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saftey air bags and plows

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by jrodgers, Jan 30, 2003.

  1. jrodgers

    jrodgers Senior Member
    Messages: 156

    I am knocking on wood as I write this. My question is, does a plow on the front of your vehicle affect the air bag from deploying in a head on collision.
  2. EIB

    EIB Senior Member
    Messages: 258

    No, it does not. If you hit a certain g load, then the bags will deploy, plow or not.
  3. Got Grass?

    Got Grass? Senior Member
    Messages: 641

    or crumple the crumple zones.
  4. chtucker

    chtucker Senior Member
    Messages: 618

    The forces that would set off an airbag are in the realm of a sudden stop from 30 mph to 0 mph in a instant. Hopefully you wouldn't be plowing at anything above 20mph.

    Sort of the same, but not really. I have never seen anyone set off an airbag off roading with a Jeep. The shakes, and sudden stops from hitting an imovable object are pretty severe.

    I don't think you have anything to worry about.
  5. Earthscapes

    Earthscapes Senior Member
    from WNY
    Messages: 577

    Not that it matters much, but the dealer told me that the chevy crush points are in the bumper and the plow would need to be crunched into the bumper for the airbags to deploy.

    I guess the only people who can really answer this post are the guys it has happened to.
  6. Roger Dodger

    Roger Dodger Senior Member
    from nw Pa.
    Messages: 240

    There is much chatter and websites on airbag nondeployment on trucks/SUVs that have bumper/grill guards. Besides the extra damage the opposing vehicle suffers, it's reported the airbags do not deploy from the altered characteristics introduced into the very design for the bags to deploy. There are groups lobbying for laws to eliminate and outlaw such front end accessories.

    On a similar note, I would think a plow would change airbag deployment characteristics somewhat. A serious crash with a plow attached would potentially bend the frame's front horns. Once that happens you risk proper motor/tranny/driveshaft alignment and steering alignment problems. Not to mention what shape the plow is left in.
  7. EIB

    EIB Senior Member
    Messages: 258

    I can tell you this, I systems I have worked on, it does not matter how much you crush the front end. It all depends on the impact G force. There is a sensor in a control box that determines when the bags will deploy. I have seen front of vehicles crushed and the airbags didn't deploy. If the body or say the plow structure absorbs the impact below a set piont, then the bags will not deploy.
  8. pats plowing

    pats plowing Senior Member
    Messages: 281

    One dealer told me that the airbag gets turned off with plow installation
    but i think he was a crackhead.
  9. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    He is correct,every system that I have come across are based on forward deceleration rate,which is measured using acceleratometer type sensors,nothing at all to do with crush or crumple zones.

    They usually use 2 airbag sensors,and one safing sensor.You must have at least one sensor and the safing sensor detect something before the airbag fires.

    I think the problem with the front end accessories,is they slow down the rate of deceleration,which will not trip the airbag sensors to deploy the airbag.

    Dealers do not deactivate airbags due to a plow installation.

    Go here for a basic explanation of airbags


    In regards to the original question,the airbag should not deploy while using the truck for snowplowing.I have never seen one go off yet on a plow truck.

    I would think the plow may affect air bag deployment due to a collision,as stated above in regards to front end accessories.It will absorb some of the impact and possible affect the way the sensors react to the impact.How much of an effect it will have I cannot tell you.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2003
  10. Wesley's Lawn

    Wesley's Lawn Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    This is an interesting topic, The reason or 1 of the reason plow manf. started comming out with minute mount systems was because when the lift frame was always on the truck a man got in an accident and his air bag didnt go off so he sued the plow dealer. Now this solved the problem when the plows off but what about when the plow is on. Hopefuly it would go off.
  11. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    I'm sure in a violent crash it would still go off.It would probably only affect the low speed impacts,right around the trigger point of the sensors.May throw it off by a few MPH i assume ?

    If it was that much off an issue,somebody would have done something about it by now.

    It was my understanding the reason they started going to removable plow harnesses was due to the damage they do to other vehicles\persons due to the extra weight and rigidty they provide.
  12. Big Nate's Plowing

    Big Nate's Plowing PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    I'd rather use your crumple zones then mine [​IMG] [​IMG]

  13. NoStockBikes!!

    NoStockBikes!! Senior Member
    Messages: 215

    I'm one of those nutcases that hates airbags. I hate the concept of them. Give me better seatbelts if you want, but get those damn overpriced airbags out of my vehicles. I don't like 'em, I don't trust 'em. If they're so great, make them an option and let the people who want them buy them. Just what I want is to get in a parking lot fender bender with my hand resting on top of the steering wheel and end up with a consussion and a broken arm. I just don't trust them. Plus my wife is short, and so an airbag would probably kill her. The good news is, we could beg the government for a decree which would allow us to turn it off for her, but then we wouldn't be able to find a shop to do it because of liability concerns. So if anything ever happens to me or anyone in my family because of an airbag, I'm going straight after the fat cows who were making the TV rounds lobbying for mandatory airbags, and hold their damn heads right up against the steering wheel while I trip one.

    Yeah, I know I need to relax. I'm just a bit wound up now. :eek:
  14. drobson

    drobson Senior Member
    Messages: 112

    NoStockBikes, even worse than that, imagine if you were just about to take a sip of coffee from your new stainless steel travel mug when the airbag went off!!

    I like the feature of being able to shut off the passenger airbag, just wish I also had that feature for the drivers side as well.
  15. ebaron

    ebaron Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    ? for anyone.
    I hear that replacing an airbag can run up to $2,000. Is it true?
  16. Big Nate's Plowing

    Big Nate's Plowing PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    yes, a " air side cushion" (side airbag) for luxuary car can go as high as $4k:eek:

  17. NoStockBikes!!

    NoStockBikes!! Senior Member
    Messages: 215

    And people wonder why new vehicles are so expensive....
  18. Crockett

    Crockett Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    I just spoke to a Dodge guy from the local dealership and he told me that the 97 Dakota that I am driving has a mercury switch in the airbag mechanism which will trip on rapid deceleration.
    He says that plowing should not cause the device to activate, however I have my concerns.
    I have heard rumors (unconfirmed) of air bags deploying on 94-95 Rams before they tinkered with the sensors a bit.
    The Dodge guy also stated that he thought most of the Dodges now have crush zones rather than the deceleration activated units.
    I guess I'll just keep plowing as is and hope the air bag doesn't deploy when it shouldn't. Has anyone else heard of premature air bag deployment on these or other vehicles?
  19. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,815

    hey nostock bikes i checked that web page out are you into choppers i wanna build one for the summer i just need to get the kits if theres is any
  20. kipcom

    kipcom Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 455

    How about this "Point of interest" Do you see airbags in racing vehicles ??? NO...why ?? You use what is around you to provide protection..not an air filled bag for 30 milliseconds. :eek:

    Crumple zones are just a cheaper way to deploy the bag. :eek:

    The only way to avoid the crash is too................:confused: