Transportation is a mandatory thing in our daily life. And many people love to use their car as their primary vehicle. And the accident is one major disadvantage of this part of our everyday life. For this reason, almost every car uses an airbag for safety purposes. This inflatable cushion attaches to the car, and it protects occupants from hitting the car object outside of the vehicle during an accident or collision. And sometimes, you need to change a faulty airbag for safety reasons. This article contains much more information about changing the airbag about the budget.
What is this car airbag?
The airbag is mainly used for safety reasons. This device works in tandem and attaches to seat belts to protect the car driver and passengers of a vehicle’s upper and head side in any collision or any event of a frontal or side-impact crash. This airbag is also known as Supplementary Restraint System or SRS. According to IIHS or the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, This SRS also proves that it saves lives. 52% of car drivers can save from a frontal collision because of an airbag combined with a seat belt.
In 1998, the airbag came with a passenger’s car to prevent frontal collision damage. After that, in 1999, it also attached pickups, SUVs, and vans. These days, side airbags are also available in many cars. This mainly depends on the model of your vehicle and the slandered package of the manufacturer. If it shows an airbag warning light, you can reset it by following simple steps.
How does the airbag work?
If you are new to the world of the car, then you don’t know how the airbag works and why it is needed. In the event of a moderate to severe accident, an airbag is rapidly inflated with the help of a controlled explosion. Then it deflates when it comes into contact with a passenger’s head or body. There is an impact sensor attached to the car. It detects collisions, mainly used to transform a decrease in acceleration into an electrical signal. This signal is sent to the car system’s electrical control module or ECU. The computer of the vehicle instructs to deploy the airbag.
In a collision, a sudden stop can cause the driver and passengers serious injury. This happens only with the resistance to change in motion, like changing the direction of movement or speed. In this event, the seat belt also gives you great help. This helps restrain the driver’s body, but you need something to save the head to keep it from colliding with the windshield or dashboard. And there attach the airbag to prevent any significant accidents from happening. There is also a secondary airbag attached to different parts of the car to save the other part of the body, and also it helps other passengers of the vehicle.
The airbag system comes with some essential components. Those are:
- Driver and passenger airbags are located at the steering wheel, dash, and sometimes in the door and seat.
- Impact sensor,
- Warning light of SRS,
- Passenger seat belt,
- Pyrotechnic inflator.
- Pretensioner for seatbelts.
All these elements are interconnected with each other for the airbag system. Which deploy damages typically all connected components like the airbag itself, crash sensor, clock spring, seat belt pretensioners, etc. sometimes, the electrical control module also needs to be replaced or reset for these purposes.
The average budget for replacing or repairing any deployed airbag
The repair or replacement cost of the airbag is also connected with all the system components. And it’s tough to give an exact value to this work. Because this cost depends on many factors like the model of the car, the year and the make, location and number of airbags, and a number of the other related parts like the dashboard, airbag computer, springs, impact sensors, instrument panel, steering wheel, etc. Additionally, this costs the labor expense and time also attached to the budget. It’s a genuine factor that an airbag replacement cost of a new and upgraded car is more expensive than any old age or vehicle.
With all these conditions above, the total cost of airbag replacement from any professional place can start from $1,000 to over $5,000 without labor costs. The driver-side airbag can cost $150 to $600, and it also depends on how many bags you want to install. The passenger-side airbag is more costly than the driver-side. It will cost at least $300 to $800. Some cars also have knee airbags and side curtains available, but these are not as common as the driver or passengers’ airbags. For this side, the cost also remains around the same as passenger airbags, but it may differ depending on the model and size of the airbag used in the car.
The vehicle seatbelt pretensioner will need to be repaired or replaced after every deployment. It needs to pay between %80 to $120 to repair a seatbelt pretensioner, and it needs more if it needs to return with a new component. At the last stage of repair, sometime the ECU or Electrical Control Module will need to be reset, and it costs around %50 to $150. It will cost more if the ECU is broken and needs to be replaced with a new one. It starts from $400 and goes up to $1200. The car auto insurance can usually cover the expense of replacing airbags.
Where do you find the airbag component?
Now you got confused with an extensive list of airbag change components. That’s why I’ll suggest the best option to repair this type of problem. The best and first places that have all elements of your airbag system installed on your car are certified car dealerships, auto body shops, or auto repair shops. You also find some shops specializing in airbags nowadays. If you are tight on budget, the cheapest option is an online retailer. But there is a disadvantage on this side. It gives a limited time warranty than the market. You need to avoid buying a counterfeit airbag as it can have dire consequences, ranging from deploying too late in an impact to opening metal shrapnel from the airbag after it deploys. And if you need to change the ECU, you also find it on the online retailer.
But before buying from any store, first, know about their product and product reviews from other customers. It can assure you of the best and most original product. Don’t buy this kind of sensitive product from any online retailer without any review.
The airbag was installed for safety purposes. So, it’s mandatory to hire a professional technician to attach the replacement airbag rather than try it by yourself. Airbags can’t be used after they are used once. This airbag can deploy accidentally during installation or removal, and that can cause any severe injury. That’s why my suggestion is to get help from a professional to install it yourself.
If the passenger is 13 years old or younger, less than 5′ tall, and sitting less than 10″ or has any medical condition, you need to install an on/off switch for the passenger airbag in the vehicle. In this particular case, the airbag’s benefits can be outweighed by accident, as the size and air pressure in the airbag could inflict any serious injury on the passenger of the vehicle.
An airbag is an essential part of every car because it can save you from any massive accident during any collision. But you can use the airbag just once, and the cost of replacement or repair can be various. The budget depends on which airbag needs to be changed and how many components are damaged and need to be repaired. In total it cost about $1000 or more than that. From static, we see that from 1987 to 2017, the airbag saved more than 50,000 people from many massive collisions. So you realize the importance of this airbag. And life is more important than money. So try to replace or repair the airbag after it is used. And don’t try to change it at your home. This is a safety issue, so get help from a professional.
Can insurance cover the cost of the replacement of the airbag?
In most situations, the insurance covers the replacement cost of your deployed airbags. But sometimes, this repair is costly, and insurance companies prefer to take the total vehicle instead of bearing the repair cost. It depends on your luck.
Can I replace the airbag by myself?
It’s not recommended. Because changing the airbag is very complex work and related to safety issues. I suggest you not do it at your garage and get help from a professional.
Is replacing the airbag expensive?
This condition depends on how damaged your car is and the model of the vehicle. The new and updated car airbag change cost is much more than any old car. And if you end up damaging other airbag components, then the replacement cost is higher than you thought.