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display. Press and hold MN until the correct minute appears on the display. To display the time with the ignition off, press RECALL or HR/MN and the time will be displayed for a few seconds. There is an initial two-second delay before the clock goes into the time-set mode.

Audio System(s) Notice: Before you add any sound equipment to your vehicle – like a tape player, CB radio, mobile telephone or two-way radio – be sure you can add what you want. If you can, it’s very important to do it properly. Added sound equipment may interfere with the operation of your vehicle’s engine, radio or other systems, and even damage them. Your vehicle’s systems may interfere with the operation of sound equipment that has been added improperly. So, before adding sound equipment, check with your dealer and be sure to check federal rules covering mobile radio and telephone units. Your audio system has been designed to operate easily and to give years of listening pleasure. You will get the most enjoyment out of it if you acquaint yourself with it first. Figure out which radio you have in your vehicle, find out what your audio system can do and how to operate all of its controls to be sure you’re getting the most out of the advanced engineering that went into it. Your vehicle has a feature called Retained Accessory Power (RAP). With RAP, you can play your audio system even after the ignition is turned off. See “Retained Accessory Power (RAP)” under Ignition Positionsonpage2-17.


AM-FM Radio

Finding a Station

Playing the Radio

Power: Turn the VOLUME knob to turn the system on and off.

VOLUME: Turn this knob to increase or to decrease volume.

RECALL: Press this knob to switch the display between the radio station frequency and the time. Time display is available with the ignition turned off.

AM-FM: Press this knob to switch between FM1, FM2, and AM. The display will show your selection.

TUNE: Turn this knob to select radio stations. o SEEK p: Press the right or the left arrow to go to the next or to the previous station and stay there. o SCAN p: Press both SCAN arrows at the same time. SCAN will appear on the display. The radio will go to the next station, play for a few seconds, then go on to the next station. Press the RECALL knob or either SCAN arrow to stop scanning. Setting Preset Stations The four numbered pushbuttons let you return to your favorite stations. You can set up to 21 stations (seven FM1, seven FM2, and seven AM) by performing the following steps: 1. Turn the radio on. 2. Press AM-FM to select FM1, FM2, or AM. 3. Tune in the desired station.


4. Press SET. SET will appear on the display. 5. Press one of the four pushbuttons within five seconds. Whenever you press that numbered pushbutton, the station you set will return.

6. Repeat the steps for each pushbutton. In addition to the four stations already set, up to three more stations may be preset on each band by pressing two adjoining pushbuttons at the same time and by performing the following steps: 1. Tune in the desired station. 2. Press SET. SET will appear on the display. 3. Press two adjoining pushbuttons at the same time, within five seconds. Whenever you press the same two pushbuttons, the station you set will return.

4. Repeat the steps for each pushbutton.

Setting the Tone (Bass/Treble)

BASS: Slide this lever up or down to increase or to decrease bass.

TREB (Treble): Slide this lever up or down to increase or to decrease treble. If a station is weak or noisy, you may want to decrease the treble. Adjusting the Speakers (Balance/Fade)

BAL (Balance): Turn the control ring behind the upper knob to move the sound toward the left or the right speakers.

FADE: Turn the control ring behind the lower knob to move the sound toward the front or the rear speakers.


Radio with CD

Playing the Radio

PWR (Power): Press this knob to turn the system on and off.

VOL (Volume): Turn this knob to increase or to decrease volume. The knob is capable of rotating continuously.

SCV (Speed-Compensated Volume): With SCV, your audio system adjusts automatically to make up for road and wind noise as you drive.

Set the volume at the desired level. Turn the control ring behind the upper knob clockwise to increase the SCV. Each notch on the control ring allows for more volume compensation at faster vehicle speeds. Then, as you drive, SCV automatically increases the volume, as necessary, to overcome noise at any speed. The volume level should always sound the same to you as you drive. If you do not want to use SCV, turn the control all the way down.

RECALL: Press this button to switch the display between the radio station frequency and the time. Time display is available with the ignition turned off. Finding a Station

AM FM: Press this button to switch between FM1, FM2, and AM. The display will show your selection.

TUNE: Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn it to select radio stations. Push the knob back into its stored position when you are not using it.


o SEEK p: Press the right or the left arrow to go to the next or previous station and stay there.

To scan stations, press and hold either SEEK arrow for two seconds until SCAN appears on the display. The radio will go to a station, play for a few seconds, then go on to the next station. Press either SEEK arrow again to stop scanning.

The radio will seek and scan only to stations that are in the selected band and only to those with a strong signal.

P.SCAN (Preset Scan): Press this button to listen to each of your favorite stations stored on the pushbuttons for a few seconds. P.SCAN will appear on the display. Press this button again or one of the pushbuttons to stop scanning presets.

The radio will scan only to the preset stations that are in the selected band and only to those with a strong signal.

Setting Preset Stations The six numbered pushbuttons let you return to your favorite stations. You can set up to 18 stations (six FM1, six FM2, and six AM) by performing the following steps: 1. Turn the radio on. 2. Press AM FM to select FM1, FM2, or AM. 3. Tune in the desired station. 4. Press AUTO TONE to select the equalization. 5. Press and hold one of the six pushbuttons. The

sound will mute. When it returns, release the pushbutton. Whenever you press that numbered pushbutton, the station you set will return and the equalization you selected will be automatically stored for that pushbutton.

6. Repeat the steps for each pushbutton.


Setting the Tone (Bass/Treble)

Adjusting the Speakers (Balance/Fade)

BASS: Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn the knob to increase or to decrease bass.

TREB (Treble): Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn the knob to increase or to decrease treble. If a station is weak or noisy, you may want to decrease the treble.

Return these knobs to their stored positions when you’re not using them.

AUTO TONE (Automatic Tone): Press this knob to select customized equalization settings designed for country/western, jazz, talk, pop, rock, and classical.

To return the bass and treble to the manual mode, either press and release the AUTO TONE button until the display goes blank or press and release the BASS or TREB knobs and turn them until the display goes blank.

BAL (Balance): Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn the knob to move the sound toward the right or the left speakers.

FADE: Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn the knob to move the sound toward the front or the rear speakers.

Return these knobs to their stored positions when you are not using them. Playing a CD Insert a CDpartway into the slot, label side up. The player will pull it in and the CD should begin playing. CD and a CD symbol will appear on the display. If you want to insert a CD when the ignition is off, first press the EJECT button. If you insert a CD with the radio off and the ignition on, it will start to play. If you turn off the ignition or radio with a CD in the player, it will stay in the player. When you turn on the ignition or radio, the CD will start playing where it stopped, if it was the last selected audio source.


As each new track starts to play, the track number will appear on the display. The CD player can play the smaller 8 cm single discs with an adapter ring. Full-size compact discs and the smaller discs are loaded in the same manner. If playing a CD-R the sound quality may be reduced due to CD-R quality, the method of recording, the quality of the music that has been recorded, and the way the CD-R has been handled. You may experience an increase in skipping, difficulty in finding tracks, and/or difficulty in loading and ejecting. If these problems occur try a known good CD. Do not add paper labels to discs, they could get caught in the CD player. Do not play 3 inch discs without a standard adapter disc. If an error appears on the display, see “CD Messages” later in this section.

1 PREV (Previous): Press this pushbutton to go to the start of the current track if more then eight seconds have played. If you hold this pushbutton or press it more than once, the player will continue moving backward through the CD.

2 RDM (Random): Press this pushbutton to hear the tracks in random, rather than sequential, order. RANDOM will appear on the display. Press this pushbutton again to turn off random play.

3 NEXT: Press this pushbutton to go to the next track. If you hold this pushbutton or press it more than once, the player will continue moving forward through the CD.

REV 4 (Reverse): Press and hold this pushbutton to reverse quickly within a track. You will hear sound at a reduced volume. Release the pushbutton to play the passage. The elapsed time of the track will appear on the display.

FWD 6 (Forward): Press and hold this pushbutton to advance quickly within a track. You will hear sound at a reduced volume. Release the pushbutton to play the passage. The elapsed time of the track will appear on the display. o SEEK p: The right arrow is the same as the NEXT pushbutton, and the left arrow is the same as the PREV pushbutton. If you hold either arrow or press it more than once, the player will continue moving forward or backward through the CD.


• The CD is dirty, scratched, wet, or upside down. • The air is very humid. If so, wait about an hour and

try again.

• There may have been a problem while burning

the CD.

• The label may be caught in the CD player. Press RECALL to make ERR go off of the display. If the CD is not playing correctly, for any other reason, try a known good CD. If any error occurs repeatedly or if an error cannot be corrected, contact your dealer. If your radio displays an error message, write it down and provide it to your dealer when reporting the problem.

RECALL: Press this button to see what track is playing. Press it again within five seconds to see how long the current track has been playing. Press this button again to return to the time display.

