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Saturn S-Series



  • I have a 96 Saturn SL2 with 98,000 miles on it (standard transmission) When I try to accelerate from stop or in any gear, it jerks. The Service Engine light starts flashing. Also when I am going up a hill, I lose speed and have to downshift to get any umpf to my car. I lose up to 20 miles an hour in speed when going uphill on a highway. I am a single mom who is tired of every mechanic trying to sell me more than what I actually need to fix on my car. My brother is trying to educate me on how to change spark clubs and general maintenance type things to help fray expenses.
  • I had a similar problem recently with my 96 Saturn. My brother helped me fix this. We had to order a shifting cable bushing from E-bay. Did a search. I do not have the guy's E-bay address anymore, but he makes several of these bushings using Neoprine. We took the boot off the gear shift and attached the bushing on the side that it was broken. The part may have cost us $20 max. And I saved 185 dollars. Saturn sells their cars cheaply but man are they proud of their parts! Hope this helps.....luvmysaturn
  • bambiebambie Posts: 12
    I have the same problem ,1997 SC1.Turn the key too on position ,but don,t start! Watch fuel gauge needle too jump from emty too whatever amout of fuel is in your tank, then try too start.I said all that too say this. when you turn your key too start,wait for your fuel pump too start. You can here it,then it will stop the humming noise(about 3-5 seconds).
  • bambiebambie Posts: 12
    My 1997 SC1 engine vibrates. I think it might be the knock sensor. Does anyone have ideas or experience?
  • tdpaul7tdpaul7 Posts: 5
    Did you get an answer to this? I have a 91, same engine, almost same problem. After mine warms up to normal operating temperature the car will buck at low speeds or even just trying to start out from a stop. It idles fine but it's quickly gotten worse (just over a week). Now it will die and not start back up until after cooling down a bit. The engine temp is normal (not even half way) when this is happening.
  • I have not gotten an answer to my post. My car does the same as Charlier3355. Please see my post. I am starting at changing the spark plugs and moving on from there. I am being told that it might be the timing belt needs to be replaced or it might be the vacuum advance. My brother has suggested we start simple and move on from there. Any other suggestions? engine temp same (not even halfway). It bucks from start to fifth gear when accelerating. I have a mechanic who thinks my clutch needs to be repaired. The thing is, it happens when I accelerate. It sometimes dies, but I can start it up immediately... for now. I have noticed that when the car isn't warmed up, it doesn't buck until it has warmed up.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi - this particular discussion isn't a very busy one so that's probably why you haven't heard anything yet.

    Why don't you hop over to our Transmission Traumas? discussion and ask there.

    Only thing is you need to tell the whole story instead of asking people to look at previous posts so that all of the information is in one place.

    Meanwhile maybe someone will chime in here.

    Good luck!
  • Hi tdpaul7,

    Sorry for my delayed response I’ve been off the computer working on my Bike…
    Anyway, sorry to say I’m glad someone else is encountering this darn problem maybe we can figure it out together for our benefit. It has been eating me up too… I think your brother has the right idea start with the small stuff but I don’t think the plugs are going to have any effect… You see I already did the same and the problem continued. Here’s a list of the things I did so far on my car…

    I changed the plugs, air filter, PVC valve, fuel filter and used Premium gas with top grade injector cleaners for a month and the problem continued.
    I then took the car to Saturn (I had no check engine light lit) explained the problem and after performing a diagnostics test they said the fuel pump was working fine and the item they recommended to replace the Diaphragm in the Fuel Pressure Regulator a part by the way they no longer stock is item for my 92 SL1 so I had to order one through a local Strauss Discount Auto and then take the car and the part back to them which they gladly installed at no charge and the tech at Saturn commented on the Throttle body looking a bit beat after the installation.
    While driving home I encountered the same problem so sorry to say this still didn’t remedy the problem.

    Anyway here’s where I am at now after doing some research on the web and some mechanic documentation I believe this problem to be a Fuel system problem not timing chain related. The problem could frankly be the Throttle Body. Now it looks like the Throttle Body is made up of 2 sections the top half or (fuel meter body) and it contains the Fuel injector and the Fuel Pressure Regulator. The bottom Piece or the Throttle body, and contains the throttle valve, IAC valve, TPS and the vacuum manifold or tubes which supply manifold vacuum to various engine control solenoids.

