Chevrolet Equinox Owners Manual
Safety BeltsSeats andRestraints / Safety Belts
This section of the manual describes how to use safety belts properly. It also describes some things not to do with safety belts.
Do not let anyone ride where a safety belt cannot be worn properly. In a crash, if you or your passenger(s) are not wearing safety belts, injuries can be much worse than if you are wearing safety belts. You can be seriously injured or killed by hitting things inside the vehicle harder or by being ejected from the vehicle. In addition, anyone who is not buckled up can strike other passengers in the vehicle.
It is extremely dangerous to ride in a cargo area, inside or outside of a vehicle. In a collision, passengers riding in these areas are more likely to be seriously injured or killed. Do not allow passengers to ride in any area of the vehicle that is not equipped with seats and safety belts.
Always wear a safety belt, and check that all passenger(s) are restrained properly too.
This vehicle has indicators as a reminder to buckle the safety belts.
Why Safety Belts Work
When riding in a vehicle, you travel as fast as the vehicle does. If the vehicle stops suddenly, you keep going until something stops you.
It could be the windshield, the instrument panel, or the safety belts! When you wear a safety belt, you and the vehicle slow down together.
There is more time to stop because you stop over a longer distance and, when worn properly, your strongest bones take the forces from the safety belts. That is why wearing safety belts makes such good sense.
Questions and Answers About Safety Belts
Q: Will I be trapped in the vehicle after a crash if I am wearing a safety
A: You could be— whether you are wearing a safety belt or not.
Your chance of being conscious during and after a crash, so you can unbuckle
and get out, is much greater if you are belted.
Q: If my vehicle has airbags, why should I have to wear safety belts?<> A: Airbags are supplemental systems only; so they work with safety belts— not instead of them. Whether or not an airbag is provided, all occupants still have to buckle up to get the most protection.
Also, in nearly all states and in all Canadian provinces, the law requires wearing safety belts.
How to Wear Safety Belts Properly
This section is only for people of adult size.
There are special things to know about safety belts and children. And there are different rules for smaller children and infants. If a child will be riding in the vehicle.
It is very important for all occupants to buckle up. Statistics show that unbelted people are hurt more often in crashes than those who are wearing safety belts.
There are important things to know about wearing a safety belt properly
• Sit up straight and always keep your feet on the floor in front of you.
• Always use the correct buckle for your seating position.
• Wear the lap part of the belt low and snug on the hips, just touching the thighs. In a crash, this applies force to the strong pelvic bones and you would be less likely to slide under the lap belt. If you slid under it, the belt would apply force on your abdomen. This could cause serious or even fatal injuries.
• Wear the shoulder belt over the shoulder and across the chest.
These parts of the body are best able to take belt restraining forces. The shoulder belt locks if there is a sudden stop or crash.
You can be seriously injured, or even killed, by not wearing your safety belt properly.
• Never allow the lap or shoulder belt to become loose or twisted.
• Never wear the shoulder belt under both arms or behind your back.
• Never route the lap or shoulder belt over an armrest.
All seating positions in the vehicle have a lap-shoulder belt.
The following instructions explain how to wear a lap-shoulder belt properly.
1. Adjust the seat, if the seat is adjustable, so you can sit up straight. To
see how, see “Seats” in the Index.
2. Pick up the latch plate and pull the belt across you. Do not let it get twisted.
The lap-shoulder belt may lock if you pull the belt across you very quickly. If this happens, let the belt go back slightly to unlock it.
Then pull the belt across you more slowly.
If the shoulder portion of a passenger belt is pulled out all the way, the child restraint locking feature may be engaged.
If this happens, let the belt go back all the way and start again.
3. Push the latch plate into the buckle until it clicks.
Pull up on the latch plate to make sure it is secure. If the belt is not long enough.
Position the release button on the buckle so that the safety belt could be quickly unbuckled if necessary.
4. If equipped with a shoulder belt height adjuster, move it to the height that is right for you. See “Shoulder Belt Height Adjuster” later in this section for instructions on use and important safety information.
5. To make the lap part tight, pull up on the shoulder belt.
To unlatch the belt, push the button on the buckle.
Before a door is closed, be sure the safety belt is out of the way. If a door is slammed against a safety belt, damage can occur to both the safety belt and the vehicle.
Shoulder Belt Height Adjuster
The vehicle has a shoulder belt height adjuster for the driver and right front passenger seating positions.
