1959 Buick Owners Guide
1959 BUICK OWNERS GUIDE
The 1959 Buick Owners is compiled by the Buick Engineering and Service Department to assist 1959 Buick Owners in attaining the utmost pleasure and satisfaction from their car. It is urged that 1959 Buick Owners follow the instruction and recommendations closely.
KEYS AND LOCKS
Identical keys operate all the locks on your Buick. Remove the “Knock-out” number and keep it in a safe place, to be used if your keys are lost or mislaid and duplicates are required. To lock the ignition, turn the key to “lock”; to shut off the ignition but still leave it operative with the key removed, turn the key to “off”. A feature has been incorporated in the ignition lock “off” position whereby the key cannot be removed until it is backed up slightly from the “off” position. This reminds the owner that the ignition is in the “off” (unlocked) instead of locked position when he removes the key. In the “off” (unlocked ) position the switch may still be operated, yet the privacy of the glove and trunk compartments is retained. Lock the ignition and the doors of your car when leaving it unattended. Over 75% of the vehicles stolen have been left either with the key in the ignition lock or unlocked.
AUTOMATIC STARTING SYSTEM
When the engine is cold, depress the accelerator pedal just far enough to engage the starter. If the engine is warm, hot, or partially flooded, and does not start readily, depress the accelerator pedal to the floor and hold it there until the engine fires regularly. On both Twin and Triple Turbine Transmission cars, starter will not operate unless control lever is in “N” or “P”.
Selection Engine crankcase oils have a definite effect on ease of starting, oil economy, combustion chamber deposits and engine wear. In selecting a specific brand of oil it is essential to consider the reputation of the refiner or marketer. See Page 52 for detailed information on selection of engine crankcase oils.
Maintaining Proper Oil – Level The oil gauge rod is marked with a “1 & 2 qts.” line to indicate the amount of oil which must be added to maintain proper level. DO NOT OVERFILL. It is desirable that between changes the same brand of oil be used for additions. See Page 52 for detailed information on crankcase oils.
NOTE: Since some engine components may require a longer break-in period, it is advisable to check engine oil level frequently during the first 1000 miles of operation; doing so will insure adequate oil supply.
The precision manufacture of your new Buick has eliminated the need for tedious low speed initial operation or break-in. However, the life of the engine, transmission and axles will be improved by the exercise of sensible care during this period. It is recommended that the speed not exceed 50 M.P.H. for the first 300 miles and that the rate of starting and stopping be moderate. After the first 300 miles 1959 Buick Owners may increase speeds above 50 M.P.H. gradually as mileage accumulates. During the first 1000 miles avoid driving for extended periods at any one speed, either slow or fast. Varying the speed of the car and including some higher speed operation, within the limits imposed by law, promotes longer life of parts and better economy of oil and gasoline.
Never subject your car to full throttle accelerations or high speeds until the engine has been thoroughly warmed up.
As in your selection of motor oils, it is desirable to choose gasoline from a reputable refiner.
The 1959 Buick engine has been built to efficiently utilize the high octane characteristics of today’s fuels. The 4400 series equipped with Synchromesh (Manual Shift) transmission is designed to use Regular fuel. All other Buick engines are designed to use high octane gasoline. Under normal city driving with partial country operation, the minimum octane requirements for Twin and Triple Turbine Transmission equipped cars is 99 Research method, 88 Motor method at sea level. These octane requirements can be reduced 1 number for each 1000 feet of altitude, e.g. at 1000 feet elevation, the octane requirement will be 98 Research method and 87 Motor method, etc.
Some detonation or “spark rap” is not harmful; however, if it should become severe consult your Buick dealer as damage to some engine parts could result. Since Buick considers engine failures resulting from use of low octane fuel as misuse of the engine, 1959 Buick Owners should always specify gasoline of the above octane rating when purchasing gasoline.
Do not become concerned if your Buick seems to be losing power under fairly high altitudes for any marked gain in altitude results in reduced air density and power.
If 1959 Buick Owners plan to operate the car in a foreign country where lower octane gasoline is sold, see a Buick dealer who will advise 1959 Buick Owners as to what engine mechanical changes are required for operation on such fuels.
Before leaving this country it is advisable to ascertain the octane ratings of fuels available in the country for which 1959 Buick Owners are destined. Such information may be obtained by writing to General Motors Overseas Operations, Service Dept., 9-164 General Motors Bldg., Detroit, Mich.
After arriving in a foreign country, contact the nearest Authorized General Motors dealer for brand names of the best fuels available and advice as to where they may be purchased.
The 1959 Dual headlamp system provides 50% higher wattage on upper beam and 25% higher on lower beam as compared to single headlamp systems, thereby giving greater seeing distance on both beams.
When the upper beam (Bright) is used, all four units are lighted. When the lower beam (Dims) are used, only the outboard units are lighted. For purposes of identification the inboard units are marked “1” and the outboard units “2”.
Headlights, parking lights, instrument lights and dome lights are controlled from a single three-way switch marked “LIGHTS” located at the left of the instrument panel. There are two “OUT” positions in the switch obtained by pulling the knob. The first position turns on the parking lights and taillights and the second position controls the headlights with the tail lights remaining on.
The lower and upper beams of the headlights are controlled for city and country driving by a foot operated switch located on the car floor adjacent to the position of the left foot. When the upper beam is in use, a small red light is illuminated just above center of speedometer.
Instrument lights may be illuminated brightly in either position mentioned above by simply turning the knob to the extreme left (counterclockwise) position.
Rotation of the knob to the extreme counterclockwise position also turns on the dome light, regardless of in or out position. Turning knob to right (clockwise) diminishes the intensity of the instrument panel lights and turns off dome light. Further rotation clockwise turns off instrument panel lights. All instrument lights may be turned “off” by simply pushing the control knob all the way in. It is not necessary to turn the knob in either direction before pushing in the knob. When pulled out again, instrument lights will be illuminated as previously mentioned.
A Map light standard on Series 4800, optional on all others, is illuminated with the dome lamp when front doors are opened. With front doors closed it ca n be turned on or off by switch located at the lamp.
The Autronic-Eye phototube, mounted on the instrument panel at the left of the windshield, picks up light from an approaching car’s headlights and automatically dims the headlights of your Buick. After the car has passed, the Autronic-Eye switches the headlights back to bright beam unless another oncoming car is within range of operation.
The foot operated dimmer switch mounted in the toe pan at the far left has two ratchet positions plus a special “override” feature. The two regular positions are automatic and lower beam. The headlamps are controlled by the Autronic-Eye in the automatic position only. In lower beam position, the headlamps are locked on lower beam.
The override section of the foot switch is ready to function only when the switch is in the automatic position. Lightly depressing the switch partway (override position) provides upper beam, regardless of the
amount of light received by the phototube. This arrangement permits signaling oncoming car to dim lights and provides a simple test for automatic position of the foot switch.
CAUTION: This is an electronic device. All adjustments have been made at tile Factory. Tile cover should not be removed nor any adjustment made except by an Authorized Buick Dealer. The windshield glass directly in front of the Autronic-Eye should be kept reasonably clean.
Operation in Automatic Position
- Turn on headlights and wait for a few moments to allow electrical components to become warm.
- Depress dimmer switch partway (about 1/4″) ; if high beams come on, Autronic-Eye is in automatic position.
- If high beam does not come on, fully depress dimmer switch to put eye in automatic position.
- Once eye is in automatic position, it is not necessary to use dimmer switch again. Eye can be left in automatic position at all times. It will keep lights in low beam position for city, driving and will switch to high beam whenever it is dark enough for high beams to be necessary.
- To signal an oncoming car to dim its headlamps, depress the foot dimmer switch partway; then release. This momentarily flashes your headlights from lower beam (dim ) to upper beam (bright).
- To keep headlights on upper beam (bright), depress the foot dimmer switch partway and hold in this position until 1959 Buick Owners desire the Autronic-Eye to automatically control the headlights.