AM FM: Press this button to listen to the radio when a CD is playing. The inactive CD will remain safely inside the radio for future listening.

CD AUX (Auxiliary): Press this button to play a CD when listening to the radio.

EJECT: Press this button to eject the CD. Eject may be activated with either the ignition or radio off. CDs may be loaded with the radio and ignition off if this button is pressed first. CD Messages

ERR (Error): If this message appears and the CD comes out, it could be for one of the following reasons: • It is very hot. When the temperature returns to

normal, the CD should play.

• You are driving on a very rough road. When the

road becomes smooth, the CD should play.


Rear Seat Audio (RSA)

This feature allows rear seat passengers to listen to any of the music sources: radio, and CDs. However, the rear seat passengers can only control the music sources that the front seat passengers are not listening to. For example, rear seat passengers may listen to a CD through headphones while the driver listens to the radio through the front speakers. The rear seat passengers have control of the volume for each set of headphones. Be aware that the front seat audio controls always override the rear seat audio controls.


PWR (Power): Press this button to turn the rear seat audio system on or off. The rear speakers will be muted when the power is turned on. You may operate the rear seat audio functions even when the front seat radio power is off.

VOL (Volume): Press this knob lightly so it extends. Turn the knob to increase or to decrease volume. Push the knob back into its stored position when you are not using it. The upper knob controls the upper headphone and the lower knob controls the lower headphone.

AM FM: Press this button to switch between FM1, FM2, and AM. If the front passengers are already listening to the radio, the RSA controller will not switch between the bands or change the frequency.

Press AM FM to listen to the radio when a CD is playing. The inactive CD will remain safely inside the radio for future listening. w SEEK x: While listening to the radio, press the up or the down arrow to go to the next or to the previous station and stay there. This button is inactive if the front radio is in use.

Theft-Deterrent Feature THEFTLOCK® is designed to discourage theft of your radio. It works by using a secret code to disable all radio functions whenever battery power is interrupted. The THEFTLOCK® feature for the radio may be used or ignored. If ignored, the system plays normally and the radio is not protected by the feature. If THEFTLOCK® is activated, your radio will not operate if stolen. When THEFTLOCK® is activated, LOC will appear on the radio display to indicate a locked condition anytime battery power has been interrupted. If your battery loses power for any reason, you must unlock the radio with the secret code before it will operate.

While listening to a CD, press the up arrow to hear the next track on the CD. Press the down arrow to go back to the start of the current track if more than eight seconds have played. The SEEK button is inactive if the CD mode on the front radio is in use.

To scan preset stations, press and hold either SEEK arrow until SCAN appears on the radio display. The radio will go to a station, play for a few seconds, then go on to the next station. Press either SEEK arrow again to stop scanning. The scan function is inactive if the front radio is in use.

P.SET PROG (Preset Program): The front passengers must be listening to something different for each of these functions to work: • Press this button to scan through the preset radio stations set on the pushbuttons on the main radio. The radio will go to a preset station, play for a few seconds, then go on to the next preset station. Press this button again to stop scanning.

TAPE CD: Press this button to play CD when listening to the radio.


Activating the Theft-Deterrent Feature The instructions which follow explain how to enter your secret code to activate the THEFTLOCK® system. Read through all nine steps before starting the procedure. If you allow more than 15 seconds to elapse between any steps, the radio automatically reverts to time and you must start the procedure over at Step 4. 1. Write down any three or four-digit number from 000

to 1999 and keep it in a safe place separate from the vehicle.

2. Turn the ignition on. 3. Turn the radio off. 4. Press the 1 and 4 pushbuttons at the same time.

Hold them down until --- shows on the display. Next you will use the secret code number which you have written down.

5. Press MN and 000 will appear on the display. 6. Press MN again to make the last two digits agree

with your code.

7. Press HR to make the first one or two digits agree

with your code.

8. Press AM FM after you have confirmed that the code matches the secret code you have written down. The display will show REP to let you know that you need to repeat Steps 5 through 7 to confirm your secret code.

9. Press AM FM and this time the display will show

SEC to let you know that your radio is secure. The LED indicator by the volume knob will begin flashing when the ignition is turned off.


Unlocking the Theft-Deterrent Feature After a Power Loss Enter your secret code as follows; pause no more than 15 seconds between steps: 1. Turn the ignition on. LOC will appear on the


2. Press MN and 000 will appear on the display. 3. Press MN again to make the last two digits agree

with your code.

4. Press HR to make the first one or two digits agree

with your code.

5. Press AM FM after you have confirmed that the code matches the secret code you have written down. The display will show SEC, indicating the radio is now operable and secure.

If you enter the wrong code eight times, INOP will appear on the display. You will have to wait an hour with the ignition on before you can try again. When you try again, you will only have three chances to enter the correct code before INOP appears. If you lose or forget your code, contact your dealership.

Disabling the Theft-Deterrent Feature Enter your secret code as follows; pause no more than 15 seconds between steps: 1. Turn the ignition on. 2. Turn the radio off. 3. Press the 1 and 4 pushbuttons at the same time.

Hold them down until SEC appears on the display.

4. Press MN and 000 will appear on the display. 5. Press MN again to make the last two digits agree

with your code.

6. Press HR to make the first one or two digits agree

with your code.

7. Press AM FM after you have confirmed that the code matches the secret code you have written down. --- will appear on the display, indicating that the radio is no longer secured.

If the code entered is incorrect, SEC will appear on the display. The radio will remain secured until the correct code is entered. When battery power is removed and later applied to a secured radio, the radio won’t turn on and LOC will appear on the display. To unlock a secured radio, see Unlockingthe Theft-DeterrentFeatureAfteraPowerLoss earlier in this section.


Care of Your CD Player The use of CD lens cleaners for CDs is not advised, due to the risk of contaminating the lens of the CD optics with lubricants internal to the CD mechanism.

Fixed Mast Antenna The fixed mast antenna can withstand most car washes without being damaged. If the mast should ever become slightly bent, you can straighten it out by hand. If the mast is badly bent, you should replace it. Check occasionally to be sure the mast is still tightened to the fender. If tightening is required, tighten by hand, then with a wrench one quarter turn.

Radio Reception AM The range for most AM stations is greater than for FM, especially at night. The longer range, however, can cause stations to interfere with each other. AM can pick up noise from things like storms and power lines. Try reducing the treble to reduce this noise. FM FM stereo will give you the best sound, but FM signals will reach only about 10 to 40 miles (16 to 65 km). Tall buildings or hills can interfere with FM signals, causing the sound to come and go.

Care of Your CDs Handle CDs carefully. Store them in their original cases or other protective cases and away from direct sunlight and dust. If the surface of a CD is soiled, dampen a clean, soft cloth in a mild, neutral detergent solution and clean it, wiping from the center to the edge. Be sure never to touch the side without writing when handling CDs. Pick up CDs by grasping the outer edges or the edge of the hole and the outer edge.


Section 4

Driving Your Vehicle

Your Driving, the Road, and Your Vehicle ..........4-2
Defensive Driving ...........................................4-2
Drunken Driving .............................................4-3
Control of a Vehicle ........................................4-6
Braking .........................................................4-6
Locking Rear Axle ..........................................4-9
Steering ........................................................4-9
Off-Road Recovery .......................................4-11
Passing .......................................................4-12
Loss of Control .............................................4-13
Driving at Night ............................................4-14
Driving in Rain and on Wet Roads ..................4-16
City Driving ..................................................4-19

Freeway Driving ...........................................4-20
Before Leaving on a Long Trip .......................4-21
Highway Hypnosis ........................................4-22
Hill and Mountain Roads ................................4-22
Winter Driving ..............................................4-24
If You Are Stuck: In Sand, Mud,

Ice or Snow ..............................................4-28
Towing ..........................................................4-29
Towing Your Vehicle .....................................4-29
Recreational Vehicle Towing ...........................4-29
Loading Your Vehicle ....................................4-30
Towing a Trailer ...........................................4-35


Your Driving, the Road, and Your Vehicle

Defensive Driving The best advice anyone can give about driving is: Drive defensively. Please start with a very important safety device in your vehicle: Buckle up. See SafetyBelts:TheyArefor Everyoneonpage1-13. Defensive driving really means “be ready for anything.” On city streets, rural roads or freeways, it means “always expect the unexpected.” Assume that pedestrians or other drivers are going to be careless and make mistakes. Anticipate what they might do. Be ready for their mistakes.

Rear-end collisions are about the most preventable of accidents. Yet they are common. Allow enough following distance. It is the best defensive driving maneuver, in both city and rural driving. You never know when the vehicle in front of you is going to brake or turn suddenly. Defensive driving requires that a driver concentrate on the driving task. Anything that distracts from the driving task — such as concentrating on a cellular telephone call, reading, or reaching for something on the floor — makes proper defensive driving more difficult and can even cause a collision, with resulting injury. Ask a passenger to help do things like this, or pull off the road in a safe place to do them yourself. These simple defensive driving techniques could save your life.


