Car Advice

Smart Airbag Light

Most newer cars are equipped with smart air bags.  There are sensors that measure the weight of the person in the front passenger seat.  Based on the weight of the person or object, the air bag might or might not deploy.  Regarding this light, there is nothing you need do.  Should there be a small child in the front seat, the smart bag knows it.  If the weight in the front seat doesn’t meet the manufacturer’s standard established criteria, the smart air bag light will come on informing you the airbag is off on the passenger side of the vehicle.

The reason the airbag won’t deploy with a child in the front passenger seat is because the auto industry has learned that small children cannot with stand the activation (explosion) of an airbag as well as an adult.

Contained within an airbag is a substance very similar to gunpowder.  When activated, the “gun powder” like substance explodes the bag out of the dash at an extremely high speed.  The air inside of the bag immediately dissipates, it is present just long enough to provide a cushioning to the blow of an impact.

Typically, the seat occupant is thrust forward while the airbag deploys towards the rear so an impact takes place between the occupant and the airbag.  Because the air bag is deployed at such a high rate of speed, a child’s body simply can’t handle that kind of force.  Injury or death can occur as a result.  After learning this through statistics, auto manufacturers introduced smart airbags—which was quite a “smart” thing to do.

Questions or concerns about your smart airbag system, call our knowledgeable staff at Express Auto/RV Care Center  (928) 305-0767