- To keep the headlights on lower beam (dim ), trip the foot dimmer switch by depressing it all the way.
NOTE: The foot dimmer switch must be fully depressed again to “automatic” position before Autronic-Eye regains control.
- If the driver desires to have lower beam come on when the approaching car is at a greater distance, turn sensitivity control dial clockwise. See Illustration. If lower beam is desired to come on at a closer distance, adjust control counterclockwise.
NOTE: It is recommended that wiper blades not be operated on dry glass for prolonged period of time as it will shorten blade life.
Two speed electrically operated wipers with washer are standard equipment on Series 4700 and 4800 Models; optional on all others. Selection of low or high speed operation is obtained by rotating the wiper control knob located on the instrument panel, just below headlight switch. Extreme counterclockwise position is off position. Extreme clockwise position is fast operation. Midway between above positions is slow operation.
Single speed electrically operated wipers are standard equipment on Series 4400 and 4600 Models and are controlled by rotary switch mounted at same location as that for two speed wiper.
Windshield washer is only available with the two speed electrically operated wipers. Washer is operated by firmly pressing the button in center of wiper control switch knob; water will squirt for a short period automatically. Pressing the windshield washer button will also activate the windshield wipers to operate at low speed. After the windshield is wiped dry, the windshield wiper control knob must be rotated back to the “off” position. Keep the glass jar filled with water. In freezing weather, use Buick Windshield Washer Solvent, Part No. 980807 and do not fill over % full. Do not use water containing alcohol or other anti-freeze as it will damage car finish.
The lighter is operated by pushing inward on the lighter knob. When the element is hot enough to light your cigarette, the lighter will return to its normal position. The ash-guard, a built-in feature on Buick lighters, may be pulled back toward the base to facilitate lighting cigars or pipes.
One large ash tray is blended into the instrument panel just to the right of instrument panel cluster. To open the ashtray, simply place finger underneath tray and pull out. Ash receiver may be readily removed for cleaning by pressing on release tab located at rear of tray. The ash tray is illuminated with instrument panel lights on fill Series except Synchromesh transmission equipped cars.
The speedometer, ammeter, gasoline gauge, temperature gauge, oil pressure gauge and speedometer trip mileage dial are all conveniently grouped in front of the driver.
The speedometer has an easy-to-read calibrated dial numbered from “0” to “120”, with a trip mileage dial mounted directly underneath. The trip mileage reset knob mounted on lower roll of instrument panel, just to left of ignition
switch, can be set at zero when starting on a trip. To reset, merely push in knob and turn in clockwise direction until all digits read zero. To adjust forward push in knob and turn counterclockwise direction. This resets reading forward by tenths of a mile.
Series 4800 Models are equipped with a Safety-Buzzer speedometer that sounds a warning when the maximum speed desired by the driver is attained. This Safety-Buzzer feature is a Factory installed option on all other series and may be adjusted to sound the buzzer at any speed between 20 and 110 mph by merely turning the knob located to the right of windshield wiper control switch knob.
A dial indicating the specific car speed at which buzzer will sound is located at left end of speedometer face. Turn knob as required for desired setting.
NOTE: Under some conditions such as prolonged periods of engine idling or when driving in heavy slow moving traffic or when subjecting engine to heavy loads for long periods of time, the temperature gauge needle may be at H “hot”. Do not become alarmed for this can be considered normal provided radiator coolant is not lost due to boiling. If radiator boils see your dealer.
OUTSIDE AIR VENTILATION SYSTEM (Non air conditioning)
Two knobs located just below the left instrument cluster operate the outside air intake valves. The lower knob controls the outside air intake on the passenger side of the front compartment and the upper knob controls the valve on the driver’s side. These may be operated individually according to preferences of either the driver or passenger. The forward motion of the car forces the air through the ventilators located on each side of the cowl just above the floor mat. Pointers showing through the cluster windows indicate the amount of opening at which valves are set.
HEATER and DEFROSTER CONTROLS
The heater and defroster controls are located just below the right instrument cluster. The upper knob controls the heater and the lower knob controls the defroster. Either knob, when moved from the “off” position, will automatically start the blower.
Temperature in the car may be controlled by moving the heater control knob from the extreme “off” position toward the “high” position. As the knob is moved, it sets itself for higher temperatures in the car and increases the speed of the blower which starts when the knob is first moved from the “off” position. Temperature and blower speed are controlled simultaneously. Nothing else need be done.
When defrosting is required simply move the knob from the “off” position toward “de-fog”. However, when moved to “de-ice”, the defroster over-rides the heater control, sets the temperature at highest possible position and starts the blower at maximum speed. At “de-fog” the defroster operates at temperature and blower speed set by the heater control.
The defroster may also be operated without heat on damp days by simply moving the lever to any desired position except de-ice depending upon how much forced air is required to restore clear, safe visibility.
AUTOMATIC HEATER CONTROL
On cars equipped with this accessory, the heater control knob may be set at any desired position. When the engine has warmed the water supplied to the heater sufficiently to provide warm air, the blower will come on automatically at low speed until water temperature has increased to provide sufficient heat for maximum blower speed. At this point, the blower will automatically increase to high speed and will remain there until the desired temperature in the car is reached. It will then return to low speed and return to high only when more heat is again needed.
As in the case of standard heating controls, when the defroster knob is moved to “de-ice”, it over-rides the heater control by operating at highest temperature and full speed of the blower. If ventilation is desired through the defroster with no heat, it may be necessary to first operate defroster at “de-ice” position until warm air is felt; then lever may be moved back to “de-fog” position at which time blower will operate at low speed even with temperature control at “off” position. In conjunction with the above, ventilation through heater outlets may also be obtained when outside air temperature is above approximately 70° by moving temperature control slightly from “off” position.
It is only necessary to set the temperature control lever once at the start of the heating season. The automatic control provides the same car temperature and comfort for all outside air temperatures and also accomplishes maximum warm-up without any need for temperature lever adjustment.
AIR CONDITIONER CONTROLS
Unlike the standard controls, only one knob just below the left instrument cluster operates the unit to set the air conditioner at any desired position. By moving the knob from the “off” position, the air conditioner is put in operation and lower temperatures may be obtained by moving it further from the “off” position. As the lever is moved, blower speed is automatically increased.
There are three air outlets for the air conditioning system which are entirely independent from the heating system. One is located at each end of the lower roll of the instrument panel and the third is in the center of the instrument panel just below the radio. Air from the two end outlets may be directed upward by pulling out the outlet as shown. The knob on the front of the outlet may be moved to direct air to right or left. The air is normally directed upward from the center outlet about shoulder high. However, if three passengers occupy the front seat, the air may be directed even higher to pass over the head of the center passenger by pulling out the outlet.
On cars equipped with both air conditioning and heating, both units may be operated simultaneously; the air conditioning providing cool air for upper level while the heating system warms lower level.
In hot climates, when car is parked in the sun with the windows closed, it is recommended that the windows be opened for a short period of time to allow the accumulated heated air to be expelled. This will help your air conditioner to cool the car interior more quickly.
It is recommended to operate the air conditioner for a few minutes periodically during the winter months or when air conditioner has not been in operation for long periods of time; doing so will lubricate the internal compressor seal and thus prevent possible loss of refrigerant. It is also recommended that the air conditioner be checked by your Buick dealer each spring in preparing for summer operation.
If the car is going to set in one position for any length of time with the air conditioner operating, selector lever must be in “P” range. This avoids an unnecessary load on the engine which may result in overheating under such conditions.
THE TWIN TURBINE TRANSMISSION
Control of the Twin Turbine Transmission is obtained by positioning the control lever mounted directly below the steering wheel. Cars so equipped do not have a clutch pedal, however, shift lever may be placed in any position when engine is idling by merely moving it to the position desired. Stops have been placed at certain points in the lever travel so that it is necessary to raise the lever to place it in certain positions. After a little experience driving the car, 1959 Buick Owners will find that it is possible to select a range merely by “feel” and visual reference to the dial will not be necessary. However, on all series the dial is illuminated for night driving and is controlled by the instrument panel lighting circuit.
