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Airbag Light is on, but the system hasn't thrown any fault codes to read/reset!? I really need some smart MINI people to help!
It's a long post, I've give you a bit of a timeline to explain how I've gotten to this point, then hopefully the issue/question will be obvious.
* 10/02 MCS. 17% Pulley + CAI + MTH. Out of warranty.
* Passenger seat reclining mechanism ~stuffed for a year or so
* Lined up to buy some Sparcos
* Thought I'd remove the seat & have a little look-see. Didn't read NAM first. Turned on the accessories with the seat out. Airbag light came on, & stayed on [expectedly]!!!
* Was going to get the Sparcos installed at a workshop, & given they had an OBD-II scanner, I thought I'd just get them to reset the light after the install... so didn't visit the dealer in the interim.
* Workshop did the install, but when they hooked up the OBD-II scanner/resetter, there was NO CODE... airbag light is still on, but there is NO CODE. They tried telling it to reset codes anyways, but that did nothing. Even with both seats out, they couldn't get it to throw a fault code!?
* Since then we've... checked the battery voltage, OK. Disconnected the battery for half an hour, without effect [although it's not been back on the OBD2 thing, the light is still on]. Workshop checked the accessible fuses, but couldn't find one that seemed specificlly related to the SRS system.
* Workshop are summising that the airbag light coming on was a coincidence, & is actually related to an SRS ECU fault [or faulty SRS ECU]. I'm wondering whether tripping the airbag light initially has somehow confused the SRS ECU.
* Any thoughts?
* Do dealers have fancier computers that can access more info than a system a garage that works with MINIs somewhat regularly would have?
Not only am I confused, but I'm not confident that the dealer will know where to start in trying to sort this out, so I'd like to be well informed myself first.
Any light you can shed on the situation would be mighty helpful & mucho appreciated!
Thanks for the replies guys, however my understanding is that tripping the airbag circuit [in this case by leaving the seat out & cable disconnected with the power on], results in a Fault Code being registered, it's the clearing of this code that resets the airbag light.
I'd be interested to hear if people have first-hand experience of it working differently, but the workshop [& MINI] owner says he's seen & reset the code using his equipment before. The problem is that we don't have a Fault Code to reset!?
A friend had the same thing.. Had the seats out and turned on the MINI. Air bag light came on and stayed on. I tried with code reader and was not able to clear fault codes. However, he took it to the dealership and was able to get it cleared. code code readers only work on the "low level" OBDII fault codes. The higher codes 1000 & higher are specific to the manufacturer..
I think the air bags are on a "separate" system and not accessable with "normal" OBDII readers... I am sure they connect to the OBDII port to clear it.. But they have "special access" to resetting this error light.
Hope that helps,
04 MCS IB-W Premium Sport HK Lapis Leather F/R Fog lights Full Aero kit
Engine Mods: The usual and then some.. Suspension: Dialed in perfect.
Show Mods: Just enough.. And a few custom mods made by me.
Clearing and reading SRS or antilock brake codes will need a fancier code reader than the plain OBD reader. These are separate things that the manufacturers don't want just anyone to clear without thoroughly inspecting the systems to ensure these safety systems don't have a 'real' problem.
Any real auto shop doing serious repairs will have a code reader that includes anti lock brakes and airbag functions and will read, reset and give you a printout of everything it finds for a fee. I just had my airbag light reset and got the fully monty of stored codes for $50.
then clearing it won't do didly. The snap-on products aren't cheap but can do the stuff. That said, if there is no code and the light is on, it's a wiring problem. If the code gets cleared and the light comes on, there is a persistant problem like a short or an open, and the scanner should be able to tell what's up. Before you tear apart your car for this issue, I'd take it to someone (agh! Dealer maybe?) to scan the car, there is an extended warranty on our first gens due to an airbag issue... Maybe you can get a free scan.
I think I'll need to get the dealer to do atleast a quick diagnostic for starters.
The most confusing thing is this... Time-wise, the light only came on after I removed the passenger's seat & turned on the accessories, so it would have to be an unlucky coincidence for a separate fault to occur at exactly the same time. That said, the Snap-On system has never shown a fault code, even after the workshop removed both seats & turned the car over, ie. they couldn't trip a code if they tried!?
they probably don't have the one that "speaks" to your SRS system properly... The Snap-On system is a modular one.... IF you can't get a code with the connectors on the seat unplugged and the car on, it's the scanner.
Thanks for the feedback Matt & YD. A local mate also suggested the issue with the Snap-On scanner may have been related to a lack of OBD compliance in some of the earlier cars that came into Australia... I don't think OBD compliance for MINIs in in Australia was introduced until 04/05, but I'm certainly no expert.
The latest update is...
Went to the dealer & they ran a diagnostic [free of charge].
They COULD read the faults, which consisted of one for each of the front seat/side airbags & seatbelt pretensioners, so 4 in total. This was completely to be expected as at one stage we had both front seats out with the all connectors open, trying to trip a code.
The thing was that they couldn't clear/reset any of the codes, with the ECU simply refusing the command!? They couldn't shed a whole lot of light on why this was happening. They said they would know if the SRS ECU/module itself was faulty.
So the situation is this...
I have 2 stock seatbelt connections, so the seatbelt sensors should be A-OK!
I have 2 [soldered] 3.9Ohm-resistored airbag connectors, which I presume are wired up correctly [the workshop has done a number of similar installs using the very same resistors].
I have 4 codes are can't be reset & thus the airbag light is still on.
My thoughts, & the things that have got me puzzled...
I'm going to check all the resistor-work, but I would have thought the seatbelt pretensioner codes should have been resettable, even if one of the airbag circuits was still open/tripped?
I suppose the only other, last resort thing to do would be to re-fit the stock seats & see if the codes are resettable with the airbags actually connected to the circuits.