Opel Insignia Owners & Service Manuals

Opel Insignia: Driving Information

Distracted Driving

Distraction comes in many forms and can take your focus from the task of driving. Exercise good judgment and do not let other activities divert your attention away from the road. Many local governments have enacted laws regarding driver distraction. Become familiar with the local laws in your area.

To avoid distracted driving, keep your eyes on the road, keep your hands on the steering wheel, and focus your attention on driving.

  • Do not use a phone in demanding driving situations.

    Use a hands-free method to place or receive necessary phone calls.

  • Watch the road. Do not read, take notes, or look up information on phones or other electronic devices.
  • Designate a front seat passenger to handle potential distractions.
  • Become familiar with vehicle features before driving, such as programming favorite radio stations and adjusting climate control and seat settings.

    Program all trip information into any navigation device prior to driving.

  • Wait until the vehicle is parked to retrieve items that have fallen to the floor.
  • Stop or park the vehicle to tend to children.
  • Keep pets in an appropriate carrier or restraint.
  • Avoid stressful conversations while driving, whether with a passenger or on a cell phone.

Warning: Taking your eyes off the road too long or too often could cause a crash resulting in injury or death.

Focus your attention on driving.

Refer to the infotainment section for more information on using that system and the navigation system, if equipped, including pairing and using a cell phone.

Defensive Driving

Defensive driving means "always expect the unexpected." The first step in driving defensively is to wear the seat belt.

  • Assume that other road users (pedestrians, bicyclists, and other drivers) are going to be careless and make mistakes.

    Anticipate what they might do and be ready.

  • Allow enough following distance between you and the driver in front of you.
  • Focus on the task of driving.

Drunk Driving

Death and injury associated with drinking and driving is a global tragedy.

Warning: 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.

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.

Control of a Vehicle

Braking, steering, and accelerating are important factors in helping to control a vehicle while driving.

Braking

Braking action involves perception time and reaction time. Deciding to push the brake pedal is perception time. Actually doing it is reaction time.

Average driver reaction time is about three-quarters of a second. In that time, a vehicle moving at 100 km/h (60 mph) travels 20m (66 ft), which could be a lot of distance in an emergency.

Helpful braking tips to keep in mind include:

  • Keep enough distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
  • Avoid needless heavy braking.
  • Keep pace with traffic.

If the engine ever stops while the vehicle is being driven, brake normally but do not pump the brakes. Doing so could make the pedal harder to push down. If the engine stops, there will be some power brake assist but it will be used when the brake is applied.

Once the power assist is used up, it can take longer to stop and the brake pedal will be harder to push.

Steering

Variable Effort Steering

The vehicle has a steering system that varies the amount of effort required to steer the vehicle in relation to the speed of the vehicle.

The amount of steering effort required is less at slower speeds to make the vehicle more maneuverable and easier to park. At faster speeds, the steering effort increases to provide a sport-like feel to the steering. This provides maximum control and stability.

Electric Power Steering

The vehicle has electric power steering. It does not have power steering fluid. Regular maintenance is not required.

If power steering assist is lost due to a system malfunction, the vehicle can be steered, but may require increased effort. See your dealer if there is a problem.

If the steering wheel is turned until it reaches the end of its travel and is held against that position for an extended period of time, power steering assist may be reduced.

If the steering assist is used for an extended period of time while the vehicle is not moving, power assist may be reduced.

Normal use of the power steering assist should return when the system cools down.

See your dealer if there is a problem.

Curve Tips

  • Take curves at a reasonable speed.
  • Reduce speed before entering a curve.
  • Maintain a reasonable steady speed through the curve.
  • Wait until the vehicle is out of the curve before accelerating gently into the straightaway.

Steering in Emergencies

  • There are some situations when steering around a problem may be more effective than braking.
  • Holding both sides of the steering wheel allows you to turn 180 degrees without removing a hand.
  • Antilock Brake System (ABS) allows steering while braking.

Off-Road Recovery

The vehicle's right wheels can drop

The vehicle's right wheels can drop off the edge of a road onto the shoulder while driving. Follow these tips:

1. Ease off the accelerator and then, if there is nothing in the way, steer the vehicle so that it straddles the edge of the pavement.

2. Turn the steering wheel about one-eighth of a turn, until the right front tire contacts the pavement edge.

3. Turn the steering wheel to go straight down the roadway.

Loss of Control

Skidding

There are three types of skids that correspond to the vehicle's three control systems:

  • Braking Skid - wheels are not rolling.
  • Steering or Cornering Skid - too much speed or steering in a curve causes tires to slip and lose cornering force.
  • Acceleration Skid - too much throttle causes the driving wheels to spin.

