10-Year Air bag Maintenance/Check ??

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Victor Roberts, Apr 12, 2006.

  1. My '97 OBW will be 10 years old this Fall. I seem to
    remember that the air bag systems need to be checked after
    10 years. Has Subaru extended this policy?

    As a separate question, how reliable are the air bags after
    10 years of being folded up in their small compartments and
    subjected to high temperatures when the car is parked in the

    While the car still runs fine and I love it, part of me is
    looking for a reason to sell it and get a new Forester :)
    Victor Roberts, Apr 12, 2006
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  2. Victor Roberts

    Al Guest

    Since you haven't used it in 10 years, what are the odds you'll need it
    in the future? I have a '71 Jag I've had since it was new. I've never
    hit anything or been hit by anything. The only crease I got was when it
    was parked at work in the parking lot and some dolt hit it and left no

    If you drive your car with your cortex instead of your brain stem, I
    doubt you will ever need it.

    Al, Apr 12, 2006
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  3. This was an industry thing ten years ago. Now some of the mfrs are backing
    off and saying "replace every 15 years." (There really isn't any practical
    inspection.) Personally, I think they are being too finicky. I'm not seeing
    reports of air bag failures due to age.

    Michael Pardee, Apr 13, 2006
  4. Victor Roberts

    Pop-N-Fresh Guest

    i had an airbag fail in a 93 dodge dynasty... caused my mother to have
    severe neck problems and she had to have surgery to correct it... she
    almost died from it
    Pop-N-Fresh, Apr 13, 2006
  5. Victor Roberts

    Body Roll Guest

    Some new souped up Toyotas reportedly would have a dual airbag system.
    Makes me wonder what would happen in case of a partial failure.
    Maybe the front seat occupants would twist in a new and interesting
    Was it ever tested by Lexus? On live people? :^)
    I'd personally be rather punched on the face with a single piece airbag
    risk serious spinal cord injuries.

    Anyhow, unless you live in New Mexico or on an street lined up with
    I think disabling airbags on old cars rather than risk them being
    triggered spontaneously is a worthwhile task to ponder.
    Body Roll, Apr 13, 2006
  6. I think you are describing an air bag that went off when it wasn't supposed
    to. That isn't a failure in the airbag but in the SRS controller. That has
    been a real problem, especially with certain makes/models/years. The airbag
    has failed if it doesn't deploy when it receives a "fire" signal from the

    Michael Pardee, Apr 13, 2006
  7. Victor Roberts

    Al Guest

    Recently there was an ad on TV showing a little old lady hitting the
    bumper of a car stopped at a crosswalk. She was slow moving and the
    driver beeped at her. When she hit the bumper, his airbags went off.
    Could this really happen, or does the car have to be moving at some
    minimum speed?

    BTW, I don't remember what the ad was all about, just the drama. So much
    for silly ads!

    Al, Apr 14, 2006
  8. Victor Roberts

    Pop-N-Fresh Guest

    the airbag didnt go off at all!
    we got hit in the side by an f350 and also hit a light post head on....
    neither set it off
    Pop-N-Fresh, Apr 14, 2006
  9. Not with modern controllers. They require a specific threshold of
    deceleration for a specified period of time, and in the proper direction, to
    activate. In addition, the car has to be going some minimum speed for them
    to activate. The controllers are designed for not activating if there is
    doubt, because the early ones were too touchy. They would even go off if the
    car was stationary, leading to all sorts of litigation.

    When I was in avionics we tested Emergency Locator Transmitters regularly.
    You could drop them on the floor and they wouldn't go off, but if you held
    them to your chest with both hands and pushed suddenly until your arms
    locked straight they would cry wolf. Same principle.

    Michael Pardee, Apr 15, 2006
  10. Victor Roberts

    Sheldon Guest

    This is an interesting thread. You know, air bags were originally installed
    as a "passive" restraint system because people are too stupid to use their
    seat belts. Remember the automatic seat belts in the older Legacy's? What
    a pain, and if you didn't buckle them completely I'm sure they did more harm
    than good.

    IMHO seat belts will do more to protect you in a crash than air bags, with
    the exception of the new side curtain air bags in a collision from the side.
    Sheldon, Apr 15, 2006
  11. Victor Roberts

    AS Guest

    Let's stir the subject:

    A female coworker, a few years ago, got disfigured when the airbag of
    her toyota tercel burnt her face and arms. When I saw her, 30 mins
    after the accident, I was furious about the airbag injuring her more
    than the crash itself.

    I believe in side airbags and seatbelts.

    You will probably find this link interesting:

    An old age friend of mine always says: follow the money trail, who
    benefits money wise from the use of airbags? Third stop light?
    AS, Apr 16, 2006
  12. IIRC the automatic seatbelts, and the airbags that replaced them, were the
    result of safety legislation passed by the US congress. The mandate was for
    a passive restraint system to be used as a supplement to seatbelts... thus
    the Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) designation. Personally, I thought
    SRS stood for Stupid Rider Saver.

    Michael Pardee, Apr 16, 2006
  13. Victor Roberts

    AS Guest

    I was referring to the manufacturers of airbag components; and keep in
    mind the lobbyists.
    AS, Apr 16, 2006
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