Airbag Thefts Rise in Honda Vehicles

1 May 2019

Airbag Thefts Rise in Honda Vehicles

Airbag theft is a crime that is rising in frequency with more than 50,000 vehicle airbags stolen each year. While no late model car that has airbags is entirely safe, late-model Honda Civics and Accords are highly targeted as various Acura models, according to the Car Buzz website which goes on to report that many of these stolen airbags are being sold on the black market as well as to some shady repair shops.

How Big is the Problem?

In Miami-Dade, a local news channel reported the theft of nearly a dozen airbags reported in a single morning with some area apartment complexes having more than one car targeted. This isn’t isolated to warm-weather areas, though. In Alexandria, VA 16 cars at a condo complex were targeted in a single night

Preventing Airbag Theft

There are many reasons why airbags are such attractive targets. Some have to do with the relative ease of removal of airbags when compared to other vehicle parts. Combine that with an average price tag of nearly $500 for thieves, and it’s what some thieves consider easy money. There are things you can do to make your vehicle airbag a less attractive target for thieves, including:

  • Park in well-lit, highly visible, and well-trafficked locations.
  • Consider installing locking anti-theft devices on your steering wheel.
  • Only use reputable automotive repair shops and check their reputation before taking your car in for repairs (many report that thefts happen at repair shops or shortly after vehicles have been taken in for repairs).

For the most part, it is obvious to car owners that the airbag has been stolen as the average thief makes no attempt to disguise his actions. Some repair shops, though, attempt to disguise their thefts by replacing the airbags with an airbag from a scrapped car so they can sell your airbag at a higher rate.

Tell-tale signs this may have happened to you will be if your airbag light begins blinking or suddenly comes on and remains on shortly after a trip to your local mechanic. Another indicator is the presence of scratches, discolorations, or burn marks on your steering wheel or dashboard.

Finally, don’t overlook the importance of GPS tracking for your vehicle. While it may not prevent airbag theft it can notify you instantly if your car is operated during designated sleep hours, leaves a specific geographic location, and in countless other scenarios. Plush, the live tracking features make the recovery of your vehicle more likely, too.

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