2020 Chevrolet Colorado Owners Manual - Driving Information

Driving Information

Driving habits can affect fuel mileage. Here are some driving tips to get the best fuel economy possible:

    Set the climate controls to the desired temperature after the engine is started, or turn them off when not required.
    Avoid fast starts and accelerate smoothly.
    Brake gradually and avoid abrupt stops.
    Avoid idling the engine for long periods of time.
    When road and weather conditions are appropriate, use cruise control.
    Always follow posted speed limits or drive more slowly when conditions require.
    Keep vehicle tires properly inflated.
    Combine several trips into a single trip.
    Replace the vehicle's tires with the same TPC Spec number molded into the tire's sidewall near the size.
    Follow recommended scheduled maintenance.

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.

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

Defensive driving means“always expect the unexpected.” The first step in driving defensively is to wear the seat belt. See Seat Belts 0 35.

    Assume that other road users (pedestrians, bicyclists, and other drivers) are going to be careless and make mistakes. Anticipate what they may do and be ready.
    Allow enough following distance between you and the driver in front of you.
    Focus on the task of driving.

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

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

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 20 m (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.

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.

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

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.

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

See your dealer if there is a problem.

    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.
    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.

    The Antilock Brake System (ABS) allows steering while braking.

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

    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.
    Turn the steering wheel about one-eighth of a turn, until the right front tire contacts the pavement edge.
    Turn the steering wheel to go straight down the roadway.

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.

Four-wheel-drive vehicles can be used for off-road driving. Vehicles without four-wheel drive and vehicles not equipped with All Terrain (AT) or On-Off Road (OOR) tires must not be driven off-road except on a level, solid surface. For contact information about the original equipment tires, see the warranty manual.

One of the best ways for successful off-road driving is to control the speed.

    Have all necessary maintenance and service work completed.
    Fuel the vehicle, fill fluid levels, and check inflation pressure in all tires, including the spare,

if equipped.

    Read all the information about four-wheel-drive vehicles in this manual.
    Remove any underbody air deflector, if equipped. Re-attach the air deflector after off-road driving.
    Know the local laws that apply to off-road driving.

To gain more ground clearance if needed, it may be necessary to remove the front fascia lower air

dam, if equipped. However, driving without the air dam reduces fuel economy.

    Do not damage shrubs, flowers, trees, or grasses or disturb wildlife.
    Do not park over things that burn. See Parking over Things That Burn 0 166.

Driving safely on hills requires good judgment and an understanding of what the vehicle can and cannot do.

For more information about loading the vehicle, see Vehicle Load Limits 0 153 and

Tires 0 261.

    Always use established trails, roads, and areas that have been set aside for public off-road recreational driving and obey all posted regulations.

Before driving on a hill, assess the steepness, traction, and obstructions. If the terrain ahead cannot be seen, get out of the vehicle and walk the hill before driving further.

When driving on hills:

    Use a low gear and keep a firm grip on the steering wheel.
    Maintain a slow speed.
    When possible, drive straight up or down the hill.
    Slow down when approaching the top of the hill.
    Use headlamps even during the day to make the vehicle more visible.
    Never go downhill forward or backward with either the transmission or transfer case in

N (Neutral). The brakes could overheat and you could lose control.

. When driving down a hill, keep the vehicle headed straight down. Use a low gear because the engine will work with the brakes to slow the vehicle and help keep the vehicle under control.

If the vehicle stalls on a hill:

    Apply the brakes to stop the vehicle, and then apply the parking brake.
    Shift into P (Park) and then restart the engine.

. If driving uphill when the vehicle stalls, shift to

R (Reverse), release the parking brake, and back straight down.

    Never try to turn the vehicle around. If the hill is steep enough to stall the vehicle, it is steep enough to cause it to roll over.
    If you cannot make it up the hill, back straight down

the hill.

    Never back down a hill in N (Neutral) using only the brake. The vehicle can roll backward quickly and you could lose control.
    If driving downhill when the vehicle stalls, shift to a lower gear, release the parking brake, and drive straight down the hill.
    If the vehicle cannot be restarted after stalling, set the parking brake, shift into

P (Park), and turn the vehicle off.

    Leave the vehicle and seek help.
    Stay clear of the path the vehicle would take if it rolled downhill.
    Avoid turns that take the vehicle across the incline of the hill.

A hill that can be driven straight up or down might be too steep to drive across. Driving across an incline puts more weight on the downhill wheels, which could cause a downhill slide or a rollover.

    Surface conditions can be a problem. Loose gravel, muddy spots, or even wet grass can cause the tires to slip sideways, downhill. If the vehicle slips sideways, it can hit something that will trip it — a rock, a rut, etc. — and roll over.
    Hidden obstacles can make the steepness of the incline more severe. If a rock is driven across with the uphill wheels, or if the downhill wheels drop into a rut or depression, the vehicle can tilt even more.
    If an incline must be driven across, and the vehicle starts to slide, turn downhill. This should help straighten out the vehicle and prevent the side slipping.

Use a low gear when driving in mud

— the deeper the mud, the lower the gear. Keep the vehicle moving to avoid getting stuck.

Traction changes when driving on sand. On loose sand, such as on beaches or sand dunes, the tires tend to sink into the sand. This affects steering, accelerating, and braking. Drive at a reduced speed and avoid sharp turns or abrupt maneuvers.

Traction is reduced on hard packed snow and ice and it is easy to lose control. Reduce vehicle speed when driving on hard packed snow

and ice.

If the standing water is not too deep, drive through it slowly. At faster speeds, water can get into the engine and cause it to stall. Stalling can occur if the exhaust pipe is under water. Do not turn off the ignition when driving through water. If the exhaust pipe is under water, the engine will not start. When going through water, the brakes get wet and it may take longer to stop. See“Driving on Wet Roads” later in this section.

