Last post on Jan 23, 2010 at 8:59 AM
You are in the Saturn S-Series
What is this discussion about?
Saturn S-Series, Engine, Sedan
#64 of 81 Re: 2000 Saturn SL2 hard to start [thorton1]
Nov 05, 2008 (2:22 pm)
I tend to not think it is the relay. If my memory serves me correctly, when ignition is put in "on" position before cranking, the buzzing of the operating fuel pump may be heard if you have someone at the back of the car. Opening up the fuel cap may help hear it better. If no cranking takes place in 5 seconds or so, the fuel pump stops and restarts when cranking. By then you know the relay is fine. If the problem is presistent until you use the gas pedal, I tend to think problem is elsewhere, especially after repeated cranking with no start. What I mention now is counter-intuitive, but the Saturn ECU is very sensitive to electrical noise. A bad alternator caused similar running problems for another car, but the closest other incident I could recall was on a Saturn in which the battery terminals were loose. Plenty of battery contact to crank and all, but the ECU had trouble from the loose connection anyway. Twist the two connectors and see if they are obviously loose, if not, we look elsewhere. I'm assuming no error codes to report. A really bad loose connection on battery, even though enough to crank, sometimes cough up U1300 code. For now, check the battery connection (also look for acid leak, GM-Delco battery prone to leak with side post battery).
#65 of 81 Re: 2000 Saturn SL2 hard to start [booboo6]
Nov 05, 2008 (4:29 pm)
No error codes. No battery leaks.
Fuel pump can be heard. I went ahead and checked the pressure. It stayed constant at 48 pounds. I had already switched the relays before seeing your reply.
The battery cables did not move when twisted. The ground cable was not loose but it was not as tight as it should have been. It took no effort at all to loosen the connection. The positive connection had some corrosion. Cleaned both battery contacts and cables and reinstalled.
Will see what happens in the morning. Your help is greatly appreciated. Will post and let you know what it does.
#66 of 81 Re: 2000 Saturn SL2 hard to start [thorton1]
Nov 05, 2008 (4:56 pm)
OK! You are thorough. I am retired and drive inter-state a lot and keep my '02 SL1 in perfect shape always. I attacked a few problems over the years on my car alone. What you are describing, with help of elimination process, sounds awfully like the start of the intake manifold gasket leak. The ills of a fully developed problem may not show up for half year or more depending on how many miles you drive. When engine is cold, the gasket leaks more and excessively dilutes the air-gas mix, but gasket seals up somewhat when head is hot. The leak initially is not enough to create a real problem after starting, but give it a few weeks and it may. Are you experiencing the following?:
1. Tiny trace of coolant smell coming from exhaust or very gradual loss of coolant?
2. Extra tough starting on the colder mornings.
3. Look at the engine at hot idle. Do you see a slight jitter as if one cylinder has a slight miss. Listen for corresponding pop on exhaust too (misfire).
#67 of 81 Re: 2000 Saturn SL2 hard to start [booboo6]
Nov 10, 2008 (5:30 am)
I have not noticed any of the items you listed for the intake gasket. Coolant has never been low and cannot notice any smell with the exhaust.
Good thing is since my last writing to you the car has started fine. The last things i did were to clean the ECT plug well and put some dialectric grease on it. Cleaned and tightened the battery terminals. Cleaned the throttle body (did not remove for thorough cleaning). So far so good, hope it stays this way.
Thanks for all the help
Sep 06, 2009 (10:20 am)
My saturn has a problem with idle speed.. It idles about 1100 rpm, sometimes this goes up and down.. Sometime when I come up to a red light or down shift it'll stall out... It was doing this most of the day yesterday, and this morning I went to start it up and it didn't want to start or stay running.. I finally got it started.. It stalled out at every light for about 30 min, and then it was fine except for it was ideling very high... I had a friend come over with a snap on scan tool, but there was no code... I don't have a clue what to do now...
#69 of 81 Re: 2001 sc1 [jdw122275]
Sep 06, 2009 (11:36 am)
It sounds like the usual intake manifold gasket leak. But there should have been a code registered. It sounds bad enough to stall the engine and should have registered something in the OBD-II. I take it there was no check engine soon light? If no Check engine soon light, then there is no code.
#70 of 81 Re: 2001 sc1 [booboo6]
Sep 06, 2009 (11:50 am)
there was no engine light on... No codes stored in the computer... I don't know what sensors would control the idle... It doesn't idle rough. This doesn't happen every time...
#71 of 81 Re: 2001 sc1 [jdw122275]
Sep 06, 2009 (12:17 pm)
Assuming car runs fine when you are moving and driving with foot on gas, the matter does appear to be idle. Having a problem for first 30 mins tells me the car must've warmed up, so issues related to faulty cold idle control does not sound to be the issue. It is warm idle issue. There are special effects with Saturn S if the battery connection is faulty for any reason. Long story. Check your terminals that the side posts did not come loose.
#72 of 81 Re: 2001 sc1 [jdw122275]
Sep 06, 2009 (10:45 pm)
The other possible problem is bad PCV. This problem may not be detected by OBD-II if not enough to misfire. During idle, the PCV is to see high vacuum and sucked closed, but if air is freely allowed to flow from crankcase into the manifold when there is no flow, you should see higher idle speed from MAP sensing the perceived air flow. As there is a idle signal from the throttle position sensor, the MAP may be limited to what it could do to achieve proper mix at idle. A test for this is to pull off that short hose between intake manifold and the engine valve cover. Use a cap plug or equivalent to cap the hose nipple at the intake manifold. In general, if car is fine when not in idle mode, tendency is that there is a vacuum leak issue. All the sensors would be working for proper operation during driving, and when problem only at idle (high vacuum), you will expose problems with air leaks or air flow that is unwanted.
#73 of 81 Re: 2001 sc1 [booboo6]
Sep 07, 2009 (8:54 am)
I cleaned the battery terminals, checked the pcv, it had no effect... Now the rpm's are up at 1500 at idle... If the pcv is bad, when i plugged the hose what would the effect be if that was the problem?