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Old 03-16-2005, 08:56 PM   #1
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here is some new information I just got from a Saturn owners forum. And please remember, "this free advice is worth exactly what you paid for it!" ED

Updated Recreational Vehicle Towing Information and Procedures for 2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles #05-00-89-014 - (Mar 8, 2005)
Updated Recreational Vehicle Towing Information and Procedures for 2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles
2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles with 3.5L V-6 (VIN 4 -- RPO L66)

Sales Manager, Fixed Operations Manager, and Technician

Important: This bulletin includes the newly released towing procedure for Saturn VUE vehicles with 3.5L V-6 (L66) engine and supersedes the information found on page 4-47 of the 2004 Saturn VUE Owner's Manual and page 4-51 of the 2005 VUE Owner's Manual. This bulletin is to be used in conjunction with Corporate Bulletin Number 03-00-89-033.


Purpose
The purpose of this bulletin is to provide updated procedures for towing a 2004-2005 Saturn VUE with a 3.5L V-6 (L66) engine and 5AT automatic transaxle (RPO MJ7/MJ8) behind a recreational vehicle with all four wheels on the ground (dinghy towing).

Based upon engineering analysis of field exchange transaxles, it has been determined that inadvertent transaxle damage may occur during dinghy towing if the appropriate steps are not taken during and prior to towing. As a result, the procedure for dinghy towing has been changed.

Copies of this bulletin should be made available and inserted into the 2004 and 2005 Owner's Manuals for those customers considering recreational vehicle or dinghy towing.

The new procedures include additional information regarding:

" Maximum duration for towing: Due to transaxle fluid drain back, the transaxle lubrication procedure is required every seven hours after the initial procedure has been completed, regardless if vehicle is being towed or parked. Once the procedure is performed, the transaxle is adequately lubricated and can be recreational vehicle towed for seven actual hours prior to repeating lubrication procedure. As an example, if you initially perform the lubrication procedure and tow your vehicle for three hours, then park for four hours, the lubrication procedure will need to be performed again, prior to dinghy towing the vehicle. Failure to observe these time limits may result in transaxle damage.

" Final shift before towing: Care should be taken to ensure that the final shift during the lubrication procedure must be from "D" (Drive) to "N" (Neutral). Failure to perform this final shift may result in internal damage to the transaxle assembly.

Procedure

Dinghy Towing (Front-Wheel-Drive and All-Wheel-Drive Vehicles with 5AT Five-Speed Automatic Transaxle)


Position and attach the vehicle behind the recreational vehicle.
Turn the ignition key to ACC.
Turn fog lamps and all accessories off.
Notice: Start the engine and shift through all gear positions. The FINAL shift must be "D" (Drive) to "N" (Neutral). Failure to perform this final shift may cause internal damage to the transaxle assembly. NEVER shift from "R" (Reverse) to "N" (Neutral) as the final shift, to avoid internal damage to transaxle.

Perform transaxle lubrication procedure:
Set the parking brake.
Start the engine.
Apply and hold the brake pedal until the end of Step 4.5.
To ensure proper automatic transaxle lubrication, shift transaxle through "P" (Park), "R" (Reverse), "N" (Neutral), "D" (Drive - Automatic Overdrive), "I" (Intermediate), "L" (Low).
Shift to "D" (Drive), then to "N" (Neutral) and let the engine run for 3 minutes. If you tow or tow and park the vehicle for more than seven hours in one day, you must repeat the procedure.
Turn off the engine, and leave the key in the ACC position.
Release the parking brake.

Important: Before performing dinghy-towing procedures, remove the large IGN fuse from the underhood fuse block. Failure to remove this fuse may result in low battery voltage after towing.


Locate and remove the large IGN fuse from the underhood fuse block. Refer to illustration in this bulletin.
After seven hours, repeat Step 4 if you intend to continue dinghy towing.