Drunken Driving Death and injury associated with drinking and driving is a national tragedy. It is the number one contributor to the highway death toll, claiming thousands of victims every year. Alcohol affects four things that anyone needs to drive a vehicle: • Judgment • Muscular Coordination • Vision • Attentiveness. Police records show that almost half of all motor vehicle-related deaths involve alcohol. In most cases, these deaths are the result of someone who was drinking and driving. In recent years, more than 16,000 annual motor vehicle-related deaths have been associated with the use of alcohol, with more than 300,000 people injured.

Many adults — by some estimates, nearly half the adult population — choose never to drink alcohol, so they never drive after drinking. For persons under 21, it is against the law in every U.S. state to drink alcohol. There are good medical, psychological and developmental reasons for these laws. The obvious way to eliminate the leading highway safety problem is for people never to drink alcohol and then drive. But what if people do? How much is “too much” if someone plans to drive? It is a lot less than many might think. Although it depends on each person and situation, here is some general information on the problem. The Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of someone who is drinking depends upon four things: • The amount of alcohol consumed • The drinker’s body weight • The amount of food that is consumed before and

during drinking

• The length of time it has taken the drinker to

consume the alcohol.


According to the American Medical Association, a 180 lb (82 kg) person who drinks three 12 ounce (355 ml) bottles of beer in an hour will end up with a BAC of about 0.06 percent. The person would reach the same BAC by drinking three 4 ounce (120 ml) glasses of wine or three mixed drinks if each had 1-1/2 ounces (45 ml) of liquors like whiskey, gin or vodka.

It is the amount of alcohol that counts. For example, if the same person drank three double martinis (3 ounces or 90 ml of liquor each) within an hour, the person’s BAC would be close to 0.12 percent. A person who consumes food just before or during drinking will have a somewhat lower BAC level. There is a gender difference, too. Women generally have a lower relative percentage of body water than men. Since alcohol is carried in body water, this means that a woman generally will reach a higher BAC level than a man of her same body weight will when each has the same number of drinks. The law in an increasing number of U.S. states, and throughout Canada, sets the legal limit at 0.08 percent. In some other countries, the limit is even lower. For example, it is 0.05 percent in both France and Germany. The BAC limit for all commercial drivers in the United States is 0.04 percent. The BAC will be over 0.10 percent after three to six drinks (in one hour). Of course, as we have seen, it depends on how much alcohol is in the drinks, and how quickly the person drinks them.


But the ability to drive is affected well below a BAC of 0.10 percent. Research shows that the driving skills of many people are impaired at a BAC approaching 0.05 percent, and that the effects are worse at night. All drivers are impaired at BAC levels above 0.05 percent. Statistics show that the chance of being in a collision increases sharply for drivers who have a BAC of 0.05 percent or above. A driver with a BAC level of 0.06 percent has doubled his or her chance of having a collision. At a BAC level of 0.10 percent, the chance of this driver having a collision is 12 times greater; at a level of 0.15 percent, the chance is 25 times greater! The body takes about an hour to rid itself of the alcohol in one drink. No amount of coffee or number of cold showers will speed that up. “I will be careful” is not the right answer. What if there is an emergency, a need to take sudden action, as when a child darts into the street? A person with even a moderate BAC might not be able to react quickly enough to avoid the collision.

There is something else about drinking and driving that many people do not know. Medical research shows that alcohol in a person’s system can make crash injuries worse, especially injuries to the brain, spinal cord or heart. This means that when anyone who has been drinking — driver or passenger — is in a crash, that person’s chance of being killed or permanently disabled is higher than if the person had not been drinking.


Drinking and then driving is very dangerous. Your reflexes, perceptions, attentiveness and judgment can be affected by even a small amount of alcohol. You can have a serious — or even fatal — collision if you drive after drinking. Please do not drink and drive or ride with a driver who has been drinking. Ride home in a cab; or if you are with a group, designate a driver who will not drink.


Braking Braking action involves perceptiontime and reactiontime. First, you have to decide to push on the brake pedal. That is perceptiontime. Then you have to bring up your foot and do it. That is reactiontime. Average reactiontime is about 3/4 of a second. But that is only an average. It might be less with one driver and as long as two or three seconds or more with another. Age, physical condition, alertness, coordination and eyesight all play a part. So do alcohol, drugs and frustration. But even in 3/4 of a second, a vehicle moving at 60 mph (100 km/h) travels 66 feet (20 m). That could be a lot of distance in an emergency, so keeping enough space between your vehicle and others is important. And, of course, actual stopping distances vary greatly with the surface of the road (whether it is pavement or gravel); the condition of the road (wet, dry, icy); tire tread; the condition of your brakes; the weight of the vehicle and the amount of brake force applied.

Control of a Vehicle You have three systems that make your vehicle go where you want it to go. They are the brakes, the steering and the accelerator. All three systems have to do their work at the places where the tires meet the road.

Sometimes, as when you are driving on snow or ice, it is easy to ask more of those control systems than the tires and road can provide. That means you can lose control of your vehicle.


Avoid needless heavy braking. Some people drive in spurts — heavy acceleration followed by heavy braking — rather than keeping pace with traffic. This is a mistake. Your brakes may not have time to cool between hard stops. Your brakes will wear out much faster if you do a lot of heavy braking. If you keep pace with the traffic and allow realistic following distances, you will eliminate a lot of unnecessary braking. That means better braking and longer brake life. If your engine ever stops while you are driving, brake normally but do not pump your brakes. If you do, the pedal may get harder to push down. If your engine stops, you will still have some power brake assist. But you will use it when you brake. Once the power assist is used up, it may take longer to stop and the brake pedal will be harder to push.

Anti-lock Brake System Your vehicle has anti-lock brakes. ABS is an advanced electronic braking system that will help prevent a braking skid. When you start your engine and begin to drive away, your anti-lock brake system will check itself. You may hear a momentary motor or clicking noise while this test is going on. This is normal.

United States


If there is a problem with the anti-lock brake system, this warning light will stay on. See Anti-LockBrake SystemWarningLightonpage3-27.


The anti-lock system can change the brake pressure faster than any driver could. The computer is programmed to make the most of available tire and road conditions. This can help you steer around the obstacle while braking hard.

Let us say the road is wet and you are driving safely. Suddenly, an animal jumps out in front of you. You slam on the brakes and continue braking. Here is what happens with ABS: A computer senses that wheels are slowing down. If one of the wheels is about to stop rolling, the computer will separately work the brakes at each front wheel and at both rear wheels.


As you brake, your computer keeps receiving updates on wheel speed and controls braking pressure accordingly.

Remember: Anti-lock does not change the time you need to get your foot up to the brake pedal or always decrease stopping distance. If you get too close to the vehicle in front of you, you will not have time to apply your brakes if that vehicle suddenly slows or stops. Always leave enough room up ahead to stop, even though you have anti-lock brakes. Using Anti-Lock Do not pump the brakes. Just hold the brake pedal down firmly and let anti-lock work for you. You may feel the brakes vibrate, or you may notice some noise, but this is normal. Braking in Emergencies With anti-lock, you can steer and brake at the same time. In many emergencies, steering can help you more than even the very best braking.

Locking Rear Axle If your vehicle has this feature, your locking rear axle can give you additional traction on snow, mud, ice, sand or gravel. It works like a standard axle most of the time, but when one of the rear wheels has no traction and the other does, this feature will allow the wheel with traction to move the vehicle.

Steering Power Steering If you lose power steering assist because the engine stops or the system is not functioning, you can steer but it will take much more effort. Steering Tips Driving on Curves It is important to take curves at a reasonable speed. A lot of the “driver lost control” accidents mentioned on the news happen on curves. Here is why: Experienced driver or beginner, each of us is subject to the same laws of physics when driving on curves. The traction of the tires against the road surface makes it possible for the vehicle to change its path when you turn the front wheels. If there is no traction, inertia will keep the vehicle going in the same direction. If you have ever tried to steer a vehicle on wet ice, you will understand this. The traction you can get in a curve depends on the condition of your tires and the road surface, the angle at which the curve is banked, and your speed. While you are in a curve, speed is the one factor you can control.


Suppose you are steering through a sharp curve. Then you suddenly accelerate. Both control systems — steering and acceleration — have to do their work where the tires meet the road. Adding the sudden acceleration can demand too much of those places. You can lose control. What should you do if this ever happens? Ease up on the accelerator pedal, steer the vehicle the way you want it to go, and slow down. Speed limit signs near curves warn that you should adjust your speed. Of course, the posted speeds are based on good weather and road conditions. Under less favorable conditions you will want to go slower. If you need to reduce your speed as you approach a curve, do it before you enter the curve, while your front wheels are straight ahead. Try to adjust your speed so you can “drive” through the curve. Maintain a reasonable, steady speed. Wait to accelerate until you are out of the curve, and then accelerate gently into the straightaway.

