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jinxxycat asked me to post this -

My Air Bag Switch Story

I have a passenger side air-bag cut-off switch, so my 6-year old boy can ride with me. How I got it is another story.

First, you need to get a letter of approval from a federal gov't agency, NHTSA. Go to their website and download the form. Fill it out and send it back. I got my approval letter in 10 days after I sent the fax.

Then, I went to the Nissan dealer where I bought my Track model, and where the salesman told me that cut-off switches were available (and even implied they would be installed free), before I signed the deal. Later, when I told them I wanted the switch, they said "the part is $375.00 plus installation, but we probably won't install it due to liability concerns." I said BS, you will install it. They talked to the owner of the dealership, who refused to install it.

I called Nissan USA customer service, and they were almost as unhelpful as the dealer. Apparently no Nissan dealer in Southern California (there are dozens of them) will install it, at least that Nissan USA knew about.

Nissan did refer me to an independent company, "Air-Bag Service," which is a national company with an 800 number and shops all over the country. The closest office to me was in Thousand Oaks, about 30 miles from my house.

I told them I wanted the passenger side air-bag cut-off switch, and that I heard the Nissan part was $375 plus installation. They said "we have seen that part, and it is very complicated. We have a generic switch that works on all cars. We have done 350Z's and G35 Coupes with the generic switch. The price is $400 installed including sales tax and everything, and we will come to your house to do the work."

I bought the Air-Bag Service switch, and they did everything with no muss, no fuss, no hassle. I recommend them. Call the (800) information operator and ask for their number.

The on-off switch is very unobtrusive. There is a little box about 2" cube. They hide it in the passenger side footwell. You can see it from the driver's seat, so you know if it is on or off. It uses a little key. There is an led on the cube. If it glows green, the airbag is on. If it is yellow, the air bag is off.

Good luck.
 

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My friend James (commasense on the "other site") had dual airbag switches installed, and they cost him about $800 total IIRC. I'll try to get him to post info here... he did this since his Z sees a large number of track miles and you really don't need airbags (or want to pay for them) when you hit a tirewall.
 

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Hey Richard,
I too had the pass. side airbag installed. I had the switch from Sensible Solutions (airbagonoff.com) installed, and like you, other than the usual red tape, it was a good experience. You can see a few pics of my installation HERE. I think down the road, I'm going to end up regretting my choice of locations for the switch because I'd like to put an LCD screen in the NAV console, but for now, it works out great.
 

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Originally posted by John@Jun 2 2004, 08:51 AM
Your cutoff switch is the same one I've seen on other cars...  isn't the company based up in Frederick, MD or something?

Yep, the company is local, but from what I understand, they'll do an install anywhere. I'm not sure how they manage that, but that's the deal.
 

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Glad you finally got someone who could help out! Wonder why Nissan is so adamant about not touching it. You'd think they'd have the most experience doing it since it's a Nissan part.

By the way, I love your new sig Kelly.
 

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Originally posted by cedusett@Jun 3 2004, 09:36 AM
Glad you finally got someone who could help out!  Wonder why Nissan is so adamant about not touching it.  You'd think they'd have the most experience doing it since it's a Nissan part.

By the way, I love your new sig Kelly.

Glad you like the new sig!

The reason the dealerships won't do the install is because of the liability. At first, I thought that meant liability about turning off your safety device or damaging your car, etc., but it's really liability to the mechanic who does it. The tech who put mine in said that almost $150 of the $400 install fee went to insurance for her. She said that people get injured or killed almost yearly trying to do this and accidentally setting off the bag. Nissan doesn't want to have to carry that kind of liability on their employees.
 

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Holy crap. I guess that answers that.
 

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That's exactly why I'd never do it as a DIY. If that bag goes off while you're down there working on it, uh oh
 
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