NEVER   DO's   , for the Suzuki Sidekick or GeoTracker.                      

THE MOTOR:  ( keeping it alive and working)

Never Do:  ( not a full list, just to show the dangers, and why you need to read the whole book on car repairs, first, not by making all these errors !)
  1. Never forget basic safety.
  2. Operate car with bad, leaking or grabbing or pulling to left/right brakes. A Brake pedal that is soft, spongy or drops to the floor, gradually as applied.
  3. Operate car with bald tires, or leaking fuel. If you smell fuel , you have leaks. Stop now and fix that first.
  4. Operate your engine if it is making , noise, stop, find it and correct it.  "Clicking, clacking , banging, clanging tapping, , or grinding rattling,or making odd noises !. "
  5. Operate your engine  if it is leaking coolant, find it and fix it or risk warping the head or far worse even engine seizure and locked rear tires on the fly !.
  7. Warning: Do not short the RED plus battery to ground ever, or jumper a battery backwards or the battery will explode, shooting acid in to your eyes or worse.  (ask the tow man, see him cry)
    Always remove the NEG battery term first and put back last or risk the above fate.
  8. Use bricks to hold up any car, any brick of any kind, use Heavy Duty  Jack stands, never use an adjustable jack, as a jack stand with you under any vehicle.
  9. Run a backfiring engine ( towards air intake  cleaner)  or risk valve damage ( the back fire, is a lean running engine)  The aircleaner is above the intake throttle body. Do not flog a lean motor !
  10. Over torque bolts on the engine, and especially the 6 mm bolts,at the Cam caps, or EGR main valve Never guess at torque on aluminum engines, use a real torque wrench.
  11. Replace the timing belt with out a new water pump, unless you like doing the job twice.  (pumps and belts have near the same life span,  can you dig it?)
  12. Buy No Name China made Knock off parts for Car.  These parts are not OEM spec. parts they are crude clones.
  13. Remove head bolts or cam cap bolts 1 at a time, stage them UP and down, per the FSM.  SEE HOW HERE.
  14. Remove the crank 17mm bolt (front) with a tiny ratchet wrench , do use a 1/2" breaker bar and use a MAP GAS torch to heat the bolt FIRST.   Don't Impact tool it; with out heat first !.  "Consider the bolt may be loctite'd in".
  15. Forget to read the OEM TSB's on your car  (factory Technical service Bulletins , see new crank pulley torque, announced in 1996 and is RetroACTIVE to all Sidekicks. 89-98'.
  16. Forget to use a new crank bolt on the crank shaft  front end when you remove it, to do the key-way inspection ! or to do the front crank seal. The $9 will save the crank. (the become "YIELDED" in time) End of life.
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  18. Run or crank any 16v 1.6L motor if you think the timing belt has slipped.  Do not run motor over 90K miles until said belt is replaced. Inspect the cam timing, any time motor quits(loses power), and the belt was neglected.
  19. Use something to jam the piston, for 17mm crank bolt removal, or risk Rod or Rod bearing damage.  Use a flywheel lockers seen here. (or ways)
  20. Fail to clean the motor or transmission first, before analyzing oil leak sources,  the fan and driving creates wind and this wind moves the oil all over the place.  Clean, drive 5-10 miles,  and look !
  21. Run motor with the oil lamp on , and never fail to check the pressure actual and see if the pressure is at factory specifications. Pressure relief valve regulates at  56.9PSI,  overall spec. is 47-61psi at 4000 rpm "COLD, less hot"
  22. Run motor with only water in the coolant in states the have freezing (32F or below) temperatures.  I use water only anytime I test or  breach the coolant system, and just a 5mile testing for leaks, then, in goes 50% mix.
  23. Run a motor with a squealing belt until to see if any of the accessories are seized ( spin all pulleys by hand first)  (you don't want to loose the water pump and have it HIT the Timing belt , no , don't let that happen )
  24. Let water suck into the air snorkel or in to the lame Cold Air Induction (CAI) kit (mod).  (most are way too low for wheeling).  (bent Rods anyone?).  The High water marker, driven slow, is the top of tires.(stock car)
  25. Cut EFI or other Critical wires, you do not understand, until  the purpose of them is known and you have no other choice.
  26. Hot wire any wire connected to any ECU/ECM/PCM ,or hot swap swap parts ( HOT SWAP is battery connected or for sure KEY ON) Hot wire means Jumper 12vdc battery power to something.
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  28. Put in an Alarm, or remote Starting  KIT  that transgresses into the primary wiring of the engine.  Unless you have designed in a regression path , for in  field failures!  ( connectors added with jumper plugs so you CAN REGRESS)! 
  29. Keep in mind with a Remote start, the car  may drop oil pressure to zero  or overheat and you will not be there to save it. And that the car is unsafe around children, when running unattended ( and is Illegal in Texas)
  30. Do not mix chemistries to the oil or coolants.  Instead change the oil or change the antifreeze.  don't play with its chemistry ,or with unknown additives.  
  31. Don't be a witch Doctor  , I do add Chevron Techron, to the fuel only if  desperate.  (like if found a partially clogged injector and have no time to fix it)  Many brands, are  just Naphtha/or Pale oil both are useless.
  32. Never drive any KICK (new to you) until you set the front 17mm crank bolt to this new spec. (retro active 89-98). DAY 1.
  33. Do not fail to inspect every inch of the EFI system before troubleshooting any engine running problem.  look at the parts, look for broken wires., missing parts, damaged parts. Just LOOK !
  34. Trouble shoot the EFI system until you check compression and if car runs, idle vacuum , vacuum must be near 19 inches HG and never bouncing.  Do not drive car, if either fails. Check the timing belt ,cam time and Ignition timing!
  35. Never  set the Timing belt tension as though it is a serpentine belt (100 lbs tension is dead wrong) it is set with a tiny spring , nothing else!{or wreck the front cam bearing and crack the cam or its COG wheel.! DO NOT DO THIS ! }
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  37. Do not run 5w oil over 50F (10C) outside ambient air temperatures EVER. DON'T DO IT. Switch to summer 10w-40. I run DELO, Or Rotella. in the Summer and Chevron 10w-30 in the winter. 
  38. Put the head gasket in upside down (blocking that 1/8" diameter hole to the head oil gallery )  kiss off that CAM/and head!.  Use a real  FELPRO gaskets and it is marked "this side UP".   
  39. Run  new motor  rebuild or head rebuild with out priming the oil pump or checking for top end oiling , using only the starter motor,  do not start that engine. do the pre checks. SAVE that new motor , please !
  40. Run old hoses; they don't last over 15year, sorry, they DON'T,  replace them before burning up the engine.
  41. Do not Skip TUNE-UPS,  See this here and all related topics ; A  Tuneup  or  aka: "SERVICE POINTS"..
  42. Never fail to use hose clamps properly, they go to the ends of hoses, not anywhere else and if screw drive, must be properly tightened, with only a small distortion of the rubber.
  43. Do not use water hose clamps on fuel lines, EVER !  Use Fuel Injection rated hose clamps ONLY.
  44. Never buy C4 spare parts,  I recommend Suzuki parts or parts from NAPA or Rockauto.  Many other stores are now selling C^4 parts .  Parts that explode !, immediately or very shortly after using.
  45. Do not use the grease that came with the non 100% sealed bearing, clean the bearing with paint thinner (never gas) and then put in a top rated grease, like disc brake grease, from Moble 1.  That grease out of the box, is only antiRUST packing grease !
  46. Never pee on a spark plug while engine is  cranking or running.
  47. Never kiss a hot exhaust pipe or manifold. (wear leather gloves , working hot exhaust and finding air leaks)
  48. Never use any  bumper jack for anything, ever. In fact, send  this jack to the dumps.  (Invented by a mad man)
  49. Never use Gasoline to clean things, benzene tops that list of carcinogens
  50. Fail to prime the oil pump and crank a new motor and get full 50psi oil pressure (at sender port), before starting a new engine.
  51. Fail to check top end oiling, on a new motor/head,  (valve cover off,  after doing above prime, you then start motor and see the oil flooding the cam, then tell KEY man , CUT IGNITION.
Drive line: (This car has no center differential , a real risk at high speeds, no kidding !)
  1. Do not drive car on dry pavement in 4wd ( 4wd means , transfer case engaged, in 4wd and hubs locked) or you will wind the gear box  up and wreck them.
  2. Do not operate in 4wd if ONLY one locking hub fails, service the hubs as the operator guide instructs. (inspect them every beginning  fall, is a good practice)
  3. Never  tow the car (non trailered) , by guessing.  Or Dolly tow car  The 6 pages are here. on my  FAQ page 1 line 1 and are Suzuki actual pages.
  4. Do not  shift to 4wd at high speeds, it's NOT a synchronized gear,  try to baby those little dog teeth.  ( the dont like crashing the dogs, not at all...)
  5. Do not over fill or under fill any gear boxes or axle housings.    (quantities very by casting variances,  do not use exact amounts, add lube to the mark , per FSM)
  6. Do not put ATF in any manual gear box or axle (the A/T method is here, and is a HOT check)
  7. Do not put GL3,4 or 5 in any A/T tranny (automatic) USE DEXTRON MAX ( max is what ever number is highest on your RETAIL SHELF)  There are great bands of GL4/5 lube (dual rated)
  8. Do not drive a slipping/flaring  A/T tranny.  (or risk clutch pack damage)
  9. Do not drive fast in 4wd, the car does not have a center differential,  IT DOES NOT !  Great danger exists driving a part time 4wd , vehicles fast.
  10. Do drag the brakes , in 4wd, stuck , making what I call, a poor mans LSD system.  The stock car sends all torque, to the tire with no traction first. Dragging brakes, creates a virtual LSD axle.  (my new Jeep Wrangle does trick automatically (ABS & ESP in 4WD)
LSD = Limited slip Differential.

