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Xsara - Airbag light off 😱


beko1987

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9 hours ago, beko1987 said:

Yea I've got that in the queue of "what could be wrong"... Bloody hope not, their not cheap nowadays! 

I'd try many things before trying that, I've been putting off fixing the indicator stalk my entire ownership so as not to disturb the clock spring and bring this very warning up 😂 I'll be annoyed if it's caused the light regardless (does diagnostic pinpoint that or did you have it apart and swapped to test?) 

It'll be something really useful like " Airbag open circuit"  As I recall it's a bit trial and error to work out which one is which side.

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If you can wait until next week, I can probably meet you after work one evening with my Lexia/Diagbox setup and see what it shows for both the airbag fault and any clues to the intermittent running issue if that would be useful?

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48 minutes ago, Anthony said:

If you can wait until next week, I can probably meet you after work one evening with my Lexia/Diagbox setup and see what it shows for both the airbag fault and any clues to the intermittent running issue if that would be useful?

Oooh yes please! Happy to come to you or find somewhere mutual! In Marlow Tuesday and Thursday, Thame the rest of the time but could travel 👌

Part of me is still tempted to solder the seat wires this weekend. Was thinking this on the way home after Tim's comment above, if all it gives with some diagnostic is 'open circuit' it's still a culprit until it's fully tested/bypassed. 

MOT runs out early spetember so there's a few weeks yet 🤞

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I work the otherside of Oxford to you (in the Didcot area) so Thame is probably easiest - I'll drop you a message next week when I know what evenings I'm free 🙂

Your call of course, but my suggestion would be to leave the seat wiring as-is for now until we've seen what the fault reports as - I've had numerous 306s and Xsaras over the years and never yet had to butcher the seat wiring.  Indeed, I've soldered the plugs back on a couple of them after getting annoyed that a previous owner had soldered the wires together and stopped me removing the seats...

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30 minutes ago, Anthony said:

I work the otherside of Oxford to you (in the Didcot area) so Thame is probably easiest - I'll drop you a message next week when I know what evenings I'm free 🙂

Your call of course, but my suggestion would be to leave the seat wiring as-is for now until we've seen what the fault reports as - I've had numerous 306s and Xsaras over the years and never yet had to butcher the seat wiring.  Indeed, I've soldered the plugs back on a couple of them after getting annoyed that a previous owner had soldered the wires together and stopped me removing the seats...

Yes sir 👌

Part of me is excited as to what systems actually function... The central locking doesn't 😂 I'll be happy if the lexia even connects and see's an airbag ecu somewhere... 

Pm me when is convenient for you then, I have my kids weds night but that's fine anyway

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I'd definitely get the codes checked on Lexia, the airbag light went on, on my old 307. I connected Lexia and it told me a connector was reading open circuit, I checked the pug forum and believe it or not this particular connector was located behind the glovebox. I popped the glovebox out, gave the connector a good clean and all was well. I would never have found that without the code reader and the forum.

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On 11/06/2024 at 21:35, Anthony said:

I work the otherside of Oxford to you (in the Didcot area) so Thame is probably easiest - I'll drop you a message next week when I know what evenings I'm free 🙂

Your call of course, but my suggestion would be to leave the seat wiring as-is for now until we've seen what the fault reports as - I've had numerous 306s and Xsaras over the years and never yet had to butcher the seat wiring.  Indeed, I've soldered the plugs back on a couple of them after getting annoyed that a previous owner had soldered the wires together and stopped me removing the seats...

Handful-of-flowers-vivid-mixed.jpg.5c7174316912f20d1f22c9abf38c2325.jpg

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Bear in mind that if you remove the Air bag lamp, that will either be a pass-and-advise or possibly a straight pass.  If the lamp is on, it's a fail, but if the lamp doesn't work at all, it's only an advisory.

I had exactly this argument with someone many years ago over a Berlingo of similar vintage.  He failed it initially until I printed off the MOT testers manual and highlighted the exact wording.  He didn't like it, but had to pass it.

He was a bit of a bellend and ended up losing his MOT licence shortly thereafter anyway, but that's not the point!

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21 hours ago, Talbot said:

Bear in mind that if you remove the Air bag lamp, that will either be a pass-and-advise or possibly a straight pass.  If the lamp is on, it's a fail, but if the lamp doesn't work at all, it's only an advisory.

