How to Reset the Airbag Light on a '98 Jetta

by Susan Revermann
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airbag image by Dimitar Atanasov from

When the airbag light illuminates on your Volkswagen, it indicates there is an issue with the airbag that needs to be addressed promptly. If the light is on, that means your airbag will not deploy at that time, even in a collision. It is imperative this issue be rectified as soon as possible to ensure your personal safety while driving. An SRS scanner can be connected to your car to diagnose any problems that your VW's internal computer has recognized, as well as to reset the airbag light and system.

Step 1

Turn your 1998 VW on and allow the airbag light to come on. Wait for at least six seconds to make sure the light stays on or continues to flash. This indicates the airbag will not deploy, even if you are in an accident. Turn your engine off.

Step 2

Purchase an SRS scanning tool. You can find these through several online companies. The regular engine scanners that you can purchase from an auto parts store will only diagnose engine systems, not the airbag system.

Step 3

Look under the steering wheel to find the 16-pin Data Link Connector. Connect the SRS scanning tool to it.

Step 4

Wait for the scan to give you a number. Look that number up in the book provided with the scanning tool so you know what the code stands for and what the problem is with the airbag system. An SRS scanner can diagnose all sorts of mechanical and electrical problems since it communicates with your Volkswagen's internal computer.

Step 5

Fix any mechanical issues the scanner identifies. After you have done this, enter the code to reset the airbag light and system.

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