2007 Saturn Sky needs module for airbag recall

saturn

#1

Is GM ever going to make the module available for the airbag recall on my car, or do I part it out and move on. Can’t drive it, can’t inspect it, can’t renew the registration = boat anchor? scrap metal?


#2

GM doesn’t make Saturn’s any more plus the car is 11 years old, beyond the point where manufacturers have agree to supply parts. Why can’t you drive it? Why can’t it be registered? Have you tried getting a module from a wrecking yard to fix it?


#3

Thanks for responding, I know all that, thanks. And yes, I have tried. In this state, the airbag indicator on the dash renders the car a “failure” in inspection. Hence, it won’t pass inspection - and registration can’t be renewed without a passing inspection. I can drive it all I like, I just have to be ready to pay fines if stopped by the police. Not sure what happens if you are stopped more than once for that infraction, don’t really want to find out. Actually, in this county, you can’t legally even have a car that is not actively registered and inspected parked on your property, unless it is inside a garage. It is against the county code. So there’s that.
The part was a poor design to begin with, the Sky is a Frankenstein of Corrvette, Chevy, and Cadillac design components, and that part is always broken in the salvage ones I have found. There aren’t many Skys out there to begin with so you won’t find alot of them in salvage yards.

I did finally get hold of someone at the corporate level. They found the part I need at a location nearby. They can only sell the part to a dealership because after installation it has to be “calibrated” before it is functional. Because my car is “hot” meaning not drivable due to the recall, I should be able to get one of only 2 parts in stock. I spoke with a dealership and they have ordered the part and will perform the service for me next week, hopefully. At this point I am only cautiously optimistic, but we shall see.


#4

Nice looking boat anchor! Sounds like you will be hitting the road again, good luck.


#5

Thanks! I am hopeful, and yes it is a wonderful little car. That’s why i want to keep driving it.


#6

You keep referring to a module . . .

Are you talking about the airbag control module?

Or are you talking about an actual airbag . . . such as in the steering wheel or dashboard?

Airbags can be replaced without performing calibration

As far as airbag control modules, they may have to be flashed and configured, so that it knows what car it’s installed in, and how many airbags, tensioners, etc are present

I admit I haven’t been keeping up with the takata airbag adventure in awhile . . . but I believe airbag control modules were never part of the recall, only actual airbags


#7

No matter the part and no matter the dealer, they do not keep parts in stock for even newer cars forever. Ten years is the max and even at that age many parts are long dead inventory.

I needed a part once for a 7 year old Ford and it simply could not be had. It was considered obsolete already.
At one time back in the late 80s Subaru obsoleted a lot of parts on cars that were only 5 years old.
That puts the dealer in the precarious position of dealing with an upset customer who is blaming them for not having that part or for not being able to get it.

Per db4690, I hope the diagnosis is correct and you end up with the right part.


#8

The recall remedy for the passenger airbag classification system (Passenger seat sensor) became available February 22, 2018 however the parts supply may be limited, sometimes customers are placed on a waiting list. There are some recalls in which dealers were only supplied with two units per week.


#9

I too like the Sky, wish the GM bean counters would bring it back as a Buick!
Only sensible alternative is a Miata.


#10

The GM platform was shared by Saturn (gone), Pontiac (gone) and Opel (sold) and didn’t sell well so you likely will never see it again.


#11

no its the sensing unit that detects weight in the passenger seat. It requires replacing the entire seat cushion. The airbag will not deploy without it.


#12

The passenger seat sensor was a common failure among several GM platforms of that era. I haven’t seen one in a while. I thought most had been repaired already. Hope you get it on the road soon. Fun little cars to drive.


#13

Thanks for clarifying . . .

Yes, replacing the component that you’ve now clearly identified does require calibration, and that involves using a professional level scan tool, and depending on the brand and model, a set of calibrated weights


#14

Hopefully you’ve got the problem resolved. If not, then another avenue you might try is getting the faulty module repaired. There are several outfits who fix electronic car modules. One of the biggest is called “Module Master” as I recall. While they may not work on that particular module, they may be able to tell you who does, so if push comes to shove, worth a call probably.


#15

this one was repaired once before, but with the same fragile part, so of course it failed again. Thanks, it is a fun little car to drive!


#16

Wasn’t the Pontiac Solstice essentially the same car? I do occasionally see a Solstice around my
town, but I have only seen one Saturn Sky. Perhaps Pontiac Solstice parts might work on the Saturn Sky.
I really like the looks of the Saturn Sky. I don’t understand why they weren’t more popular.


#17

Yes, essentially the same car but, IMHO, the Sky had much better styling.


#18

I googled it. There s an inexpensive plug and play bypass available from a company in Ireland. It eliminates the weight sensing feature, and the passenger airbag is always “armed”. You can’t put a small person in that seat, but the car would pass inspection. Airbag 360.com


#19

That is a good solution. Most older cars were designed this way, anyways. In an impact, both front airbags go off together, even if no one is sitting in the passenger seat.


#20

It is frustrating that one might have to junk a car, especially a desirable and fun to drive one, over some dumb electronic module. At least it sounds like you have this solved and someone has suggested an electronic bypass or workaround for the problem.

I work on computers for a living and commonly see this type of problem. Many phones are considered obsolete and no longer supported after 3 years. You are lucky to have any support after 10 years on any computer, not that many keep one that long. I can usually find parts but sometimes it will cost more than just replacing it so it makes sense to just replace it with a newer and better model for the same price, rather than fix the old one. Another issue is that most operating systems lose support after 10 years from their initial release. The system may still work but newly discovered security holes will no longer be patched, leaving everything vulnerable. This is a HUGE problem and is the reason so many hacks occur. I still commonly see people running Windows XP and trying to use them online for banking and such. NO!!!

Windows 7 only has support until Jan 2020 and then it will be obsolete. I tell everyone to make the jump to Windows 10 sooner than later.

This makes more sense with computers and phones but not so much with cars. I don’t like these modern infotainment systems where everything is controlled through the dash board and if that fails, it can cost thousands to fix. I like the old replaceable radios and such and feel that modern touch screens are more distracting and harder to use than the old analog controls or push buttons.