I had exactly this argument with someone many years ago over a Berlingo of similar vintage.  He failed it initially until I printed off the MOT testers manual and highlighted the exact wording.  He didn't like it, but had to pass it.

He was a bit of a bellend and ended up losing his MOT licence shortly thereafter anyway, but that's not the point!

How does the audible beep that accompanies it work with that? Do I hover around the corner by the test centre and wait for him to go start the car and cause a distraction? 😂

Is it a fail if I borrow a car seat, strap it into the front and turn the airbag off with the key? I got my xm with its dodgy rear belts through a test with that, but I assume the back seats are fine for it whereas the front... 

 

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If turning off the passenger airbag gets rid of the fault and the lamp, then just do that.

They test the car in "as presented" condition.  The MOT tester is not permitted to turn functions like passenger air bag on and off as part of the test.  Most he can do is advise.

If he gets pissy about it, then yes, shove a child seat on the passenger seat, belt it in, turn off the airbag.  Again, car is tested "as presented".  Possibly an advisory for "child seat fitted" but that's it.

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1 hour ago, beko1987 said:

How does the audible beep that accompanies it work with that?

The audible beep is not mentioned in the MOT test text.  It is a fail if the MIL is illuminated.  If the lamp is inoperative, it's an advise.  Nothing else is relevant.

You know what you've done, the tester knows what you've done, and it's all very obvious, but the tester has to stick to the wording of the MOT test.  It's all a bit of a game.

Much like a car with defective rear seat belts.  You fold down the seats and they are no longer testable items.  Or a series land-rover with inoperative wipers.  Fold down the windscreen and they are not testable.  You know it's a cheat, the tester knows it's a cheat, but you're compliant with the wording, hence a pass (and advise possibly)

etc.etc.etc.

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Turning the pass airbag off brings the AIRBAG light and an icon of a child holding a balloon, so it's obvious it's off, but not showing a fault and crucially there is no beep (which gives me hope it's a fault in a connector past where that key turns and not the ecu/bsi as a whole 🤞

Couldn't care less about a seat belt advisory, maybe I should borrow 3 so it's not so obvious, and let the kids use the car as a den during a FoD weekend and not clean it out afterwards... Be just like any average car that's presented then 🤷

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I did another bit of troubleshooting today. Was reading deep within the archives of the 406oc forum and maf sensor was mentioned alot. And someone explained their symptoms same hdi 110 lump and a similar aged car) and they matched mine, and they confirmed the difference with unplugging the maf. 

So before leaving for work this morning I unplugged it! And it drove a bit lumpy, the acceleration wasn't quite as smooth so I didn't hoon it about but the turbo spooled up every time bag on que going by the revs. Coming home I plugged it back in and as I joined the bypass it turned into an n/a again for a while before deciding to come on board. 

I have a date with a can of brake clean and the maf sensor this weekend to see... 

One thing I did notice was the 406 thread guy and others confirmed that the engine light came on. Mine didn't... Not sure wether i care enough to work out if its fine or not, the engine light does have a bulb in it as it comes on at startup 

Still no closer to the airbag though

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Yesterday saw me have a few hours on the xsara, starting with a full battery disconnect. After doing that I had the airbox off incase a fox had got caught up in there or similar, impeding air intake under load but... nope

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I then took the top intercooler hose off and with the access I gained had a good feel around the rubber hoses incase my hand could fall inside of one but all seemed ok, this connection between the curved top pipe into the bigger one below is a bit loose

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but obviously hasnt ever had a clamp on it so I thin it's fine. Once @maxxo gets to the post office I can read up on what it all does 😂 But his car needed an MOT first for that to happen so that's fair.

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Top hose wasn't split or really gooey

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and I could see the throttle body, which looked ok

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I gave it a blast of contact cleaner and it repaid me by bouncing some back into my eye which was nice of it 👍

I also idly unplugged random things and fired contact cleaner at them, this time pointing them mostly away from myself. I noted whilst doing this one that the intercooler is a bit loose and wobbly. Won't go anywhere but some movement. I found some coarse foam from elsehere in the engine bay and folded it up and stuffed it in and it's solid now

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Got the MAF out next, and after the change in behavious (for the positive) with it unplugged it was a suspect. A thin layer of brown did come off when blasted with contact cleaner so maybe!

