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> Tech Tips and Tricks > Passenger airbag off light problem
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Bavarian
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Cologne, Germany
Posts: 9

Question Passenger airbag off light problem

Hello,
We just bought an all-new Escape 2.3 manual 4WD here in Germany (where it's called Ford Maverick). One problem we encountered was that when my wife (weighing less than 100 lbs)is on the passenger seat the "airbag off" light is on, warning that the passenger airbags are disengaged. If a "heavier" person (like me) is on the passenger seat, it's off. Seems to switch at around 110-120 lbs. Bad thing is, that Ford customer service does not yet have a solution for this.
Since there's not too many Escapes on the roads in Germany I was wondering if anybody in the States has experienced the same or similar problem with the occupant classification sensor. If so, any solution by Ford?

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Bavarian is offline Old Post 07-02-2005 07:56 PM
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Ford Tek
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Registered: Nov 2001
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There is no updates on you air bag system.
It is operating as intended.
You do not want the air bag going off with a person of that stature.

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Ford Tek is offline Old Post 07-03-2005 07:28 AM
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totcm
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Registered: Mar 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 302

If you do a search on E-C concerning that very same issue, you should find a couple threads that answer your question. I believe there has been much discussion about this very issue and the problems some people have with the way Ford established that weight and "stature" boundary. I won't re-create it here, but if you do a search you will find some interesting reading.
Hope that helps!

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totcm is offline Old Post 07-03-2005 08:15 PM
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Bavarian
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Cologne, Germany
Posts: 9

Thanks for your info.
I just registered yesterday and before I couldn't access the search function.
Seems like more escape owners have that problem.

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Bavarian is offline Old Post 07-03-2005 09:58 PM
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bananaboat
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Registered: Dec 2002
Location: north texas
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quote:
Originally posted by Bavarian
Seems like more escape owners have that problem.


I don't have the wife-under-100lbs problem.


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bananaboat is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 12:16 AM
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totcm
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Registered: Mar 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 302

I don't know if that would be considered a "problem" Mine sorta has that problem

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totcm is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 04:51 AM
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SullyND
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Once again my recommended fix:


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SullyND is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 05:44 AM
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HybridArchitect
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Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posts: 11309

An extensive thread on this concern was initiated by "dory" under General Chat last year... it is really disconcerting when you have a passenger who is right on the weight threshold for the system. Depending how they sit, the light can be on or off (sometimes "flickering" from one state to the other).

The only "solution" -- sit with a sandbag (or a case of Guinness as suggested) in your lap.


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HybridArchitect is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 10:11 AM
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Jeepsbeme
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Registered: Mar 2004
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quote:
Originally posted by totcm
I believe there has been much discussion about this very issue and the problems some people have with the way Ford established that weight and "stature" boundary.
Just for the record - it wasn't Ford or any of the manufacturers that set the guideline for when the lamp comes on and the air bag is disabled. It's a government standard. The manufacturers are only meeting the operational criteria that government specifies.

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Jeepsbeme is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 07:09 PM
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Bavarian
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Cologne, Germany
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Thanks for the Guinness recommendation. If it was about me I'd love it. BTW, German beer with sausage also does the trick.

Anyway, I'd still like to know if the weight threshold is the same on all Escapes or are there variations, so that changing to another Escape might be the solution. Unfortunately Ford doesn't give a clear information on what the weight threshold should be.
I just found somwehere in the net that Subaru has specified a similar system to 66 lbs and (I think it was) Hyunday at around 80 lbs (or vice versa). Both make more sense to me than those 110-115 lbs some Escape owners are reporting.

Does anybody know what those mentioned US government regulations specify?

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Bavarian is offline Old Post 07-04-2005 08:13 PM
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Jeepsbeme
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quote:
Originally posted by Bavarian
Does anybody know what those mentioned US government regulations specify?
I tried researching them a little for you and found the wording of the regulations to be incredibly difficult to understand for a non-engineer such as myself. The regulation is contained in FMVSS 208 Occupant Crash Protection and is incredibly long, involved and detailed.

There doesn't appear to be just a simple statement that says the lamp will come on at a specific weight. The regulation references 3 & 6 year old Hybrid-III crash dummies as well as 5%tile female and 50%tile male Hybrid-III dummies. There are also factors for an in-position dummy a well as an out-of-position one.

The regulations and resulting systems apparently are MUCH more complex than I ever imagined!

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Jeepsbeme is offline Old Post 07-05-2005 04:03 PM
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RoadKingTrib
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"The regulations and resulting systems apparently are MUCH more complex than I ever imagined!"

As are all standards.


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RoadKingTrib is offline Old Post 07-05-2005 05:15 PM
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dory
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Registered: May 2004
Location: Canada
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quote:
Originally posted by Ford Tek
There is no updates on you air bag system.
It is operating as intended.
You do not want the air bag going off with a person of that stature.

If she is under 100lbs, then yes most likely the air bag should be off. The probably with mine (and I believe the original poster is having the same issue), is that it is sometimes off AND sometimes on. Flickers between on and off as we are driving. I found a decent scale and I weigh just under 105. I weighed about 5lbs heavier earlier this year and it still did the same thing. I want it OFF or ON (whichever is safest) but not dancing inbetween.


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dory is offline Old Post 07-05-2005 08:10 PM
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Bavarian
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Cologne, Germany
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Finally, I DID get a solution on this problem.
Our Ford dealer managed to get a replacement sensor mat for the passenger seat. After they changed it, the threshold seems to have shifted by something like 30-40lbs (my guess), so now the light is off also with persons of around 100lbs.
Still the system works, because when changing position to put much less weight to the seat area, the light turns on again.

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Bavarian is offline Old Post 07-21-2005 02:32 PM
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