Steering in Emergencies There are times when steering can be more effective than braking. For example, you come over a hill and find a truck stopped in your lane, or a car suddenly pulls out from nowhere, or a child darts out from between parked cars and stops right in front of you. You can avoid these problems by braking — if you can stop in time. But sometimes you can not; there is not room. That is the time for evasive action — steering around the problem. Your vehicle can perform very well in emergencies like these. First apply your brakes. See Brakingonpage4-6. It is better to remove as much speed as you can from a possible collision. Then steer around the problem, to the left or right depending on the space available.


Off-Road Recovery You may find that your right wheels have dropped off the edge of a road onto the shoulder while you are driving.

An emergency like this requires close attention and a quick decision. If you are holding the steering wheel at the recommended 9 and 3 o’clock positions, you can turn it a full 180 degrees very quickly without removing either hand. But you have to act fast, steer quickly, and just as quickly straighten the wheel once you have avoided the object. The fact that such emergency situations are always possible is a good reason to practice defensive driving at all times and wear safety belts properly.

If the level of the shoulder is only slightly below the pavement, recovery should be fairly easy. Ease off the accelerator and then, if there is nothing in the way, steer so that your vehicle straddles the edge of the pavement. You can turn the steering wheel up to one-quarter turn until the right front tire contacts the pavement edge. Then turn your steering wheel to go straight down the roadway.


Passing The driver of a vehicle about to pass another on a two-lane highway waits for just the right moment, accelerates, moves around the vehicle ahead, then goes back into the right lane again. A simple maneuver? Not necessarily! Passing another vehicle on a two-lane highway is a potentially dangerous move, since the passing vehicle occupies the same lane as oncoming traffic for several seconds. A miscalculation, an error in judgment, or a brief surrender to frustration or anger can suddenly put the passing driver face to face with the worst of all traffic accidents — the head-on collision. So here are some tips for passing: • “Drive ahead.” Look down the road, to the sides and to crossroads for situations that might affect your passing patterns. If you have any doubt whatsoever about making a successful pass, wait for a better time.

• Watch for traffic signs, pavement markings and lines. If you can see a sign up ahead that might indicate a turn or an intersection, delay your pass. A broken center line usually indicates it is all right to pass (providing the road ahead is clear). Never cross a solid line on your side of the lane or a double solid line, even if the road seems empty of approaching traffic.


• Do not get too close to the vehicle you want to

pass while you are awaiting an opportunity. For one thing, following too closely reduces your area of vision, especially if you are following a larger vehicle. Also, you will not have adequate space if the vehicle ahead suddenly slows or stops. Keep back a reasonable distance.

• When it looks like a chance to pass is coming up,

start to accelerate but stay in the right lane and do not get too close. Time your move so you will be increasing speed as the time comes to move into the other lane. If the way is clear to pass, you will have a “running start” that more than makes up for the distance you would lose by dropping back. And if something happens to cause you to cancel your pass, you need only slow down and drop back again and wait for another opportunity.

• If other vehicles are lined up to pass a slow vehicle,

wait your turn. But take care that someone is not trying to pass you as you pull out to pass the slow vehicle. Remember to glance over your shoulder and check the blind spot.

• Check your mirrors, glance over your shoulder, and start your left lane change signal before moving out of the right lane to pass. When you are far enough ahead of the passed vehicle to see its front in your inside mirror, activate your right lane change signal and move back into the right lane. (Remember that your right outside mirror is convex. The vehicle you just passed may seem to be farther away from you than it really is.)

• Try not to pass more than one vehicle at a time on

two-lane roads. Reconsider before passing the next vehicle.

• Do not overtake a slowly moving vehicle too rapidly.

Even though the brake lamps are not flashing, it may be slowing down or starting to turn.

• If you are being passed, make it easy for the following driver to get ahead of you. Perhaps you can ease a little to the right.

Loss of Control Let us review what driving experts say about what happens when the three control systems (brakes, steering and acceleration) do not have enough friction where the tires meet the road to do what the driver has asked. In any emergency, do not give up. Keep trying to steer and constantly seek an escape route or area of less danger. Skidding In a skid, a driver can lose control of the vehicle. Defensive drivers avoid most skids by taking reasonable care suited to existing conditions, and by not “overdriving” those conditions. But skids are always possible. The three types of skids correspond to your vehicle’s three control systems. In the braking skid, your wheels are not rolling. In the steering or cornering skid, too much speed or steering in a curve causes tires to slip and lose cornering force. And in the acceleration skid, too much throttle causes the driving wheels to spin.


A cornering skid is best handled by easing your foot off the accelerator pedal. If your vehicle starts to slide, ease your foot off the accelerator pedal and quickly steer the way you want the vehicle to go. If you start steering quickly enough, your vehicle may straighten out. Always be ready for a second skid if it occurs. Of course, traction is reduced when water, snow, ice, gravel or other material is on the road. For safety, you will want to slow down and adjust your driving to these conditions. It is important to slow down on slippery surfaces because stopping distance will be longer and vehicle control more limited. While driving on a surface with reduced traction, try your best to avoid sudden steering, acceleration or braking (including engine braking by shifting to a lower gear). Any sudden changes could cause the tires to slide. You may not realize the surface is slippery until your vehicle is skidding. Learn to recognize warning clues — such as enough water, ice or packed snow on the road to make a “mirrored surface” — and slow down when you have any doubt. Remember: Any anti-lock brake system (ABS) helps avoid only the braking skid.


Driving at Night

Night driving is more dangerous than day driving. One reason is that some drivers are likely to be impaired — by alcohol or drugs, with night vision problems, or by fatigue.

Here are some tips on night driving. • Drive defensively. • Do not drink and drive. • Adjust your inside rearview mirror to reduce the

glare from headlamps behind you.

• Since you can not see as well, you may need to

slow down and keep more space between you and other vehicles.

• Slow down, especially on higher speed roads. Your headlamps can light up only so much road ahead.

• In remote areas, watch for animals. • If you are tired, pull off the road in a safe place

and rest.

No one can see as well at night as in the daytime. But as we get older these differences increase. A 50-year-old driver may require at least twice as much light to see the same thing at night as a 20-year-old. What you do in the daytime can also affect your night vision. For example, if you spend the day in bright sunshine you are wise to wear sunglasses. Your eyes will have less trouble adjusting to night. But if you are driving, do not wear sunglasses at night. They may cut down on glare from headlamps, but they also make a lot of things invisible.

You can be temporarily blinded by approaching headlamps. It can take a second or two, or even several seconds, for your eyes to re-adjust to the dark. When you are faced with severe glare (as from a driver who does not lower the high beams, or a vehicle with misaimed headlamps), slow down a little. Avoid staring directly into the approaching headlamps. Keep your windshield and all the glass on your vehicle clean — inside and out. Glare at night is made much worse by dirt on the glass. Even the inside of the glass can build up a film caused by dust. Dirty glass makes lights dazzle and flash more than clean glass would, making the pupils of your eyes contract repeatedly. Remember that your headlamps light up far less of a roadway when you are in a turn or curve. Keep your eyes moving; that way, it is easier to pick out dimly lighted objects. Just as your headlamps should be checked regularly for proper aim, so should your eyes be examined regularly. Some drivers suffer from night blindness — the inability to see in dim light — and are not even aware of it.


Driving in Rain and on Wet Roads

Rain and wet roads can mean driving trouble. On a wet road, you can not stop, accelerate or turn as well because your tire-to-road traction is not as good as on dry roads. And, if your tires do not have much tread left, you will get even less traction. It is always wise to go slower and be cautious if rain starts to fall while you are driving. The surface may get wet suddenly when your reflexes are tuned for driving on dry pavement. The heavier the rain, the harder it is to see. Even if your windshield wiper blades are in good shape, a heavy rain can make it harder to see road signs and traffic signals, pavement markings, the edge of the road and even people walking. It is wise to keep your wiping equipment in good shape and keep your windshield washer tank filled with washer fluid. Replace your windshield wiper inserts when they show signs of streaking or missing areas on the windshield, or when strips of rubber start to separate from the inserts.


Driving too fast through large water puddles or even going through some car washes can cause problems, too. The water may affect your brakes. Try to avoid puddles. But if you can not, try to slow down before you hit them.


Wet brakes can cause accidents. They will not work as well in a quick stop and may cause pulling to one side. You could lose control of the vehicle. After driving through a large puddle of water or a car wash, apply your brake pedal lightly until your brakes work normally.