When required , additional engine “braking” can be obtained by placing the lever in “L”.
NOTE: The starting motor circuit on cars equipped with the Twin Turbine Drive is so wired that the engine will not start unless the control/ever is in either “P” or “N” position.
THERE ARE FIVE POSITIONS INDICATED-
P – This is a Parking Lock and is to be used in conjunction with the foot operated “Step-on” parking brake. THIS PARKING LOCK MUST NEVER BE APPLIED WHEN CAR IS IN MOTION. Control lever must be raised to be placed in or out of this position. Parking the car with the control lever in “D”, “L”, or “R” positions will not partially brake the car as it does when 1959 Buick Owners leave a conventional transmission “in gear.”
N – This is neutral and is to be used when towing the car and may be used instead of “P” when car is standing still and engine is running. Control lever must be raised when moving it from “D” to “N” position.
D – This range is used for all normal forward driving. After the engine has been started, place Control Lever in “D” position and depress accelerator pedal. Nothing more need be done.
The converter with Variable Pitch Stator Blades enables the driver to select the efficient cruising position or the greater performance position by the normal operation of the accelerator pedal. An added resistance to the accelerator pedal operation is provided near the end of its travel. By fully depressing the pedal through this point the higher performance setting is achieved.
L – This range is to be used when the “going” is particularly tough, such as deep snow, or sand, or on long steep grades. To operate in this range, simply move the control lever to “L” position and drive as before. This range may also be used for “braking” the car speed on long or steep down grades.
NOTE: When shifting into “L,” “D” or Reverse, ease up on accelerator between shifts to obtain smooth engagement of clutch and internal parts of transmission.
The shift from “L” to “D” or vice versa may be made while the car is in forward motion by merely flipping the lever. These shifts should not be made at speeds over 40 M.P.H.
R – This position reverses the car motion. To operate with car standing, raise and move control lever to stop at bottom of lever travel. Depress accelerator pedal for backing car.
NOTE: In cold weather, the engine and transmission oil will not Row as readily as when warm. It is important, therefore, that the engine be operated for a short time before placing the shift lever in position. It is also recommended that rapid acceleration be avoided until after a few miles of operation.
PUSHING CAR TO START ENGINE
If it becomes necessary to push a Twin Turbine equipped car to start the engine, place control shift lever in Neutral ( N) until car speed reaches approximately 15 MPH, then shift into Low (L). Continue to increase car speed until engine cranks. After engine starts, return control lever to Neutral ( N ) for engine to warm up. It is safer to push car than tow it.
ECONOMY NOTE: When driving Twin Turbine equipped cars, Buick owners have a choice of good performance with economy or superb performance. Good fuel economy may be obtained by making normal starts and not attempting to obtain maximum acceleration at all times. If, however, 1959 Buick Owners desire maximum performance on every start, 1959 Buick Owners must expect less fuel economy.
TOWING TWIN TURBINE TRANSMISSION
If car is to be towed a short distance it may be towed with rear wheels on the ground, provided control shift lever is placed in Neutral “N” position and speed does not exceed 25 MPH.
If car is to be towed for any extended distance it is recommended that towing be done with rear wheels off the ground.
TRIPLE TURBINE TRANSMISSION
Control of the Triple Turbine Transmission is obtained by positioning the control lever mounted directly below the steering wheel. The selector quadrant sequence used on cars equipped with the Triple Turbine Transmission is P-R-N-D-G, with “G” representing the grade retard position. Cars so equipped do not have a clutch pedal, however, the shift lever may be placed in any position when engine is idling by merely moving it to position desired. Stops have been placed at certain points in the lever travel so that it is necessary to raise the lever to place it in certain positions. After a little experience driving the car, 1959 Buick Owners will find that it is possible to select a range merely by “feel” and visual reference to the dial will not be necessary. However, on all series the dial is illuminated for night driving and is controlled by the instrument panel lighting circuit.
NOTE: The starting motor circuit on cars equipped with the Triple Turbine Drive is so wired that the engine will not start unless the control/ever is in either “P” or “N” position.
THERE ARE FIVE POSITIONS INDICATED-
P – This is a parking lock and is to be used in conjunction with the foot operated “Step-on” parking brake. THIS PARKING LOCK MUST NEVER BE APPLIED WHEN CAR IS IN MOTION. Control lever must be raised to be placed in or out of this position. Parking the car with the control lever in “R”, “D” or “G” positions will not partially brake the car as it does when 1959 Buick Owners leave a conventional transmission “in gear.”
R – This position reverses the car motion. To operate with car standing, raise and move control lever to position indicated. Depress accelerator pedal for backing car.
N – This is neutral and is to be used when towing the car and may be used instead of “P” when car is standing still and engine is running. Control lever must be raised when moving it from “N” to “R” position.
D – This range is used for all normal forward driving. After the engine has been started, place control lever in “D” position and depress accelerator pedal. Nothing more need be done.
The converter of this transmission has a multi-pitch stator which affords an infinite number of blade positions between low and high angle, depending upon throttle opening. The blades are calibrated to automatically shift to the most efficient position as the throttle opening increases to provide best overall economy and performance.
Fully depressing the accelerator pedal shifts the stator blades to the “High” angle position for maximum performance.
G – Downhill grade braking, which in the Twin Turbine Transmission is achieved by the use of “Low” range, is achieved in the Triple Turbine Transmission by shifting to “Grade” (G) position. The transmission design in this range utilizes both the engine and the transmission converter as the braking forces. The “Grade” retarder clutch may be engaged at any vehicle speed below 45 mph to control car speed when descending grades.
CAUTION: Do not use this Range for pulling forward. Do not depress accelerator pedal when shifting from “D” to “G” range.
NOTE: In cold weather the engine and transmission oil will not Row as readily as when warm. It is important therefore that the engine be operated for a short time before placing the shift /ever in position. It is also recommended that rapid acceleration be avoided until alter a few miles of operation.
ECONOMY NOTE: When driving Triple Turbine equipped cars, Buick owners have a choice of good performance with economy or superb performance. Good fuel economy may be obtained by making normal starts and not attempting to obtain maximum acceleration at all times. If, however, 1959 Buick Owners desire maximum performance on every start, 1959 Buick Owners must expect less fuel economy.
If battery will not crank engine, procure charged battery or use “jumper” battery to start engine.
TOWING TRIPLE TURBINE TRANSMISSION
If car is to be towed a short distance it may be towed with rear wheels on the ground, provided control shift lever is placed in Neutral “N” position and speed does not exceed 25 MPH.
If car is to be towed for any extended distance, it is recommended that towing be done with rear wheels off the ground.
BUICK AIR-RIDE SUSPENSION
Buick’s Air-Ride Suspension is optionally available on all models equipped with power steering. This feature is one in which air cylinders replace the conventional coil springs at the rear to provide an even more comfortable and satisfactory ride.
Under unusual conditions such as frequent loading and unloading of passengers or other weight loads with engine not running, air in reservoir tank may be exhausted to the extent self leveling feature will no longer operate. Do not become alarmed for this is normal. Running the engine for a few minutes will restore car to normal level. Sometimes when engine is not running a slight hissing sound may be heard when weight load of car is changed. This also is normal for sound heard is that of air being exhausted when self leveling feature is in operation.
In the event a flat tire is experienced and the wheel and tire assembly is to be removed, it will first be necessary to shut off the low pressure valve located behind the upper radiator support. NEVER ATTEMPT TO JACK CAR WITHOUT FIRST PERFORMING THE ABOVE. This lock out valve prevents air in the cylinders from escaping. The bumper jack may then be used to raise the car and facilitate wheel removal. After wheel and tire assembly has been installed and jack removed, be sure to open shut off valve. Every 1000 miles, have your dealer drain water from air tank reservoir.
