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Saab 9-3 Maintenance and Repair

I've found my leak in the high pressure line, have the hose disconnected, but for the life of me I can't figure out how to remove the line.

I've removed the reservoir, battery, even the radiator reservoir, the battery plate, cleared most wires, but I can't figure out how to wiggle the hard line out from under the welded metal bracket that supports the battery.

Do I have to disconnect more of the other systems or is there a quicker way?
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Comments

  • bluedogsbluedogs Posts: 5
    My '99 Saab 9-3 is giving me fits. I just bought it a week ago from an individual but didn't do my home work before buying. the car has 133K miles, but I have heard nothing but good things about Saabs, so I bought it. Problem is, the thing just does not idle smoothly and when I give it gas to take off it sputters and acts as if it will die--and has a couple of times. I've changed the plugs, O2 sensors, new fuel filter, air filter, and ran diognostics at a mechanic's garage. We just cannot figure out what is going on. Mechanic says I should wait till the fuel injector cleaner has run it's course before doing anything else. Well, it has run it's course and nothing has changed. But, when the thing gets going it runs great! Any help will be greatly appreciated.
  • waterdrwaterdr Posts: 307
    Whoever told you that has neither owned a Saab or worked on one - lol.

    On to serious business.....has the car been road-tested with a data-logger?

    Since you have already replaced the likely culprits, there are still a few more areas that you can check. Vacuum leak? It could also be a sensor problem. Thing is about sensors, a bad sensor can give you a "good" reading because the sensor is broken. I am not sure about Saabs, but a lot of cars work in "closed-loop" control until they warm up. This means that the car's ECU is controlling the spark and fuel addition based on the built-in fuel tables and not using the O2 sensors. Once it warms-up, the the O2 sensors provide feedback.

    I would ask a Saab technician about what sensors might be in use during "closed-loop" vs "open-loop" and that may help you deduce the likely problem.

    You could also have a bad Idle Air Controller. This device is supposed to control your idle speed. However, the fact that the car sputters when you add fuel makes it not look liek an IAC problem. When an IAC is at fault, it will generally die warm or cold, and not sputter when you add fuel.
  • Hi,
    Thanks for the advice. Yes, we did road test the car with a diagnostic computer if that is what you meant about a data-logger. It all tested good. Now the car runs slightly better than before, but it takes several tries just to get it started--and this is not cold weather starting...

    I don't see any vacuum hoses that need replacing or that are not connected. I did however put some Sea Foam cleaner in the gas tank when I filled up last. Although I ran Slik 50 through the previous tank.

    Can the sludge problem that I hear of be any threat? I just put half a can of Sea Foam cleaner in the crankcase also. Will have the oil changed this week.

    Again thanks for your advice. I'm just puzzled and fearful that I bught someone else's problem.

    -Mark :confuse:
  • Hi Mark,

    What resolved your starting and stalling problem. I am experiencing the same issue with a 03 9-3.

    Thanks,
  • Hi,
    I suppose I had a moment of hope. False hope that is. The car still runs terribly. I had a former Saab tech look at it last week and he thinks I need a new Direct Ignition Cassette. Can't afford it right now, but he thinks that should do it. Another tech--non-Saab thinks I need to get the fuel pressure checked before doing anything... Please let me know if you have any success with yours.
    -Mark
  • Must crank at least 5 or 6 times before it finally and roughly starts. Slow, bogged take-offs. Nearly constant surges when idling. But when going down the road it will fly! It is really fast and runs great when driving. I've had several techs look at it and put a computer to it. MAP sensor is good; all hoses seem to be fitted properly; both O2 sensors replaced; new plugs... One tech thinks I may need a new Direct Ignition Cassette. I've heard that those can go instantly? But he claime they can slowly decline? Any help is greatly appreciated, as I'm about to get full, low deductible insurance and burn the thing!!! :lemon:
  • My 98 Saab is running extremely hot, just replaced radiator and still running extremely hot, the old radiator was singed (white) at the bottom of the radiator, the head gasket was deemed OK, thermostat opens OK. temperature gauge reads normal temperature. Any suggestions appreciated.

    olearymag
  • I had a similar problem to yours on my '99 93.Check the vacum hose near the air filter it connects to a small plastic cylinder that opens and closes it's smaller than a golf ball and looks a bit like a funnel.Sometimes it sends a message to the computer if it does'nt work but in my case it didn't.I changed it and my car got back to normal.My specialist had a few clients that had the same problem.Give it a shot,the part is not expensive!
  • xela200093xela200093 Posts: 2
    Help, my 2000 9-3 dealer maintained Saab
    (94,000) was on the interstate and the turbo failed.
    Towed 120 miles back to repair shop that just
    replaced water pump, belts, tensioners and was told the turbo and engine need to be replaced.
    History of car documents problems associated with recall (engine doesn't always start ....towed to dealership many times over the last 5 years
    and "fixed"...last failed start was 1/09 after
    driving car short distance, turned off engine
    and tried to restart it about 5 minutes later.
    Didn't start...had to wait about 15 minutes and it started. ll/08 head gasket was replaced.
    at Saab dealership. I was told the turbo failed due to poor oil changes. The car's service history at a Saab dealership indicates that oil changes were
    timely and often before the recommended mileage.

