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Subaru Legacy Owners Manual: Front seatbelt pretensioners

The driver's and front passenger's seatbelts have a seatbelt pretensioner. The seatbelt pretensioners are designed to be activated in the event of an accident involving moderate to severe frontal and side collisions and rollover accidents.

Front seatbelt pretensioners

The following sensors serve as sensors for the pretensioners.

  •  Front sub sensor
  •  Front door impact sensor
  •  Rollover sensor

If the sensor detects a certain predetermined amount of force during frontal or side collisions or rollover accidents, the front seatbelt is quickly drawn back in by the retractor to take up the slack so that the belt more effectively restrains the driver.

When a seatbelt pretensioner is activated, an operating noise will be heard and a small amount of smoke will be released.

These occurrences are normal and not harmful. This smoke does not indicate a fire in the vehicle.

Once the seatbelt pretensioner has been activated, the seatbelt retractor remains locked. Consequently, the seatbelt cannot be pulled out and retracted and therefore must be replaced.


  •  Seatbelt pretensioners are not designed to activate in minor impacts.
  •  In cases of rollover accidents, as the SRS curtain airbags deploy, the seatbelt pretensioners are activated simultaneously.
  •  In cases of frontal collisions, the following components will operate simultaneously.
  •  Seatbelt pretensioner for driver
  •  Seatbelt pretensioner for front passenger
  •  SRS frontal airbag for driver
  •  SRS frontal airbag for front passenger*
  •  SRS seat cushion airbag for driver
  •  SRS seat cushion airbag for front passenger*
  •  SRS curtain airbags (both sides) (if an offset frontal collision occurs) *: This does not operate if the occupant detection system deactivates airbag operation.

    For details, refer to "Front passenger's SRS frontal airbag" .

  •  In cases of side collisions, the following components will operate simultaneously.
  •  SRS curtain airbag (impacted side)
  •  SRS side airbag (impacted side) (when any of the center pillar impact sensors/front door impact sensors senses an impact force)
  •  Seatbelt pretensioner for driver (when the driver's side front door impact sensor senses an impact force)
  •  Seatbelt pretensioner for front passenger (when the front passenger's side front door impact sensor senses an impact force)
  •  Pretensioners are designed to function on a one-time-only basis. In the event that a pretensioner is activated, both the driver's and front passenger's seatbelt retractor assemblies should be replaced only by an authorized SUBARU dealer. When replacing seatbelt retractor assemblies, use only genuine SUBARU parts.
  •  If either front seatbelt does not retract or cannot be pulled out due to a malfunction or activation of the pretensioner, contact your SUBARU dealer as soon as possible.
  •  If the front seatbelt retractor assembly or surrounding area has been damaged, contact your SUBARU dealer as soon as possible.
  •  When you sell your vehicle, we urge you to explain to the buyer that it has seatbelt pretensioners by alerting the buyer to the contents of this section.
  •  To obtain maximum protection, the occupants should sit in an upright position with their seatbelts properly fastened. Refer to "Seatbelts" .
  •  Do not modify, remove or strike the front seatbelt retractor assemblies or surrounding area.

    This could result in accidental activation of the seatbelt pretensioners or could make the system inoperative, possibly resulting in serious injury. Seatbelt pretensioners have no user-serviceable parts. For required servicing of front seatbelt retractors equipped with seatbelt pretensioners, consult your SUBARU dealer.

  •  When discarding front seatbelt retractor assemblies or scrapping the entire vehicle due to collision damage or for other reasons, consult your SUBARU dealer.
Seatbelt maintenance
To clean the seatbelts, use a mild soap and lukewarm water. Never bleach or dye the belts because this could seriously affect their strength. Inspect the seatbelts and attachments including the ...

System monitors
A diagnostic system continually monitors the readiness of the seatbelt pretensioner while the vehicle is being driven. The seatbelt pretensioners share the control module with the SRS airbag syste ...

Other materials:

Sun visors
To block out glare, swing down the visors. To use the sun visor at a side window, swing it down and move it sideways. With the sun visor positioned over the side window, you can slide the sun visor toward the rear to prevent glare through the gap between the sun visor and center pillar. ...

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