As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Can Airbags Be Reused After Deployment?


One of the most incredible features of a car is airbags. They are designed to keep you safe in case of a collision; thus must be properly checked before driving. Since its creation, airbags have averted fatal injuries for many people.

You’re probably aware of airbags’ potential to deploy. As much as you do, it is also important that you know what happens after they deploy. However, if you’ve ever wondered whether airbags can be reused after deployment, you’re in the right place.

Airbags cannot be reused after deployment. The airbag deflates, emitting chemicals that can produce nitrogen gas, which has a foul odor and can irritate the eyes and skin.

This article provides every detail about the subject, so you don’t want to stop reading here.

Can airbags be reused after deployment?

As stated above, airbags cannot be reused after deployment, although they can be replaced. So if your airbags deployed after a collision but the vehicle is still in good shape, it’s critical to replace them.


It might be interesting to know that people repaired airbags in the past after an accident by resetting the sensors and replacing the airbag unit. However, most present-day vehicles will not permit you to reset an airbag for safety precautions. Instead, they often ask that you replace them entirely.

The verdict is that replacing your airbags after they have been deployed in an accident is critical before you begin driving. This way, the airbags will function normally in the event of another collision.

How does the vehicle airbag system operate?

Airbags deploy very fast, as fast as 200miles per hour. They are made from thin fabric and are carefully folded and inserted into the steering wheel and side panels.

Airbags deployment is triggered by signals received from a crash sensor which measures the force exerted by your car. This sensor works only when a relevant collision is noticed, such as head-on collisions or very high speeds greater than 10miles per hour.

The sensor activates the chemicals sodium azide and potassium nitrate when the airbag complex deflates. These chemicals react and produce nitrogen gas, filling and inflating the airbags before escaping through holes in the bag after the crash.

This chemical reaction occurs only once, using up all the compounds after the airbag deploys, meaning that the same bags can’t be reused because they are unsafe. This, therefore, implies that the airbags should be fully replaced after every deployment. Replacing your airbag after it deploys will ensure that these chemicals are intact and ready to react when triggered in case of another accident in the future.

Can airbags cause injury during a collision?

As we all know, airbags in vehicles do prevent injuries during a collision. Yet they could also cause mild to severe and sometimes deadly injuries even while in good working shape. However, If your car airbag causes you injuries, you might be entitled to a reimbursement.

That said, it is also important to note that the most common airbag injuries result from people using a faulty airbag or a malfunctioned crash sensor.

The following causes can let to airbag injuries.

  • When a sensor fails to release the airbags during a collision.
  • Deployment of the airbags by the sensor when there is no collision.
  • Deployment of the airbags very late during a collision.
  • When the sensor fails, all the airbags do not deploy once a collision is detected.


O the crash sensor deploys the airbags too late during a collision, there is a substantial danger of injury to the automobile occupants. Once the airbags eventually deploy, the car occupants become too close. This means that an airbag with a force of up to 2,000 pounds could strike their bodies or heads.

Passengers and car occupants who are too close to the airbag during a crash are more likely to be injured. The further away someone is from the airbag when it deploys, the more likely they will be injured.

Some examples of airbag injuries

The most common examples of airbag injuries include;

  • Burns on the body, alongside bruises and finger sprains.
  • Contusions on multiple body parts, including the arms, chest, face, and legs.
  • Internal bleeding and damage to body organs like the liver, veins, and lungs, brain injury, neck injuries, and head injury
  • Trauma, irritated lungs resulting from the chemicals emitted by the airbag.
  • Unconsciousness, whiplash, fractured ribs, broken arms, etc.

More severe injuries can result from airbag malfunction, even death. 

How can I prevent airbag injuries?

There are different ways by which you can reduce the risk of airbag injuries_prevent or even avoid them. These measures are specifications you should be mindful of before and when driving. They include the following.

Male Motorist Injured In Car Crash With Airbag Deployed
  • Airbags only work well with seat belts. Ensure that you wear your seatbelt securely fastened before driving your car.
  • Ensure that the distance between the car occupants and any airbag deployment area is 10 inches.
  • If you often ride with older and shorter people, you must install your airbags with an on/off switch.
  • Avoid riding a car if you are heavily pregnant, as the airbags can cause harm to your unborn child.
  • Avoid putting back-facing car seats in the front seat of your car. You should use the proper car seats and convertible seats for kids. Also, ensure you securely fasten them to their seat belts.
  • If you have kids ages 12 or below, make sure they are seated at the back.

What do I do if my airbags injure me after a deployment?

If you believe that the injury results from a faulty airbag or crash sensor, you can decide to take your case to court. So, you must keep the airbag and its accessories securely in your custody after the crash. The court may dismiss your injury claim if you don’t have these items as proof.

As with any court case, you must also understand that you must contact an experienced injury attorney to assist you with the necessary paperwork and get the compensation you deserve for your airbag injury.


If you’ve read this far, you’ve probably figured out why airbags can’t be reused after deployment. While airbags help prevent injuries, this article also explains how airbags can cause injuries. As a result, it is imperative to understand and execute airbag injury avoidance procedures in your regular driving.

Thanks for reading to the end.

Scroll to Top