Adjust the height so the shoulder portion of the belt is on the shoulder and not falling off of it. The belt should be close to, but not contacting, the neck. Improper shoulder belt height adjustment could reduce the effectiveness of the safety belt in a crash.
Move the height adjuster up to the desired position by pushing up on the height adjuster.
After the height adjuster is set to the desired position, try to move it down without pressing the release button to make sure it has locked into position. Press the release button to lower the height adjuster.
Safety Belt Pretensioners
This vehicle has safety belt pretensioners for front outboard occupants. Although the safety belt pretensioners cannot be seen, they are part of the safety belt assembly.
They can help tighten the safety belts during the early stages of a moderate to severe frontal and near frontal crash if the threshold conditions for pretensioner activation are met. And, if the vehicle has side impact airbags, safety belt pretensioners can help tighten the safety belts in a side crash or a rollover event.
Pretensioners work only once. If the pretensioners are activated in a crash, the pretensioners and possibly other parts of the safety belt system will need to be replaced.
Rear Safety Belt Comfort Guides
This vehicle may have rear shoulder belt comfort guides. If not, they are available through your dealer. The guides may provide added safety belt comfort for older children who have outgrown booster seats and for some adults. When installed and properly adjusted, the comfort guide positions the belt away from the neck and head.
There is one guide for each outside passenger position in the rear seat.
Here is how to install a comfort guide to the safety belt:
1. Remove the guide from its storage pocket on the side of the seatback.
2. Place the guide over the belt, and insert the two edges of the belt into the slots of the guide.
3. The belt should not be twisted and it should lie flat. The elastic cord must be under the belt and the guide on top.
A safety belt that is not properly worn may not provide the protection needed in a crash. The person wearing the belt could be seriously injured. The shoulder belt should go over the shoulder and across the chest. These parts of the body are best able to take belt restraining forces.
4. Buckle, position, and release the safety belt as described previously in this section. Make sure the shoulder portion of the belt is on the shoulder and not falling off of it. The belt should be close to, but not contacting, the neck.
To remove and store the comfort guide, squeeze the belt edges together so that the safety belt can be removed from the guide. Slide the guide back into its storage pocket located on the side of the seatback.
Safety Belt Use During Pregnancy
Safety belts work for everyone, including pregnant women. Like all occupants, they are more likely to be seriously injured if they do not wear safety belts.
A pregnant woman should wear a lap-shoulder belt, and the lap portion should be worn as low as possible, below the rounding, throughout the pregnancy.
The best way to protect the fetus is to protect the mother. When a safety belt is worn properly, it is more likely that the fetus will not be hurt in a crash. For pregnant women, as for anyone, the key to making safety belts effective is wearing them properly.
Safety Belt Extender
If the vehicle's safety belt will fasten around you, you should use it.
But if a safety belt is not long enough, your dealer will order you an extender. When you go in to order it, take the heaviest coat you will wear, so the extender will be long enough for you. To help avoid personal injury, do not let someone else use it, and use it only for the seat it is made to fit. The extender has been designed for adults. Never use it for securing child seats. To wear it, attach it to the regular safety belt. See the instruction sheet that comes with the extender.
Safety System Check
Now and then, check that the safety belt reminder light, safety belts, buckles, latch plates, retractors, and anchorages are all working properly.
Look for any other loose or damaged safety belt system parts that might keep a safety belt system from doing its job. See your dealer to have it repaired. Torn or frayed safety belts may not protect you in a crash. They can rip apart under impact forces. If a belt is torn or frayed, get a new one right away.
Make sure the safety belt reminder light is working.
Keep safety belts clean and dry.
Safety Belt Care
Keep belts clean and dry.
Do not bleach or dye safety belts.
It may severely weaken them. In a crash, they might not be able to provide adequate protection.
Clean safety belts only with mild soap and lukewarm water.
Replacing Safety Belt System Parts after a Crash
A crash can damage the safety belt system in the vehicle.
A damaged safety belt system may not properly protect the person using it, resulting in serious injury or even death in a crash. To help make sure the safety belt systems are working properly after a crash, have them inspected and any necessary replacements made as soon as possible.
After a minor crash, replacement of safety belts may not be necessary.
But the safety belt assemblies that were used during any crash may have been stressed or damaged.
See your dealer to have the safety belt assemblies inspected or replaced.
New parts and repairs may be necessary even if the safety belt system was not being used at the time of the crash.
Have the safety belt pretensioners checked if the vehicle has been in a crash, or if the airbag readiness light stays on after you start the vehicle or while you are driving.