DO NOT BUY China Knock off, NO-NAME , Clones  PARTS    or Worse Counterfeit parts:    

Consider not buying CHINA BEARINGS from :
"The city Wafangdian which is called the bearing capital of China. ZWZ is in our city, there are nearly 700 small or big bearing factories in our city"
Now the question begs, which of the 700 companies  make good parts.?...

See a China poster. who works there, in sales., called 19820816789 (Mechanical)

Good bearings are: Timken, NSK, FAG, National, KOYO, SKF,  Federal Mogul (BCA)

The auto store sells bearing of the proper grade, the below is for persons buying direct from bearing makers. (or there distribution network)
Bearings come in Grades,  ( if you buy say axle bearing from say NAPA Auto,  you will get a top quality bearing.

The Below helps you pick a bearing directly from the maker , the manufacture.  Like Microprocessors and other parts, they all come in grades.
Is the bearing ABMA, ISO or ABMA tested or rated?  or SUJ2  Japanese standard, or   SAE52100 is a U.S. standard.  ?

The bearing needs to be rated ABEC 1 -9   you dont need #9 rated bearings, not at all, but if the maker is clueless to that and other bearing parameters, walk.
Not  every company uses  the same grade standards. Ask them for theirs? and a conversion to regular grades.
G grades are listed here, 
Grade G1000 is toy grade, at .005" ball diameter tolerance great on a wheel barrow, and Grade G100 is typical in Automotive work,,  below G100 is overkill (just a thin wallet) but great in an Air tool or Router.

ABEC 1 Approximately equal to ISO P0
ABEC 3 Approximately equal to ISO P6
ABEC 5 Approximately equal to ISO P5
ABEC 7 Approximately equal to ISO P4
ABEC 9 Approximately equal to ISO P2

When replacing your axle bearings, always use a high quality OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) replacement part.
Less expensive bearings, are that for a reason, they usually use a lower grade of steel and can fail much sooner than an OEM part.
I buy by name, and with a top branded name, I  can even look it up in the manufactures catalog  (ecat), with clone parts?, you can not do that!
 I buy most my parts from NAPA they do not sell cloned or shoddy parts.

Do not buy bearings from no name China makers and for sure not counterfeiters.

Franken-Kick's  (this section is for bastardized cars ,that is, the Previous owner hacked up, a great car or mixed two cars in one franken vehicle ,with alien parts, etc. eg: Sidekick + Samurai ?)
Fueling , there is no better way to get hurt than with fuel (brakes is #1 , maybe) Ask John Denver that one. RIP.  (see links below for 2 infamous ways)
The below is never do, but is really , if you must do this, and not regress it back to stock , then consider these points.

The stock INSIDE the fuel tank  pump , is there,  not by luck, fate or funs and giggles.
Bullet points for stock pumps:
  •  Less parts external , causes less leaks , less product liability and keeps cars cheaper. (less expensive)
  • Ends VAPOR lock, for ever , back there.
  • Runs cooler, if fact, it is fuel cooled.
  • Is fuel lubricated, so when you start it up  ,it gets fuel now, and not later (no damage to pump parts ,over life of car/pump)
  • Instant priming, on low fuel levels. Faster starts.
  • It has only 2 enemies.  No fuel in tank and a clogged filter, at the front of tank fuel line.

