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Old 04-28-2011
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Airbag question

I just bought a 2002 ford ranger 4x4. When I got it,it was blowing the #2 fuse(airbag,transmission o/d,A/C,back-up lights) Dealer said it was the fan blower drawing too much amperage and said he would replace it. I got it back, and the airbag dash light and the O/D was not working.They were working as long as the fuse wasn't blown. So I got reading on this forum and read where the O/D wire shorts on the steering column. I check this and sure enough,bare wire, dead short. I taped this up and found where they had disconnected my O/D.So, I reconnected it and tested it. works great.Still,my airbag light is not coming on when I turn on the ignition. This tells me they also either disconnected the airbags or removed the dash lamp. It doesn't appear to have had the dash removed and the module at the passenger side airbag keyswitch is plugged. My question is,what would have been the easiest way for them to have disconnected the airbags?Passenger seat is plugged and don't see anything unplugged behind passenger side kick panel.Thanks for your help.
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Old 04-28-2011
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Check to see if they unplugged the Restraints Control Module. It is on the transmission tunnel directly below the center of the dash. There will be a cupholder consolette or some other part covering the RCM.
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Old 04-28-2011
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Did that.Removed consolette. Wires are plugged into module.
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Old 04-28-2011
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if they pulled the bulb, there would be an audible beep. i would still pull the cluster to see if maybe they taped over the bulb or something.
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Old 04-28-2011
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When I turn on the ignition,I hear tones,but how do I know those are from the airbags? New info...The light beside the keyswith shows off until the dings and lights on the dash stop then it goes off.Does this indicate that the airbags are still plugged up,and just the bulb has been removed? Also,just found a screw in the floorboard under drivers sseat. Plastic panel on the dash cluster is missing center screw. Looking more like the dash HAS been taken out.
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Old 04-28-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elit4ce05 View Post
When I turn on the ignition,I hear tones,but how do I know those are from the airbags?
When the restraints indicator lamp circuit resistance is judged to be incorrect (this usually means short or open), there is a backup chime requested by the RCM and produced in the GEM. It consists of 5 series of 5 low, slow beeps for a total of 25. I don't think it's possible to confuse it with any other chime/beep/warning - really annoying.
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Old 04-28-2011
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Originally Posted by rwenzing View Post
I don't think it's possible to confuse it with any other chime/beep/warning - really annoying.
agreed! not to mention it will repeat the cycle ever 45 minutes or so. really annoying on long trips!
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Old 04-29-2011
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ok...well I definitely am not getting that chime.The unit on the transmission tunnel is connected,the seats are plugged,the keyswitch is plugged,yet the indicator light on the dash does not come on(which it did before they "fixed" it) and I don't get the back-up chime. Is the #2 fuse the only fuse in the Airbag circuit. Is it possible they took the indicator light out AND disconnected the chime?
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Old 04-29-2011
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The RCM gets power from 2 fuses in the dash box.
2 - Hot in Run
26 - Always hot

The restraints indicator lamp gets voltage from one fuse and the RCM supplies ground when the lamp is to be lit:
11 - Hot in Start/Run

The chime/tone generator is internal to the GEM and the GEM is inside the dash to the left of the radio. The chime signal from the RCM to the GEM is via a light blue/black wire.
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Old 04-29-2011
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This is all great information and I've checked each thing posted.I have all my fuses in. I guess I was hoping to not have to pull the dash. I'm torn as to just go ahead and do it,which would possibly be the quickest fix, or take it back and let them do it, as it kind of pi$$e$ me off that a dealership takes you for a complete idiot and disconnects all these things instead of fixing the problem. Now I fixed the short but I would like to let them know that they didn't get away with filling me with BS and disconnecting my airbags,hoping I wouldn't notice.Atleast until I needed them to work and they didn't.This is my first Ranger and from reading these forums,I gather,when I turn on the switch the airbag indicator light should light-up to indicate the airbags are working.Then it should go out.This is what it did before I took it to have the short fixed. Now the light does NOT come on and I get NO other chimes/dings. So by the light NOT coming on,this indicates 1) the airbag system is not working or 2) the light has been taken out of the dash.Correct me if I'm wrong. If the bulb has been removed from the dash,it IS possible that the airbags ARE working,I just don't have an indicator light.
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Old 04-29-2011
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i would take it back and tell them to fix it correctly. from what i understand, it is illegal for a shop to disable any restraint system (airbags or seat belts). i would also tell them you fixed the fuse issue the correct way as well. in my opinion, unless you bought it "as is", they should be responsible for making sure the restraint system is working correctly.

i would be willing to say, and bob will correct me if i'm wrong, that if the light isn't present, the system won't work. if the light is on, the system is disabled. so no light would probably do the same. just as when the passenger switch pad light goes out, it trips a code. the light in the cluster probably shows resistance in the circuit.
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Old 05-02-2011
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Going back to the dealer this morning. I talked to the mechanic Friday.he said they did not disconnect anything but something could have "fallen loose" from the fuse panel when they were working on the a/c short.Note:the O/D was obviously disconnected.I did buy the vehicle "as-is" but this issue was discussed before the sell and they agreed to have it fixed. I know it is a used vehicle and there are things that I am responsible for fixing.But this was agreed to BEFORE the deal was signed.p.s.the seat belt light and chime DOES work,just NO airbag light.
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