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Saturn S-Series Starting Problems

I have a 95 Saturn s-series with trouble starting when cold. Sometimes it take 5-10 minutes to get it started. When it does start it is all you can do to keep it running. I have had it to 2 different repair shops spending way too much to not have the problem fixed. No one seems to kow what to do or look for now. Help.


  • I noticed that you put up a message about your car not starting when it is cold outside back in december. Did you ever figure out what it was? I seem to be have the same problem with my car right now. It has been in and out of two different shops for the past two and half months.
  • dies on hwy. Replaced bad coil. Now won't start. Floods imediately 4 or 5 rotations. Spark is very weak---barelky a flicker. All reaing on scantool look good except on asynchpulse=no, don't know what that is.
  • I am having great difficulty getting my car to start this morning. I had it started yesterday no problems and moved it forward in my driveway after a raging blizzard. Now, she wont start. She almost catches, but then nothing. I thought it was the battery so I got a boost...NADDA! I am wondering, that with the amount of snow and winds we had would that be a factor of why it wont start? It is cold today, and the sun just started shining. Could there be snow somewhere that I cant see? The tailpipe is clear and open, so it isnt that....any help would be appreciated.
  • Haven't figured it out yet, had several parts replaced that they thought was the cause, still doing the same thing. If I every get it figured out will let you know, and if you figure it out I would appreciate knowing what it was. Thanks :cry:
  • I got it fixed on tuesday.... it was the computer.
  • Got mine fixed as well...first it was the spark plugs. I had her flooded after so many people "trying" to get her going. They were soaked with gas. So that was all good, came out 2 days later, and no start, not even a click. Starting motor....gone...had it replaced...went through that again 2 days later had it replaced again. Working great now....thanks though and hope yours keeps going! :)
  • My wife left the lights on last night which of course caused the car battery to die. This morning I tried to jump it, but it wouldn't respond to a jump. I would turn the key and there would be no clicking. The only thing that happened was that the dashboard lights, radio lights, cigarette light started blicking. Some of the lights on the outside also started blinking. They weren't my hazard lights either. So I got my battery checked and charged again. Although the battery was fine the same things happened again. No noise and blinking. The blinking only lasted for about 1 minute and then it stopped until i turned the key again. What is wrong?
  • I hope someone can remind me what these symptoms mean:

    The battery in my 1996 SL2 discharged because the car was sitting for several months unused (I know, I know -- I should have disconnected the battery!).

    So I recharged it (pretty sure, anyway). Now the lights come on, etc. but when I turn the ignition the car cranks for about 1 second then stops cranking and there is a loud rapid clicking noise.

    I've seen this symptom before in other cars but I can't remember what they mean. Can anyone help?

    Thanks very much,
  • don't know if u have fixed your code problem yet. i believe it is related to the crank positioning sensor. a synch pulse is the seventh pulse read thru the crank sensor when the number one cylinder is at top dead center(tdc). meaning that u have no reading of that pulse could be a bad crank positioning sensor. eventhough they rarely go bad
  • brently527brently527 Posts: 1
    I hope someone can help me. My '97 Saturn (104K) starts well in the morning. I drive home everyday about noon. When I try to start it, it cranks, and will eventually start, but it takes a good 8 to 10 seconds to get it going. The weather is hot when I have these problems, not sure if this has anything to do with it. Any thoughts?
  • oufan4oufan4 Posts: 3
    We purchased a 1998 Saturn coupe (80,000 miles now) for our daughter 2 years ago, was running ok (with the exception of the "check engine light" that comes on every once in a while.) But in the last year, she has had problems intermittently starting her car. There is no consistency and it doesn't matter if it is hot or cold, except it seems to happen more in the spring/summer(we live in Texas). It starts fine in the morning after sitting all night, then after school it won't start. This will happen for several days in a row, then it will be fine for weeks & months. Then it starts over again. She normally has to wait about 10 mintues then it will start.(all the electrically stuff works, radio, windows, locks, etc) Once or twice, it took longer to start. It has been to two mechanics--the first one could not find anything wrong, the second one is not sure. It only not started once for him, all other times it started right up. The second mechanic said the starter looked fine and it could be a ignition problem, but before we spend the $$$ on this...If anyone could shed some light on this, we'd appreciate. It's starting to become extremely frustrating. Also, could it be the security mode I read about on the internet? Thanks
  • cytotechcytotech Posts: 1
    I am having similar problems. It randomly wouldnt start one day. After I let it sit for an hour or overnight it started fine. I took it to a shop and it started everytime for them (engine was always cold).they told me they could find nothing wrong. After I drive it and get the engine hot is when it has problems. Im stuck.
  • oufan4oufan4 Posts: 3
    Interesting (but not surprising) someone else is also having same problems. The 2d mechanic said he finally narrowed it down to something in the ignition cylinder (?). Something about the key is turning but not far enough to get the car started only enough for the a/c, radio, power windows, etc to work. Unfortunately, he said only a Saturn dealer can fix it. The nearest for us is 2 hrs away and their service dept said the car will not have to work for them to see if that is really the problem. Not sure what we will do as this always happens at the most inconvenient time. Please post on this web site, if you ever get your problem fixed. I am interested to see if it is the same.
  • My cars been through a lot, and now it won't start half of the time. It will turn but it won't start, and thoughts or comments? Also, I'll be driving on the freeway and all of a sudden the engine will start to idle roughly. The RPM will go up to like 6 when I haven't messed with the gas. Any comments on that?
  • wopahowopaho Posts: 1
    1997 Saturn Wagon keeps getting stuck in park. Push on brakes, rock the car, wiggle gear shift. Doesn't always lock in park. just every few days.
  • :confuse: After sitting with the car running for a few minutes I popped the clutch on my Saturn. It immediately wouldn't start afterward. We tried jumping it off... wouldn't work. We took the battery to be tested and it was dead, so we bought another one. It wouldn't start. It turns over fine and then dies. The inside dash lights blink off and on as well as the outside lights when we open the door or try to start it. Everything is flashing for approx 30-60 seconds then stops. We have checked to make sure the motor is grounded, fuel filter & lines are clear. We checked the fuses, as well as all the spark plugs and wires. Can you tell us what we need to do?
  • My car is doing the same thing. Did you find a solution for this problem?
  • Just purchased '98 SC1, paperwork from owner showed a new battery, starter and alternator check on 7/11/07. The car wouldn't start, put on the battery charger, but battery showed full charge. We had to jump start the car, drove to Batteries Plus where the battery was tested, and showed to be bad, alternator also tested came out ok. Now the weird part, the car needed to be jumped again to get it home, but would not start with the jumper cables. We had to push it and pop the clutch. Why would it start with the jumper cables one time, but 20 minutes later not start? I'm getting the battery replaced, but I'm wondering if it could also be - a) the ground cable from the battery, b) the crank position sensor, or c) the starter solenoid. I'm wide open to any and all ideas, I would like to narrow it down if I can before I sell a kidney to pay a mechanic to dig into this.
  • Wow I am so glad to hear that I am not the only one with this aggravating promblem!...My 1995 saturn s2 coupe runs great except when I park it for awhile then want to get it started agion it wont start for a couple of mins.....just had a tune-up my mehanic tells me there nothing wrog...but it keeps happening!!!help!
  • Having the same promblem,and my mehanic says there is nothing wrog!
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