Trouble shooting

i own a 2005 chevy silverado 1500 crew cab with 100k mi. recently the service airbag sign appeared on the instument cluster and ocasionally i hear a squeeky like noise coming from the driverside airbag. i bought the truck back in 2005 with 7k mi and to my knowledge the airbags have never deployed. My service manual has very little information on airbags and if possible i would like to repair this myself.

Unfortunately, most code scanners are unable to pull airbag codes. Special ones are needed, and the only ones to pay that kind of money for them are body shops and dealers. And that special code scanner is the only way to know what the computer ‘sees’ as a problem. Other than that, your shooting in the dark, and it becomes nearly impossible to fix this problem.

That squeaking noise you hear as you turn the wheel may be from the clockspring.

You’ve at least got to have the problem diagnosed, to find out which part is bad. You could have a bad air bag module (computer), or it could be the air bag itself.

If you replace anything having to do with the airbag, absolutely, positively disconnect the neg battery cable and tie it down so it doesn’t spring back up again. You don’t wanna get your eyeballs blown out of their sockets.

You’ve gotta keep the steering wheel oriented the same way in relation to the column when you put it back on the column. Ditto for the clockspring. It’s a “wire” that carries current to the airbag. It’s underneath the horn on most cars, and it’s shaped like a spiral–that’s why they call it a clockspring.

With the steering wheel “level”–in the straight ahead position, that is, the clockspring is “centered”–halfway wound up. That way you can turn the steering wheel lock to lock without the clockspring running out of travel.

If the clockspring is all the way “wound up” after reinstallation, but the steering wheel is properly centered, you’ll rip the clockspring the moment you turn the steering wheel right–or left, (whichever direction will try to wind the clockspring up).