    Since I know my fuel pump and FPR to be working I would say I need to address replacing the Fuel injector for the top piece or find out if replacing the whole bottom piece (throttle body) will it contain with the new replacement a new throttle valve, IAC valve, TPS if yes then I would think replacing the bottom half to be the most focused on resolving the problem. If I get a chance tomorrow I’ll be calling Saturn to ask for a price on the replacement and installation of the throttle body. Heck let’s see if they even stock the part otherwise I’ll have to order it from somewhere else.
    I’ll keep you all posted … Paul run my thoughts on the possible solution and let me know what he thinks. If you try something else and find the problem let us all know.

    Hope some of this helps... Keep me posted... I'll do the same...
  • Hmm,

    I thought the idea was to post a message as it relates to the problem and field it out in that created forum... Instead of taking a Fuel related acceleration problem discussions to a Transmission Forum???

  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Heh, well I never claimed to be a gearhead! :blush:

    But I was going on the little information that was presented in the one post and particularly the fact that the person was concerned that he/she had not gotten a reply. My intent was to get the person somewhere where people know more about those things than I do. And in fact to a place where more folks hang than here.

    Thanks for your reply. Hope it helps both members.
  • tdpaul7tdpaul7 Posts: 5

    Thanks for the response. I had a code 34 MAP sensor error. I don't see how that was causing my problem though. I've changed the following and may have a fix. O2 sensor (no fix), MAP sensor seems to have fixed it (crazy) but it's cold here this morning and I want to test it some more. My SL1 has gotten to the point that when it warms to operating temperature it dies and will not start again until it cools. It's not running hot. I put the MAP sensor in this morning let it warm up at idle for about 45 minutes and then went and drove it --- no problems. Yesterday, after the O2 sensor I did the same and it died within 5 minutes of driving. But yesterday is was warm (upper 70's) and today it's in the 40's and rainy. Anyway, I hope the MAP sensor takes care of it but if not the research I've been doing also may point to a crankshaft position sensor. When it stops running it doesn't seem to even try to start (fire) although I haven't checked to see if there is spark yet. One thing at a time.
  • Thanks Charlie for the detailed message. Although I am "just a female", and do not understand all the technical terms in your email, your response is thorough enough for me to share with my brother. When we spoke last night, he still thinks it is the Vacuum Advance. I will share this with him and let you know what we find out. Right now we have a family member who is living out his last days (age 37) with his wife, and 2 children. He has liver cancer and we were told yesterday, it may be days if not hours before he dies. So we may not get to this right away. Appreciate your response......Nancy
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Oh, I'm so sorry. Best wishes.
  • Hey Pat,

    It's all good... :)

    When I commented I didn't realize you were the Host of this forum...You are right the idea is to help folks get to an area if needed that can generate them some feedback about their car problem.

    Thanks and keep up the great work...

  • gstroudgstroud Posts: 1
    I have a 1999 SL2 101512K/60,000 miles and it is currently using oil between the dipstick lines (L and F) in about 3000 miles This seems high to me.
    1)is this normal
    2)Any user with suggestions
    3)any suggestions as to synthetic vs standard oil
    4)what weight of oil for temperate summer conditions?
  • Latest on my acceleration problem….

    Since my last posting I disassembled the Throttle body and cleaned it out with carburetor cleaner. After which I reassembled and re-installed the throttle body. The car seemed to accelerate fine for a day but started up again the next day. At this point I don’t really know if the cleaning really had an impact because my acceleration problem has been an intermittent problem to begin with so it may have seemed like it worked but in fact it may just have been masked. I really don’t think any of the throttle body sensors are defective because I don’t get a check engine light. So now I’m thinking timing belt after all this car does have 144K and I don’t know if it has ever been changed.

    Does anyone know if a bad time belt would result in poor starting acceleration with infrequent throttle hesitations?
    Oh, and how much does a timing belt change on a Saturn SL1 typically go for???

  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,120
    Saturn SLs have timing chains, not belts, and the chains don't need to be replaced.
  • I just recently purchased purchased a 98 SL2 with 95K miles. This past weekend I noticed a small amount of leaking around the sunroof. It has been raining a lot here lately in Minnesota. Any experience with this kind of problem? Is there a caulk I can buy to help improve the seal of the sunroof? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  • ellis5ellis5 Posts: 2
    Hey Pat How do I post a new message? MY question is this. My daughter is driving a 1992 Saturn coupe two door. Almost everyday now on the way to school the car is stalling out when she turns left. Any idea why this could be happening? Thanks
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Regarding posting a new message, I assume you mean as opposed to a "reply" to someone else? All you need to do is scroll to the bottom of the page and use the post box that you'll see there (assuming you are logged in).
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