    Many other Saab 9-3 owners have reported
    failed engines due to oil sludge, etc.

    I called the dealership and they told me it was time to buy a new car! Saab headquarters told me the
    car had too many miles and was too old for them to offer any assistance.

    My warranty company (MPV) and I have put
    thousands of dollars into this car over the last
    5 years. The dealership "documented"
    repairs that should have prevented this type of failure.

    My first Saab 9-3 (1987) was kept in the family
    well past 250,000 miles without any major problems.

    HELP....I was told an attorney would be able to
    seek financial reimbursement for the expenditures made on this car..but the attorney fees would be significant.

    Anyone have suggestions?
  • lokkilokki Posts: 1,200
    You are on your own. Your car is nine years old. 94,000 miles while, perhaps only 10,000 per year, is still a substantial number of miles.

    Even the best cars are not designed or intended to last forever. While many modern cars are able to go to 150,000 miles or more, there is no promise by any auto company that any individual car will do so.

    Your original warranty through SAAB was for 48 months or 50,000 miles. You don't provide any information about your aftermarket warranty but any claim that you might have would depend on the terms of your agreement with them - not SAAB.

    You might try to make some claim against the repair shop who had recently worked on your car, but unless they worked on the turbo system, I'd expect them to prevail against any claims. I don't believe that there is any easy way to diagnose turbo bearings that are starting to fail until they're already cooked....

    The value of a 9 year old SAAB with a good engine is going to be much less than the cost of replacing your bad engine.

    Sorry to be so pessimistic, but, yeah, after 9 years, you probably need a new car.
  • 93goblin93goblin Posts: 1
    I had the same problem with the engine not starting, what happens is that the oil pressure builds up in the engine and the pressure sensor tells the computer not to let the engine start. there is a pressure relief kit that must be added to relieve the pressure of the motor oil building up in the block and is mounted near the oil pan (i had a technician install mine because he was checking other things). You may have noticed oil leaks on certain parts of the engine. The time that you wait for the car to start is the engine oil cooling down and contracting. The kit can be ordered at the dealer and installed yourself with a little know-how.
  • Hi,
    I live in Texas and am in desperate need of help with my soft top problem. Hydraulic hose “P” that connects from the cylinder on the driver’s side blew off from the fitting. My general mechanic repaired it and then instantly, a hose on the passenger side cylinder also blew from the fitting. This time, I took the car to an independent Saab mechanic. All of the hoses have lost most of the black protective coating, which exposes the nylon braiding. The mechanic said that all of the hoses need to be replaced, otherwise I will continue to blow hoses.

    The dealer said that these hoses rarely fail. The mechanic has posted threads to find out if any other techs have seen this problem, but has not had any luck. One suggestion by another tech was to just replace the 2 hoses that connect to each cylinder, since they do the work.
    Have you ever experienced this problem? Is it possible for the hoses to operate properly without the coating? Do you have any other tips or advice that I can pass on the mechanic?
    Feel free to e-mail me at mysaabstory@sbcglobal.net

    Thank you!
  • joshsaabjoshsaab Posts: 2
    i am having the same problem...exact...1st and only hose to blow so far is the driverside outer piston...have you tried to contact Saab direct???...i sent an email Wednesday...lets stay in touch about this...i am hoping to get a positive outcome w/ Saab...maybe you should email as well...
  • Thank you for your post. I found another local Saab mechanic who said that he just replaced hoses for anothers customer. He said that he has seen this problem several times. The black coating is starting to peel off. The problem is that the coating goes up into the fitting, and when it peels off, the fitting is not as tight and so the hose blows.

    You are right about e-mailing Saab. It is a smart idea and worth a try. I was quoted $3,000 to replace all of the hoses! That is a big expense to absorb.
    I did find some used hoses that came with several other convertible parts on Ebay for $350 and it cost $820 to have them put on. All of the hoses looked good, except one was starting to peel in the middle, but at least it isn't near the fitting. You might want to start looking for some good hoses too. If your plastic is peeling it is only a matter of time before you blow another one and it is expensive to replace them one at a time, unless you know how to do it.
    Good Luck, and we will staty in touch!
  • i called GM and tried to get an exception to have the part paid for by GM...they told me no because they havent heard about the problem from anyone else...who is the mechanic and what dealer is he apart of???...i suggest contacting saab customer service and file a request...
  • It was the owner of: Goreki Auto Service in Fort Worth: 817-732-8346. He was not the one that repaired my hoses but he said that he just replaced someone else's. He is an independent mechanic. He was trained by Saab and has worked on them for over 20 years.
    Can you give me the number and possibley the name of the person that you called, so I can call them as well? I feel that we can make better progress if everyone calls the same person. I will talk to the owner of Goreki too.
  • dpeteydpetey Posts: 1
    I have the same problem - just replaced the 2nd hose within 2 months (passenger 1st then driver side) - same two you guys are talking about. I'm in FL and my buddy in AR has the same problem. My mechanic said it is a common repair (Saab trained - left Massey and started his own shop). I get my car back tomorrow. I am going to send the hose to a manufacturer in China to see how much they will be to make. I'm positive it won't be any where near $170 a hose. There is no way I am going to pay $600 every time one of these hoses pops - or sally up $2k to replace the rest of them. If I cant find a reasonable replacement I'll sell the car and get a Vette or Porsche.

