Troubleshooting Volvo SRS Airbag Light Stays On

Vehicle:   Volvo
Difficulty: ⚫⚫⚫⚪⚪
DIY Cost: $50-$200
Est. Time: 30 min

Volvo SRS Airbag service urgent comes on when the Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) detects a problem such as low battery voltage or a defective passenger occupancy sensor. 

In this article, you will become familiar with common problems that cause Volvo SRS Airbag warning message and how to reset Volvo SRS Airbag warning light yourself using a Volvo airbag scanner

What does Volvo Airbag Light and SRS Service Urgent Mean?

Volvo SRS Airbag Service Urgent

If you see SRS airbag service urgent on the dashboard, there is a problem with the airbag system.

The airbags of your Volvo may not deploy if you get in an accident.

Even though Volvos are some of the safest cars on the road, with an SRS airbag warning message on the dashboard, the car is not going to be as safe.

How to Reset / Diagnose Volvo Airbag Light

To find out why your Volvo airbag light is staying on, use a Volvo Airbag Scanner to read the SRS module's fault codes. Do not use a generic scanner. Generic OBD-II scanners are not able to retrieve airbag codes. 

  1. Locate the OBD-II port under the dashboard. Connect your Volvo scanner.obd ii port airbag diagnostic
  2. Turn on the ignition but do not start the engine.Volvo airbag srs light on igntion on
  3. Select Volvo and the correct model from the menu.
  4. Select Control Units, then scroll to SRS Control Unit. 
  5. Next select Read Codes. Write down all the codes.
  6. To clear the SRS light, fix the problems found in step 5. Then select Clear Codes. 

These steps will help you diagnose and reset Volvo SRS airbag service urgent message. Airbag light can be reset if there are no current issues with the SRS system. For example, the light was triggered because you disconnected an airbag wire, replaced the radio, or had a dead battery. Such fault codes are in STORED status and can be cleared.

If there is an airbag problem that is PRESENT, you can't reset it. Even if you try the SRS airbag, an urgent warning will come back immediately after restarting the car.

Common Problems

SRS malfunctions are often caused by low battery voltage or dead battery, working on the electrical system without disconnecting the battery, damaged clock spring, or SRS control unit issues.

Disconnecting Airbag Wires

volvo sras light on due to disconnecting radio stereo

Disconnecting components such as stereo, seat, airbag, a sensor of the airbag system without disconnecting the battery is one of the most common reasons that Volvo SRS warning comes up.

The good news is that you don't need to take the car to the dealer to reset the SRS Airbag warning message. While you can't reset airbag warnings with a generic OBD2 scanner or disconnect the battery, you can use a Volvo scanner to clear the airbag module's fault code.

Rember to always disconnect the battery when you work on the electrical system.

Instrument Cluster / DIM

Volvo DIM problem triggers srs airbag light  XC70, V70, S60, S40, V40, V50, XC60, XC90, S60, S70, S80, C30  240

The Driver Information Module (DIM), which Volvo calls the instrument cluster, may fail. When DIM fails, an SRS airbag alert comes up. You will also notice intermittent electrical issues on the dashboard such as other warning lights, gauges not working, or speedometer not working.

You can learn more about this problem here: Volvo Instrument Cluster DIM Problems.

Previous Accident

volvo reseting crash data after accident

If your Volvo was involved in an accident, the airbag light might come on even if it is minor. An accident event will be stored in the SRS module. After a car accident, items such as seat belt tensioners, airbags deploy and will need to be replaced.

After you replace the airbags and seat belt tensioners, you will need to either replace the SRS module or reset it. Replacing the SRS module costs $1000+, but a less expensive fix would be to remove the SRS module from the center console and send it for repair to a specialist.

Check out these places that offer Volvo SRS Airbag module repair.

Dead Battery 

jump starting volvo triggers the srs airbag light

Volvo SRS airbag message can also come on when you replace the battery or jump-start the car if your battery died.

This is because the Volvo SRS module does not operate properly at low voltage. Therefore it stores a low voltage fault code in the SRS module, which triggers the SRS Airbag Service Urgent message. Codes related to the low battery can be cleared with a Volvo scanner.

See the instructions below on how to reset the Volvo airbag light.

Seat Occupant Weight Sensor (OWS)

Volvo seat mat sensor

An occupant weight sensor (OWS) is installed in the passenger seat cushion. It detects the weight of the passenger on the front seat. A passenger seat sensor is sometimes the culprit.

Another related problem that happens quite often is that the wires under the seat that connect to the passenger OWS sensor get damaged or unplugged.

Inspect the yellow connector under the passenger seat.

Seat belt buckle

Volvo seat belt buckle triggers airbag light

The seat belt buckle has a small sensor that detects if you are using the seat belt or not. If the wires to the seat belt sensor (which is nothing more than a micro-switch) get disconnected, you will get a fault code that points to an open circuit to the seat belt buckle. You can use a multimeter to test the switches in the seat belt buckle.

SRS Module

Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) control module is located under the center console behind the shifter. It can fail especially if exposed to liquid. Not a very common issue.

Software Issue

The SRS software may need to be updated. A Volvo dealer can only perform this. Call your Volvo dealer and ask if there is a recall for the airbag module or a software update. Depending on how old your Volvo is, you may get the update free of charge.

SIPS Unit

Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) is a passive safety system in Volvo designed to protect against injury in a side collision. Even though it is rare, the SIPS unit can fail and may need to be replaced.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will I fail the state inspection with the airbag light on?

It depends on the states. Several states such as Utah will fail you if the airbag light is on. Other states such as Maryland will pass a safety emission even if the SRS light is on.

Can I clear the Volvo airbag light by disconnecting the battery?

No. Disconnection the battery will not reset Volvo airbag light.

Volvo Airbag Codes

There are hundreds of possible fault codes that can trigger Volvo airbag light and warning to come up.

Here are a few common Volvo airbag fault codes:

Show
  • CEM-2FA2 or SRS-00D0 means the driver seat belt buckle is defective. It may be a loose wire or the switch in the buckle.
  • CEM 2FA5 or SRS 00D1 Means the passenger seat belt buckle is defective.
  • SRS-0165 Rear left side impact sensor
  • SRS-010F Control module
  • SRS-010D Control module
  • SRS-0210 Front right front impact sensor
  • SRS-0220 CAN signal
  • SRS-0231 Switch for the passenger airbag
  • SRS-0250 Occupant weight sensor (OWS)
  • SRS-B000112 Driver Frontal Stage 1 Deployment Control. General Electrical Failures. Circuit short to battery
  • SRS-B00211B Left Curtain Deployment Control 1. General Electrical Failures. Circuit resistance above threshold
  • SRS-DD00 Control module communication

This article applies to all Volvo models, including XC70, V70, S60, S40, V40, V50, XC60, XC90, S60, S70, S80, C30.

By YOUCANIC Automotive Experts
Nov 2020

Comments