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Q: Right side curtain air bag

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The right (passenger) side curtain air bag deployed while the car was not moving, from the door being shut forcefully from the outside. The previous year, the vehicle was hit on the same side while parked, not serious damage. There was a recall on the SRS system for the vehicle, which was performed after all this happened. Honda is denying the side curtain air bag being a defect, because of the damage on that side of the car. How can an airbag go off a year after impact? I have found a recall that describes this very thing, and this vehicle falls into those specs.

My car has 114650 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The deployment of the air bag may or may not be a "delayed" consequence of the year ago "damage". A possibility is the deployment is a consequence of a defect(s) in the circuit and the "safing" provisions as well. A forensic examination (literally) would be required to determine the cause of the deployment and even that has many uncertainties. That is precisely why Honda can tailor their story to meet their needs; they know of the burden (to you) in getting to the bottom of something like this. In particular, it is obviously not credible for Honda to claim anything, or draw any conclusion, at all, about the deployment unless and until they have examined your particular case in high detail and, again, the ONLY way to do that is in the context of a forensic exam of the components, period.


You can file a complaint with NHTSA if you believe the deployment was unintended. You should file a complaint as NHTSA’s database of complaints is used by regulators to protect the public at large from defects in motor vehicles. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic.

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