We have a 1998 Z3 2.8 litre. The dash warning light for the airbags
came on Saturday, and is staying on solid. No flashing, no flickers.
The manual say that our mechaninc needs to look at the airbag system,
and I definitely do not want to mess with that, but is there something I
can check, to make sure it is not a false error message?
I don't think there is a lot you can do to be honest.. maybe check your
fuses.. BUT.. don't despair just yet.. Airbag lights SOMETIMES come on and
the system can simply be reset and then they seem to work properly again..
The SRS light will come on if the computer senses a problem and this
can sometimes/often be caused by bad wiring. On some models BMW has
replacement looms to fix the bad wiring. BMW will make a charge for
resetting the light so you won't want it to happen too often!
The airbag light is a Safety Of Flight item, it will not reset itself. It
assumes that once there is a problem, the problem exists until the
diagnostic tool is plugged in to reset it. The other systems, the ABS for
example, do a self diagnostic with each start up, and a problem in these
systems can go away on their own.
TO THE OP
Carefully observe the SRS light when you turn the ignition to ON. The light
will come on for a few seconds for the self test, then go out and
immediately come back on. This indicates the system checked itself, then
remembered that it had a problem the last time you drove it.
My aribag light is on in my car, and the problem is the seat switches, or
seatbelt switches -- I don't recall which one. I reset the light, and it
stayed off for a long time, but came back on again when the seat was moved
and somebody was sitting in it. My eductated guess is that your
seat/seatbelt switches are dirty or have a poor connection.
I'm not sure the seat mechanism itself will cause your error, my instinct is
that the seat switches or the seatbelt switch(es) will be your problem. I
have a friend with the scan tool, and we reset my Airbag Light, then got it
to come on again by sitting in the seat, then moving it with the positioning
switch. My passenger seat is more problematic than my driver seat, and dirt
and grime in the electircals is a known BMW issue. I have to wonder if your
issue is smiply a result of a poor contact or connection ...
I think mid 90's & beyond can use a code reader to determine state of Airbag
system. In my 92 it's a seperate system -- mine went off becuase battery got low
& it was confused -- After talking to the dealer (unhelpful really) and a few
mechanics, I went ahead and reset the light on the theory if something was
really wrong, it would re-arm itself.
The 60 for the srs reset tool was a lot cheaper than the 300 quoted from the
If you have a code reader -- I'd see if you pull a code off the system, if you
don't -- I'd look into getting one.
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The airbag light can only be reset through the computer. It comes on if
there is a problem ANYWHERE in the system. The most common problem spot is
in the connectors to the seats. The seats and seatbelts are innerconnected.
The diagnostic tool will tell you which seat is the offender, and the
diagnostic tool must be used to reset the light.
There can be other problems, but the diagnostic tool is required to find out
any of the possible trouble spots. The light can be reset without any
service work being performed, but the light might come back on in a few
days, or minutes, or not at all.
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