Malfunctioning Seat Belt Warning Chime - Hyundai Forums : Hyundai Forum
 
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#1 Old 12-19-2009, 05:13 PM
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drfugawe
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Greetings,
I have spent the entire morning reading each and every post on this full forum having to do with Seat Belt Warning Chimes - most inquiries were from those who simply didn't want to wear their seat belts, and most responses were "Wear your seat belts!". No problem with that - but not one time did I see a post from someone who had a malfunctioning seat belt warning chime, as I do. Do any of you have any idea what it's like to have to drive everywhere with that chime going off every 3 seconds? Before I get to my actual request, here's some background info:

Vehicle: 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe - 3.5L, 4WD
Issue: For the last 5-6 months -[b]with the seat belts fastened - the seat belt warning light (on the dash) has been flashing intermittently, and the chime has been sounding, again intermittently (not in coordination with the warning light on dash) - sometimes the flashing light, sometimes the chiming noise, sometimes neither. Very difficult to see a pattern with this! Very difficult to see what sets it off, or interrupts it. In fact, we really don't know if it's a problem with the driver's side or the passenger side - or neither!

We waited this long to get this fixed because we live on the Oregon coast, and the Hyundai dealer is a 3 hour drive away, and we had our 60,000 maintenance coming up. We have just returned from that service, and here is what the dealer tells us:

* The problem did not occur while the car was being serviced (of course, they never do.)

* The suggested remedy, in such cases, is to replace the entire seat belt assembly, (a $300-400 job) - and even then, there is no guarantee that that would solve the problem.

* The Hyundai service rep "suggested" that regulations kept them from being more helpful, since the issue we were asking assistance with was a safety issue, and some customers just wanted to disable this so they could drive with no seat belt and no seat belt warnings. (Sounds like you guys!) He also "suggested" that there was no easy "disablement" because the govt asked Hyundai to make it difficult to disable!

OK - here are my questions to you:

* Why wouldn't this be a warranty item? Unless I heard wrong, the service rep was saying that "we'd" have to pay $300-$400 to get this fixed, or partially fixed.

* I'm not asking here for a way to disable this system, I'd actually like it work! (Hey, that's different, isn't it!) Do these symptoms sound familiar to anyone here? Is there a fix?

* I suspect that the problem may be in the seat belt "receiver" - essentially a malfunction of the connector that is engaged when the belt gets plugged in. One of the two basic "disabling" processes discussed here involves opening the female seat belt receiver section, which I would love to be able to do - But first I must get a set of Torx screwdrivers (have no idea what they are), and then I need to figure out how to find the two screws that are holding that receiver together (I see no screws - but it does look like it may snap apart with a screwdriver - I can feel a place on the bottom where it's possible the 2 screws are located, but it doesn't look accessible, is that where they are - yes/no?)

I'm hoping someone here knows how to fix this problem - it must be nice to get a request from someone who actually wants this device to work, instead of simply disabling it.

Thanks much for your help.
john
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#2 Old 12-19-2009, 06:21 PM
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DSHornet
A long time ago, I got in the habit of disconnecting the seat switch that tells the seat belt warning system that I'm at the steering wheel. That way, I didn't have to hear the seat belt warning the few seconds between the time I start the car and fasten the belt. Thinking back to high school science classes, I know enough not to drive the car without the belt holding me in position to control the car in an emergency situation. It's hard to steer out of a skid while sliding across the console!

Now that I got that out of my system, you might try the same thing to get rid of the chime but it won't solve the actual problem. If I had to guess, you have a bad switch in the buckle (which is what you have already been told), or you might have a bad connection somewhere, most likely at a ground point. Which ground point? Hard to tell, but the intermittant nature of the problem suggests a connection issue somewhere. If you haven't done it yet, log on to www.hmaservice.com and look around at wiring schematics and vehicle cabling diagrams (there are pictures). Use Microsoft Internet Explorer since the diagrams don't come through very well with Firefox.

Paw-paw Don, y'all
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#3 Old 12-20-2009, 07:53 AM
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drfugawe
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Don,
Thanks for your reply - if "disconnecting the seat switch" will silence the chime, please tell me how I can do that (somehow, I think this issue is not that simple!).

Appreciate your help.
john
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#4 Old 12-20-2009, 08:12 AM
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DSHornet
Easy - there are two connectors under the driver's seat, one for the switch and one for the bun warmer (called by more straitlaced the seat heater, a good thing to have available in winter). Follow the wires to see which is which. In the Santa it may be the switch inside the seat belt buckle, but it was the driver's butt switch in another car I had. Anyway, notice how the catch on the connector shell is made, squeeze the connector to release the catch, and pull the halves of the connector apart. If they have never been moved since the car was made, which is likely, you may have to move it around to get it to come apart.

No more chime dingdonging at you!

Paw-paw Don, y'all
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#5 Old 12-21-2009, 03:55 PM
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drfugawe
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Don,
Thanks for your reply - I went out and took a few pics of the area under the driver's seat, and I found two suspicious things - one is a wire harness with empty connectors on the end - this harness is laying loose under the seat, as if it had been pulled loose from a more secure location (should that connector have anything plugged into it?) :




And the other suspicious thing is a piece of wiring that has apparently been pulled/striped away from it's original placement:




My further suspicion after seeing these is that our dog may have been chewing on these - there are times when she rides in the back seat, and she easily could have chewed on them. Although it's difficult to see under the seat, I don't see any place that second wire could have been striped from except from the wire harness in the top pic - in the area of the curve, the black wrapping tape is pulled loose from the harness.

Are you familiar with how these should look? Can you suggest the correct assembly? I'm thinking if I can put these wires back together, the dinging may be over, and the warning device may function as intended - Then everyone will be happy!
Thanks much for your help.
john
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#6 Old 12-21-2009, 08:59 PM
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DSHornet
On my '01 under the driver's seat I found two connectors, two mating green and two mating white. The green are for the seat heater, because they are still connected and the heater works. The white are for the seat belt warning chime, because they aren't connected and it doesn't work. I didn't see a black connector under my driver's seat, but they could have changed the color of the connectors.

The wires from the car wiring harness come from a flap of carpet under the front of the seat at the heater duct opening that sends warm air toward the rear seat passenger's feet. The mating connectors on the seat are attached to a brace on the underside of the seat.

Fido might have shorted wires inside the taped part of the mangled cable, which could cause the problem you are having. I suggest unwrapping the tape and checking if it's so. The tooth marks on the plastic are a dead giveaway!

Paw-paw Don, y'all
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#7 Old 12-23-2009, 06:42 PM
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drfugawe
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Don/Others,
I've now been driving for two days with no dinging!!!!! What a relief - just pure silence.

Thanks for your help and the suggestions - however, before I simply tape off all currently exposed and shorting-out wires, I need to know for sure that this wire assembly (pictured in my previous message) does not contain wiring for other devices as well (such as airbags, etc.). I'd love confirmation on this from anyone who knows the '04 Santa Fe well enough.

john
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#8 Old 12-24-2009, 06:26 AM
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DSHornet
QUOTE (drfugawe @ Dec 23 2009, 05:42 PM)
Quote:
Thanks for your help and the suggestions - however, before I simply tape off all currently exposed and shorting-out wires, I need to know for sure that this wire assembly (pictured in my previous message) does not contain wiring for other devices as well (such as airbags, etc.). I'd love confirmation on this from anyone who knows the '04 Santa Fe well enough.

john
Isn't it great?!

If the seat heaters and power seat motors work (if it has them) and you don't get a warning light for anything, I'd say the fix is good.

Paw-paw Don, y'all
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