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I put the air filter and pipework back together

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and moved inside, removed both front seats again and had a better look at these

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The tape at the ends had been worying me, but now it doesn't, as I did mostly the same just a bit better! Nothing wrong as such with the plugs, but the pins were very loose, part of me thinks the tape is genuine PSA as it was an official issue for many years and they were very tidy wraps of tape...

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Which I cut off, and used a thin cable tie to pack the pack of the pins out. Each pin took 2 ties like this, and is rock solid now! I also bent the male pins a fraction so I could feel them making good contact when I plugged the connectors back in.  I added new electrical tape too which is how I realised how neat the stuff there before was vs how I did it 😂

I did find the ultimate root cause of all the problems there will ever be though 😡

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Why couldn't they have been given the job of the rear window winders and told to sit in the corner and shut up? At least this side was in the shade

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Because the drivers side wasnt! It also had a new exciting big connector

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I did the same on this side to all the connectors

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Sprayed the 2 tiny pins of the entire big connector so they felt involved, refitted the seats, reconnected the battery and..........

No change.

This was annoying, but at least I feel fairly confident the seat connectors themselves are fine. Today, @Anthony popped by 🙏

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Very kindly he got set up and connected to the car, which auto-populated the vin nice and properly. All* the systems read ok. Many historical faults on the engine ecu and main BSI, most historical or from me running it 25 miles with no MAF last week. The lot were cleared and nothing airbag related was coming up as a stored code.

Time to check the airbag module...

...

It wouldn't connect! As far as the otherwise perfectly functioning lexia was concerned, it cant communicate with the ECU computer at all.

Which is a massive clue I think to the whole fault, and why I'm getting a solid fail-safe type of light rather than the flashing light I got the one time I did anger the seat connector gods after Eva drove around the FOD with the seat right forward.

My next steps we deduced are to work out the state of the airbag ecu and any other issues that would cause a straight fail of a circuit, so any ideas welcome! I'll find out when I next drive it if the engine behaves any better too now it's been fully cleared and I've done the above.

 

Thanks again Anthony, lovely to meet you! We may well meet again... 😂

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  • beko1987 changed the title to Xsara - wot airbags m8?

And that folks is what owning aged French cars for over 20 years does to your hairline 😄

Good to meet you Sam and sorry that we couldn't identify an easy 5 minute fix - that Lexia would communicate with everything except for the airbag ECU is distinctly suspect in and of itself though and where I'd start looking.

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It's a different car now to drive 😂 Clearing the codes and cleaning the maf has it pulling REALLY strong from where it should on the rev range now, more so than before! The traffic was quite heavy so I couldn't test it properly but I got up to 80 in 3rd very easily before having to slow. Doing that and going into 5th had it not boosting again, although I was going up a steep incline and once we got up it came back online and was fine for the rest of the trip! 

I'm now wondering if that was causing the odd kangarooing effect I was having... I got down to 40 mph in 5th which would usually require a down shift to 4th but it happily stayed at not much above idle wafting along. I'd get around said kangarooing by just throttling up or down mildly and in normal driving it was rare it happened for more than a short while before natural speed change happened anyway

Shall monitor that, still not touched the airbag though. Have had confirmation from other xsara people it is under the centre console though, that's for another day 

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I had a quiet afternoon today, and am batch outputting files anyway so still working. Went out to the car and took things apart

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This is the airbag module apparently. It looks spotless and fine

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I had the battery back off and unplugged and plugged it back in again

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And as I feared no change and the airbag light is on  still 😥 Running out of ideas fast now, anyone have any wiring diagrams for a xsara? 

I found 2 connectors for things my car doesn't have too floating around under the center console

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But they've been tucked away for years so their not the problem. The earth bolts seem OK, the connectors the ecu goes near straight into seem fine... 

Fuse box? 

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Had some time again this morning so did some more poking about around the fusebox

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The loom from the centre console runs right up to the top of the dash inside a plastic box so zero chance of finding that! I had a poke around the fusebox but nothing seems untoward. Equally I'm looking at approx 17000 wires so who knows! 

I then got fucking brave as the battery had been off an hour and took the wheel airbag out incase any of its connectors were hanging off

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But all seems fine. 

