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Are Replacement Airbags Safe?

You may be wondering if it’s safe to replace your damaged or deployed airbag with a recycled one after an accident. It all depends on where you get the airbags from. You will need to have it professionally installed to ensure it operates safely and properly.

OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) airbags are safe and guaranteed auto parts for your SUV, truck, car, or van. However, it is not recommended to choose an aftermarket option when it is sold by a third-party company, according to the trusted automotive resource guide Edmunds. Industry experts consider them illegitimate.

Most recommend ordering an OEM airbag. You can either find a new OEM airbag through a new auto dealership or through an authorized used auto parts business. Airbags top the list of important safety parts in a vehicle. You will need to replace them after they have been deployed or damaged if your vehicle can be repaired. Dealers normally have new replacement airbags in stock for your auto repair. These parts can range in price depending on the vehicle, and the mechanics at these dealerships can replace them.

Recycled Airbags Can Be an Inexpensive Option

Recycled/used OEM non-deployed airbags are a good alternative for anyone watching their wallet or when a new airbag is on backorder. A non-deployed or “used” airbag doesn’t mean the part was ever deployed or tampered with on the vehicle it’s being removed from. You’ll save a lot more by ordering never-deployed airbags from auto parts recyclers. These are perfectly legal and safe.

If you’re ordering a part from a used or recycled auto parts store, make sure it comes from a certified airbag reseller. The Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA), the voice of the professional automotive recycling industry, certifies recyclers applying to be authorized recycled OEM non-deployed vehicle airbag resellers.

Certification is not just a badge any airbag reseller can easily get. Businesses must go through strict certification from ARA and receive a minimum score of 70 to qualify as authorized resellers. ARA allows more than just airbag sales; it provides a guideline of compliance and excellence for businesses to follow a strict set of US standards through the CAR (Certified Automotive Recyclers) program.

To read more about My Auto Store’s impressive CAR high score, click here.

By having this certification, you can be assured your airbag is from a reputable business that has a safe, compliant workplace with quality parts. These parts, including airbags, are legitimate OEM parts. Unlike aftermarket airbags, recycled non-deployed airbags are not counterfeit and come directly from the vehicle.

Dangers of “Aftermarket” or Counterfeit Airbags

The NHTSA conducted a consumer safety advisory on the dangers of counterfeit airbags, according to Edmunds. They are offered for sale online, and some dishonest auto shops will use them as replacements. Several federal government agencies are investigating counterfeit airbags due to the dangers they pose. Through tests, the NHTSA found these produced a wide range of dangerous results, including the airbag not deploying, exploding, or shooting shrapnel into the vehicle’s cabin during deployment.

Ways to Tell a Counterfeit Airbag Was Installed

  • The airbag was purchased from eBay or another source that isn’t certified.
  • The texture of the vinyl material used for the airbag trim cover is different from the OEM’s
  • The vinyl trim cover may not have “tear seams” or slight depressions in the vinyl material that
    determine where the flap doors will open during deployment (H-pattern).
  • “SRS” is not well-defined.
  • There is evidence the installer of the counterfeit airbag shaved or trimmed the vinyl trim cover.
  • The airbag warning light does not illuminate when the ignition key is on or does not function as
    the automaker intended.

It is recommended you have a reputable auto repair shop install the replacement airbag to keep you and your passengers safe on the road. You can find a quality non-deployed frontal airbag and side airbag from authorized. resellers like My Auto Store

What if There is a Recall?

Anyone who has a new OEM airbag installed by a new car dealership will be notified of a recall. You can also count on CAR-certified auto part resellers when ordering a non-deployed airbag.

Safety is important to websites such as eBay Motors, which require businesses to have a recall certification to resell airbags on their website. eBay Motors reached out to ARA, who has been using their own industry-leading certification program for years, to help them improve quality control for recycled non-deployed airbags and other parts sold through the eBay website. Having CAR certification ensures the airbags are approved.

eBay and the consumer will be notified whenever a recall occurs. This ensures airbags are safe from authorized resellers and eBay.

While replacing damaged or deployed airbags is necessary, choosing the right replacement and ensuring proper installation is critical for safety. OEM airbags, whether new or non-deployed and recycled from certified resellers, are the safest options. Avoid aftermarket and counterfeit airbags, and always have a professional install your replacement airbag to maintain vehicle safety.

When you need to replace your airbag, you can always order one from My Auto Store. My Auto Store is your car parts store and CAR-authorized airbag reseller. You can find an assortment of airbags and other high-quality auto parts on our website or by speaking with our knowledgeable team.

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