Defensive drivers avoid most skids by taking reasonable care suited to existing conditions, and by not overdriving those conditions. But skids are always possible.

If the vehicle starts to slide, follow these suggestions:

  • Ease your foot off the accelerator pedal and steer the way you want the vehicle to go.

    The vehicle may straighten out.

    Be ready for a second skid if it occurs.

  • Slow down and adjust your driving according to weather conditions. Stopping distance can be longer and vehicle control can be affected when traction is reduced by water, snow, ice, gravel, or other material on the road. 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.
  • Try to avoid sudden steering, acceleration, or braking, including reducing vehicle speed by shifting to a lower gear. Any sudden changes could cause the tires to slide.

Remember: Antilock brakes help avoid only the braking skid.

Driving on Wet Roads

Rain and wet roads can reduce vehicle traction and affect your ability to stop and accelerate.

Always drive slower in these types of driving conditions and avoid driving through large puddles and deep-standing or flowing water.

Warning: Wet brakes can cause crashes.

They might not work as well in a quick stop and could cause pulling to one side. You could lose control of the vehicle.

After driving through a large puddle of water or a car/vehicle wash, lightly apply the brake pedal until the brakes work normally.

Flowing or rushing water creates strong forces. Driving through flowing water could cause the vehicle to be carried away. If this happens, you and other vehicle occupants could drown. Do not ignore police warnings and be very cautious about trying to drive through flowing water.

Hydroplaning

Hydroplaning is dangerous. Water can build up under the vehicle's tires so they actually ride on the water. This can happen if the road is wet enough and you are going fast enough. When the vehicle is hydroplaning, it has little or no contact with the road.

There is no hard and fast rule about hydroplaning. The best advice is to slow down when the road is wet.

Other Rainy Weather Tips

Besides slowing down, other wet weather driving tips include:

  • Allow extra following distance.
  • Pass with caution.
  • Keep windshield wiping equipment in good shape.
  • Keep the windshield washer fluid reservoir filled.
  • Have good tires with proper tread depth.
  • Turn off cruise control.

Hill and Mountain Roads

Driving on steep hills or through mountains is different than driving on flat or rolling terrain. Tips include:

  • Keep the vehicle serviced and in good shape.
  • Check all fluid levels and brakes, tires, cooling system, and transmission.
  • Shift to a lower gear when going down steep or long hills.

Warning: Using the brakes to slow the vehicle on a long downhill slope can cause brake overheating, can reduce brake performance, and could result in a loss of braking.

Shift the transmission to a lower gear to let the engine assist the brakes on a steep downhill slope.

Warning: Coasting downhill in N (Neutral) or with the ignition off is dangerous. This can cause overheating of the brakes and loss of steering assist. Always have the engine running and the vehicle in gear.

  • Drive at speeds that keep the vehicle in its own lane. Do not swing wide or cross the center line.
  • Be alert on top of hills; something could be in your lane (e.g., stalled car, accident).
  • Pay attention to special road signs (e.g., falling rocks area, winding roads, long grades, passing or no-passing zones) and take appropriate action.

Winter Driving

Driving on Snow or Ice

Snow or ice between the tires and the road creates less traction or grip, so drive carefully. Wet ice can occur at about 0 ºC (32 ºF) when freezing rain begins to fall. Avoid driving on wet ice or in freezing rain until roads can be treated.

For Slippery Road Driving:

  • Accelerate gently. Accelerating too quickly causes the wheels to spin and makes the surface under the tires slick.
  • Turn on Traction Control.
  • The Antilock Brake System (ABS) improves vehicle stability during hard stops, but the brakes should be applied sooner than when on dry pavement.
  • Allow greater following distance and watch for slippery spots. Icy patches can occur on otherwise clear roads in shaded areas.

    The surface of a curve or an overpass can remain icy when the surrounding roads are clear.

    Avoid sudden steering maneuvers and braking while on ice.

  • Turn off cruise control.

Blizzard Conditions

Stop the vehicle in a safe place and signal for help. Stay with the vehicle unless there is help nearby.

If possible, use Roadside Assistance. To get help and keep everyone in the vehicle safe:

  • Turn on the hazard warning flashers.
  • Tie a red cloth to an outside mirror.

Warning: Snow can trap engine exhaust under the vehicle. This may cause exhaust gases to get inside. Engine exhaust contains carbon monoxide (CO), which cannot be seen or smelled. It can cause unconsciousness and even death.

