Is it true ALL airbags won't deploy if the airbag warning light is on?

Joined
May 3, 2022
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I encountered some airbag error codes for the side airbag on my car and got them all fixed. Honestly it was quite awhile before I got around to this fix, but I remember reading somewhere that airbags won't deploy if the warning light is on.

I told my friend what I read and he argued that it's nuts to think ALL airbags would be disabled if the system sees a problem with only one.

My question is, is it really like that? For instance, if your systems have identified a problem with the side airbags, does that mean it will disable even the airbags it hasn't identified a problem with such as the steering wheel one?
 
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It depends on the car, the codes, what's actually wrong with it, etc. Ask the manufacturer :unsure:

Takata airbags are disabled even without a warning light :sneaky:
 

JTK

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On a Nissan forum I'm on, there is a 2017 Nissan Pathfinder owner with airbag codes and a warning light associated with the "module" for the driver's seat airbags. The dealer told the guy none of the airbags will deploy because of the condition. They did happily quote him $2700 for a new driver's seat assembly/install to supposedly fix the problem. I suggested to the guy that he find a good used seat, put it in himself and have a shop do any necessary module programming if required.

Seems odd to me that none of the airbags would deploy, but I suppose they could need to work together?
 
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I've been wondering this my self. Have an 08 Buick Lacrosse and the passenger side seat sensor turns the "passenger airbag on" light randomly between on and off when driving. The repair is to replace the seat sensor but it is no longer serviced by GM and this was a common defect so a recycled sensor might have the same issue. So maybe in my case the bags would blow but passenger side deployment will be at the mercy of how the seat sensor feels.
 

CKN

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Nobody should be deliberately driving a vehicle with these lights on............IMHO.
 
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Seems odd to me that none of the airbags would deploy, but I suppose they could need to work together?
I think that's the logic. Depending on the impact location, etc, etc, the system may deploy the airbags that it sees fit or necessary. Just a made-up example, but in a front impact and no passenger, the passenger's dash airbag won't deploy or side curtain airbags in the rear. Or in a (passenger) side-impact, the steering wheel airbag probably doesn't deploy.
 
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I still have not had the recall done on my Dodge Pickup. I can only hope they wont go off, I dont want to be killed in a fender bender by the air bags.
By the way they keep sending me notices but everytime I try and get them done they dont have any available for 10 years now.
 
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The dealer told the guy none of the airbags will deploy because of the condition. They did happily quote him $2700 for a new driver's seat assembly/install to supposedly fix the problem.
Call me dubious, but this sounds like something a dealer would say. Regardless of truth.
 
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near Cincinnati, OH
And we don’t need any stinking seat belts. If we got in a crash we would be thrown clear, and we loved it! :D
Yep, and we didn't back over children or forget and leave babies in our back seats, and could even parallel park.

In a generation or two, cars will HAVE to be self driving because nobody will be able to figure out how. ;)
 
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How can you even ask this question and expect a 100% truthful answer?

The only ones who know are the engineers, programmers, and lawyers at the manufacturer. They tell the rest of us, rightfully, that if there's any error that lights the light, it needs to be addressed, "or else."

But they also tell us to disconnect the battery before working near the airbag, "or else" the bag will spontaneously pop.

The truth lies in the middle.

Would you fly a plane that doesn't meet its minimum equipment list?
 
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