The airbag system is a crucial part of the car's safety system. The car's airbag system can mean the difference between survival and serious injury or death in a crash situation. The airbag system is a seriously clever and complex piece of kit which is made up of various components, which work together with the airbag control unit ECU, a highly advanced computerized part, to ensure this crucial safety device functions effectively.
The airbag control unit ECU is located in the front section of the car and can be found in various places, such as underneath the passenger or driver seat or hidden in the casing beneath the radio, for example.
The car's airbag system has airbag sensors which are electronic sensors that detect when the vehicle has crashed and which area is damaged. These advanced sensors monitor and measure factors such as brake pressure, wheel speed and which seats are occupied and sends this information to the airbag control unit ECU which is the control center of the airbag system. The airbag control unit ECU will determine if it needs to implement the activation of airbags as well as deciding if functions such as automatic seat belt and door lock are put into place.
The airbag control unit ECU will regularly carry out routine diagnostic checks of the air bag system. If the airbag control unit ECU picks up a fault, the air bag system warning light will illuminate on the dashboard. Once the airbag system warning light illuminates, the system becomes inactive, which means if you have a crash the airbags will not work, so it is important to address the problem as soon as possible. A common problem with the airbag control unit ECU is water damage, particularly if it is situated underneath one of the front seats, which can lead to corrosion over time or cause the airbag control unit ECU to fail as a result of a short circuit. If the airbag control unit ECU is broken or damaged by water, for instance, you will need to replace it because the airbag system will not function properly without it. This means the airbags will not inflate properly in a crash, and left unaddressed could also lead to other electrical and airbag system failures. If any of the airbags are activated, then the airbag control unit ECU will need to be replaced or reset by a professional.