Spring 2006 Forward to a Friend

Quick Stops

Proposed EPA Fuel Economy Estimates •  April Is National Car Care Month •  B9 Tribeca Spare Tire
The State of Navigation •  Driving in Fog •  Seatbelt Hang-Ups

“Your mileage may vary.” No doubt you’ve heard that regarding the fuel-economy ratings on the window stickers of new vehicles. Currently, the estimated city and highway ratings are determined in two laboratory tests that were last revised in 1985. Since then, changes in testing methods and emissions regulations have enabled greater accuracy.

The EPA has proposed changes that will require measuring fuel economy in three real-world conditions not currently part of the testing: high-speed/rapid acceleration driving, use of air conditioning and cold-temperature operation. As a result, expect the estimated fuel economy shown on new-vehicle window stickers in the future to be lower than current figures. Changes in testing will affect fuel-economy estimates for 2008 model-year vehicles starting in the fall of 2007.

Details are available by going to “Regulations and Standards” at the EPA Web site – www.epa.gov/fueleconomy.


Twice a year, the Car Care Council reminds you to care for and maintain your vehicle. (October is the official Car Care Month for autumn.) Subaru of America, Inc. endorses National Car Care Month. Watch your maibox for service coupons and offers provided by your dealer.

Your car care checklist for improved vehicle safety, dependability and fuel economy:
1. All fluids
2. All filters
3. Battery and charging system
4. Engine cooling system
belts and hoses
5. Engine oil
6. All lights
7. Windshield wipers
8. Tires and suspension
9. Air conditioner refrigerant and hoses
10. Engine drivability


B9 Tribeca Spare Tire

Like the spare tire for the Baja, the one for the B9 Tribeca is located underneath the vehicle, under the cargo area. (In other Subaru vehicles, the spare is housed under the cargo floor.) The spare is held in place by the spare-tire holder, which is lowered and raised by a hoist mechanism. That mechanism is accessible through an access panel under the rear subfloor storage lid in the cargo area.

See the Owner’s Manual for more details about the spare tire for your Subaru vehicle. (The page number can be found in the index under either “Spare tire” or “Flat tire.”)


The State of Navigation

When inputting a destination in your Subaru navigation system, be sure to start with the area in which the destination state is located. Otherwise, the system cannot find the correct street address or city.

To input a destination, press the menu button, then select “Destination Entry.” Press “Change” to select from the group of states to which you want to travel. If your destination state is not among the choices, you’ll have to exchange DVDs in the control unit.


What’s the best way to deal with driving in fog? Don’t! Postpone or interrupt your trip, and get off the road. Fog is extremely dangerous because it reduces visibility – sometimes completely!

However, if you must venture out, please practice extreme caution and use common sense:
Use your fog lights, if your car is so equipped, and low beams
Slow down, and watch your speedometer
Be patient and avoid quick changes in speed or direction
Do not attempt to pass
Turn on wipers and defrosters for the best possible all-around visibility
Listen for other traffic
Use the edge of the road or painted lane marker as a guide
Do not stop, especially on an interstate, freeway or other heavily traveled road
When pulling off the road, pull off completely
Reduce all distractions inside the car


QUESTION: My seatbelt doesn’t retract all the way when I take it off. Then it flops around and becomes a nuisance. What can I do about that?

ANSWER: Usually the answer is as simple as seatbelt maintenance, and that is often as easy as doing a little cleaning. The belt guide mounted on the pillar is a collection point for dirt and debris from the safety belt. When the belt retracts, it tends to deposit that dirt and debris on the guide, effectively narrowing the slot through which the belt must travel. After a while, the space is too narrow for the belt to slide freely, and it gets caught.

Try cleaning the guide and the belt with warm water and a neutral detergent to get rid of your hang-ups. If you continue to have a problem with the belt, see your Subaru dealer.