most important and effective safety systems in a vehicle. According to a periodic report from The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 50,475 lives had been saved as of 2017 by frontal airbags.

Safety experts opine that combining seatbelts and airbags reduces death risk by 61% during a frontal accident. As a way of ensuring that drivers do not get carried away and forget their safety and passengers’ safety, vehicle manufacturers design several safety warning signals in various automobiles.

Warning signals ranging from lights to sounds have been strategically fitted in most vehicles for users’ safety. However, many people keep ignoring the messages to their detriment.

The Honda airbag light is one of such signals with a very vital safety message in your Honda Accord. This warning light is fitted in most vehicles, especially modern cars with a sophisticated computer system.

Read Also: Service Engine Soon Light: All That You Need To Know

How do you check the service airbag light?

Several reasons may be responsible for the illumination of the airbag warning light in a car if you’re wondering, “Why is my airbag light on?”

For example, a new radio installation may trigger the light suddenly. If the car had been involved in a crash before with the airbag engaged, it could also instigate the light.

However, the light may also be due to a malfunction within the SRS (Supplemental Restraint System). Ascertaining which cause is responsible for the effect may not be easy immediately; hence, there is a need to be proactive in order to avoid an unexpected accident.

So, firstly, you need to check the service airbag light to determine whether it is a result of a slight malfunction or a real problem that you should tackle right away. These simple steps will help you with the service airbag light reset.

Step 1: Insert the car key and turn the ignition to the “ON” position. Do not start the engine throughout the reset process until it is concluded.

Step 2: Allow the airbag warning light to appear on the dashboard. It will turn on for about 10 seconds and go off thereafter. Once the light goes off, simply switch it off for the next 3 seconds.

Step 3: Repeat the first and second steps two to three more times. After the third attempt, turn on the engine and watch the airbag warning light. It should turn on and stay illuminated for about 7 seconds and go off permanently.

service airbag light reset

Read Also: What Does Change Engine Oil Soon Warning Light Mean

How do you fix a service airbag light?

Once you spot the service airbag light in a GMC Sierra, there’s no point procrastinating on when to fix it. The situation requires a quick fix or repairs that can resolve it immediately and restore your safety.

Therefore, the following procedures will help fix the service airbag warning problem in a moment.

  • Step 1: Locate and park in a safe place.
  • Step 2: Turn off the car completely. Then, turn on the ignition and turn it off again. The airbag light will turn on for a few seconds and go off again. Do this up to three times.
  • Step 3: Start the car and go for a test drive. Ensure to watch the light as you drive. If it is a slight malfunction, it will go off after illuminating for about 7 seconds and remain off thereafter.
  • Step 4: Inspect the passenger’s seat belt and sensor to ascertain whether they are working perfectly.
  • Step 5: Use an OBD II scanner or any SRS light reset option fitted scanner to unravel the problem.
  • Step 6: Repair or replace the faulty airbag sensor and clock spring.

The reset/repair approaches above will help you fix the airbag light irrespective of the cause of the problem, whether the airbag light stays on perpetually or the service airbag light comes on and off periodically.

However, ensure to contact a professional auto technician to fix the problem once it goes beyond your capacity.

Read Also: Service Advancetrac Warning Light – Meaning, Causes, & Fixes

How much does it cost to fix the service airbag light?

The cost of fixing an airbag issue varies based on the cause of the problem. If you have an airbag light sensor issue, the estimated cost of fixing this malfunction can range from $65 to $82. 

Meanwhile, a more severe issue can cost around $600 or more, depending on the car’s make and model. However, if you have a completely defective airbag system, replacing the airbag can cost around $1,000 to $1,500 or more.

In any case, if you spot the service airbag light in a Chevy Traverse, ensure you first perform a simple airbag light reset exercise before opting for a repair or replacement to avoid unnecessary expenses.

Can a mechanic fix the airbag light?

Of course, an expert auto mechanic can fix your car’s airbag light problem. Auto mechanics are trained to rectify vehicle problems by inspecting the components and diagnosing the hidden cause of the problem before delving into the repair properly.

Once the mechanic spots the underlying issue, fixing it can be pretty straightforward. However, the labor cost of fixing an airbag light issue depends on various factors, including the kind of auto technician, location, parts replacement, or vehicle type.

Read Also: What Does it Mean When My Car Says Service Safety Restraint System?

Can I drive with the service airbag light on?

Technically, it is possible to drive a Chevy Equinox or any other car with the service airbag light. This is because the airbag does not play any role in the mechanical operation that sets your car in motion. However, you may be running a big risk driving with the airbag warning light on.

The light signifies that any sudden crash may end with a very fatal consequence because one or more of the airbags may not deploy. It can be a disaster during an auto crash if your airbag light comes on and off while driving.

So, to avoid any form of casualty due to unforeseen circumstances, kindly drive straight to see an expert auto technician once you spot the service airbag signal on your dashboard. Meanwhile, ensure to try the reset method before going for a proper repair.

Final Words

When it comes to your safety, “Always Be Careful – ABC.” The service airbag light is not for decoration; hence, you should take the warning signal very seriously whenever you spot it. However, do not panic anytime you suddenly observe a supposed fault in your car.

Simply learn to be proactive by acting before an imminent problem occurs to avert it instead of correcting the damage after it occurs. Your safety matters. The safety of your passengers matters. Therefore, do not overlook your Chevy Silverado service airbag light.

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Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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