Question about Hyundai Elantra

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My recently bought hyundai 2003 elantra GLS has airbag light on. It runs without any problem though. I wonder if I can identify if it is a sensor problem or is that real airbag issue. I know airbag is a huge thing, but I would like to know a bit more before I take it to dealer to pay two hours just to diagonalize. A friend told me that "There have been very, VERY few problems with the 2003 Elantra Supplemental Restraint System (AIRBAG). It's a good chance that it just a 'History" code that may have occured during a low battery voltage condition. " Is that true? My battery has been dead and recharged and replaced before. It didn't fix the light problem. Thank you!

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  • leerobin May 18, 2010

    I am hoping someone can give me a detailed guide as to 1)where can I find OBD 2 to use; and 2)if it is the sensor, how do I replace it (step-by-step). Thanks!

  • leerobin May 18, 2010

    Thanks! I'll do that!

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2 Answers

The best thing to do is drive it down to your local auto parts store and borrow (for free) there on board diagnostics (OBD II) scanner tool. Hook this tool up underneath the drivers side steering wheel and scan your vehicles computer for error codes. Write these codes (if any) down on paper and then look in the back of a Haynes repair manual. In the back of that Haynes manual it will have the compete list of trouble codes. Match your code up with the code in the book and this will pinpoint the exact problem with your airbag system. After the tool scans your vehicles computer you can use the tool to reset all error codes and your airbag light will go off. If it stays off then you DON'T have a problem with your airbag system. If it comes back on then at least you will have the trouble code written down to research what sensor has failed.

Posted on May 18, 2010

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  • Master
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What your friend told you is very true. When this happens on the Elantras you need to reset the computer. But sometimes when the car battery dies or operated on low voltage, it can cause sensor's to go bad. I would first say to try and reset the computer with a OBD 2, if that doesnt fix your issue then you will need to replace the sensor on the car, which is located under the dash. But if you replace the sensor yourself make 100% SURE you unplug the battery first before you touch the sensor other wise your air bags can fire. So just make sure that both the positive and negative wires are off of the battery

Posted on May 18, 2010

  • 1 more comment 
  • leerobin May 18, 2010

    Thanks for the response. My confusion is: since my battery has been replaced before, will that erase any history code? So you mean that is not true? I always hear people talking about disconnect the battery cable in order to clear the check engine light. Is that just different for airbag light?



    Also, is there a stepwise procedure I can follow to replace the airbag sensor? I don't even know how to open the dash. Thanks!

  • Jeremy Reddick
    Jeremy Reddick May 18, 2010

    It does reset the computer to a point. Not all the way. That is why you need a code reader to make sure that you clear the computer completely. I understand why you are confused, but that is a common mistake made by people telling others how to clear there engine codes.

  • leerobin May 18, 2010

    Thanks for the clarification. Where can I find a OBD 2 though? Does autozone or someplace like that has that? Or do I have to buy it or take it to dealer? I really want to avoid dealer if possible.

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