What is SRS Light (Airbag Light) – How To Fix It?

Hey there, ever wondered what that mysterious “SRS Light” in your car dashboard means? Well, you’re not alone! SRS stands for “Supplemental Restraint System,” and it’s a crucial part of your vehicle’s safety features. In this article, we’ll dive into what the SRS Light is, why it might come on, and most importantly, how you can fix it. So, whether you’re a seasoned car enthusiast or a newbie behind the wheel, let’s unravel the mystery behind the SRS Light and ensure your ride stays safe and sound.

What Does the SRS Light Mean?

The SRS Light, short for Supplemental Restraint System Light, serves as a warning indicator in your car’s dashboard to alert you to potential issues with the vehicle’s safety airbag system. When it illuminates, it typically signifies a malfunction or fault within the airbag system, which could compromise its ability to deploy during an accident. Ignoring this warning could lead to a lack of protection in the event of a collision, so it’s essential to address the underlying problem promptly and ensure your car’s safety features are functioning as intended.

What Causes the SRS Light to Come On?

The SRS Light may illuminate for various reasons, signaling potential issues with your car’s safety airbag system. Some common causes include:

  • Faulty Sensors: Sensors throughout the vehicle monitor various parameters, such as seat occupancy, impact force, and vehicle speed. If any of these sensors malfunction or provide inconsistent data, the SRS Light may come on.
  • Wiring Issues: Damaged or corroded wiring in the SRS system can disrupt the communication between components, leading to a warning light activation.
  • Clockspring Malfunction: The clockspring is a coil of wire that connects the steering wheel to the SRS system. When it fails, it can trigger the SRS Light because it impedes the airbag’s ability to deploy in the steering wheel.
  • Faulty Airbag Modules: If the airbag control unit or individual airbag modules have internal faults, it can trigger the SRS Light.
  • Recent Repairs or Modifications: Sometimes, if a vehicle has recently undergone repairs or modifications that involve the SRS system, the light may illuminate due to incorrect installation or a failure to reset the system properly.
  • Low Battery Voltage: A weak or failing battery can disrupt the electrical system, including the SRS system. When voltage drops below a certain threshold, the SRS Light may come on.
  • Accidents or Impacts: In the event of a collision or even a strong impact, the SRS Light may activate due to the system’s sensitivity to sudden force.
  • Software or Calibration Issues: Sometimes, the SRS system may require recalibration or software updates to function correctly. Ignoring these updates can lead to the light coming on.

It’s crucial to address the cause of the SRS Light activation promptly, as driving with this light illuminated can compromise the safety of your vehicle in the event of an accident. A qualified mechanic or dealership service department can diagnose the issue and carry out the necessary repairs to ensure your SRS system functions as intended.

How Do You Reset the SRS Light?

Resetting the SRS Light should only be done after addressing and fixing the underlying issue that caused it to illuminate in the first place. Resetting the light without resolving the problem can compromise your vehicle’s safety. Here are the steps to reset the SRS Light once the issue has been resolved:

  • Ensure the Issue is Fixed: Before attempting to reset the SRS Light, make sure the underlying problem has been diagnosed and repaired by a qualified mechanic. This might involve replacing faulty components, fixing wiring issues, or addressing any other malfunction.
  • Disconnect the Battery: To reset the SRS Light, you’ll need to disconnect the car’s battery. Start by turning off the ignition and disconnecting the negative terminal of the battery. Be sure to have the radio security code if your car’s radio requires one, as it may reset as well.
  • Wait For 15-30 Minutes: Allow at least 15 to 30 minutes for the vehicle’s electrical system to discharge any residual power. This ensures that the airbag system is completely de-energized and safe to work on.
  • Reconnect the Battery: After the waiting period, reconnect the negative terminal of the battery and tighten it securely.
  • Turn the Ignition to the “On” Position: Turn the ignition key to the “On” position without starting the engine. This should power up the vehicle’s electrical system.
  • Check the SRS Light: The SRS Light should initially come on for a few seconds as a self-test, and then it should turn off. If it remains off, this indicates a successful reset. If it comes back on or blinks, there may still be an underlying issue, and you should consult a mechanic for further diagnosis.
  • Drive the Vehicle: Take a short test drive to ensure that the SRS Light remains off during normal driving conditions. If it stays off, your reset was successful.

Keep in mind that some vehicles may require specialized diagnostic tools to reset the SRS Light, and attempting to reset it manually may not work. Additionally, if the underlying problem was not properly fixed, the light may come back on. It’s always recommended to have a professional technician address and reset the SRS Light to ensure the safety and functionality of the airbag system.


In conclusion, understanding the SRS Light and knowing how to address it is essential for ensuring your vehicle’s safety on the road. While the light might seem like a mysterious warning, it’s there to protect you in the event of an accident. We’ve explored the common causes behind its illumination and how to reset it once the underlying issue is resolved. Remember, safety should always come first, and ignoring the SRS Light could have serious consequences. So, if you ever see that warning light in your car, don’t panic—take action, get it checked out, and drive with the peace of mind that your airbag system is ready to protect you when it matters most. Stay safe on the road!

SRS Light (Airbag Light) – FAQs

1. Can You Drive With the SRS Light On?

Ans: Driving with the SRS Light on is not advisable. The light indicates a potential issue with your car’s airbag system, and if it’s on, your airbags may not deploy correctly in the event of an accident. It’s crucial to have the problem diagnosed and fixed by a qualified mechanic before driving to ensure your vehicle’s safety features are fully functional. Ignoring the SRS Light could put your safety at risk.

2. How Much Does It Cost To Fix The SRS Light?

Ans: The cost to fix the SRS Light can vary depending on the underlying issue. Simple problems like sensor replacements or minor wiring repairs may cost a few hundred dollars, while more complex issues such as airbag module replacements can be more expensive, ranging from several hundred to over a thousand dollars. Diagnostic fees and labor costs from a professional mechanic or dealership should also be considered. It’s essential to get a proper diagnosis to determine the exact cost of the repair.

3. Will airbags deploy if the SRS light is on?

Ans: If the SRS (Supplemental Restraint System) light is on, it signifies a problem within the airbag system, which can impact the airbags’ proper functionality. In many cases, if the SRS light is illuminated, the airbags may not deploy as intended in the event of a collision. To ensure your safety, it’s crucial to address and resolve the issue indicated by the SRS light before assuming that the airbags will function properly. Ignoring the warning light can put you at risk during an accident.

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