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1996 Park Avenue Airbag Light

The airbag light stays on and the car will not pass inspection. I’ve looked online and haven’t found much information on a car that old. I tried to reset it by disconnecting the battery but that didn’t work. I’m wondering if there is a sensor somewhere or if I can use my OBDI adapter to reset it. Any ideas on how to reset this light short of “taking it to a professional” or removing the bulb (which I have considered given the fact the car is a fossil) would be appreciated.

It is a 96, it should be OBD2. That said, the reader you need is more than a simple code reader. You need a reader that can capture the airbag codes. If you can’t buy or borrow one, you will need a professional with the right tools. Sorry.

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If you remove the bulb, then it won’t come on for the bulb test when you turn the key to ON, and you’ll also fail the inspection.

You’re going to have to get it fixed.

Hey, thanks, My reader does say OBD II. It is read by an app on my phone called Torque.

I was wondering about that too. Thanks.

Torque might have an extra cost app after you buy the Pro version that may allow younto read the airbag codes. You will still have to fix whatever set the light.

So what triggers the light? Could a sensor be bad? Worse case, if you know, what would it cost? This car is a fossil but in very good condition. I appreciate your responses!

Depend on the code. Could be a broken wire, bad sensor or similar. Worst case is probably not the cost but the lack of repair parts.

OK, I can see you are way ahead of me on this. Can my OBDI II read the code. Please excuse me for not completely understanding this. If this were your car, what would you do?

Not if you have the free version

I would pay to have the codes read (if I could not read them myself), have the problem diagnosed and then decide what to do.

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You have been very helpful with this problem and I sincerely appreciate you sticking with me. I am stingy but do have money to fix it, and the old car is in very good condition. Thank you very much!

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Here’s some questions nobody’s yet asked, as far as I know . . .

Has the car ever been wrecked and/or in an accident?

What I’m getting at is this . . .

Any chance the warning light’s on because an airbag and/or electronic tensioning retractor has in fact deployed . . . ?!

Good point, and thanks. No, the car has never been in a collision. I took it in for an evaluation and the SRS Code says the passenger side bag is bad. At this point, what Mustangman said about parts is playing out, although I see some options on ebay. Thanks again for your response.

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There’s a chance you don’t need to replace the actual passenger airbag, but only the connector known as the “squib”

It’s clear you don’t want to pay for diagnosis

However . . . a savvy mechanic armed with the factory trouble tree and wiring diagram(s) should be able to properly diagnose this in short order

And what if he determines that you don’t in fact have to scour the ends of the for an unobtainable part, but instead just need to fix some broken wire(s) or splice in a new squib . . . ?!

I suspect that the fault reads; Open circuit in passenger airbag squib.

I have also seen many squib connector problems, there are sometimes replacement connectors available. Unplugging and reconnecting the airbag connector will sometimes temporarily restore the connection.

To offer clarification, the squib is the ignition device inside the airbag inflator cylinder, not the connector.

There is a rumor that salvage yards cannot sell airbag components however if you check LKQ you will find a dozen passenger airbags for your vehicle offered via their network of associated salvage yards for $55 to $62.

There are also companies that offer used and refurbished airbag parts;

Interesting. Had I known about the “squib”, I would have attempted to locate and fix it myself. I have taken the car for a diagnostic and yesterday, he indicted the passenger airbag. He told me the part availability was questionable. I found a few on ebay and the post by Nevada_545 pointed to LKQ, where I found the part too. I am supposed to get a call today. Thanks for your input - - that was very helpful.

Never heard of LKQ but they sure do have the part! I wish I knew where that squib was located - - I’d be right at it! Thank you very much for your response.

The local “you pull it” yard here absolutely refuses to sell any used airbags under any circumstances, and has signs to this effect where you enter. They would rather crush the cars with the airbags intact than let customers buy them. Of course, they claim it’s due to “safety reasons” and because they “care about the customer”, but anyone who would be considering a used airbag either can’t afford a new one, or cannot obtain one because the part is discontinued.

The squib is inside the airbag cylinder, it is not serviceable. The squib is the ignition device for the propellant. The airbag control module monitors the squib circuits to insure they are not disconnected or shorted.

The shop I took the car to just called and said they won’t buy the part from LKQ even though they deal with them. He said if I buy the part, they will install it but will double the labor if it does not work. He suggested I call the state police to see if I can get an exemption due to lack of parts. How hard is that airbag to replace? Is it something a person with average mechanical skills can accomplish? I’m not sure where to go from here.