In temperatures below freezing 1/2 pint of Methanol alcohol should be added to the air reservoir tonic alter each draining
ADJUSTABLE FRONT SEAT
The front seat on all Buick models is easily adjusted forward or rearward to provide maximum driving comfort.
The manually-operated seat may be adjusted by merely depressing the control lever at the driver’s end of the seat and exerting slight body pressure either forward or rearward. When the seat is in the desired position, releasing the control lever will automatically lock the seat adjuster mechanism preventing further movement.
The electrically-operated two-way seat is standard equipment on Series 4800 Convertibles equipped with either the standard full width front seat or with the optional bucket-type front seats. However, on the series equipped with bucket type seats, only the driver’s seat is adjustable while the passenger’s front seat remains stationary. Forward or rearward movement of the two-way power seats is controlled by pressing a button on driver’s end of seat in direction of desired travel.
The electrically-operated six-way seat is optional equipment on all series except those equipped with the bucket-type front seats and Model 4411. The six-way power seat is controlled by a three button switch mounted on the left side of the front seat. Pressing the center button forward, rearward, up or down will result in the seat traveling in the corresponding direction.
Tilting seat action may be acquired by pressing the front, rear, or both end switches in the direction desired.
NOTE: On long trips, changing the adjustment occasionally will be helpful in avoiding fatigue.
STEP-ON PARKING BRAKE
This is a mechanically operated brake which locks both rear wheels. This brake is operated with the foot and is located on the left side under the instrument panel.
This brake is self-locking and will remain applied until the “Brake Release,” located at lower left flange of instrument panel, is pulled up to release. This brake should always be released before the car is driven.
A red warning light on the instrument panel is illuminated if the ignition is turned on and the brake is not released. (Standard on Series 4800; Optional on all other Series).
Standard on Series 4700 and 4800 and optional on all other Series equipped with Twin or Triple Turbine Transmission.
Power brakes operate in the same manner as conventional Buick hydraulic brakes, except that about a third of the effort required to apply the brakes is furnished by the power cylinder. In addition to the reduced effort required, the travel of the brake pedal is reduced by about one third.
The source of power to operate power brakes is furnished by the normal vacuum which is present in the intake manifold of the engine. A vacuum reservoir is provided in the pipe line from the power cylinder to the engine manifold. This tank insures instant response of the power cylinder when the brake pedal is depressed and also stores sufficient vacuum for 4 to 7 power stops after the engine stops.
After the supply of vacuum in the reservoir has been expended, the brakes will function unassisted by power but will require higher pressure of the foot on the pedal.
BUMPER JACK INSTRUCTIONS
- Set parking brake, remove hub cap and loosen wheel bolts. CAUTION: If car is equipped with Buick Air-Ride Suspension, the low pressure hand shut off valve located behind upper radiator support must be turned to closed position before attempting to raise the car. Never attempt to jack the car without first performing the above.
- When changing FRONT tires, place jack in line with inner end of upper rail with depression of lifting seat in notch provided in bumper. For REAR tires, place jack in notch provided in lower flange of bumper approximately 8 1/2″ inboard of taillight.
- Wheel bolts must be used at location marked on head of bolts, “Front” for front wheels and “Rear” for rear. After tire is changed on car equipped with Air-Ride Suspension and jack removed, be sure to open shut-off valve.
CAUTION: Never work underneath car when it is supported only by the jack; always use additional safety stands to support the frame.
NOTE: Store jack between spore wheel and trunk back as shown in instruction chart on rear comportment lid.
The Buick hood is a conventional front-opening, spring counterbalanced hood of the so-called “alligator” type.
The hood latch is controlled from the front of the car by a handle located between the ;radiator grille and the radiator grille header bar. To open the hood, locate the handle by placing the fingers under the header bar, at the center of the car as shown in illustration. Pull forward firmly and the hood-latch will release the hood; then raise hood by lifting upward. The hinge design makes it advantageous to pull forward as well as upward for easy raising of hood.
To operate the turn signals the ignition switch must first be turned on. The switch lever on the left of the steering column should then be pushed up for a right turn and down for a left turn. This action causes the front signal lamp and the stop light mounted at the extremity of the rear fender to flash on that side of the car to indicate direction of turn to be made. If stop lights are applied at the same time a turn is indicated, the opposite stop light will remain illuminated but will not flash.
Verification of the proper functioning of both front and rear lamps is indicated by the flashing of one of the green lights, located on the ends of the speedometer.
If the indicator lamp does not light and flash, after movement of the turn signal lever, it indicates that the signal system is not functioning properly and should be checked for burned out fuse, or bulbs in either front or rear signal lamps or the bulb which illuminates the green indicators.
Always indicate a turn at a reasonable distance before making the turn.
TRANSISTOR PORTABLE RADIO
The operation of this radio in the car is the same as the Sonomatic Radio which is described later. When installed in the car, it utilizes electrical energy from the car battery only. When the portable is removed from the car, it automatically receives its power from four (4) dry cell batteries. Two sets of controls are used with this radio option; the permanent controls mounted on the instrument panel are used to operate the radio while in the car. The portable which is mounted in the upper portion of the glove compartment has a set of controls to operate it outside the car. Since the portable is actually part of the car radio, the radio in the car will not operate with portable removed.
To remove portable from the car, open glove compartment door; then depress lever which lowers front end of portable. Pull radio out of instrument panel.
To obtain best reception while radio is removed from car, rotate it to direction of strongest signal.
Switch and Volume Control (Left Knob) – The first portion of rotation in a clockwise direction turns on the radio. Further rotation increases volume.
Tone Control (Chrome Plated Knob Behind the Volume Control Knob) – Control in extreme clockwise (“treble”) position gives brilliant tone reproduction. This position will reproduce speech clearly and distinctly. Rotation counter-clockwise (to “Bass”) diminishes brilliance and accentuates low notes. Full tone response is obtained with the control set midway between “Treble” and “Bass.” This position is easily located by definite detent on control.
PORTABLE RADIO BATTERY MAINTENANCE and REMOVAL
IMPORTANT-Discharged dry cell batteries deteriorate rapidly. If portable radio stops playing or if the sound becomes distorted, batteries should be checked immediately, and if they are found to be discharged, should be replaced. See illustration.
Even new dry cell batteries may leak because of slight imperfections. To obtain longer life and for the above reasons, it is recommended that batteries be of the Mercury type.
NOTE: In one row positive end of each battery must be positioned toward end of case marked (+). In other row, battery position is reversed. See illustration.
CAUTION: If batteries other than those specified above are used, the warranty will be voided.
REAR COMPARTMENT SPEAKER
A rear seat speaker is offered as optional equipment. This speaker can be used independently, or with the instrument panel speaker by moving the control knob (located to the right of the map light) to right or left depending on which speaker is desired. Moving the knob diminishes the volume of one speaker and increases it on the other.
WONDER BAR SET-UP
Buick’s Wonder Bar Radio incorporates all of the favorite tuning methods in one receiver, i.e. manual tuning, automatic “Wonder Bar” tuning and automatic foot switch tuning. When either the “Wonder Bar” or foot switch is momentarily depressed, the set automatically and quickly tunes in stations all along the dial which fall within the signal strength limits controlled by the “More-Less Station Knob.”
Signal strength limits may be set at any one of three positions by turning the sensitivity knob located behind the manual tuning knob to either “MORE” or “LESS.” Extreme movement of the knob clockwise will include all available stations, provided the antenna is fully extended. By turning the knob to the counterclockwise position, nearly all stations are eliminated except strong local stations.
After setting the sensitivity control knob at any one of the three positions, turn on the set and move the dial indicator by either pressing the foot switch or the “Wonder Bar” on the front of the set. Touch either momentarily and the dial indicator will automatically move to the next station on the dial having sufficient signal strength to fall within the range for which the sensitivity control is set. By repeating this operation intermittently, the dial indicator will “search” the entire width of the dial and automatically return to the low frequency end of the dial ready to “search” the entire dial again.
The push buttons operate in the same manner as the Sonomatic Radio.
