Last post on Nov 25, 2013 at 4:27 PM
You are in the Saturn ION
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Saturn ION, Electrical, Coupe, Sedan
#672 of 1223 Re: 2005 Saturn Ion Electrical Problems [gmcustsvc]
Aug 18, 2011 (11:25 am)
I have had my 2003 Saturn sitting for 3 months because of this. I researched it last year and the problem is the ignition switch solonoid. They are easy to swap out and cheap ($25). I don't have the tools to do it and had bought another car and I am lazy; so it isn't fixed yet. It is the lubricant (grease) in the switch that is the failpoint and causes the relay to the passlock security to fail. Yes, you can cut the white wire (via youtube video) and you will never have the problem again but you will have a check engine light on permanently. I am now ordering the part today and will be putting it in with the help of a friend. There is a process you have to do to reset the passlock system. You can find it here:
If you buy the switch just have a local mechanic do it. Print the instructions from the above site and take them to him. It will run about $100-150. That beats paying GM though right... and will have a warranty?
Here is where I bought my switch and is the same for all ions 2003-2007/
I know people that have had to replace this every few years. The way I see it, it's a part of maintenance. I'll let you know how the install goes this weekend.
#673 of 1223 Re: not turning on and then turing on 10 - 60 minutes later [saturntech9]
Aug 18, 2011 (2:33 pm)
not sure what you mean by relearn the pass lock sensor. remember, i am just a person, not a mechanic! I looked on amazon and found some, none for saturns, but a link took me to Autoparts warehouse and found one for $24.99.
have you heard of this problem before? Why would the mechanic say i needed a new battery (which worked fine before I had my car towed to him and then say i also need a starter? well over $500 as compared to the $25 + labor.
why would saturn not make this a recall if so many people have the same problem?
#674 of 1223 Re: not turning on and then turing on 10 - 60 minutes later [pamela519]
Aug 19, 2011 (5:51 am)
I apologize for your frustrations. Can you please send me your VIN? I will look into recall information for you. Have you spoke with an Authorized Saturn Service Center? I look forward to your response. Have a great weekend!
GM Customer Service
#675 of 1223 Re: not turning on and then turing on 10 - 60 minutes later [pamela519]
Aug 19, 2011 (7:08 am)
I have replaced a lot of the ignition switches on those cars for not starting especially when outside temp bellow 40 degrees there is even a bulletine on it.They have redesigned the switch 3 or 4 times.If you have the body control module scanned for codes right after a no start you would look for a B2960 andor B3033 in the body control module.But you need a scan tool that can read codes on your body control module.So when the car doesnt start is the security light on solid or flashing?The pass lock relearn is what you have to do when you replace the switch.What you do is replace the switch then turn the key to the start postion then let the key sit in the run position for ten minutes till the security light goes out then you turn the key off for 30 seconds and repeat that for 2 two more cycles.Not every repair shop especially the mom and pop shops know about the ignition switch issue you could have had a bad battery and they figured from your symptoms that is what your problem was.Then you say its still happening then they guess you have a starter going bad.So what year is your car?Gm doesnt just have a recall just because a lot of people have a certain problem with a certain car.Most of the time they will extended certain parts warranties for a longer period of time on different year makes and models and will have within a certain vin numbers included.A good example they did that with ion electric steering motors and the saturn vue vti transmissions never recalled just a longer warranty on certain ones.So let me i can help you out with one i know caron is doing her best too but if you dont have the diagnoses fee to pay the gm dealer for a chance they may cover the switch then i understand that times are tough right now.
#676 of 1223 Re: not turning on and then turing on 10 - 60 minutes later [pamela519]
Aug 19, 2011 (7:27 am)
My advice is to take it to a GM dealer. Anytime you are experiencing concerns you should take it to a GM dealer. I also always advise to call Customer Assistance, or you can contact myself, if your dealer is having difficulties. The dealer has GM options such as Technical Assistance to help get the vehicle fixed. GM has a working relationship with our dealers. This keeps GM in the loop of whats going on. As well as if there was a recall to come out for that concern in the future, we could look into reimbursement. This is not possible with an independent dealer. I hope this helps.
