Airbag lamp on dashboard constantly on

Hello,
few days ago the Airbag lamp on the dashboard lit up and didn't go off after few seconds as usually. I'm guessing something is wrong with the airbag
system, but I'm a bit concerned as to what kind of expense I can expect if I take it to the service? I'm pretty much broke atm, so I can't really afford some expensive repairs :(
On the other hand, I have no idea as to what could've caused the problem. I didn't have an accident or anything like that, it's been pretty much just normal driving.
I'm also wondering could it be it's just a signal to have the airbag system checked (the car is A4, year 2000.)?
Thanks for the help!
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I would have it serviced.
How much would it cost to fix your face? Or how much is your life worth?

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The airbags saved my sister-in-law's life about 4 years ago. I think she suffered no major injuries too!
Fixing it can save yours too! Maybe a sensor or faulty grounding connection. Have someone scan the ECM for the trouble code(s).
Hmmm I wonder if you have an accident, you are injured, the airbags do not deploy and your insurance co. does not want to pay you anything for your injuries. They claim you operated an unsafe vehicle. hmmm
JMHO
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later,
dave
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dave AKA vwdoc1 wrote:

What happened before airbags were installed as standard equipment? What about all the cars out there that don't have airbags installed!!
I agree he should get it fixed though.
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The insurance on any car is weighted based on many things including it's safety features. If they aren't working the insurance company could weedle out of paying for injuries that were potentially caused or may have been made worse by the failure of the airbag system. Really depends on the insurance company.
Mike
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Mike wrote:

Thats true. I'd imagine most insurance companies would take a dim view of non-working safety equipment.
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message

Well, the other replies haven't been particularly helpful!
If your car has front seat belt tensioners (the bit the buckle clips into, near the transmission tunnel), then these are the usual suspects. Either the pyrotechnic "grabber" has failed (a relatively cheap item), or more usually, the electrical connector under the base of the seat has an open circuit. This can be either general electrical corrosion, or more often, the connector gets disturbed by rear passenger feet, stowing objects under the seat, or over-zealous vacuuming under the seat.
Unfortunately, you will need a proper diagnostic check, either main stealer, or a friend with VAG-COM (and your offering of a small case of beer ;-) ). A simple clearing of the stored fault codes is often enough to clear the airbag light.
Whatever you do, do NOT try to unplug and reconnect the under-seat connector, either with the ignition on, or with the battery connected, as this will throw another DTC error code, store it in the ECU, and still keep your airbag light on.
Whilst the airbag light is illuminated, ALL SRS functions will be disabled, irrespective of the "faulty" component, so please do get this checked out and sorted.
Rgds, Sean
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Thanks a bunch, this is all very usefull info. I suspect it might be the contact under the seat, since I sort of remember doing a very thorough cleaning of the car before the lamp went on :)
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Drazen Stojcic Buntovnik wrote:

You'll get a lot of postings here about what should be in principle be true, without a lot of real experience on the part of the authors, regarding the actual fault itself.
My small contribution: I got the airbag light after thumping the steering wheel in frustrating heavy traffic one morning. It persisted even after turning off the ignition and restarting.
Clearing the codes via the Bosch PC program (equal to but not the same as VAG-COM) at my indy had no effect. In this case, the mechanic removed the cowling to the steering wheel airbag, exposing the connecting wires, replaced them, then reset the fault codes via the PC. Seems there was an intermittent fault which was fixed by this simple action. This indy workshop is a team of ex-Audi dealer mechanics who started up their own business so their knowledge appears good. Given the risks for triggering the system by accident, I was happy for the experts to do this instead of me.
Conclusion - even if a fault light cannot be reset by software alone, the hardware fix required to clear the problem may be quite simple, so I'd always suggest going to a reputable indy (who has sufficient diagnostic tools and experience) to see if the problem is relatively simple and cheap to fix; you might be in for a pleasant surprise ...
/Robert (2001 A4 Avant 1,8 TS, 8D chassis)
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