In some cases, when it is desirable to tune the set manually, simply operate the manual tuning knob at the right of the dial as with any conventional radio.
Tuning Control (Right Knob) – When tuning manually, or when setting up a station on one of the buttons, remember-If the program sounds shrill or distorted, it is probably caused by improper tuning and can be corrected by adjusting the tuning knob slightly. Since the low notes are more affected by tuning than the high tones, it is a good plan to tune the set to a point where the low notes are heard best and the high notes are clear but not shrill.
IMPORTANT: In the event of a National Emergency when radio stations stop their scheduled programs, be sure to tune in important Civil Defense information broadcast for you by the Conelrad Plan. With the manual tuning knob, set the radio dial pointer on one of the small Civil Defense triangles at 640 or 1240 kilocycles! This applies to “Wonder Bar,” “Sonomatic” and “Transistor Portable” radios.
SONOMATIC PUSH BUTTON SET-UP
Setting the push buttons to tune to any desired station is a simple procedure requiring no tools or equipment.
Procedure Is as follows:
- Turn on radio.
- Press button to left and at the same time pull it out as far as possible.
- With this button out, tune in the desired station manually. (Do this very carefully as the push buttons will automatically repeat the tuning each time they are pushed. If incorrectly tuned when set up, they will always be incorrect until setting is changed manually.)
- Push button in as far as possible. This automatically completes the button set-up and locks the mechanism in position.
(All radios) – The Buick radio antenna is located on the left front fender. The “manually operated” antenna must be raised and lowered by hand.
The “electrically-operated” antenna (optional equipment on all models) may be raised or lowered from inside the car even while driving. A switch mounted on the instrument panel raises or lowers the antenna as desired. For satisfactory radio operation, the antenna should be extended from half-way to the fully up position.
Your new clock incorporates a sweep-second hand and an automatic regulator which regulates the clock toward fast or slow provided the reset knob is rotated in the direction the hands must move to correct the clock setting. If clock is running fast, turn the reset knob counterclockwise to correct the time. This resetting of hands will automatically make the clock run slower; likewise, if clock is running slow, turn the knob clockwise.
A lock out feature prevents the regulator from being moved more than twice during a 12 hour period, regardless of the number of times the clock has been reset. This permits the initial setting without affecting regulation.
IMPORTANT: If the clock is running FAST turn reset knob counterclockwise to reset. If clock is running SLOW turn reset knob clockwise to reset. This will automatically regulate clock a small amount.
NOTE: The electric clock requires special attention when reconnecting a battery that has been disconnected for any reason, a clock that has been disconnected, or when replacing a blown fuse. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT THE INITIAL WIND BE FULLY MADE.
To be certain of this, proceed as follows:
- 1 . Make sure that all other instruments and lights are off.
- Connect one terminal of the battery first.
Before permanently connecting the other cable, touch the terminal to its post on the battery. Immediately afterward strike the terminal again to see if there is a spark. If there is, allow the clock to run down until it stops ticking and repeat as above until there is no spark. Then immediately make the permanent connection before the clock can again run down.
The above procedure should also be followed when reconnecting the clock after connections have been removed, or when replacing a blown fuse. Be sure to disconnect the battery cable before installing new fuse.
Failure of clock to run may be caused by any of the following:
Blown fuse-discharged battery-corroded battery terminals-wire improperly connected to fuse block or terminal connection to back of clock-or defective clock.
In replacing fuse, use only 1-ampere AGA fuse on all Series.
REAR VIEW MIRROR
The rear view mirror is easily adjusted for correct visibility and to prevent headlight glare by simply adjusting the small ear on the bottom of the mirror in or out. The mirror can be adjusted to accommodate the driver’s height for greater driving convenience. Rotating the mirror
180° on its pivot will provide additional mirror height adjustment. NOTE: The mirror ball socket bracket is designed with an angle so that additional lowering adjustment may be achieved if desired. To accomplish this, merely remove mirror and invert it, then reinstall and rotate mirror as mentioned above to obtain desired setting.
Your Buick is equipped with tubeless tires mounted on disc wheels. These tires resist blow-out from impact breaks and give a slow loss of air instead of a blow-out. Puncture sealant is not specified in these tubeless tires; however, air loss due to a puncture is much slower from a tubeless tire and a nail can usually be left in until a service station can be reached. Tires should be inspected periodically, preferably each time the car receives Lubricare, and puncturing objects removed. When puncturing objects are removed, repairs will have to be made according to recommendations of the tire manufacturer.
For maximum tire service-keep tires properly inflated- use an accurate gauge- after inflating, be sure valve caps are in place and screwed down finger tight.
EXTRA LOW PRESSURE TIRES
Use air pressure as indicated below for checking proper inflation.
- 24 lbs. (starting pressure) AFTER the car has been standing for three hours or driven less than a mile.
- 26 lbs. (city pressure) AFTER driving the car three miles or more BELOW 40 miles per hour.
- 28 lbs. (highway pressure) AFTER driving the car three miles or more ABOVE 40 miles per hour.
NOTE: Estate Wagon Rear Tires should have 28 lbs. pressure when cold.
It is normal for air pressure to build up in a tire due to driving conditions. DO NOT LET AIR OUT OF TIRES TO REDUCE THIS INCREASE IN PRESSURE.
EQUALIZE WEAR ON TIRES
CHANGE TIRES TO POSITIONS SHOWN IN DIAGRAM BELOW AT LEAST EVERY 4000 MILES.
This change of position helps out uneven wear on front tires and distributes the faster wear on the rear tires over all five tires.
CLEANING WHITE SIDEWALLS
Use mild soap, warm water, and stiff brush to remove road grime and curb dirt.
Use medium or fine steel wool for severe cases.
Do not use gasoline, kerosene, or any oil product that will discolor the sidewalls and rot the rubber.
By comparing air pressure in all fires, any variation in pressure will be evident. To prevent
flat fires, investigate and correct a continuer/ loss of air in any tire.
The power operating switch for ra1smg or lowering top is the knob located on instrument panel to the right of windshield wiper control knob.
TO LOWER TOP
- Stop car.
- Release locking handles above windshield.
- With ignition switch on, rotate control knob counterclockwise and hold until top is approximately two ( 2) feet from completely lowered position.
- After top is lowered to this position, pull the top material and padding out from under the top operating arm. See Figure 1. Actuate control knob to completely lower top as shown in Figure 2.
TO RAISE TOP
- Stop car.
- Disengage top boot snap fasteners from molding; then turn boot over seat back and fold ends of boot toward center of car.
- Rotate control knob clockwise and hold until top is fully raised.
- Guide the studs on the front roof rail into holes in each lock striker; then engage each folding top locking handle with striker on windshield header.
To keep mechanism in good condition the top should be operated at least once a month. Do not operate top when temperature is below freezing ( +32°F) or damage to top will result.
CAUTION: Do not operate top either up or down while car is in motion or when rear compartment lid is in the raised position.
CARE OF CONVERTIBLE MODEL TOPS
The top should be washed frequently with neutral type soap suds and lukewarm water. A brush with soft bristles should be used. Generous quantities of clear water should be applied over the entire top to remove any trace of soap which might remain.
If the top requires additional cleaning after using soap and water, a mild bleach free foaming type cleanser can be used. A small hand brush having soft or nylon bristles should be used for scrubbing. Add water to the cleanser until a soapy consistency is attained and clean approximately two square feet of the top at one time. After scrubbing, remove the cleanser with a sponge. Care must be exercised to keep the cleanser from running down and across the body finish which may cause streaks. After the entire top has been cleaned, rinse the top generously with clear water to remove any trace of cleanser which might remain.
Volatile and other clear cleaners, naphtha, gasoline or household cleaners and bleaching agents should not be used.
NOTE: Buick Kar-Kleen and cleanser makes a very good cleaning solution.