    Please send me the GM rep's contact info. A few well placed letters from an attorney cant hurt. Keep in touch on here. I'm fairly good at making a car MFG life miserable. (Ask Honda).
  • Hi out there. I'm new to the Saab boards, but are seriously considering a used 9-3 Sportcombi 2.0 - 2007 or newer with less than 30K miles. What seems rather attractive is the 4 year/50K warranty.
    I previously owned a turbocharged car ( years ago, not a Saab ) in which the turbo itself had very limited life. The old turbocharger bearings were not water cooled, and the turbo I had was known to have a life span of 30K miles or so. I assume the Saab turbo bearings are now water cooled, but does Saab recommend using a full synthetic oil, also? High temps associated with turbos can coke regular oil.
    So...anyone out there with high mile, late model Saab 9-3s - and what's the secret, if any, to long engine life?
  • Synthetic oil changed at 5k mile intervals. I think the turbo is cooled by the oil, not the coolant.
  • I would always use synthetic, but is it recommended or required by Saab? What year and how many miles on your Saab? Thanks for the reply.
  • dmaindmain Posts: 1
    I also have a 2000 9-3 and the turbo bearings burned out at about 50,000 km. It seems that it is a design flaw. The turbo is too close to the exhaust manifold and it gets too hot. In 2000, GM did not specify synthetic oil but it did in 2001. By the time I found out it was too late for my turbo. Synthetic oil is the answer for engine sludging too.

    Since changing over to synthetic oil, my 9-3 has been great and even at 160000 km, it still feels like a fairly new car. I like it so much I went out an bought a 2009 9-3 XWD Aero, as it looks like they are al bound to be collector items (and can be had for about 20% off the list prices now. What deal. Still, I love my 2000 9-3. Once you get the turbo and the electronic engine management cassette dealt with.

    Good luck. 94000 miles should be nothing for a Saab.
  • My wife has a 2005 9-3 Arc Convertible with 60k miles. Mobil 1 has been used exclusively, it was European Delivered and has had no issues except the power steering pump.
  • The not starting is the neutral switch... It cost me about 375.00 to fix it... or for the switch itself...
  • I just bought a used 2008 Saab 9-3 2.0 engine with 28,000 miles. It now has 29,500 miles and I recently noticed that each time I accelerate to 30mph & 70mph, the car wobbles, or wiggles, or what appears like it's shaking a little.
    I have new tires but they looked like they had been balanced.
    I think the slight shake feels like engine related.
    Does anyone have the same problems with a used Saab 9-3?
    Please help.
  • I'm sorry you bought the car. I am trying to get rid of my 99 9-3 with 130 K after putting way too much money in it the past few years and time in the repair shop. Recently experienced rough idling and stalling - had crank sensor replaced but that didn't solve the problem and eventually had to replace the fuel pump after it failed to start. This week the radiator started leaking and is now in the shop for that to be replaced. Another costly repair. We have trying to maintain the car meticulously it looks new but there are so many little annoying things wrong with the car and things are constantly breaking. My advice: sell ASAP before you end up with more headaches and run out of money!
  • I had the same problem and gave up. I cut the rusted line out and spliced in a piece of 3/8 inch steel tubing. It worked like a champ. No issues so far.
  • Please tell me the results of your repair work did you get the correct hoses and was the work done at a reasonable price? I need the same hoses...repaired in 2008 and now they need repairing again!!!
  • 2002 9-3 SE, 145000 km, well serviced. Last summer it would not start on a hot day. No response when the key was turned (ie the problem was not the battery). Hauled to dealer in Exeter NH. Car started. Dealer not sure but thought it might be the sensor for transmission in park. Did not have the part in stock, so I did nothing. Yesterday, a hot day in Gainesville FL, it would not start. No dealer here. Hauled to Continental Imports, who seemed very competent. The car started on arrival, perhaps because it cooled off during the tow. Shop owner said he could not find the problem, since now there is no problem; he thought it might be something other than the park sensor.

    What should I do? Where is the gear shift park sensor? Can it be 'shorted', or cooled with a bag of ice? Another discussion item on this forum suggests that the problem is high oil pressure? Is that likely, given that the pressure icon is not displayed?
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