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2001 Toyota 4Runner - Seats

I used to have a 2003 Toyota Camry, and the power seat was so uncomfortable for long drives that I purchased a seat cushion and a lumbar support pillow from a relax-your-back store. This was such a HUGE improvement that I have been using these in my 2001 Toyota 4Runner. I got to wondering the safety of this when recently a friend and his wife were in a near-fatal car accident that totaled their BMW. The friend was driving, and his air bag protected him. His wife, a very short and petit lady, was in the passenger seat sitting on a cushion to raise her up in the seat. Her airbag was not sensing that anyone was in the seat and did not go off. She suffered significant injuries, while he had only minor injuries.

So is my cushion and lumbar support negating the protection of my airbag? If so, is there any way to adjust the sensitivity of the seat sensor to remedy this issue?

Not likely

No, there is no adjustment.

Your friend’s problem with the passenger airbag would have been easily recognized if they had simply looked at the warning light that TELLS you if the car doesn’t sense someone in the seat. If the passenger airbags are disabled, and those are the ONLY ones that can be, a message will appear somewhere in the car.

The driver’s airbags (and the rest as well) are off if the SRS dash light is lit.

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