Hydroplaning Hydroplaning is dangerous. So much water can build up under your tires that they can actually ride on the water. This can happen if the road is wet enough and you are going fast enough. When your vehicle is hydroplaning, it has little or no contact with the road. Hydroplaning does not happen often. But it can if your tires do not have much tread or if the pressure in one or more is low. It can happen if a lot of water is standing on the road. If you can see reflections from trees, telephone poles or other vehicles, and raindrops “dimple” the water’s surface, there could be hydroplaning. Hydroplaning usually happens at higher speeds. There just is not a hard and fast rule about hydroplaning. The best advice is to slow down when it is raining. Driving Through Deep Standing Water Notice: If you drive too quickly through deep puddles or standing water, water can come in through your engine’s air intake and badly damage your engine. Never drive through water that is slightly lower than the underbody of your vehicle. If you can not avoid deep puddles or standing water, drive through them very slowly.

Driving Through Flowing Water


Flowing or rushing water creates strong forces. If you try to drive through flowing water, as you might at a low water crossing, your vehicle can be carried away. As little as six inches of flowing water can carry away a smaller vehicle. If this happens, you and other vehicle occupants could drown. Do not ignore police warning signs, and otherwise be very cautious about trying to drive through flowing water.

Some Other Rainy Weather Tips • Besides slowing down, allow some extra following

distance. And be especially careful when you pass another vehicle. Allow yourself more clear room ahead, and be prepared to have your view restricted by road spray.

• Have good tires with proper tread depth. See Tires



City Driving

Here are ways to increase your safety in city driving: • Know the best way to get to where you are going. Get a city map and plan your trip into an unknown part of the city just as you would for a cross-country trip.

• Try to use the freeways that rim and crisscross most large cities. You will save time and energy. See FreewayDrivingonpage4-20.

• Treat a green light as a warning signal. A traffic light is there because the corner is busy enough to need it. When a light turns green, and just before you start to move, check both ways for vehicles that have not cleared the intersection or may be running the red light.

One of the biggest problems with city streets is the amount of traffic on them. You will want to watch out for what the other drivers are doing and pay attention to traffic signals.


Freeway Driving

Mile for mile, freeways (also called thruways, parkways, expressways, turnpikes or superhighways) are the safest of all roads. But they have their own special rules.


The most important advice on freeway driving is: Keep up with traffic and keep to the right. Drive at the same speed most of the other drivers are driving. Too-fast or too-slow driving breaks a smooth traffic flow. Treat the left lane on a freeway as a passing lane. At the entrance, there is usually a ramp that leads to the freeway. If you have a clear view of the freeway as you drive along the entrance ramp, you should begin to check traffic. Try to determine where you expect to blend with the flow. Try to merge into the gap at close to the prevailing speed. Switch on your turn signal, check your mirrors and glance over your shoulder as often as necessary. Try to blend smoothly with the traffic flow. Once you are on the freeway, adjust your speed to the posted limit or to the prevailing rate if it is slower. Stay in the right lane unless you want to pass. Before changing lanes, check your mirrors. Then use your turn signal. Just before you leave the lane, glance quickly over your shoulder to make sure there is not another vehicle in your “blind” spot. Once you are moving on the freeway, make certain you allow a reasonable following distance. Expect to move slightly slower at night.

When you want to leave the freeway, move to the proper lane well in advance. If you miss your exit, do not, under any circumstances, stop and back up. Drive on to the next exit. The exit ramp can be curved, sometimes quite sharply. The exit speed is usually posted. Reduce your speed according to your speedometer, not to your sense of motion. After driving for any distance at higher speeds, you may tend to think you are going slower than you actually are.

Before Leaving on a Long Trip Make sure you are ready. Try to be well rested. If you must start when you are not fresh — such as after a day’s work — do not plan to make too many miles that first part of the journey. Wear comfortable clothing and shoes you can easily drive in. Is your vehicle ready for a long trip? If you keep it serviced and maintained, it is ready to go. If it needs service, have it done before starting out. Of course, you will find experienced and able service experts in GM dealerships all across North America. They will be ready and willing to help if you need it.

Here are some things you can check before a trip: • WindshieldWasherFluid: Is the reservoir full? Are

all windows clean inside and outside?

• WiperBlades: Are they in good shape? • Fuel,EngineOil,OtherFluids: Have you checked

all levels?

• Lamps: Are they all working? Are the lenses clean? • Tires: They are vitally important to a safe,

trouble-free trip. Is the tread good enough for long-distance driving? Are the tires all inflated to the recommended pressure?

• WeatherForecasts: What is the weather outlook

along your route? Should you delay your trip a short time to avoid a major storm system?

• Maps: Do you have up-to-date maps?


Hill and Mountain Roads

Driving on steep hills or mountains is different from driving in flat or rolling terrain.

Highway Hypnosis Is there actually such a condition as “highway hypnosis”? Or is it just plain falling asleep at the wheel? Call it highway hypnosis, lack of awareness, or whatever. There is something about an easy stretch of road with the same scenery, along with the hum of the tires on the road, the drone of the engine, and the rush of the wind against the vehicle that can make you sleepy. Do not let it happen to you! If it does, your vehicle can leave the road in lessthanasecond, and you could crash and be injured. What can you do about highway hypnosis? First, be aware that it can happen. Then here are some tips: • Make sure your vehicle is well ventilated, with a

comfortably cool interior.

• Keep your eyes moving. Scan the road ahead and

to the sides. Check your mirrors and your instruments frequently.

• If you get sleepy, pull off the road into a rest,

service or parking area and take a nap, get some exercise, or both. For safety, treat drowsiness on the highway as an emergency.


If you drive regularly in steep country, or if you are planning to visit there, here are some tips that can make your trips safer and more enjoyable. • Keep your vehicle in good shape. Check all fluid levels and also the brakes, tires, cooling system and transmission. These parts can work hard on mountain roads.

• Know how to go down hills. The most important thing to know is this: let your engine do some of the slowing down. Shift to a lower gear when you go down a steep or long hill.


If you do not shift down, your brakes could get so hot that they would not work well. You would then have poor braking or even none going down a hill. You could crash. Shift down to let your engine assist your brakes on a steep downhill slope.


Coasting downhill in NEUTRAL (N) or with the ignition off is dangerous. Your brakes will have to do all the work of slowing down. They could get so hot that they would not work well. You would then have poor braking or even none going down a hill. You could crash. Always have your engine running and your vehicle in gear when you go downhill.

• Know how to go uphill. You may want to shift down to a lower gear. The lower gears help cool your engine and transmission, and you can climb the hill better. • Stay in your own lane when driving on two-lane

roads in hills or mountains. Do not swing wide or cut across the center of the road. Drive at speeds that let you stay in your own lane.

• As you go over the top of a hill, be alert. There

could be something in your lane, like a stalled car or an accident.

• You may see highway signs on mountains that

warn of special problems. Examples are long grades, passing or no-passing zones, a falling rocks area or winding roads. Be alert to these and take appropriate action.


Here are some tips for winter driving: • Have your vehicle in good shape for winter. • You may want to put winter emergency supplies in

your vehicle.

Include an ice scraper, a small brush or broom, a supply of windshield washer fluid, a rag, some winter outer clothing, a small shovel, a flashlight, a red cloth and reflective warning triangles. And, if you will be driving under severe conditions, include a small bag of sand, a piece of old carpet or a couple of burlap bags to help provide traction. Be sure you properly secure these items in your vehicle.

Winter Driving


Driving on Snow or Ice Most of the time, those places where your tires meet the road probably have good traction. However, if there is snow or ice between your tires and the road, you can have a very slippery situation. You will have a lot less traction or “grip” and will need to be very careful.

What is the worst time for this? “Wet ice.” Very cold snow or ice can be slick and hard to drive on. But wet ice can be even more trouble because it may offer

the least traction of all. You can get wet ice when it is about freezing (32°F; 0°C) and freezing rain begins to fall. Try to avoid driving on wet ice until salt and sand crews can get there. Whatever the condition — smooth ice, packed, blowing or loose snow — drive with caution. Accelerate gently. Try not to break the fragile traction. If you accelerate too fast, the drive wheels will spin and polish the surface under the tires even more. Your anti-lock brakes improve your vehicle’s stability when you make a hard stop on a slippery road. Even though you have an anti-lock braking system, you will want to begin stopping sooner than you would on dry pavement. See Brakingonpage4-6. • Allow greater following distance on any

slippery road.

• Watch for slippery spots. The road might be fine

until you hit a spot that is covered with ice. On an otherwise clear road, ice patches may appear in shaded areas where the sun can not reach: around clumps of trees, behind buildings or under bridges. Sometimes the surface of a curve or an overpass may remain icy when the surrounding roads are clear. If you see a patch of ice ahead of you, brake before you are on it. Try not to brake while you are actually on the ice, and avoid sudden steering maneuvers.


