Auto Service Professional

OCT 2017

Magazine for the auto service professional

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52 | ASP October 2017 Technical Airbag deactivation tips How to avoid accidental deployment and prevent expense and personal injury By Mike Mavrigian A irbag deactivation procedures differ among makes/models/years, so al- ways refer to the appropriate service manual for the correct method. NEVER as- sume that any specific deactivation procedure is correct for all airbag-equipped vehicles. Listed here are a few examples of recom- mended procedures. Bear in mind that the procedures listed here are provided merely as examples of procedures. ALWAYS refer to the applicable factory service guidelines for the correct procedure for any given vehicle! 2008 Mazda5 Inspecting an airbag module using a tester can deploy the airbag module, which may cause serious injury. DO NOT use a tester to inspect an airbag module. Always use the on-board diagnostic function to diagnose the module for malfunctions. Before removing the airbag module or disconnecting the air bag module connector, always turn the ignition switch to the LOCK position, disconnect the negative battery cable (and isolate the cable end using an isola- tor such as electrical tape), then wait for one minute or more to allow the backup power supply of the SAS control module to deplete its stored power. 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee To avoid serious or fatal injury on vehicles equipped with air bags, disable the SRS (sup- plemental restraint system) before attempting any steering wheel, steering column, airbag, seat belt tensioner, impact sensor or instru- ment panel component diagnosis or service. Disconnect and isolate the battery negative (ground) cable, then wait at least two minutes Performing work on a vehicle equipped with an airbag safety restraint system can be dangerous, as an accidental airbag deployment can cost the shop a hefty sum if an airbag needs to be replaced due to unsafe service actions. There is also the very real risk of serious personal injury to the technician. Whenever diagnosing or servicing an airbag system, or working on the steering column area or SRS activation sen- sors, proper safety precautions must be followed to prevent accidental discharge. Airbags are intended to save lives and reduce injury. However, accidental deployment during service work can be devastating, considering the violence of both force and extreme sound level. Photo courtesy of Copley Collision, Copley, Ohio

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