Chevrolet Repair Questions? Ask a Mechanic for Answers ASAP
Replacing the airbags is a fairly straightforward process; all you have to do there is unbolt the old deployed ones and bolt on the new ones. I am not sure about having to replace the SRS control module as part of the repair, but if you wish to do so I can look up the exact location of the module for you when I get to work tomorrow.
The seat belt retractors will also need to be replaced, they are not a repairable unit. Just like the airbags, the belt retractors contain a small inciendary charge that is ignited to force teh belts to retract just before the airbags are deployed. They are a one time use item just like the airbags and must be replaced once deployed. Not to worry though; this vehicle is now 6 years old and starting to show up in junk yards due to lack of maintenance and collision damage. As a result, if you call some local salvage yards in youra rea you should be able to purchase a couple of good used (non deployed) seat belt assemblies fairly inexpensively. Replacing these is also a fairly simple bolt-on process.
One caution here though: I took a look at the ebay listing for the parts you intend to purchase. The seller does not specify any return policy in the event there is a problem with one or more of the components. Airbag components are fairly touchy; when the module is powered up during vehicle starting, it monitors resistance through all of the attached circuits. If resistance is out of spec on any of them by as little as one ohm, it shuts the system down and turns on the airbag warning light. It is not uncommon on older vehicles for internal corrosion to start to develop that can result in the system not "proving out" during startup, thereby rendering the system inoperable. Being used parts, you really do not know their condition: they are obviously in good cosmetic shape but you relally do not know if they will be useable untill they are installed and you turn the key to start the vehicle. For this reason you may wish to clear up a return policy with the seller, pay by paypal or credit card to give you some recourse to be able to get your money back if there is a problem since the seller is 2000 miles away, or you may wish to check to see what these items sell for locally where you can deal face to face with the salvage yard.
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I will look up the control module location for you when I get to work in the morning.
I'll be glad to look up the SRS control module location for you; I am sure that is in my inormation system. I'll also see if ther is a system schematic for you, although your eally should not need to have one to jsut bolton a few damaged components (but you never know!)
Based on past experience, I am not sure if I have the R&R procedure for the passenger side airbag assembly; I have found on other models in teh past that for some reason the passenger side replacement procedure is often not in the system. Depending on where the screws are located, sometimes you ahe to remove teh upper dash trim panel to gain access. Not a complicated process, but a pain in the neck to locate all of teh screws sometimes. Manuals also do not usually show all of the screw locations. (if youa re an engineer with automotive experience, you might want to consider going into the field of writing repair manuals; there is a great need for improvement!)
I am sure this type of parts replacement is someting you can handle; all that should be needed is some basic hand tools. If you get everything assembled and the airbag light remains on however, you will likely need to take the vehicle in to a repair shop that has a Ford NGS scanner with the software to communicate with the SRS module to identify the problem. SRS modules (as do most other vehicle electronic modules these days) store fault codes and provide live data stream capability for quick identification of problem circuits, but the proper scanner and software is required to access this information. Chances are you will be just fine, but if you do encounter a problem at some point paying a little to have the circuit identified with the correct diagnostic equipment is money well spent since otherwise you really ahve no way of knowing what is wrong. You cannot ohm check a live airbag module for example, since the current flow from the ohmmeter can be enough to ignite it.
When working on an airbag system, always make sure the vehicle battery has been disconnected for at least 10 mins to give the capacitors in the SRS controller enough time to discharge; also, never cut, splice, or solder any SRS system wiring since the resultant change in resistance can throw the harness out of electrical specs. If an electrical connector or a wire is found to be at all damaged, replacing the setion of wiring harness containing the problem area is the professional way to repair the problem. On most vehicles, SRS system wiring is yellow in color and is usually labelled with harness tags.
Ok, time for a follow up on your question...
I discussed your vehicle with a Ford certified master technician in our shop, and he tells me that on older vehicles when the airbag deployed it would at the same time pop an internal fuse in the module so the module required replacement. However, he says that on a 2002 model year vehicle the module does not do this, so your present module should still be OK.
The SRS module is located under the center of the dash. If you remove the center lower trim panel, the module is located behind it.
Driver's side airbag replacement procedure:
WARNING:ALWAYS WEAR SAFETY GLASSES WHEN REPAIRING AN AIR BAG SUPPLEMENTAL RESTRAINT SYSTEM (SRS) VEHICLE AND WHEN HANDLING AN AIR BAG MODULE. THIS WILL REDUCE THE RISK OF INJURY IN THE EVENT OF AN ACCIDENTAL DEPLOYMENT. CARRY A LIVE AIR BAG MODULE WITH THE AIR BAG AND TRIM COVER POINTED AWAY FROM YOUR BODY. THIS WILL REDUCE THE RISK OF INJURY IN THE EVENT OF AN ACCIDENTAL DEPLOYMENT. DO NOT SET A LIVE AIR BAG MODULE DOWN WITH THE TRIM COVER FACE DOWN. THIS WILL REDUCE THE RISK OF INJURY IN THE EVENT OF AN ACCIDENTAL DEPLOYMENT. AFTER DEPLOYMENT, THE AIR BAG SURFACE CAN CONTAIN DEPOSITS OF SODIUM HYDROXIDE, A PRODUCT OF THE GAS GENERANT COMBUSTION THAT IS IRRITATING TO THE SKIN. WASH YOUR HANDS WITH SOAP AND WATER AFTERWARDS. NEVER PROBE THE CONNECTORS ON THE AIR BAG MODULE. DOING SO CAN RESULT IN AIR BAG DEPLOYMENT, WHICH CAN RESULT IN PERSONAL INJURY. AIR BAG MODULES WITH DISCOLORED OR DAMAGED TRIM COVERS MUST BE INSTALLED NEW, NOT REPAINTED.
Disconnect the battery ground cable and wait at least one minute
Passenger airbag replacement:
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WARNING:TO AVOID ACCIDENTAL DEPLOYMENT AND POSSIBLE PERSONAL INJURY, THE BACKUP POWER SUPPLY MUST BE DEPLETED BEFORE REPAIRING OR REPLACING ANY FRONT OR SIDE AIR BAG SUPPLEMENTAL RESTRAINT SYSTEM (SRS) COMPONENTS AND BEFORE SERVICING, REPLACING, ADJUSTING OR STRIKING COMPONENTS NEAR THE FRONT OR SIDE AIR BAG SENSORS, SUCH AS DOORS, INSTRUMENT PANEL, CONSOLE, DOOR LATCHES, STRIKERS, SEATS AND HOOD LATCHES. PLEASE REFER TO THE APPROPRIATE COMPONENT OR SYSTEM TO DETERMINE LOCATION OF THE FRONT AIR BAG SENSORS. THE SIDE AIR BAG SENSORS ARE LOCATED AT OR NEAR THE BASE OF THE B-PILLAR. TO DEPLETE THE BACKUP POWER SUPPLY ENERGY, DISCONNECT THE BATTERY GROUND CABLE AND WAIT AT LEAST ONE MINUTE. BE SURE TO DISCONNECT AUXILIARY BATTERIES AND POWER SUPPLIES (IF EQUIPPED
NOTE: The driver side is shown, the passenger side is similar.
Deactivate the supplemental restraint system (SRS). (disconnect module)
Remove the seat on the side with the affected safety belt retractor
Remove the three seat side trim panel attachment screws
Remove the two screws securing the lumbar adjuster control to the seat track riser
Disconnect the seat control switch electrical connector
Remove the screws and the bracket. NOTE: Observe the retainer bracket orientation