Chevrolet Airbag Light ON Troubleshooting Guide
Updated Friday Apr 20, 2018
If your Chevrolet airbag light comes on and won't turn off it is because the Safety Restraint System (SRS) has detected a problem with one of the components of the SRS or a short. A code is stored in the airbag control module. Any Chevrolet dealer, mechanic or yourself can read the airbag codes to find out why the airbag light is staying on. In this guide, you will find instructions on how to read and clear Chevrolet airbag codes.
Disconnecting the battery for a few hours and reconnecting it does not clear the airbag fault codes on Chevrolet vehicles. You will need a diagnostic scanner that can read and clear Chevrolet airbag codes. Any Level 2 OBD-II scanner that can communicate with Chevy vehicles can read and clear airbag light codes. Most Chevrolet airbag scan tools for DIYers run in the $100-$150 range and allow you to diagnose many systems not just airbag.
How to diagnose Chevrolet Airbag Light yourself
Below you will find instructions on how to read codes from the airbag module and clear the codes yourself. These instructions apply to Chevy Spark, Sonic, Bolt, Volt, Cruze, Malibu, Impala, Camaro, Corvette, City Express, Trax, Equinox, Traverse, Tahoe, Suburban, Colorado, Silverado, Sonic, Blazer, Astro, HHR, Uplander, Avalanche etc. Ensure that the scanner that you use works on the model and year of your Chevrolet.
What you will need
Under the dashboard of your Chevrolet, you will find the Onboard Diagnostic port also known as OBD-II port. All 1996 and newer Chevrolet have this port.
Plug your Chevrolet Airbag Scan Tool into the 16 pin OBD2 port. The port is trapezoid shape and allows the scanner to plug only in one direction.
Turn on the ignition. Do not start the engine. If your Chevrolet has a START/STOP button, press this button without pressing the brake pedal.
Allow your Chevrolet airbag scanner to power on. The scanner should turn on once the ignition is turned on or to position II. Once the scanner is fully powered, select Chevrolet from the menu.
Follow the prompting on the diagnostic scanner to select your model. Next manually select the AIRBAG SYSTEM. Scroll down to read codes and scan your Chevrolet for airbag fault codes. If the codes you retrieve are PRESENT or CURRENT status you will need to fix that problem before you can clear the airbag light.
If the status of the codes is STORED or PAST it is ok to clear the code. For example, an airbag fault code triggered by battery voltage can be erased once the battery has been recharged. After you clear Chevrolet airbag light, turn off the ignition then back on to determine if the airbag light has been reset.
Before you try to fix airbag problems yourself, it is recommended to call your dealer and check if there are any recalls for your car. Provide the dealer with your VIN number and they can verify if there any open recalls or not. Your dealer is responsible to fix the recall-related problems free of charge even if your car is out of warranty.
Frequently Asked Questions
- The first question that comes to mind when your airbag or SRS light turn on is: "Is it safe to drive with the airbag light on?"
Your car will run and drive fine if the airbag light is on. Vehicles without airbags or newer cars that don't have working airbag system increase the chance of fatal injuries when involved in accidents. When you get into an accident the airbag may or may not deploy and protect you and your passengers.
Having working airbags can mean the difference between life and death.
- Can I reset airbag light myself?
It is very easy and simple procedure but requires a scanner which typically costs you as much as it would cost to have your car diagnosed by the dealer one time. Disconnecting the battery will not reset the airbag light. Once the codes are read from the airbag module you will need to fix the problem that triggered the airbag light. If the code is PAST or STORED such as Low Battery Voltage, it can be cleared. If the code is PRESENT, you will need to fix it then reset the airbag light.
Posted by Mike. M. on Apr 21, 2018 @ 21:10 pm