ENGINEering  (nothing like Carburettors  cars, not at all )  This section is all in LEFT FIELD or Over the top.
Custom pumps. (outside of tank) NOT STOCK ways, (put here, just in case someone attempts it and gets in trouble)
Never DIRECT wire this pump to +12vdc Ignition feed, Do wire it to the ECU Pump relay pink wire feed:  (like it was factory new car)
Never hot wire the Fuel pump relay or you will risk blowing the ECU to HELL.  (killing the fuel pump driver transistor and turning it to smoke , dust and carbon debris)
If not, the pump will overheat the first time the pump sucks air (lost prime or near empty tank) and can explode the fuel just like what killed many in aircraft or    these dead 7 men in a MIL aircraft.
Do run your pump via the stock cars Fuel pressure relay so the pump never runs full time keyon.  or you will have a car fire, not today but WILL, in time....(the stock car kills the pump when spark ends, (no crashes and burn either)
The relay cuts fuel for 3 reasons, lost spark , lost spark pre-cursors (CMP/CKP) and engine stalls and , out of fuel. If you run out of fuel , you want the pump dead, as the engine stalls. You DO.
The 3 second rule, at key on, is to prevent fires and to prevent hydralocking the combustion chambers, if you keyed on, and the injector (bad) leaks, and fills the rear cyclinder (lower) with over 55cc of  fuel, it can and will hydralock the piston and bend the rod. (engineering ways and means)
Any new outside pump, must be mounted real low, or use 2 pumps, the lift pump, feeding the main pump, or it all will lose prime and fail.
Do mount the pump near the bottom edge of the tank (not so good for 4WD wheel'n and road damage...) this allows the natural siphon action of the tank feed tube, to keep the pump primed all the time.
The higher the pump, the less likely siphon can happen.
If you mount the pump way above tank top , it will lose prime easy.  Most pumps can not suck fuel up hill (self prime) when dry.  (read the spec. on the pump, see that?)

Do run a  pump bottom sock filter on the input pipe. not a tight weave screen,  Think "blocks  any large rust flakes or junk"  use a real pump sock filter, nothing made by hand or tight weave mesh.
The pump also needs the, in line, above pump, check valve, just like the stock car had, to keep the prime on the fuel rail.
(On a stock car the 30 psi rail pressure can hold for many minutes, for faster restarts, of the car ) Do a pump leak down test. Make sure it passes this test. (FSM standard test, under injecton)
Use a sump tank. (ask a race car builder ! )
Use a  lift pump to prime, your high frame rail mounted pump (over tank)  (two cheap pumps solve most of these issues .)
The pump must  have a 60 psi minimum shunt pressure rating.  and a full  time dutycycle at  35 PSI (at least)  at wide open throttle up  any hill.
The stock pump can push 60 PSI shunted, but does overload the stock pump at 60..(its just a test in the FSM, see it there)
Do not use fuel line parts that are not rated over 60 PSI (EFI rated system parts)  nor non EFI fuel line clamps.

If you run sock free, on any gerotor pump , it will suck in junk, some day soon, and be damaged. The Gerotors just hate debris (over the size, of sock mesh hole size)

Walbro pumps

Magnefuel  (self priming) $450 (racing only)

Be Safe !

Think twice, about where you get your wheel bearings.  and never run the supplied grease, with bearings. (open bearings , not sealed bearings)   Unless you like Careening.

1/2 million hits.. and growing....

Warnings and a disclaimer.:
Only certified and licensed automotive technicians should do fuel system maintenance or modifications.
This is especially true of fuel injected fuel delivery systems, because the high pressure in these lines can be maintained for hours or even days.
 In-tank fuel pumps present additional risks due to the nature of placing a 12-volt electric circuit into a fuel tank.
 Gasoline vapors are highly explosive.
They can be easily ignited by many different heat sources (including static electricity) and can travel unseen for long distances to be ignited, only to return in the form of flames to the fuel source. (garage water heaters (any heaters) from H3LL) makes no express or implied approval of any  products for any application. ( We do not sell parts, or recommed any parts, all parts shown are generic samples, only)
The buyer holds the sole responsibility for the selection, purchase, safe installation, and safe use of any of the products listed or stated or linked, on this website.
For a  short list of precautions for fuel system service, click here.
more danger...
FIRE DANGER (De-pressurizations rules and very serious warnings)

Happy trails and I hope I saved your engine ! and even your life !
version 10:   2-07-2013

These are only my opinions or that of friends, your mileage and experiences my be different.  Long live Suzuki.