If You Are Caught in a Blizzard

• Put on extra clothing or wrap a blanket around you.

If you have no blankets or extra clothing, make body insulators from newspapers, burlap bags, rags, floor mats — anything you can wrap around yourself or tuck under your clothing to keep warm.

If you are stopped by heavy snow, you could be in a serious situation. You should probably stay with your vehicle unless you know for sure that you are near help and you can hike through the snow. Here are some things to do to summon help and keep yourself and your passengers safe: • Turn on your hazard flashers. • Tie a red cloth to your vehicle to alert police that

you have been stopped by the snow.


You can run the engine to keep warm, but be careful.


Snow can trap exhaust gases under your vehicle. This can cause deadly CO (carbon monoxide) gas to get inside. CO could overcome you and kill you. You can not see it or smell it, so you might not know it is in your vehicle. Clear away snow from around the base of your vehicle, especially any that is blocking your exhaust pipe. And check around again from time to time to be sure snow does not collect there. Open a window just a little on the side of the vehicle that is away from the wind. This will help keep CO out.

Run your engine only as long as you must. This saves fuel. When you run the engine, make it go a little faster than just idle. That is, push the accelerator slightly. This uses less fuel for the heat that you get and it keeps the battery charged. You will need a well-charged battery to restart the vehicle, and possibly for signaling later on with your headlamps. Let the heater run for a while. Then, shut the engine off and close the window almost all the way to preserve the heat. Start the engine again and repeat this only when you feel really uncomfortable from the cold. But do it as little as possible. Preserve the fuel as long as you can. To help keep warm, you can get out of the vehicle and do some fairly vigorous exercises every half hour or so until help comes.


If You Are Stuck: In Sand, Mud, Ice or Snow In order to free your vehicle when it is stuck, you will need to spin the wheels, but you do not want to spin your wheels too fast. The method known as “rocking” can help you get out when you are stuck, but you must use caution.


If you let your tires spin at high speed, they can explode, and you or others could be injured. And, the transmission or other parts of the vehicle can overheat. That could cause an engine compartment fire or other damage. When you are stuck, spin the wheels as little as possible. Do not spin the wheels above 35 mph (55 km/h) as shown on the speedometer.

Notice: Spinning your wheels can destroy parts of your vehicle as well as the tires. If you spin the wheels too fast while shifting your transmission back and forth, you can destroy your transmission. For information about using tire chains on your vehicle, see TireChainsonpage5-67. Rocking Your Vehicle To Get It Out First, turn your steering wheel left and right. That will clear the area around your front wheels. Then shift back and forth between REVERSE (R) and a forward gear, spinning the wheels as little as possible. Release the accelerator pedal while you shift, and press lightly on the accelerator pedal when the transmission is in gear. By slowly spinning your wheels in the forward and reverse directions, you will cause a rocking motion that may free your vehicle. If that does not get you out after a few tries, you may need to be towed out. If you do need to be towed out, see TowingYour Vehicleonpage4-29.


Notice: Towing an all-wheel-drive vehicle with all four wheels on the ground, or even with only two of its wheels on the ground, will damage drivetrain components. Do not tow an all-wheel-drive vehicle if any of its wheels will be on the ground. Your vehicle was not designed to be towed with any of its wheels on the ground. If your vehicle must be towed, it should be placed on a platform trailer.


Towing Your Vehicle Consult your dealer or a professional towing service if you need to have your disabled vehicle towed. See RoadsideAssistanceProgramonpage7-6. If you want to tow your vehicle behind another vehicle for recreational purposes (such as behind a motorhome), see “Recreational Vehicle Towing” following.

Recreational Vehicle Towing Recreational vehicle towing means towing your vehicle behind another vehicle — such as behind a motorhome. The two most common types of recreational vehicle towing are known as “dinghy towing” (towing your vehicle with all four wheels on the ground) and “dolly towing” (towing your vehicle with two wheels on the ground and two wheels up on a device known as a “dolly”).


Loading Your Vehicle It is very important to know how much weight your vehicle can carry. This weight is called the vehicle capacity weight and includes the weight of all occupants, cargo and all nonfactory-installed options. Two labels on your vehicle show how much weight it may properly carry, the Tire and Loading Information label and the Certification/Tire label.


Do not load your vehicle any heavier than the GVWR, or either the maximum front or rear GAWR. If you do, parts on your vehicle can break, and it can change the way your vehicle handles. These could cause you to lose control and crash. Also, overloading can shorten the life of your vehicle.


Tire and Loading Information Label

A. Vehicle Capacity Weight The Tire and Loading Information label is attached to the center pillar, near the driver’s door latch. Vehicles without a center pillar will have the Tire and Loading Information label attached to the driver’s door edge. This label lists the number of people that can be in your vehicle and the total weight it can carry. This weight is called the vehicle capacity weight.

The Tire and Loading Information label also tells you the size and recommended inflation pressure for the original equipment tires on your vehicle. For more information on tires and inflation see Tiresonpage5-52
and Inflation-TirePressureonpage5-61. If your vehicle does not have the Tire and Loading Information label, the Certification/Tire label shows the tire size and recommended inflation pressures needed to obtain the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) and the Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) for the front and rear axles. See “Certification/Tire Label” later in this section. Steps for Determining Correct Load Limit 1. Locate the statement “The combined weight of occupants and cargo should never exceed XXX pounds” on your vehicle placard.

2. Determine the combined weight of the driver and

passengers that will be riding in your vehicle.

3. Subtract the combined weight of the driver and

passengers from XXX kilograms or XXX pounds.

4. The resulting figure equals the available amount of

cargo and luggage load capacity. For example, if the “XXX” amount equals 1400 lbs. and there will be five 150 lb. passengers in your vehicle, the amount of available cargo and luggage load capacity is 650 lbs. (1400 - 750 (5 x 150) = 650 lbs.).

5. Determine the combined weight of luggage and cargo being loaded on the vehicle. That weight may not safely exceed the available cargo and luggage load capacity calculated in Step 4.

6. If your vehicle will be towing a trailer, the load from

your trailer will be transferred to your vehicle. Consult this manual to determine how this reduces the available cargo and luggage load capacity of your vehicle. See TowingaTraileronpage4-35 for important information on towing a trailer, towing safety rules and trailering tips.


Example 1

Example 2

Loading Your Vehicle

Loading Your Vehicle






Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 1 = Subtract Occupant Weight 150 lbs (68 kg) · 2 = Available Occupant and Cargo Weight =

1,000 lbs (453 kg)

300 lbs (136 kg)

700 lbs. (317 kg)

Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 2 = Subtract Occupant Weight 150 lbs (68 kg) · 5 = Available Cargo Weight =


1,000 lbs (453 kg)

750 lbs (136 kg)

250 lbs. (113 kg)


Certification/Tire Label

Example 3

Loading Your Vehicle



Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 3 = Subtract Occupant Weight 200 lbs (91 kg) · 5 = Available Cargo Weight =


1,000 lbs (453 kg)

1000 lbs (453 kg)

0 lbs. (0 kg)

Refer to your vehicle’s tire and loading information label for specific information about your vehicle’s capacity weight and seating positions. The combined weight of the driver, passengers and cargo should never exceed your vehicle’s capacity weight.

The Certification/Tire label in your vehicle will look similar to this example. The Certification/Tire label is found on the rear edge of the driver’s door. The label shows the size of your original tires and the inflation pressures needed to obtain the gross weight capacity of your vehicle. This is called the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). The GVWR includes the weight of the vehicle, all occupants, fuel, cargo and tongue weight, if pulling a trailer.


The Certification/Tire label also tells you the maximum weights for the front and rear axles, called Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR). To find out the actual loads on your front and rear axles, you need to go to a weigh station and weigh your vehicle. Your dealer can help you with this. Be sure to spread out your load equally on both sides of the centerline. Never exceed the GVWR for your vehicle, or the GAWR for either the front or rear axle. And, if you do have a heavy load, you should spread it out.

Notice: Overloading your vehicle may cause damage. Repairs would not be covered by your warranty. Do not overload your vehicle. If you put things inside of your vehicle – like suitcases, tools, packages, or anything else – they will go as fast as the vehicle goes. If you have to stop or turn quickly, or if there is a crash, they’ll keep going.



Do not load your vehicle any heavier than the GVWR, or either the maximum front or rear GAWR. If you do, parts on your vehicle can break, and it can change the way your vehicle handles. These could cause you to lose control and crash. Also, overloading can shorten the life of your vehicle.

Using heavier suspension components to get added durability might not change your weight ratings. Ask your dealer to help you load your vehicle the right way.


Things you put inside your vehicle can strike and injure people in a sudden stop or turn, or in a crash.

• Put things in the cargo area of your

vehicle. Try to spread the weight evenly.