CARE OF PLASTIC BACK WINDOW
To avoid scratches to which the back window is susceptible, use only a soft cotton cloth moistened with tepid (not hot) water and mild (not caustic) soap. Rinse with clean water and dry with a slightly moistened soft, clean cloth. NO OTHER CLEANING METHOD IS RECOMMENDED.
POWER OPERATED WINDOWS
The master door and quarter window control switch is located on the driver’s side front door trim pad. Illustration shows the master control switch. As shown in the illustration, the switch closest to the front of the car controls the right rear door or quarter window; the second switch controls the left rear door or quarter window; the third switch controls the right front door window; the fourth, or rear-most switch, controls the left front door (driver’s) window.
The right front door window and the rear door or rear quarter windows can also be operated by individual control switches mounted on the door or rear quarter window trim pad at the window location.
POWER OPERATED VENTILATORS (Optional on Electra Models only)
The master front door ventilator control switch is located on the driver’s side front door trim pad and controls both front door ventilators. The right front door ventilator may also be operated by an individual control switch mounted on the right door trim pad.
The Delco battery in your new Buick is warranted for 36 months under the terms defined in the Warranty Policy which has been placed in the glove compartment. Please read it carefully and retain it for future use if necessary.
Proper attention to your Delco battery will insure many months of satisfactory service. Periodically, it should receive the following attention:
- Add distilled or demineralized water every 1000 miles or more frequently in warm weather. Do not over fill.
- Have battery checked regularly for state of charge. A lowcharged battery can freeze in extremely cold weather.
- Keep your battery clean. This prevents loss of charge and corrosion to hold-down bracket and cable connections.
CAUTION: Electric storage batteries give of a highly inflammable hydrogen gas when charging and continue to do so for some time alter receiving a steady charge. Under no condition should an electric spark or an open /lame be allowed near the battery, particularly in the vicinity of the vent caps.
Before doing any work around a battery a metallic contact between the car bumper and the ground should be made to remove the possibility of a static charge causing a spark in the vicinity of the battery. A long metal bar or a metal chain of sufficient length will accomplish this.
A Buick dealer will gladly give 1959 Buick Owners more information on the care of your battery but we also suggest that 1959 Buick Owners read that portion of the Warranty Policy entitled, “Things You Should Know About Your Battery.”
The Buick cooling system is a sealed pressure type which raises the coolant boiling point.
As long as operating temperatures remain normal, there is no need to check coolant level when refueling, or stopping at Service Stations for other service.
Observe radiator cap removal precautions outlined below. Never add cold water when engine is overheated as the engine crankcase or cylinder heads may be damaged.
Recommended coolant level is at bottom of filler neck opening or at seam of top tank as shown in illustration. Do not overfill as loss of coolant due to expansion may result.
The radiator cap is the pressure type which opens to vent the cooling system only after internal pressure exceeds approximately 15 lbs. The pressure cap prevents loss of vapor by raising the boiling point of the coolant.
Pressure is maintained during normal operation due to the expansion of heated liquid. This pressure will be evident if cap is removed while system is hot. If the cap is removed, the pressure will be released and will result in coolant boiling. This is a normal condition and does not mean that the system is overheated. Therefore, should it become necessary to remove the radiator cap-use care. Turn cap to first stop to safely allow release of pressure. Only after pressure has been relieved should the cap be turned further and removed.
The cooling system is controlled by a 170 ° F. thermostat which is installed in the water outlet housing, to maintain minimum satisfactory operating temperatures in cold weather.
NOTE: A 180° F. thermostat is available for use when maximum heater performance is desired in cold weather. Use only permanent type anti-freeze with this thermostat.
In cold weather, protect your cooling system with an anti-freeze solution to meet the maximum freezing condition expected where your Buick is operated.
Permanent-type anti-freeze such as Buick Non-Evaporating Anti-Freeze is especially recommended when driving conditions vary from extremely low to fairly high temperatures. Permanent-type solutions with ethylene glycol base do not evaporate and require only occasional checking.
Alcohol-type anti-freeze, due to evaporation, must be checked more frequently and if necessary, added to maintain proper protection. Before installing anti-freeze, the cooling system should be checked for leaks and all hose connections tightened.
Each year when preparing for cold weather operation install a fresh filling of anti-freeze. NOTE: Avoid mixing permanent type anti-freeze with alcohol type because it is difficult to accurately test such coolant mixtures with the type of testing equipment used at service stations.
CAUTION: When installing anti-freeze, do not use solutions that contain salt, oils, kerosene, glucose or honey. The cooling system has been treated at the factory with a special patented stop leak and inhibitor. If, for any reason the system is ever completely drained, “Buick Rust Inhibitor and Stop Leak” Part No. 981931, should be added for maximum protection.
To completely drain the cooling system, open drain cock at bottom of radiator and remove pipe plug on each side of cylinder block. Loosen radiator cap when draining. The cooling system should be drained twice a year.
CARE OF EXTERIOR
CARE OF CHROME
Calcium chloride and other salts, road tar, excretion from insects, tree sap, chemical from factory chimneys and other foreign matter may permanently damage the finish of cars.
Frequent, regular washing and thorough cleaning after exposure is recommended to prevent damage by these substances.
All exterior chrome plated parts should receive extra care during periods of ice and snow. At such times the use of salts or other chemicals as a snow removal aid, is very common. Such deposits should be washed off with
water at very frequent intervals; as they are apt to be very destructive to chrome surfaces. As an extra precaution, the use of Buick Chrome Gard, part No. 981904 is recommended.
CARE OF ACRYLIC FINISH
The use of waxes or polishes is generally not recommended for 60 days after application of paint. Treatments that may be used even during this 60-day period are Buick Beauty Glaze (dealer applied ), Porcelainize (dealer applied ), or Buick Hand Glaze, Part No. 981120, and Buick Hand Glaze Cleaner, Part No. 981121.
When removing road oils and tar from acrylic finishes, care must be exercised to use a cleaner that is not harmful to the finish. Ordinary tar removers that were developed for cleaning regular lacquer may be harmful. Instances have been reported where these commercial cleaners have caused spotting and in some cases extensive paint damage.
Any cleaner is satisfactory if it is recommended for use on acrylic lacquer. When purchasing, make sure that the instructions on the container specifically state that the contents can safely be used on acrylic and other finishes.
FREE WHEELING DOOR LOCKS
The rear door locks on four door sedans are designed so that the inside handles “free-wheel” when the locking button is pushed down into lock position. It is necessary to raise the lock button before either the inside or outside handles will open the door. This prevents children from accidentally opening the rear doors.
*THERMAL RELAY-There are no fuses in the headlamp, tail lamp, parking lamp or instrument lamp circuits. Protection for these circuits is through a thermostatically controlled current limit relay attached to light switch. When the current load is too heavy, due to a short circuit, the relay opens and closes rapidly thus reducing current sufficiently to protect the wiring from damage. This action continues until the cause is eliminated.
SPECIFICATIONS AND DATA
BUICK OWNER PROTECTION POLICY
Included in the envelope containing your 1959 Buick Owners Guide you will find a booklet entitled, “1959 Buick Owners Protection Policy.” This is an innovation which provides a means of giving Buick owners the utmost in protection during the Warranty period plus a schedule of recommended service operations at 1000-mile intervals.
Please read it carefully and note that the booklet contains your Service Policy, 1000-Mile Inspection Coupon, and Maintenance Verification Coupons. The latter are to be signed and given to your dealer if any work covered by the Service Policy is required during the Warranty period. So that 1959 Buick Owners may take full advantage of the Owner Protection Policy, be sure the dealer from whom 1959 Buick Owners bought their Buick has filled in and signed the Owner Identification and 1000-Mile Inspection Coupon at the front of the book.
At the first 1000 miles and each 1000 miles thereafter, a coupon is provided to remind 1959 Buick Owners that certain services are needed to keep their Buick in top operating condition. These services will be performed by your Buick dealer at an economical cost to you. Each coupon features Lubricare which is Buick’s exclusive plan of lubrication. Your Buick dealer will welcome the opportunity to prove to you that Lubricare is the finest lubrication available. Only your Buick dealer has the trained personnel to properly service your Buick.