GM Customer Service
Aug 21, 2011 (11:09 am)
i have had this problem for years i have been kinda avoiding replacing the switch myself
don't want to be disappointed
called GM multiple times and they say that a diag is 90 and then whatever it is to replace the part so ball park was like 450 and the diag doesn't come off the top of the total. soooo i just kept doing this
turn key forward and let sit in run position until light stops flashing usually ten min
then turn the key back to off and pull key out then start her up! works first try every time
now if its the grease how does this technique work every time what does this do to stop the grease from causing it to malfunction.
however i am TIRED of this happening so i WILL buy the part today at Auto Zone for 54.00 and do it myself because i am pretty handy and have all tools req
also i will post my results and let anyone know if the problem persists or is remedied but it seems that it will only be a temporary remedy anyways.
i WILL tell ya what though if someone goes on YOUTUBE and posts a fix for something and it gets 40,000 hit and a large amout of feedback something is WRONG and should be recalled but once again it is what it is
thanks everyone for listening to my rambling...
also the only reason that i came in here and wrote this was because i was going to head down to auto zone to buy the part when guess what my car didn't start!!
so i thought id come in and give GM a piece of my mind because i knew i had at least ten min to write this
#678 of 1223 Re: YEP [eskimomann]
Aug 21, 2011 (11:53 am)
Just wanted to let you know the switch will work i have replaced so many i lost count during all my years as a saturn service tech for the same symptoms your car has.After you have replaced the switch do you know how to relearn the new pass lock in the new switch?It takes three cycles.
#679 of 1223 response about my 2005 staurn Ion 1 not starting and then starting again
Aug 23, 2011 (12:23 pm)
First of all I live in Southern california so the cold weather is not really an option. although i did notice when it is colder out in the winter it does start no problem. the not starting - there is no rhyme or reason to this. When I took the car to the GM dealer in december I told them about my problem. they had never heard of it. and offered me nothing. if i want them to look at it i have to pay $120 or $125 (can't remember) to get it diagnosed. gmcustsvc - my car is at the mechanic's so I will ask him the VIN # and get back to you. he told me he had to replace the battery which blew my mind, cause the battery had never given me a problem. he at first said it was the starter and with the battery (already charged $177 for battery and labor) he wanted another 350 to install the starter. after telling him last week about the ignition switch and starter relay (was that the other part?) he did some internet research and now says I should take it to GM.
I don't have the kind of money where i can afford the hit and miss. I know there are so many out there with this problem. It is very frustrating that there is not one sure way to fix it. and btw, when i would turn the car on and it wouldn't start. nothing happened. no click no trying to start no messages coming up. there was one constant symbol that came up and when i looked in the saturn book it always said something about emissions.
#680 of 1223 Pamela 519
Aug 23, 2011 (12:41 pm)
Your mechanic is guessing. You've already spent 177 on a battery that had nothing to do with the problem and you're still not wanting to take Gmcustsrv offer and get a file started ?
You can pay for a new starter too which it doesn't need. And GM is the problem ?
As for that GM tech: he's lying. They used that frigging switch on Ions, Cobalts, G5s, HHRs and Colrados and Canyon trucks. They have most definitely seen this problem before. Google search "Cobalt Ignition switch problems" or something similar and see what comes up.
If you go through the proper procedures, the GM service provider hearing from corporate will be wayyy more willing to listen to you and help you with your problem ,even work with you on the diagnostic.
It's a sure thing you're not going to get it fixed with your current mechanic just throwing parts at it. And charging you for the privilege of guessing.
Believe me I empathize. I've been fighting this for 6 years already and for the time being it's fixed.
Click on gmcustsrv and there's the email connection. Send VIN, model year, phone #, all pertinent info. Let them try and help you.
GM has felt the wrath from this and it's other indiscretions towards it's customers over the years. There's a reason they went bankrupt. Life isn't fair and when the time comes, people move on. Good luck with this. Stop fighting it. Sometimes you simply have to go where yopu don't want to go to get some sort of resolution.
Stay the course. You will get this sorted out in the end. Just keep hacking away.
#681 of 1223 Re: response about my 2005 staurn Ion 1 not starting and then starting agai
Aug 23, 2011 (1:59 pm)
I have worked for saturn repairing there cars from 1993-2009 in southern california I have replaced the ignition switches for no starts on the 2003-2007 till the last year they made the ions they have redisgned that switch 3 or four times.That switch failing is the number cause for the no starts.I have replaced a few other parts here and there but for the intermintant no starts the switch is number one.Even in the warmer weather i have replaced so many of those its crazy Its easy to replace them yourself there 23-50 depending where you buy the switch.