Remove any brush or debris that has collected on the underbody or chassis, or under the hood. These accumulations can be a fire hazard.

After operation in mud or sand, have the brake linings cleaned and checked. These substances can cause glazing and uneven braking. Check the body structure, driveline, steering, suspension, wheels, tires, and exhaust system for damage and check the fuel lines and cooling system for any leakage.

More frequent maintenance service is required. See the Maintenance Schedule 0 315.

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.

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.

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. See Tires 0 261.
    Turn off cruise control.

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.

    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, crash).
    Pay attention to special road signs (e.g., falling rocks area, winding roads, long grades, passing or no-passing zones) and take appropriate action.

Snow or ice between the tires and the road creates less traction or grip, so drive carefully. Wet ice can occur at about 0 °C (32 °F) 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. See Traction Control/Electronic Stability Control 0 182.
    The Antilock Brake System (ABS) improves vehicle stability during hard stops, but the brakes should be applied sooner than when on dry pavement.

See Antilock Brake System (ABS) 0 180.

    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.

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. See Roadside Assistance Program 0 337. To get help and keep everyone in the vehicle safe:

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

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.

Slowly and cautiously spin the wheels to free the vehicle when stuck in sand, mud, ice, or snow. See“Rocking the Vehicle to Get It Out” later in this section.

If equipped, the front and rear axles may be locked to improve traction. See Locking Front Axle 0 187 and Locking Rear Axle 0 186.

The Traction Control System (TCS) can often help to free a stuck vehicle. See Traction Control/ Electronic Stability Control 0 182.

If TCS cannot free the vehicle, see“Rocking the Vehicle to Get it Out” following.

For information about using tire chains on the vehicle, see Tire Chains 0 281.

Turn the steering wheel left and right to clear the area around the front wheels. For four-wheel-drive vehicles, shift into Four-Wheel Drive High. Turn the TCS off. Shift back and forth between R (Reverse) and a forward gear, spinning the wheels as little as possible. To prevent transmission wear, wait until the wheels stop spinning before shifting gears. 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. See Towing the Vehicle 0 299. Recovery hooks can be used, if the vehicle has them.

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 was designed to carry: the Tire and Loading Information label and the Certification/Tire label.

There are recovery hooks at the front of the vehicle. Use them if the vehicle is stuck off-road and needs to be pulled some place to continue driving.

Tire and Loading Information Label

Label Example

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 size of the original equipment tires (3) and the recommended cold tire inflation pressures (4). For more information on tires and inflation see Tires 0 261 and

Tire Pressure 0 268.

There is also important loading information on the vehicle Certification/Tire label. It may show 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–

    Locate the statement "The combined weight of occupants and cargo should never exceed XXX kg or XXX lbs." on your vehicle’s placard.
    Determine the combined weight of the driver and passengers that will be riding in your vehicle.
    Subtract the combined weight of the driver and passengers from XXX kg or XXX lbs.
    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.)

    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.
    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.”

See Trailer Towing 0 207 for important information on towing a trailer, towing safety rules, and trailering tips.

Example 1

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

Example 2

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

Example 3

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

of the driver, passengers, and cargo should never exceed the vehicle's capacity weight.

Certification/Tire Label

Label Example

B-pillar or on the forward edge of the rear door. The label may show the size of the vehicle's original tires and the inflation pressures needed to obtain the gross weight capacity of the vehicle. This is called Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR).

The GVWR includes the weight of the vehicle, all occupants, fuel, and cargo.

The Certification/Tire label may also show the maximum weights for the front and rear axles, called Gross Axle Weight

Rating (GAWR). To find out the actual loads on the front and rear axles, weigh the vehicle at a weigh station. Your dealer can help with this. Be sure to spread the load equally on both sides of the centerline.

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

Warning (Continued)


When you carry

something inside the

vehicle, secure it

whenever you can.


Do not leave a seat

folded down unless you

need to.

There is also important loading information for off-road driving in this manual. See“Loading the Vehicle for Off-Road Driving“ under Off-Road Driving 0 145.

Two-Tiered Loading

Depending on the model of the pickup, an upper load platform can be created by positioning three or four 5 cm (2 in) by

15 cm (6 in) wooden planks across the width of the pickup box. The planks must be inserted in the pickup box depressions.

When using this upper load platform, be sure the load is securely tied down to prevent it from shifting. The load's center of gravity should be positioned in a zone over the rear axle. The zone is located in the area between the front of each wheel well and the rear of each wheel well. The center of gravity height must not extend above the top of the pickup box flareboard.

Any load that extends beyond the vehicle's taillamp area must be properly marked according to local laws and regulations.

Remember not to exceed the Gross Axle Weight

Rating (GAWR) of the front or rear axle.

Add-On Equipment

When carrying removable items, a limit on how many people carried inside the vehicle may

be necessary. Be sure to weigh the vehicle before buying and installing the new equipment.

Remember not to exceed the Gross Axle Weight

Rating (GAWR) of the front or rear axle.

* Equipment

Maximum Weight

Ladder Rack and Cargo

340 kg (750 lb)

Cross Toolbox and Cargo

181 kg (400 lb)

Side Boxes and Cargo

113 kg per side (250 lb per side)

* Equipment

Maximum Weight

* The combined weight for all rail-mounted equipment should not exceed 454 kg (1,000 lb).

Loading Points

    Primary Load Points
    Secondary Load Areas
    GM Approved Accessory Mounting Points

Structural members (1) and (2) are included in the pickup box design. Additional accessories should use

these load points. Depending on the accessory design, use a spacer under the accessory at the load points to remove gap. The holes for GM approved accessories (3) are not intended for aftermarket equipment. See www.gmupfitter.com for additional pickup box load bearing structural information.

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