Follow the suggestions contained on the back of the coupons and you will soon discover that “Buick Care Keeps Buicks Best” at a minimum of cost to you.
For instructions on maintaining proper oil level see Page 6.
The crankcase oil put in at the factory is a high quality Service M S oil (see below ) with special break-in additives so it should be left in for the first 1,000 miles.
Ordinarily, no further break-in oils or additives are needed. However, under some adverse driving conditions if such additives are necessary, your Buick dealer has available Buick Engineer-approved products for your use.
Oil should be normally changed after the first 1,000 miles (see Page 58 for filter service)
and every 2,000 to 3,000 miles thereafter. Certain types of operation, however, such as short run, low speed operation in cold weather or in metropolitan areas where .driving is limited to ten to twenty miles per day, or in extremely dusty territory, calls for more frequent changing. These oil change recommendations apply to multi-viscosity oils as well as to conventional viscosity oils. If there is any question about the change interval best suited for your type of driving, please consult your Buick dealer.
There are several types of oil manufactured for use in internal combustion engines. For use in the Buick engine we recommend that an oil, designated “For Service DG” or “For Service MS” (formerly called heavy duty type) be used for maximum protection under all driving conditions. “For Service ML” (formerly called regular type) and “For Service MM” (formerly called premium type) are not recommended for use in Buick engines.
Engine crankcase oils have a definite effect on ease of starting, oil economy, combustion chamber deposits and engine wear. Many commercial crankcase oils contain heavy non-volatile deposit forming components which make the type of combustion chamber deposits that greatly increase detonation and particularly pre-ignition, even though these oils may be designated “For Service MS” or “For Service DG.” Some commercial crankcase oils are deficient in anti-wear characteristics and may contribute to rapid wear of camshafts, valve lifter assemblies and other highly stressed engine parts. Owners are urged to use only crankcase oils that have proven to produce ease of starting, satisfactory oil economy, minimized combustion chamber deposits and provide adequate protection against wear.
The following chart will serve as a guide for the selection of the correct SAE viscosity number oil to use under specified atmospheric temperature ranges:
EVERY 1000 MILES
Chassis – Wipe dirt from lubrication fittings, then apply a good grade of water-resistant chassis lubricant, under pressure, at the following points: (1) Upper and lower control arm inner pivot shafts, front and rear, (2) Steering knuckle ball joints, (3) Tie rods and intermediate rod, steering linkage idler arm bushing, (4) Clutch release equalizer, (5) Clutch and throttle linkage may be lubricated (up to carburetor throttle rod only) with engine oil.
Synchromesh Transmission – Check level at filler plug. Maintain level using SAE 90 Multi-Purpose Gear Lubricant (U.S. Army Spec. MIL-2105) for temperatures not lower than 10°F below zero. In temperatures continuously below -10°F, use SAE 80. Seasonal or periodic draining and flushing is not required.
Rear Axle – Check level at filler plug. Maintain level using SAE 90 Multi-Purpose Gear Lubricant (US Army Spec. MIL-2105) on standard axles. For temperatures continuously below -10°F. use SAE 80. For Positive Traction axle: do not use multi-purpose lubricant in these units. Periodic draining and flushing of any Buick axle is not required. When complete fill is required, however, use Buick Factory Hypoid Lubricant for standard axles; use special Buick Positive Traction Lubricant for Positive Traction axles. Positive Traction axles are identified by caution tag attached to axle filler plug.
Automatic Transmissions – Check Transmission oil level, with transmission oil warm, transmission in Parking and engine idling. If level is more than one inch below “FULL” mark on gauge rod, add oil but do not fill above the “FULL” mark. Distance between “FULL” and “ADD OIL” marks on rod represents one pint. Use oil specified under “Every 25,000 Miles.”
Manual Steering Gear – Seasonal or periodic change of lubricant is unnecessary. Maintain
Power Steering Gear – Seasonal or periodic change of lubricant is unnecessary. Maintain lubricant to specified level mark using Automatic Transmission oil. (With engine warm).
Distributor – Fill oil cup with SAE 10W engine oil.
Battery – Add water to bring level to ledge at bottom of slot in well.
WARNING: Do not fill above ledge.
Air Cleaner – Normally serviced every 5000 miles. If car is operating in dusty territory, clean oftener. See cleaning instructions under “Every 5000 Miles.”
Air Conditioner – Check system for proper charge of Freon (Every spring have your dealer check the complete system ).
Rear Propeller Shaft – Remove pipe plug in torque tube for access to fitting. Apply Type “0” chassis lubricant.
Radiator – Check coolant level only when radiator is cold. Maintain level at seam of tank. Filling above level line or when radiator is hot will cause loss of coolant.
CAUTION: Do not remove cap when radiator is hot because coolant will boil and overflow when pressure is released. When refilling cooling system after draining, Temperature Control lever must be moved to Maximum position.
NOTE: If cooling system is being drained for storage where freezing is likely to occur, it is necessary to disconnect heater and defroster hoses to thoroughly drain them.
Manifold Valve Shaft – Place a few drops of graphited kerosene on shaft at each end and rotate shaft to work lubricant into bearings. If shaft is frozen, free up by tapping ends of shaft lightly with hammer.
Throttle Control Linkage – Place a few drops of engine oil at connections. Lubricate lower equalizer link contact (sliding) bearing with lubriplate.
Generator – Fill front and rear oilers to the caps with light engine oil. Do not lubricate while generator is in operation.
Master Brake Cylinder – Maintain fluid level 1/2″ to 1″ below top of filler opening. Ordinarily, fluid level need only be checked when brakes are adjusted or if there is evidence of leakage. When adding brake fluid use only G.M. or Delco Super No. 11 Hydraulic Brake Fluid. Never use reclaimed fluid, any mineral oil, or fluid inferior to SAE Standard 70-R-1.
Power Brake Cylinder – Maintain fluid level so that it is visible in filler tube or approximately 1″ below filler cap. Ordinarily fluid level need only be checked when brakes are adjusted or if there is evidence of leakage. If fluid is needed it should only be added until it is visible in the filler cap tube, approximately one inch below filler tube opening. Use G.M. or Delco Super No. 11 Hydraulic Brake Fluid.
Air-Ride Suspension – Drain water from air tank reservoir by depressing Schrader valve core stem, located at bottom of tank.
In temperatures below freezing 1/2 pint of methanol alcohol should be poured into the tank. See your dealer for this service.
Tires – Inflate all tires to pressures given on page 38.
WARNING: It is not possible to inflate tires correctly when they ore hot.
FIRST 1000 MILES
Lights – Have all lights checked and aimed according to State code.
EVERY 5000 MILES
Weatherstrip – Lubricate door, trunk and side roof rail weatherstrip and hood cowl seal with a light film of Silicone Rubber Lubricant such as Buick 4X Compound.
Wiper Cam Plate – Clean wiper plate and lubricate with Silicone Rubber Lubricant.
Wiper Motor Crank Arm Pin – Apply a small amount of engine oil to the wiper motor crank pin.
Air Cleaner-Standard Oil Wetted Element – The standard wire mesh filter element should be cleaned and re-oiled with engine oil each Spring and Fall, or every 5,000 miles. A reoiled element should be thoroughly drained before assembling. Under extreme dusty conditions, service every 2,000 miles or replace with a Buick Engineering approved AC Heavy Duty Dry Element (Disposable type). The interior metal surface should also be cleaned prior to reinstallation of element.
NOTE: The Dry Air Cleaner Element is o dealer installed item and it should NOT BE WASHED, OILED OR CLEANED WITH AN AIR HOSE. See your Authorized Buick Dealer for recommended service.
Fuel Filter – Visually inspect and replace element if necessary.
Crankcase Ventilator Filler Caps – Every 5000 miles, depending on driving conditions, clean and reoil, using the current viscosity engine oil.