If the vehicle is stuck in snow:

  • Clear snow from the base of the vehicle, especially any blocking the exhaust pipe.
  • Open a window about 5 cm (2 in) on the vehicle side that is away from the wind, to bring in fresh air.
  • Fully open the air outlets on or under the instrument panel.
  • Adjust the climate control system to circulate the air inside the vehicle and set the fan speed to the highest setting.

To save fuel, run the engine for short periods to warm the vehicle and then shut the engine off and partially close the window. Moving about to keep warm also helps.

If it takes time for help to arrive, when running the engine, push the accelerator pedal slightly so the engine runs faster than the idle speed. This keeps the battery charged to restart the vehicle and to signal for help with the headlamps.

Do this as little as possible, to save fuel.

If the Vehicle Is Stuck

Slowly and cautiously spin the wheels to free the vehicle when stuck in sand, mud, ice, or snow.

If stuck too severely for the traction system to free the vehicle, turn the traction system off and use the rocking method.

Warning: If the vehicle's tires spin at high speed, they can explode, and you or others could be injured. The vehicle can overheat, causing an engine compartment fire or other damage. Spin the wheels as little as possible and avoid going above 56 km/h (35 mph).

Rocking the Vehicle to Get it Out

Turn the steering wheel left and right to clear the area around the front wheels. Turn off any traction system. Shift back and forth between R (Reverse) and a low forward gear, spinning the wheels as little as possible. To prevent transmission wear, wait until the wheels stop spinning before shifting gears. Release the accelerator pedal while shifting, and press lightly on the accelerator pedal when the transmission is in gear.

Slowly spinning the wheels in the forward and reverse directions causes a rocking motion that could free the vehicle. If that does not get the vehicle out after a few tries, it might need to be towed out. If the vehicle does need to be towed out.

Vehicle Load Limits

It is very important to know how much weight the 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 the vehicle may show how much weight it may properly carry: the Tire and Loading Information label and the Certification label.

Warning: Do not load the vehicle any heavier than the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), or either the maximum front or rear Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR).

This can cause systems to break and change the way the vehicle handles. This could cause loss of control and a crash. Overloading can also reduce stopping distance, damage the tires, and shorten the life of the vehicle.

Tire and Loading Information Label

Label Example Label Example

A vehicle-specific Tire and Loading Information label is attached to the vehicle's center pillar (B-pillar). The Tire and Loading Information label shows the number of occupant seating positions (1), and the maximum vehicle capacity weight (2) in kilograms and pounds.

The Tire and Loading Information label also shows the tire size of the original equipment tires (3) and the recommended cold tire inflation pressures (4).

There is also important loading information on the Certification label. It may show the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) and the Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) for the front and rear axle. See "Certification 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 kg or XXX lbs." on your vehicle's 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 kg or XXX lbs.

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, 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."

This vehicle is neither designed nor intended to tow a trailer.

Example 1 Example 1

  1. Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 1 = 453 kg (1,000 lbs).
  2.  Subtract Occupant Weight @ 68 kg (150 lbs) × 2 = 136 kg (300 lbs).
  3. Available Occupant and Cargo Weight = 317 kg (700 lbs).

Example 2 Example 2

  1. Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 2 = 453 kg (1,000 lbs).
  2. Subtract Occupant Weight @ 68 kg (150 lbs) × 5 = 340 kg (750 lbs).
  3. Available Cargo Weight = 113 kg (250 lbs).

Example 3 Example 3

  1. Vehicle Capacity Weight for Example 3 = 453 kg (1,000 lbs).
  2. Subtract Occupant Weight @ 91 kg (200 lbs) × 5 = 453 kg (1,000 lbs).
  3. Available Cargo Weight = 0 kg (0 lbs).

Refer to the vehicle's Tire and Loading Information label for specific information about the vehicle's capacity weight and seating positions. The combined weight of the driver, passengers, and cargo should never exceed the vehicle's capacity weight.

Certification Label

Label Example Label Example

A vehicle-specific Certification label is attached to the vehicle's center pillar (B-pillar). The label may show the gross weight capacity of the vehicle, called the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). The GVWR includes the weight of the vehicle, all occupants, fuel, and cargo.

Warning: Things inside the vehicle can strike and injure people in a sudden stop or turn, or in a crash.

  • Put things in the cargo area of the vehicle. In the cargo area, put them as far forward as possible.

    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 the vehicle.
  • Secure loose items in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave a seat folded down unless needed.

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