Having a break now but I might have a gander under the passenger side of the dash just in case but I'm almost at the point of admitting defeat now, and have 2 options. 1 - find a friendly tester/read up 1000% on the rules and have an argument with my tester but I like him, I drop the car off at 8am and wait for the phone call and I don't want to ruin that... , 2 - look for another car, I can't walk to work... 😥

The dash plastics around the speedo binnacle started to come loose as I tugged on it but I don't want to get into that today

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Fuck me it's gone 😱 I don't know what I did either 😂

I took the main earths from the airbag ecu off (all looked fine) and put them back on, fiddled with the fuse box and dropped the bsi down, got scared and put it all back. Drivers airbag out, not disconnected but I poked at the plugs with my finger. Went to the skate park, came back, did lunch then I went under the passenger side of the dash, had all 4 of the big multiplugs (which are all covered in that foamy sticky shit) apart, blast of contact cleaner and back together.

Tidied up the car feeling deflated as I'd not found anything, fired it up from outside the car incase the airbag did explode and THERE WAS NO BEEP!

Jumped in and there was no light either! Charlie came out at that point too and I shouted excitedly the light was off and he told Eva, who came out and we had a mini celebration 

Drove up the road and back and it didn't come back on... I wonder what's causing that. Part of me wonders if me flexing the bsi module helped? I peeked inside a corner of the casing and it's not spotless in there... Don't know if I have the balls to fully unplug and remove it to have a proper look though

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Will see how it goes, I've got to drive to Cardiff on Friday so I'll see if it comes back on. I drove up the road and back to park back in my space and it stayed off and the horn/lights still work

Now I'm fucking tempted to just throw it in for its mot before it's due whilst it's off... Or just wait until August the 6th which is it's normal earliest period

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  • beko1987 changed the title to Xsara - Airbag light off 😱

It stayed off all the way to work! It first came on on a Tuesday so if I get home tonight with it off I'll call it fixed! 

She's alot spicier with the maf working better too. I've got a few things to do this month but next month I'll look to replace that I think. 

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Home with zero lights! 

The maf did a full on nope again though as I pulled out of lane 2 into lane 3 and went to gain some speed. A down shift to 4th at 70 whilst accelerating then back into 5th woke it up again and it was fine the rest of the way. 

Can drive around that more easily than an airbag light though 👌 @Anthony did you say you might have a couple of mafs lying around? 

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On 09/07/2024 at 16:33, beko1987 said:

Home with zero lights! 

The maf did a full on nope again though as I pulled out of lane 2 into lane 3 and went to gain some speed. A down shift to 4th at 70 whilst accelerating then back into 5th woke it up again and it was fine the rest of the way. 

Can drive around that more easily than an airbag light though 👌 @Anthony did you say you might have a couple of mafs lying around? 

Good news on the airbag light front 👍

I've got some spare MAFs you're welcome to try, but I'm not around until next week. If I get chance, I'll fit one of the spare MAFs onto my 306 to check all is still well with it.

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You can dismember the airbag light and it will pass the MOT with an advisory. It's only a fail if it is on, but there's no fail available for "does not illuminate" unlike the EML from the relevant years onwards.

Once you've got your ticket then you can uncover it if you wish - the "BEEEP" alone won't be a fail if the light is nowhere to be seen 

Not condoning it, but it's an option!

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10 hours ago, RoverFolkUs said:

You can dismember the airbag light and it will pass the MOT with an advisory. It's only a fail if it is on, but there's no fail available for "does not illuminate" unlike the EML from the relevant years onwards.

Once you've got your ticket then you can uncover it if you wish - the "BEEEP" alone won't be a fail if the light is nowhere to be seen 

Not condoning it, but it's an option!

Someone else mentioned similar up thread but you've answered my question about the phantom beep 👌

I got close to it! As I was putting the car back together but before I'd connected the battery back I did give all the speedo binnacle a bit of a tug and it started coming loose. I decided I needed to work out what bolts were there though so pushed it back in, fired the car up and the problem was solved. 

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I think the maf died more this weekend 😂 300 mile round trip and on the way there it was OK, I drove a car full of people to the activity we did yesterday and it was a bit iffy but not bad. Coming home today started well, but after 180 miles it didn't work more than it did. Luckily the traffic was heavy enough it wasn't too noticeable, and I was starting to feel hung over so didn't give a crap about it. 

We stopped at asda (started at an asda in Cardiff for McDonald's then we stopped at my local asda as I needed a drink) and for the first time ever he car didn't start. Went to fire but struggled. It eventually caught as I gave it some throttle and stayed running but was fairly unhappy the entire way home. Left it running until I got parked and it restarted fine but I'm taking that as a huge warning sign now

 

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