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Airbag Replacement Cost

Airbags ReplacementAccording to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), airbags are proven to save lives. When you combine the use of a seatbelt, an airbag can reduce driver fatalities by 52 percent in a front collision. Statistics are similar for passengers as well as side impact collisions.

Nobody wants to be involved in an accident but, Unfortunately, we have no control over this. Luckily, all cars today come equipped with Supplemental Restraint System known as airbags. Read more to learn how deployed airbags can affect your vehicle, and if it's worth selling your car after an accident.

Without a doubt, airbags are a critical safety component in your vehicle. In an accident where airbags have deployed, the scene usually looks like carnage. There will be pieces of car everywhere, white dust all over the interior, and billowing material draped from the places the airbags deployed.

Can Airbags Be Replaced After an Accident?

So, can airbags be replaced after they're deployed? As bad as the damage seems, your vehicle’s body damage can be fixed, and your airbags can be replaced. Depending on the scenario, you could be inclined to avoid an insurance claim, or your accident may not be covered under your insurance company's policy. You may ask yourself: "Is my car totaled if airbags deploy"? But, total loss is not always the case in these situations. 

It can cost you a fistful of money at a local body shop, but repairing your car is possible. It’s when you start talking about airbag replacement that the bills start to climb much higher.

My Airbags Deployed, Now Is It Safe to Drive Without Airbags?

You might be inclined just to get your car driving again and never replace your deployed airbags. And while that’s an avenue you can pursue, you should be aware of a few things:

  • Your airbag light will always stay on. Until the airbag system is repaired fully, your instrument cluster will have that little airbag light illuminated.

  • Your vehicle may not pass its safety inspection. In some states like Virginia, your vehicle’s airbag light can’t be illuminated, or it will not pass its state inspection. That means you won’t be able to register your car for use on the road. If you decide to sell your car, the buyer won’t be able to register the car until the airbag system is repaired.

  • You’re putting yourself and your passengers in unnecessary danger. In the event of a collision when the airbag system isn’t working, the instances of injury or death skyrocket by 30 percent. And if you don’t wear a seatbelt, the fatality rate is 52 percent higher.

You don’t have any guarantees that you won’t get into an accident, so why would you take your chances in a vehicle that doesn’t have airbags? 

What Are Your Airbag Repair Costs?

Airbags RepairIn airbags repair procedures, there’s a surprising amount of work:

  • In many cases, airbag control module replacement is necessary. It contains an impact sensor that can’t be reused. If the airbag control module isn’t changed, the entire airbag system won’t work.

  • Seatbelt buckles and retractors are commonly replaced. Some vehicles are equipped with pre-tensioners in the seatbelt buckle or retractor that tightens before the airbags deploy. They’re one-time-use components.

  • Airbags need to replaced. Any airbags that have deployed must be replaced with new ones.

  • Wiring and connectors must be inspected to make sure they aren’t damaged.

Replacing the driver’s steering wheel a deployed airbag is fairly simple, but most of the others are labor and parts-intensive. Airbag replacement service may involve many of the airbags within the car. On the passenger side, an airbag rips through the dashboard when it deploys. On a side impact, an airbag may tear through the seat cover on its way out. And side curtain airbags destroy the headliner. These make collision repair costs increase substantially.

How Much is an Airbag Replacement & Airbag Prices?

Airbags replacement can cost much more than just the airbag itself. They’re incredibly time-consuming to change out and the related components that need to be changed tally up quickly.

On average, expect around $1,000 to $1,500 per airbag that needs to be replaced. That doesn’t take into consideration other parts that need to be changed; just the airbags themselves. Airbag module replacement will run another $600 and up.

So, if you’ve been in a front collision and your driver’s and passenger’s front airbags have deployed, you can expect your airbag system alone to cost around $3,000 to repair. That’s above and beyond the bodywork to get your car roadworthy! With these costs in mind, is it worth fixing, or is it better to sell your vehicle?

Of course, depending on the year, make, and model of your vehicle, the total cost of repair for replacing airbags, and/or your instrument panel may vary. As an example, Ford F150 airbag replacement has a range of $200-$700 for driver-side airbags alone. Airbag replacement cost for Honda Civic’s side passenger airbags are between $400-$1000. BMW's, Nissan Altima's, Toyota Camry's, and others may have a high cost or lower cost based on the maker.

Alternatives to Replacing Airbags After an Accident?

When it comes to airbags, replacement after a crash is quite cost-prohibitive. Most people don’t have that chunk of change hanging around for car repairs of any kind. If your car has had its airbags deploy, it may not be the type of project you want to tackle.

Instead, you could sell us your car. At CarBrain, we offer you a way out. Whether your vehicle is still bashed up from an accident, your dash is still torn, or your airbags are draped across your interior, we can take it off your hands. It’s easy to do: just request a guaranteed offer from us online. We’ll make you an offer on your damaged car, just as it is. Once you accept our offer, we’ll pick it up from you free of charge and put money in your hands.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is a car worth fixing if the airbags deploy?

That comes down to what you're financially willing to pay. Airbags deploying does not damage the car's functionality — other than the fact that having them reinstalled, which is typically mandatory, can be very expensive. If you can't budget up to $1,500 for airbag reinstallation, along with repairing any damages that led to the airbags being deployed, then it might not make sense to pay for the repairs at all.

Can you replace an airbag yourself?

In most cases, no. Unless you are an experienced mechanic independently, it is very risky to take on the job yourself. This is because if you do it incorrectly, the next accident you get into could prove fatal due to the airbags not performing correctly. It is much safer to have it professionally installed.
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