Hi there I recently purchased a 2003 Volkswagen 1.8T MK4. My airbag light is on and I need to get it fixed to pass inspection. HELP!? This is my first time owning a Volkswagen so I have no idea how to fix these issues. If someone can provide a step by step guide on how to fix this issue that would be great. Thank you in advance.

  • It sounds like you should speak to the inspector / a local shop and try to figure out what the fault is. At a minimum, it's likely that you have a problem with the airbag system. That could be anything from a blown fuse to a dangerous fault that can badly injure you. I wouldn't advise just turning the light off to hide the problem.
    – Bob Cross
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 12:30
  • Yeah I know that the wires are disconnected for the driver's side seatbelt belt buckle, basically there are no wires connected to the seatbelt buckle. The wires I saw had 5 different colors, the problem is that the connectors are so small in the seatbelt that it would be almost impossible to solder together.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 12:35
  • Are you talking about the wiring in the buckle itself? Or in the harness leading up to it?
    – Bob Cross
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 12:55
  • The wiring in the buckle itself. it has 4-5 colors that aren't connected. I will see if I can find a picture.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 13:03
  • bit.ly/2HsZoh7
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 13:11

2 Answers 2


Summarizing the commentary on the question above:

  1. The vehicle is manifesting an ABS warning light.
  2. Ajax is thinking that this is a consequence of faulty wiring in the seat belt receiver itself (called the buckle in the comments).
  3. Ajax is also thinking that fixing the wiring in place would be a nightmare due to the teensy tiny wires.

Given the above, my recommendation is to replace the whole seat belt receiver. A quick online search shows candidate parts for between 15-80 USD. There's an excellent chance that a local shop has a compatible part that will do two things:

  1. Keep you in the seat in a crash. Important!
  2. Properly indicate to the vehicle that you've fastened your seat belt, thus activating the airbag (also important!).

Based on looking at the parts, the replacement should be straightforward. There's the major structural bolt and a yellow multi-pin connector. Not quite plug and play but within arms reach.

  • Without seeing the fault codes in detail you are purely guessing. It would be far better to scan the car and ask the ECU why it's illuminated it's airbag light than starting to buy parts. Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 15:16
  • @SteveMatthews, based on the comments above, we know that the seat belt receiver has faulty wiring. That will definitely cause an airbag light to indicate that the airbag has been disabled due to an unsecured driver.
    – Bob Cross
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 15:30
  • Assuming the air bag module isn't programmed to assume there is always a driver? I'd still personally rather plug it in and scan it before spending any money on parts. Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 16:02
  • @BobCross Could you please provide a link to the seat belt receiver for me please? Thank you soo much.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 13:21
  • 1
    Ah. I see. You ladies & gentleman are VERY helpful thank you a million times over! I mean that.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 13:27

The most common reason for this is that one of the connectors under the seat has become detached. Unfortunately, the light will remain lit until reset. In order to reset it you need to use an OBD II tool such as VCDS or Carista.

  • Or disconnect the battery for a few minutes.
    – Moab
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 17:08
  • For things like engine light faults, disconnecting the battery would work. These cars have a separate air bag module with its own storage so disconnecting the battery does not reset the air bag module. Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 17:12
  • I actually have purchased an OBD device so that I can read what the code is, and then go from there. I figured that was the wisest investment I have ever made. Going to a dealership can cost money, this way I can avoid spending money, just to read a code.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 13:39
  • @steveMatthews The funny thing is is that my engine light came on this morning lol.Well now I have an OBD device that can tell my specifically what is the issue with the engine.
    – Ajax
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 13:40
  • A fault code reader is worth it's weight in gold. Not only will it let you turn out the light but it will also tell you exactly why it's lit. Takes all the guesswork out of it. Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 13:43

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .