Last post on Jul 27, 2009 at 3:24 PM
You are in the Subaru Forester
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Subaru Forester, Car Safety, Wagon
#1 of 25 Passenger Air Bag Occupancy Sensor
Jul 09, 2007 (1:06 pm)
We test drove a Forester the other day and when we rouded curves.. the passenger air bag OFF light would come on .. So my analysis is that my 100 lb wife is shifting in the seat on the curves and fooling the sensors.. There are supposedly 4 in the 4 corners of the seat.. so I would think the weight would increase on some and decrease in others.. but still overall, it would think someone of enough mass is there.
If we were to get in an accident while rouding the corner (which I would think is a popular mode of accidents).. she would go thru the windshield ?
Can this really be how its supposed to work ? Is there a way to make it STAY ON no matter what it thinks ?
i had read to learn about the sensors but it does not talk about any adjustments ..
#2 of 25 Re: Passenger Air Bag Occupancy Sensor [vtkahns]
Jul 09, 2007 (1:19 pm)
If we were to get in an accident while rounding the corner (which I would think is a popular mode of accidents).. she would go thru the windshield ?
You know I never thought about this but my wife only weighs 36 kilos! The airbag might kill her if it went off, if it worked at all! I know short people who don't weigh much are more likely to be injured by airbags.
I read that sometime ago.
#3 of 25 Re: Passenger Air Bag Occupancy Sensor [stevecebu]
Jul 10, 2007 (9:55 am)
Our van is the opposite - people in the 2nd row rest their legs on the flat-folding front seat and it complains that the front seat belt is not on.
#4 of 25 Re: Passenger Air Bag Occupancy Sensor [vtkahns]
Jul 10, 2007 (2:52 pm)
Well, I doubt she would go through the windshield unless she were not wearing her seatbelt. Honestly, for someone that light, it might be better for it not to employ. I think the sensor only affects the dash-mounted airbag, so the side and curtain airbags would still employ to protect her from side impacts.
Can anyone confirm that is accurate?
#5 of 25 Re: Passenger Air Bag Occupancy Sensor [xwesx]
Jul 11, 2007 (5:37 am)
Some vehicles have multi-stage air bags that deploy with less force when they sense a smaller occupant (less weight) on the seat.
#6 of 25 FRUSTRATION!!!!
Oct 25, 2007 (7:05 pm)
I made a formal complaint to the NHTSA.gov today. I URGE YOU ALL to make your complaints formal and your voice HEARD. I have been on the phone sick w/ SOA, and want some resolve. My complaint was as follows:
Since purchasing my vehicle brand new on 7/4/05, the front passenger occupant detection system fails to activate the front airbag for passengers who are both larger and heavier than the purported cutoff of 80-pound children. The passenger is 5'3", 105lbs, yet the airbag light goes to the "off" position intermittently despite the passenger sitting straight. The airbag also sometimes fails to arm upon start up of the car, and will remain "off" for more than 15 minutes while the car is moving. The car was also involved in a safety campaign, in which my passenger seat wiring was already checked by the dealer and found to be routed properly, which may have affected the airbag if routed improperly. Thus, the wiring is a non-issue. The fault is in the passenger sensing equipment. Attempts to bring the car to the dealer to be checked with diagnostic equipment, ended in being told that the system is "working as designed". I contacted Subaru Corporate and local dealer on 10/18/07, who told me that nothing can be done to fix/change the situation, as the system cannot be adjusted, nor do they perceive a problem with the system. I already explained to Subaru that a number of other known owners of 06-08 Forester models have the same problem, and that 130lb passengers still have the same problem. I have concluded that while the intent of Subaru's design was good, the design is flawed, as the sensor pad is not sensitive enough for many passengers, and the intermittent-nature of the sensor is quite dangerous should a frontal-impact occur. This problem has existed on my car for over a year in which I started taking notice, and there is no known fix, nor have I been told that Subaru is admitting to a problem or seeking a solution. This is a big liability and safety concern of mine, and hope to find some resolution.
I have been told that the same sensor system is used in all 06-08 imprezas, 06-08 foresters, and the current generation legacy. Spread the word, everyone please make a complaint to NHTSA.gov! Thanks for your support.
#7 of 25 118 post thread for your info:
Oct 25, 2007 (7:10 pm)
If you have this problem, you're definitely not alone... I am part of a subaru forester owner's forum. Please read through when you have time, to share the journey of me and some others.
#8 of 25 Re: Airbags
Oct 25, 2007 (7:36 pm)
It's just my personal opinion but if you're properly belted in, a frontal impact airbag offers limited added protection(however, I can see real value in side impact airbags). So while I agree that Subaru should ensure that the passenger seat airbag works as advertised, I don't see it as a huge safety concern.
Oct 25, 2007 (7:40 pm)
I'm not sure if it's the case, but it may be that if the sensor is in the "off" position, neither the front, or the side airbag may work. In that cased you're screwed.
#10 of 25 Re: my worry [davebee1]
Oct 25, 2007 (8:14 pm)
I'm fairly certain that the side airbags aren't passenger dependent. The reason the front one is, is due to the danger of the airbag causing more damage to the occupant than the actual accident. Yet another reason I don't get too excited about them.