• Never stack heavier things, like suitcases,

inside the vehicle so that some of them are above the tops of the seats.

• Do not leave an unsecured child restraint

in your vehicle.

• When you carry something inside the vehicle, secure it whenever you can.

• Do not leave a seat folded down unless

you need to.

Payload The Payload Capacity is shown on the Certification/Tire label. This is the maximum load capacity that your vehicle can carry. Be sure to include the weight of the people inside as part of your load. If you added any accessories or equipment after your vehicle left the factory, remember to subtract the weight of these things from the payload. Your dealer can help you with this. Trailering Package There is a load rating which includes the weight of the vehicle and the trailer it tows. This rating is called the Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR). When you weigh your trailer, be sure to include the weight of everything you put in it. And, remember to figure the weight of the people inside the vehicle as part of your load. Add-On Equipment When you carry removable items, you may need to put a limit on how many people you carry inside your vehicle. Be sure to weigh your vehicle before you buy and install the new equipment.

Towing a Trailer


If you do not use the correct equipment and drive properly, you can lose control when you pull a trailer. For example, if the trailer is too heavy, the brakes may not work well — or even at all. You and your passengers could be seriously injured. Pull a trailer only if you have followed all the steps in this section. Ask your dealer for advice and information about towing a trailer with your vehicle.

Notice: Pulling a trailer improperly can damage your vehicle and result in costly repairs that would not be covered by your warranty. Always follow the instructions in this section and check with your dealer for more information about towing a trailer with your vehicle. To identify the trailering capacity of your vehicle, you should read the information in “Weight of the Trailer” that appears later in this section.


If yours was built with trailering options, as many are, it’s ready for heavier trailers. But trailering is different than just driving your vehicle by itself. Trailering means changes in handling, acceleration, braking, durability and fuel economy. Successful, safe trailering takes correct equipment, and it has to be used properly. That’s the reason for this part. In it are many time-tested, important trailering tips and safety rules. Many of these are important for your safety and that of your passengers. So please read this section carefully before you pull a trailer. If You Do Decide To Pull A Trailer If you do, here are some important points: • There are many different laws, including speed limit restrictions, having to do with trailering. Make sure your rig will be legal, not only where you live but also where you’ll be driving. A good source for this information can be state or provincial police.

• Consider using a sway control. See “Hitches” later

in this section.

• Don’t tow a trailer at all during the first 500 miles (800 km) your new vehicle is driven. Your engine, axle or other parts could be damaged.

• Then, during the first 500 miles (800 km) that you

tow a trailer, don’t drive over 50 mph (80 km/h) and don’t make starts at full throttle. This helps your engine and other parts of your vehicle wear in at the heavier loads.

• See also “Driving on Grades” later in this section. Three important considerations have to do with weight: • the weight of the trailer, • the weight of the trailer tongue • and the weight on your vehicle’s tires. Tow/Haul Mode Tow/haul is designed to assist while your vehicle is pulling a large or heavy load or trailer. Tow/haul is most useful while pulling such a load in rolling terrain, in stop-and-go traffic, or when you need improved low-speed control, such as when parking. The purpose of the tow/haul mode is to: • Reduce the frequency and improve the predictability

of transmission shifts,

• provide the same solid shift feel when pulling a

heavy load as when the vehicle is unloaded, and

• improve control of vehicle speed while requiring less

throttle pedal activity.


Press the button on the end of the shift lever to turn tow/haul mode on and off. While activated, the indicator light on the instrument panel will be on. Tow/haul mode will turn off automatically when the ignition is turned off. See Tow/HaulModeLightonpage3-36. Tow/haul is most effective when the vehicle and trailer combined weight is at least 75% of the vehicle’s Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR). See “Weight of the Trailer” later in this section. Driving with tow/haul activated without a heavy load will cause reduced fuel economy and unpleasant engine and transmission driving characteristics, but will not cause damage.

Weight of the Trailer How heavy can a trailer safely be? It depends on how you plan to use your rig. For example, speed, altitude, road grades, outside temperature and how much your vehicle is used to pull a trailer are all important. And, it can also depend on any special equipment that you have on your vehicle. The following chart shows how much your trailer can weigh, based upon your vehicle model and options.


Axle Ratio

Max. Trailer Wt. (lbs)


Two-Wheel Drive (Cargo)

Two-Wheel Drive (Passenger)

All-Wheel Drive (Cargo)

All-Wheel Drive (Passenger)


5,200 (2359) 5,700 (2585) 4,900 (2223) 5,400 (2449) 5,000 (2268) 5,500 (2495) 4,600 (2087) 5,100 (2313)

GCWR (lbs) (kg)

9,500 (4309) 10,000 (4536) 9,500 (4309) 10,000 (4536) 9,500 (4309) 10,000 (4536) 9,500 (4309) 10,000 (4536)


The Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) is the total allowable weight of the completely loaded vehicle and trailer including any passengers, cargo equipment and conversion. The GCWR for your vehicle should not be exceeded. You can ask your dealer for our trailering information or advice, or you can write us at the address listed in your Warranty and Owner Assistance Information Booklet. In Canada, write to:

General Motors of Canada Limited Customer Communication Centre, 163-005
1908 Colonel Sam Drive Oshawa, Ontario L1H 8P7

Weight of the Trailer Tongue The tongue load (A) of any trailer is an important weight to measure because it affects the total or gross weight of your vehicle. The Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) includes the curb weight of the vehicle, any cargo you may carry in it, and the people who will be riding in the vehicle. If you have a lot of options, equipment, passengers or cargo in your vehicle, it will reduce the tongue weight your vehicle can carry, which will also reduce the trailer weight your vehicle can tow. And if you will tow a trailer, you must add the tongue load to the GVW because your vehicle will be carrying


that weight, too. See LoadingYourVehicleonpage4-30
for more information about your vehicle’s maximum load capacity.

The trailer tongue weight (A) should be 10 percent to 15 percent of the total loaded trailer weight, up to a maximum of 200 lbs (92 kg) with a weight carrying hitch. The trailer tongue weight (A) should be 10 percent to 15 percent of the total loaded trailer weight, up to a maximum of 750 lbs (341 kg) with a weight distributing hitch.

After you’ve loaded your trailer, weigh the trailer and then the tongue, separately, to see if the weights are proper. If they aren’t, you may be able to get them right simply by moving some items around in the trailer. Total Weight on Your Vehicle’s Tires Be sure your vehicle’s tires are inflated to the upper limit for cold tires. You’ll find these numbers on the Certification/Tire label at the rear edge of the driver’s door or see LoadingYourVehicleonpage4-30. Then be sure you don’t go over the GVW limit for your vehicle, including the weight of the trailer tongue. If you use a weight distributing hitch, make sure you don’t go over the rear axle limit before you apply the weight distribution spring bars. Hitches It’s important to have the correct hitch equipment. Crosswinds, large trucks going by and rough roads are a few reasons why you’ll need the right hitch.

Weight-Distributing Hitches and Weight Carrying Hitches

(A) Body to Ground Distance, (B) Front of Vehicle

When using a weight-distributing hitch, the hitch must be adjusted so that the distance (A) remains the same both before and after coupling the trailer to the tow vehicle. If you use a step-bumper hitch, your bumper could be damaged in sharp turns. Make sure you have ample room when turning to avoid contact between the trailer and the bumper.


If you’ll be pulling a trailer that, when loaded, will weigh more than 2,000 lbs. (900 kg.), be sure to use a properly mounted, weight-distributing hitch and sway control of the proper size. This equipment is very important for proper vehicle loading and good handling when you’re driving. You should always use a sway control if your trailer will weigh more than these limits. You can ask a hitch dealer about sway controls. Will you have to make any holes in the body of your vehicle when you install a trailer hitch? If you’re using the wiring provided with the factory-installed trailering package, you should not need to make any holes in the body of your vehicle. However, if you have an aftermarket hitch installed, you may need to make holes in the body. If you do, then be sure to seal the holes later when you remove the hitch. If you don’t seal them, deadly carbon monoxide (CO) from your exhaust can get into your vehicle as well as dirt and water. See “Carbon Monoxide” under EngineExhaustonpage2-26. Safety Chains You should always attach chains between your vehicle and your trailer. Cross the safety chains under the tongue of the trailer to help prevent the tongue from contacting the road if it becomes separated from the hitch. Instructions about safety chains may be provided by the hitch manufacturer or by the trailer manufacturer. Follow


the manufacturer’s recommendation for attaching safety chains and do not attach them to the bumper. Always leave just enough slack so you can turn with your rig. Never allow safety chains to drag on the ground. Trailer Brakes If your trailer weighs more than 1,000 lbs (450 kg) loaded, then it needs its own brakes — and they must be adequate. Be sure to read and follow the instructions for the trailer brakes so you’ll be able to install, adjust and maintain them properly. Your trailer brake system can tap into your vehicle’s hydraulic brake system, except: • Don’t tap into your vehicle’s brake system if the

trailer’s brake system will use more than 0.02 cubic inch (0.3 cc) of fluid from your vehicle’s master cylinder. If it does, both braking systems won’t work well. You could even lose your brakes.

