Because an airbag is no good unless it springs into action instantly once a crash occurs, airbag sensors must be able to deploy the airbag quickly. The location of airbag sensors on a vehicle is important as this will determine the airbag's reaction time.
Airbag sensors usually are located at the front of most of today's American made automobiles. They are placed purposefully in the known impact zones of a vehicle. This way when a crash occurs, the sensors can signal the airbag to deploy nearly instantaneously.
There are several types of airbag sensors, such as the "spring and mass" type, which works using a weight held by a spring and trips to close a switch once an impact occurs. Another type of airbag sensor has a "micro accelerometer" chip that sends an electronic signal to the airbag when the vehicle is impacted hard enough.
Some vehicle makers insist that their crash senors don't have to be replaced after an accident because the sensors automatically reset themselves. However, consider having them checked as the sensors may have suffered damage during the accident or failed to reset themselves properly.
- Photo Credit car crash image by dawn from Fotolia.com
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