Once you have reached your destination, do the following:

Set the parking brake.
Turn the ignition key to LOCK and remove the key from the ignition.
Reinstall the large IGN fuse.
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Old 03-16-2005, 08:56 PM   #2
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here is some new information I just got from a Saturn owners forum. And please remember, "this free advice is worth exactly what you paid for it!" ED

Updated Recreational Vehicle Towing Information and Procedures for 2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles #05-00-89-014 - (Mar 8, 2005)
Updated Recreational Vehicle Towing Information and Procedures for 2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles
2004-2005 Saturn VUE Vehicles with 3.5L V-6 (VIN 4 -- RPO L66)

Sales Manager, Fixed Operations Manager, and Technician

Important: This bulletin includes the newly released towing procedure for Saturn VUE vehicles with 3.5L V-6 (L66) engine and supersedes the information found on page 4-47 of the 2004 Saturn VUE Owner's Manual and page 4-51 of the 2005 VUE Owner's Manual. This bulletin is to be used in conjunction with Corporate Bulletin Number 03-00-89-033.


Purpose
The purpose of this bulletin is to provide updated procedures for towing a 2004-2005 Saturn VUE with a 3.5L V-6 (L66) engine and 5AT automatic transaxle (RPO MJ7/MJ8) behind a recreational vehicle with all four wheels on the ground (dinghy towing).

Based upon engineering analysis of field exchange transaxles, it has been determined that inadvertent transaxle damage may occur during dinghy towing if the appropriate steps are not taken during and prior to towing. As a result, the procedure for dinghy towing has been changed.

Copies of this bulletin should be made available and inserted into the 2004 and 2005 Owner's Manuals for those customers considering recreational vehicle or dinghy towing.

The new procedures include additional information regarding:

" Maximum duration for towing: Due to transaxle fluid drain back, the transaxle lubrication procedure is required every seven hours after the initial procedure has been completed, regardless if vehicle is being towed or parked. Once the procedure is performed, the transaxle is adequately lubricated and can be recreational vehicle towed for seven actual hours prior to repeating lubrication procedure. As an example, if you initially perform the lubrication procedure and tow your vehicle for three hours, then park for four hours, the lubrication procedure will need to be performed again, prior to dinghy towing the vehicle. Failure to observe these time limits may result in transaxle damage.

" Final shift before towing: Care should be taken to ensure that the final shift during the lubrication procedure must be from "D" (Drive) to "N" (Neutral). Failure to perform this final shift may result in internal damage to the transaxle assembly.

Procedure

Dinghy Towing (Front-Wheel-Drive and All-Wheel-Drive Vehicles with 5AT Five-Speed Automatic Transaxle)


Position and attach the vehicle behind the recreational vehicle.
Turn the ignition key to ACC.
Turn fog lamps and all accessories off.
Notice: Start the engine and shift through all gear positions. The FINAL shift must be "D" (Drive) to "N" (Neutral). Failure to perform this final shift may cause internal damage to the transaxle assembly. NEVER shift from "R" (Reverse) to "N" (Neutral) as the final shift, to avoid internal damage to transaxle.

Perform transaxle lubrication procedure:
Set the parking brake.
Start the engine.
Apply and hold the brake pedal until the end of Step 4.5.
To ensure proper automatic transaxle lubrication, shift transaxle through "P" (Park), "R" (Reverse), "N" (Neutral), "D" (Drive - Automatic Overdrive), "I" (Intermediate), "L" (Low).
Shift to "D" (Drive), then to "N" (Neutral) and let the engine run for 3 minutes. If you tow or tow and park the vehicle for more than seven hours in one day, you must repeat the procedure.
Turn off the engine, and leave the key in the ACC position.
Release the parking brake.

Important: Before performing dinghy-towing procedures, remove the large IGN fuse from the underhood fuse block. Failure to remove this fuse may result in low battery voltage after towing.


Locate and remove the large IGN fuse from the underhood fuse block. Refer to illustration in this bulletin.
After seven hours, repeat Step 4 if you intend to continue dinghy towing.

Once you have reached your destination, do the following:

Set the parking brake.
Turn the ignition key to LOCK and remove the key from the ignition.
Reinstall the large IGN fuse.
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Old 03-17-2005, 02:57 AM   #3
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edgray, thank you for posting the update info on the proper towing proceedures for this vehicle. I am sure it will help many of our members a lot of aggrivation and expense.
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Old 03-19-2005, 12:47 PM   #4
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Thanks for the updated towing info. It so happens that`I have been following this procedure anyway, however my instructions include removing a small fuse from the panel located under the dash on the passenger side.

