Last post on Sep 11, 2012 at 4:19 PM
You are in the Saturn S-Series
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Saturn S-Series, Sedan
#891 of 1418 Saturn SL shifing??
Mar 08, 2002 (10:30 am)
I have just purchased a 2002 Saturn SL with the manual 5 speed. My question is does anyone else have one that shifts a bit clunky? I have drove manuals all my life and this one seems to click or clunk into gears most the time. I was hopeing it was just a breakin thing but it has gotten no better. Before the dealer gives me some B.S. I just wanted to know if anyone else thinks their car shifts this way? Thanks for any help....
Mar 08, 2002 (2:44 pm)
My 1999 SL2 also shifts a little "clunky." But, I don't really consider it a fault. I think that once you get used to it, the "clunkiness" actually helps you make sure the shifter is going where you want it to go. Of course, yours may be doing something different than mine--so, by all means, have the service department look at it. You say you just bought it--did you not raise a concern during your test drive?
#893 of 1418 Shifting
Mar 08, 2002 (8:02 pm)
Yes I did kind of notice it during the test drive, but hoped it was a breakin thing. I will bring it to the dealers attention. Other than the shifting thing I really like the car so far. I hope some of the stories I have read hear are not very common. I hope to run 150,000 to 200,000 miles without major problems. I ran 203,000 miles on a plymouth horizon without one major problem. Just an alternator and tires/brakes, very depenable car....
#894 of 1418 Problems at 117K miles
Mar 09, 2002 (8:06 pm)
I'm now at 117.5K miles (Feb 19, I was only at 115K; damn I drive a lot) and just took my car to the dealer for some service. They told me $1600 of work should be done! Is this a load a crap? Here are the major issues: new front brake pads and rotors ($350), fog light replacement ($140), replace spark plugs and wires, clean throttle body, to correct and prevent carbon buildup ($300), flush automatic transmission fluid ($350), replace upper engine mount ($250), and some other minor issues.
I had the brakes done, which I now feel was a mistake. According to dealer, the front pads were at 5/32, according to my Haynes repair manual, 1/16 is the minimum thickness. They feel better, but could have gone longer. I love the fog lights so I replaced it. The housing was completely rusted and stopped working even after replacing the bulb. What's the story with spark plug wires arcing? I can't figure out how to diagnosis this. I declined this and figure I'll take care of when I do the 120K mile service myself. Flushing the automatic transmission fluid? I've been changing it as scheduled so I declined this as well. Replace upper engine mount? I did this 18 months/25K miles ago. It looks fine to me and I remember what a collapsed mount looks like. My car is running fine so I'm not terribly concerned about any of the issues, but would appreciate some feedback.
#895 of 1418 those are expensive repair prices
Mar 10, 2002 (6:01 pm)
most of those repairs can be done with basic auto tools . And an average comsumer can do a better job performing that work .
#896 of 1418 Expensive prices?
Mar 10, 2002 (10:20 pm)
wwhite2: what repairs specifically are you calling expensive? The brakes were $250 in parts so $100 doesn't seem outrageous for installation. The fog light replacement was $70 in parts, but it was all rusted and a pain to get to (I have changed the bulbs on several occasions) so I decided to have the dealer do the dirty work. Replacing the spark plugs and wires seemed really high to me so I'll do it myself. The auto transmission flush also seems pricey. Can a mechanic do that for less? The engine mount replacement is also too much. I did this myself as well. The part was $70 and only took about 30 minutes to replace. Very fun and easy to do. What's the going rate for a 120K mile service? I'm going to do it myself, but am curious. The dealers in my area (Balt/Wash) want $325-350. That seems expensive. I will say, the dealers all seem to know what they're doing. Any problems I've had, all have been fixed the first time. Never a repeat trip to the dealer.
#897 of 1418 My opinion
Mar 11, 2002 (11:02 pm)
"I'm now at 117.5K miles (Feb 19, I was only at 115K; damn I drive a lot) and just took my car to the dealer for some service. They told me $1600 of work should be done! Is this a load a crap? Here are the major issues: new front brake pads and rotors ($350), fog light replacement ($140), replace spark plugs and wires, clean throttle body, to correct and prevent carbon buildup ($300), flush automatic transmission fluid ($350), replace upper engine mount ($250), and some other minor issues."
I'm not an expert on service issues. The prices you mentioned are about right for a Saturn dealer to charge - except they are on the very HIGH side of what I have seen. In particular $350 to flush the tranny fluid and (I assume) replace the filter. Thats about a 70 dollar internal job.
My advice would be when it comes to big repair issues or when your car is still low in miles and worth more its not a bad idea to pay the extra money for actual Saturn dealer work.
When your car has that many miles I would suggest you find a local reputable mechanic who can proably do the same work for
New front brakes and rotors (200)
Fog light replacement (80)
Spark plugs and wires - clean throttle body (100)
Transmission flush and new filter (100)
Replace top motor mount (80)
Also if you are handy at all you could do the majority of the above work at home. The most difficult part would be new front brakes and rotors - and thats not too hard.
#898 of 1418 firestone affinity tires
Mar 13, 2002 (12:50 pm)
Hey Saturn owners. I just bought a Saturn SL2 about 3 weeks ago. While I have no complaints with my OEM Affinity tires, I am thinking about replacing them. I think it is just the lack of goodwill associated with the Firestone name. I know the problems were with the truck tires; and, that there have been no problems with the Affinity passenger tire. How have you liked your Affinity tires? Have you replaced them--and if so, with what? Have you not even thought about it? I went to tirerack.com and read some posts from people about a couple of tires. Generally all bad reviews of the Affinity. The most popular tire Saturn SL2 owners bought to replace the Affinity tires was the Dunlop SP Sport A2. The reviews on that tire are great. I may go with them. Tirerack.com sells them for $55 each, but you have to get a shop to install them at about $20 each--plus shipping. Sears sells them for $80 each, so I may just go there. It may all be in my head, though. Any thoughts?
Mar 18, 2002 (12:49 pm)
I can't believe how little interest there is in Saturn around here!
I guess I will keep the tires. I went out over the weekend and tried to make them squeal or slide in turns (not in heavy traffic), and they would not. Maybe the Affinity is a good tire for the size and weight of the Saturn SL class.
Mar 20, 2002 (7:36 pm)
My 93 SL2 originally came Firehawk FTX02 tires. They were very sticky, but also rough riding. Snow/wet traction was decent. At 45K miles, they were replaced with Affinitys. I was extremely disappointed and can't believe Saturn now sells new models with them. They have zero grip, squeal at every turn, and have no wet/snow traction. The backend was always sliding out unexpectedly. This would happen while traveling on straight, flat roads at low speed. After an accident that I spun out and broke my front and rear knuckle joints, I decided it was time for a change to something better. A bulge also appeared on one of the sidewalls. When I made my way to the Firestone dealer, they inspected all 4 tires and said they were all dry-rotting. They only had 60K miles on them and are guaranteed for 80K miles. I got $75 towards my new tires. A set of Firestone SS20s ($250 installed for all 4). They are dramatically better in all road conditions. Dry cornering is great, but more importantly wet/snow grip is light years ahead of the Affinitys. I would never want to drive another car with Affinitys.