• Will the trailer parts take 3,000 psi (20 650 kPa) of pressure? If not, the trailer brake system must not be used with your vehicle.

• If everything checks out this far, then make the

brake fluid tap at the port on the master cylinder that sends fluid to the rear brakes. But don’t use copper tubing for this. If you do, it will bend and finally break off. Use steel brake tubing.

Driving with a Trailer


If you have a rear-most window open and you pull a trailer with your vehicle, carbon monoxide (CO) could come into your vehicle. You can not see or smell CO. It can cause unconsciousness or death. See Engine Exhaustonpage2-26. To maximize your safety when towing a trailer:

• Have your exhaust system inspected for leaks, and make necessary repairs before starting on your trip.

• Keep the rear-most windows closed. • If exhaust does come into your vehicle through a window in the rear or another opening, drive with your front, main heating or cooling system on and with the fan on any speed. This will bring fresh, outside air into your vehicle. Do not use the climate control setting for maximum air because it only recirculates the air inside your vehicle. See Climate Control System in the Index.

Towing a trailer requires a certain amount of experience. Before setting out for the open road, you’ll want to get to know your rig. Acquaint yourself with the feel of handling and braking with the added weight of the trailer. And always keep in mind that the vehicle you are driving is now a good deal longer and not nearly as responsive as your vehicle is by itself. Before you start, check the trailer hitch and platform (and attachments), safety chains, electrical connector, lamps, tires and mirror adjustment. If the trailer has electric brakes, start your vehicle and trailer moving and then apply the trailer brake controller by hand to be sure the brakes are working. This lets you check your electrical connection at the same time. During your trip, check occasionally to be sure that the load is secure, and that the lamps and any trailer brakes are still working. Following Distance Stay at least twice as far behind the vehicle ahead as you would when driving your vehicle without a trailer. This can help you avoid situations that require heavy braking and sudden turns.


Passing You’ll need more passing distance up ahead when you’re towing a trailer. And, because you’re a good deal longer, you’ll need to go much farther beyond the passed vehicle before you can return to your lane. Backing Up Hold the bottom of the steering wheel with one hand. Then, to move the trailer to the left, just move that hand to the left. To move the trailer to the right, move your hand to the right. Always back up slowly and, if possible, have someone guide you. Making Turns Notice: Making very sharp turns while trailering could cause the trailer to come in contact with the vehicle. Your vehicle could be damaged. Avoid making very sharp turns while trailering. When you’re turning with a trailer, make wider turns than normal. Do this so your trailer won’t strike soft shoulders, curbs, road signs, trees or other objects. Avoid jerky or sudden maneuvers. Signal well in advance.

Turn Signals When Towing a Trailer When you tow a trailer, your vehicle has to have extra wiring (included in the optional trailering package). The arrows on your instrument panel will flash whenever you signal a turn or lane change. Properly hooked up, the trailer lamps will also flash, telling other drivers you’re about to turn, change lanes or stop. When towing a trailer, the arrows on your instrument panel will flash for turns even if the bulbs on the trailer are burned out. Thus, you may think drivers behind you are seeing your signal when they are not. It’s important to check occasionally to be sure the trailer bulbs are still working. Driving On Grades Reduce speed and shift to a lower gear before you start down a long or steep downgrade. If you don’t shift down, you might have to use your brakes so much that they would get hot and no longer work well. You can tow in DRIVE (D). You may want to shift the transmission to THIRD (3) or, if necessary, a lower gear selection if the transmission shifts too often (e.g., under heavy loads and/or hilly conditions).


When towing at high altitude on steep uphill grades, consider the following: Engine coolant will boil at a lower temperature than at normal altitudes. If you turn your engine off immediately after towing at high altitude on steep uphill grades, your vehicle may show signs similar to engine overheating. To avoid this, let the engine run while parked (preferably on level ground) with the automatic transmission in PARK (P) for a few minutes before turning the engine off. If you do get the overheat warning, see EngineOverheatingon page5-27. Parking on Hills


You really should not park your vehicle, with a trailer attached, on a hill. If something goes wrong, your rig could start to move. People can be injured, and both your vehicle and the trailer can be damaged.

But if you ever have to park your rig on a hill, here’s how to do it: 1. Apply your regular brakes, but don’t shift into

PARK (P) yet.

2. Have someone place chocks under the trailer


3. When the wheel chocks are in place, release the regular brakes until the chocks absorb the load.

4. Reapply the regular brakes. Then apply your

parking brake, and shift to PARK (P).

5. Release the regular brakes. When You Are Ready to Leave After Parking on a Hill 1. Apply your regular brakes and hold the pedal down

while you: • start your engine, • shift into a gear, and • release the parking brake.

2. Let up on the brake pedal. 3. Drive slowly until the trailer is clear of the chocks. 4. Stop and have someone pick up and store the



Maintenance When Trailer Towing Your vehicle will need service more often when you’re pulling a trailer. See the Maintenance Schedule for more on this. Things that are especially important in trailer operation are automatic transmission fluid (don’t overfill), engine oil, axle lubricant, belt, cooling system and brake system. Each of these is covered in this manual, and the Index will help you find them quickly. If you’re trailering, it’s a good idea to review these sections before you start your trip. Check periodically to see that all hitch nuts and bolts are tight. Trailer Wiring Harness If you have the optional trailering package, your vehicle will have an eight-wire harness, including the center high-mounted stoplamp battery feed wire. The harness is stored on the passenger’s side of the vehicle near the rear wheel well. This harness has a 30 amp battery feed wire and no connector, and should be wired by a qualified electrical technician. After choosing an aftermarket trailer mating connector pair, have the technician attach one connector to the eight-wire trailer harness and the other connector to the wiring harness on the trailer. Be sure the wiring harness on the trailer is taped or strapped to the trailer’s frame rail and leave it loose enough so the wiring doesn’t bend or break, but not so loose that it drags on the ground. The eight-wire


harness must be routed out of your vehicle between the rear door and the floor, with enough of the harness left on both sides so that the trailer or the body won’t pull it. If you do not have the optional trailering package, your vehicle will still have a trailering harness. The harness is located near the passenger’s side rear wheel well. It consists of six wires that may be used by after-market trailer hitch installers. The technician can use the following color code chart when connecting the wiring harness to your trailer. • Brown: Rear lamps. • Yellow: Left stoplamp and turn signal. • Dark Green: Right stoplamp and turn signal. • White (Heavy Gage): Ground. • Light Green: Back-up lamps. • White (Light Gage): Center High-Mounted Stoplamp. • Blue: Auxiliary circuit (eight-wire harness only). • Orange: Fused auxiliary (eight-wire harness only).

Store the harness in its original place. Wrap the harness together and tie it neatly so it won’t be damaged.

Section 5

Service and Appearance Care

Service ............................................................5-3
Doing Your Own Service Work .........................5-3
Adding Equipment to the Outside of Your

Vehicle ......................................................5-4
Fuel ................................................................5-4
Gasoline Octane ............................................5-4
Gasoline Specifications ....................................5-5
California Fuel ...............................................5-5
Additives .......................................................5-6
Fuels in Foreign Countries ...............................5-6
Filling Your Tank ............................................5-7
Filling a Portable Fuel Container .......................5-9
Checking Things Under the Hood .....................5-9
Hood Release ..............................................5-10
Engine Compartment Overview .......................5-12
Engine Oil ...................................................5-13
Engine Cover ...............................................5-17
Engine Air Cleaner/Filter ................................5-21
Automatic Transmission Fluid .........................5-22
Engine Coolant .............................................5-25
Radiator Pressure Cap ..................................5-27
Engine Overheating .......................................5-28
Cooling System ............................................5-30
Engine Fan Noise .........................................5-36
Power Steering Fluid .....................................5-37
Windshield Washer Fluid ................................5-38

Brakes ........................................................5-39
Battery ........................................................5-42
Jump Starting ...............................................5-43
All-Wheel Drive ..............................................5-47
Rear Axle .......................................................5-48
Front Axle ......................................................5-48
Bulb Replacement ..........................................5-49
Halogen Bulbs ..............................................5-49
Headlamps ..................................................5-50
Front Turn Signal Lamps ...............................5-53
Taillamps .....................................................5-54
Replacement Bulbs .......................................5-55
Windshield Wiper Blade Replacement ..............5-56
Tires ..............................................................5-56
Inflation - Tire Pressure .................................5-66
Tire Inspection and Rotation ...........................5-68
When It Is Time for New Tires .......................5-69