I didn't know I could tow for 7 hours?

By the way, I'm writing from the FMCA International rally at Perry, GA where I'm an exhibitor. If anyone is coming to the rally please stop by booth #44 and say hello.
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:58 AM   #5
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The fuze under the hood is for the 2005 only. For the 2004, there is a fuse beside the driver's leg. I have it painted, so here at work I don't remember which it is, but it is NOT under the hood.
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Old 03-24-2005, 04:23 PM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Blue Ribbon:
For the 2004, there is a fuse beside the driver's leg. I have it painted, so here at work I don't remember which it is, but it is NOT under the hood. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>You know instead of going through all that trouble may I suggest you do what I did and that's put an inline fuse and a SPST push button switch in the BCM socket. The BCM socket uses a dead fuse to connect the wires going to the switch. I never have to open the fuse panel and just simply reach in under the dash and "click" the BCM cluster fuse is disconnected.
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Old 03-24-2005, 07:14 PM   #7
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Isn't funny, when I first posted information about towing the Vue, I stated you must run through the procedure every 8 hours or 500 miles which ever came first. Then I went back to look at my information and I could not find the notation on 8 hours. Now Ed posts a 7 hour requirement, I still can't find out where I came up with the 8 hour requirement, I know I saw it when I first bought my Vue in Jan of 2004.

I have never towed my Vue more then 4 or 5 hours without going through the towing procedure. I usually do it when we stop at rest stop for a stretch of the legs.
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Old 03-24-2005, 08:00 PM   #8
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by CAD-Man:
I have never towed my Vue more then 4 or 5 hours without going through the towing procedure. I usually do it when we stop at rest stop for a stretch of the legs. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Me too and I believe the the 8 hour interval is in the 2004 Owner's Manual.
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Old 07-05-2005, 10:37 AM   #9
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Towin 05 fwd vue.
If removing ign fuse may only run down battery, why bother to remove it.
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Old 07-07-2005, 03:22 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by dick zurn:
... why bother to remove it... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>You may not be able to start the car at the end of the day is my guess but it may have something more to do with the electronics. I'd say call Saturn for a better answer.
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Old 07-27-2005, 01:09 PM   #11
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Whew...I'm one step away from ordering a new Saturn VUE after comparing it to the Jeep Liberty and Honda CR-V and settled on the VUE because every indication I received is that it was flat towable without any complications like pulling fuses and having to run the darned thing every so many hours like the CR-V states in their manuals.
Thanks to all the contributors to this topic for this timely info. Does anyone have any input on the Jeep Liberty or any other unit for trouble free, "hitch it up and go" toads? Thanks again
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Old 07-27-2005, 01:55 PM   #12
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Jan,
I just returned from a 6200 mile trip towing my 05 Liberty 4WD and it doesn't get any easier.
No distance or speed limitations...No fuses to pull..Mileage doesn't register on the odometer..no battery drain. Just put the transfer case in neutral..Tranny in park..key one click clockwise to unlock the steering and your off. I use a Roadmaster setup with a Falcon 2 towbar and Brake Buddy. I beleive all the Jeep 4WD models are this easy. Hope this helps.
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Old 07-27-2005, 02:08 PM   #13
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Tom: Helps a bunch. Thanks for sharing your experience with these "newbies". Looks like I've got to get to Jeep before the "employer discount" spiff ends.
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Old 07-28-2005, 07:05 AM   #14
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Driver, can you send me an e-mail telling me exactly how to do the ON/OFF toggle switch wired to the BCM fuse. I went to Radio Shack and a couple other places, under the assumption that you could buy a dummy Mini Fuse to run wire to a toggle. but have not had any success. I bought an in-line fuse but don't know how to connect it to the BCM cluster and cant get in the back of the fuse block. I am not the sharpest nail in the bag when it comes to Vehicular elect. I know what I want but just don't know how to get there without burning everything up. Thanks

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