Oil Filter – Change oil filter at first 1000 miles, then change at each 4000 mile interval thereafter. Use only Buick Replacement Oil Filter Part No. 5575198 (AC-PF-5) or equivalent.
Do not accelerate engine beyond normal idle until oil pressure is indicated. In extremely dusty areas, more frequent change may be desirable.
Horn Cable Connector – Pull out plunger and apply a small amount of Lubriplate. Work plunger in and out.
Hood Fastener Mechanism – Lightly coat latch lever and pilot with Lubriplate.
Door Locks and Strikers – Apply G.M. Door-Ease Lubricant to the mating surface of the rotary lock bolt and the striker gear teeth of each door.
Door Checks and Hinges – Apply Lubriplate or chassis lubricant to hold-open springs in front door hinges. Use same lubricant sparingly on lugs of all rear door check links. On check link pins of rear doors use Lubriplate. No lubricant required on hinge pins.
Estate Wagon – Use Lubriplate on tail gate support and hinges.
Dome Lamp Door Switches – Apply G.M. Door-Ease Lubricant to end of switch plunger and point of contact on door hinge pillar.
Glove Box Door – Apply a few drops of light engine oil to glove box door hinges-wipe off surplus oil. Sparingly coat lock striker with G.M. Door-Ease Lubricant.
Speedometer and Seat Adjuster Drive Cable – The speedometer and power seat adjuster drive cables are Factory lubricated with special grease and normally require no further service unless they become noisy. In extremely hot climates, or where considerable dust and water is encountered it may be necessary to lubricate the cable at intervals of approximately 20,000 miles or every two years. It is advisable to have this service performed by an Authorized Buick Dealer to insure use of the special grease in proper quantity.
Sunshade – If sunshade rod turns hard in support, remove retainer screw, pull rod from support and apply G.M. Door-Ease Lubricant. Install rod in support and adjust retainer screw to proper tension.
Cleaning Leather – (1) Apply a damp (not wet) cloth to mild soap and rub surface of leather briskly. (2) Wipe with moist cloth without soap. (3) Rub dry with clean, soft cloth.
Rear Compartment Lid Lock – Lightly coat lock latch and lock striker with Lubriplate.
Lock Cylinders – If key operates roughly in lock cylinder, blow powdered graphite into key slot. DO NOT USE OIL.
Should 1959 Buick Owners contemplate hauling a house trailer with their Buick, it is advisable that 1959 Buick Owners follow our instructions covering weight limits, springs, tires, and hitch specifications. To obtain this information, write Buick Motor Division, Service Department, Flint, Mich.
EVERY 10,000 MILES
Tune-Care – Have your Authorized Buick Dealer perform this operation on your car. Fuel Filter Element-Replace
Brakes – Visually check linings and adjust brakes.
Front Wheel Bearings – Pack front wheel bearings with a good quality of water-repellent high temperature-resisting wheel bearing grease.
NOTE: Do not over fill bearings as excessive lubricant may be forced through seals and get on brake lining.
EVERY 25,000 MILES
Automatic Transmission – At 25,000 mile intervals the oil pan and torque converter should be completely drained and re-filled with fresh oil. Transmission MUST NOT BE FLUSHED when oil is changed. Use Special Buick Oil or any Automatic Transmission Fluid, Type A, which has an AQ-ATF identification number embossed in lid of container.
To accurately check oil level of either automatic transmission, car must be driven (shifting transmission into all driving ranges) until transmission is at normal operating temperature; oil level should then be at “FULL” mark on gauge rod.
CAUTION: II oil level is checked without following these instructions, a false oil level may be indicated.
Rear Wheel Bearings – Rear wheel bearings need not be lubricated. Whenever axle shafts are removed it is advisable to inspect rear wheel bearings and oil seals. Replace seals if leaking or worn.
ENGINE AND SERIAL NUMBERS
There are two identical numbers which identify your car. They are recorded by the License Bureau of the state in which your car is licensed.
SERIAL NUMBER-ALL SERIES
The serial number is located on a plate affixed to the left front pillar post below the belt molding line and is visible by opening the left front door.
The engine number is located on top face of engine block extension, directly forward of the valve lifter cover.
BODY IDENTIFICATION NUMBER
The body style number, body serial number, trim number, paint number, etc. are shown on a plate affixed to the left side of the upper dash panel. The plate is visible when the hood is in the open position.
Avoid inhaling exhaust gases when any concentration of these is present in the air, i.e., in a garage, in congested traffic, or when stopped closely behind a vehicle with its motor running. Exhaust gases may have strong odors which normally should give warning of their presence. However, the exhaust gases from some vehicles may not be noticeable under certain conditions and the senses of people react differently. Exhaust gases contain a percentage of carbon monoxide which is a poisonous gas that, by itself, is tasteless, colorless, and odorless.
MODELS, WHEELBASES AND LENGTHS
LICENSE WEIGHT: Consult the dealer who sold the car to the original 1959 Buick Owners or the Motor Vehicle Commissioner of your State. Weights of all Buick body styles are regularly supplied to these authorities.
TAIL GATE OPERATION
Manual Rear Window Control
To open the tail gate it is first necessary to lower the rear window. This is accomplished on the manual rear window control by pulling out the window control knob, placing the indicator on OPEN and turning the handle counterclockwise until the window is completely down. A built-in safety device prevents the tail gate from being opened until the window is down completely. When lowering is completed, turn the indicator to FOLD. This places the control knob in “free wheeling” so it may be rotated to locate in the recess at the bottom of the control assembly when folded back into position.
To raise the window, pull out control knob, place indicator in OPEN position and turn knob clockwise. When the window is completely closed, turn the indicator to FOLD and replace control knob in closed position.
When the window is completely down, the tail gate is opened by grasping the latch located top center on the inner panel of the tail gate and pulling up and to the rear.
To lock the tail gate, lift the control handle, insert the door and ignition key and turn the indicator counter-clockwise to LOCK. Remove key and replace control knob in closed position.
ELECTRIC REAR WINDOW CONTROL
If your Estate Wagon is equipped with an electric rear window control, the window is lowered from the outside by inserting the ignition key in the tail gate lock and turning counter-clockwise. Turning the key clockwise raises the window. The rear window may also be raised and lowered from the driver’s compartment by the control switch located on the lower left instrument panel, below the safety buzzer knob.
NOTE: This is the same control that operates the convertible tops. (See Illustration on Page 14) Both switches operate independently of the ignition switch.
As in the case of the manual control, the window must be completely down before the tail gate can be opened. When the tail gate is open, a circuit breaker automatically prevents the window from being raised.
NEW CAR WARRANTY
On new Buick motor vehicles, purchased by the Dealer issuing this Policy from Buick Motor Division, General Motors Corporation (the Manufacturer), Manufacturer gives Dealer the warranty quoted below. On each new Buick motor vehicle sold by Dealer, Dealer, as seller thereof and not as agent of Manufacturer, gives Purchaser a like warranty.
“The Manufacturer warrants each new motor vehicle, including all equipment or accessories (except tires) supplied by the Manufacturer, chassis or part manufactured by it to be free from defects in material and workmanship under normal use and service, its obligation under this warranty being limited to making good at its factory any part or parts thereof which shall, within ninety (90) clays after delivery of such vehicle to the original purchaser or before such vehicle has been driven 4,000 miles, whichever event shall first occur, be returned to it with transportation charges prepaid and which its examination shall disclose to its satisfaction to have been thus defective; this warranty being expressly in lieu of all other warranties, expressed or implied, and all other obligations or liabilities on its part, and it neither assumes nor authorizes any other person to assume for it any other liability in connection with the sale of its vehicles.
This warranty shall not apply to any vehicle which shall have been repaired or altered outside of an authorized Buick Service Station in any way so as in the judgment of the Manufacturer to affect its stability and reliability, nor which has been subject to misuse, negligence or accident.
The Manufacturer has reserved the right to make changes in design or add any improvements on motor vehicles and chassis at any time without incurring any obligation to install same on motor vehicles and chassis previously purchased.