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Old 03-29-2010, 08:02 PM   #1
mwarchut
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Default Saturn SL2 won't start

Hi there.

My daughter has a 2002 Saturn SL2 that I bought her about 2 years ago. The car has been great until this past week. Earlier in the week it was suffering the reverse issue. I did the Wolfram fix and that seemed to have solved it.

Anyhow on to todays problem. She went out to run some errands and got gas. Well after she got gas she drove about 2-3 miles over to Costco. She shut the car off and when she came out it wouldn't stay running. It would start for a second or two and then die. It's most certainly a fuel delivery problem. I had it towed home and was wondering what kinds of things I should be looking for? Does this car have an inertia switch? I didn't find one anywhere. I shot some starter fluid into the throttle body and the engine fired right up so its not a spark issue. Any thoughts would be great.

Mike

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Old 03-30-2010, 05:43 AM   #2
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1994 SL2
1997 SW2
Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

I would check the fuel rail and injectors. Maybe the fuel injectors are clogged up? Also, even though you mentioned that the car is getting a spark, what condition and type of Spark Plugs are in the car? Are they the same ones that came with the car? Properly gapped at .040? Clogged Throttle Body? (Not unheard of on these cars...can be cleaned with Brake Cleaner)

If the plugs haven't been changed since you bought the car, it may very well be a spark plug/wire issue. I would check these, as well as the fuel injectors. Then move to the CPS (Crankshaft Position Sensor- mounted behind the starter with 1 10MM Bolt). I don't think this is a starter issue. Check the smaller stuff first and make sure that it is all good.

...
Bryan

94 SL2 225K Miles
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Old 03-30-2010, 10:20 AM   #3
mwarchut
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Well I did the Richpin test for the CPS and it passed so I assume that it is good. Could it still be bad even after passing that test?

Could a failed ECTS prevent the car from starting up?

We bought the car with 56k miles on it and the saturn dealer supposedly replaced the plugs and wires at the time we got the car. But I will check them anyway.

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Old 03-30-2010, 10:30 AM   #4
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Does the SECURITY light come on with the key-in-RUN bulb check? Does it go off again when she starts the engine?

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Old 03-30-2010, 10:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Good point Madpogue. Forgot about the RKE (Remote Keyless Entry).....

...
Bryan

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Old 03-30-2010, 02:33 PM   #6
cmpcpro
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Mine did the same exact thing, the TPS replacement solved the problem.

...
Christopher May
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Old 03-31-2010, 09:53 AM   #7
mwarchut
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

The Security light comes on during the start and then goes off. Does this mean that passlock is not triggered and that its a mechanical issue? I replaced the ECTS but that didn't help. Maybe the TPS is next part to try. I have a CPS too but I don't think it is bad since it passed the richpin test.

Is there anyway to make sure it is not the passlock system being invoked because of the worn ignition? I am assuming it is worn since I can pull the key out in the run position. Or is that a saturn trait?

Thanks all.

Mike

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Old 03-31-2010, 10:04 AM   #8
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

When you cycle the key can you hear the pump run for a couple seconds? If not check the fuel pump fuse in the fuse block inside the car.

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Old 03-31-2010, 06:55 PM   #9
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

With as much wind we have here I am lucky I can hear the engine running on my muscle car. Ill see if I can hear it.

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Old 04-01-2010, 12:56 AM   #10
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Ok.. So I have replaced the CPS, ECTS, TPS. I have checked to see if I can hear a running fuel pump and it does sound like it is running for a few seconds at key turn on. I have not checked the fuel filter. Could this cause a problem where the car will not start? I don't have a fuel pressure test gauge but if I push in the shraeder valved at the rail a squirt barely comes out. I would have expected more. May a failed regulator filter be causing trouble? She did get gas just before it stopped running. I will happily paypal a prize to the winning answer now..

Mike

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Old 04-01-2010, 08:16 AM   #11
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwarchut View Post
...I am assuming it is worn since I can pull the key out in the run position...
... ya its worn (dunno if that will cause your issue... however someone else should be able to say ).

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwarchut View Post
...I have not checked the fuel filter. Could this cause a problem where the car will not start? I don't have a fuel pressure test gauge but if I push in the shraeder valved at the rail a squirt barely comes out...
I think a fuel pressure test should be your next check, there should be quite a bit more than a squirt.

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Old 04-01-2010, 08:29 AM   #12
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Default Re: Saturn SL2 won't start

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwarchut View Post
Ok.. . I have checked to see if I can hear a running fuel pump and it does sound like it is running for a few seconds at key turn on..... but if I push in the shraeder valved at the rail a squirt barely comes out. I would have expected more....
There's the big hint of a fuel issue, barely a squirt of fuel when depressing the schrader valve on the fuel rail. The pump will only run for 2-3 seconds with the ignition ON and there should be plenty of pressure to spray fuel out the valve. Check the fuel pump fuse - pull it off and check it then swap the fuel pump relay next if the fuse is good. Fuse, pump relay, wiring, pump, and pump ground - all in sequence when checking a fuel issue. Hardly any fuel filters clog enough to stop flow. They do occasionally so replacement every 100k miles should be good. If the fuel still doesn't spray out after all the above the next step will be jumpering the fuel pump relay socket contacts, pins 30 and 87, to send 12v directly to the fuel pump. This will power the pump immediately if the pump and wiring is good. At this point you should hear the faint hum/hiss of the pump or listen near the tank with an ear pressed to the car body. A screwdriver stethoscope also works.

...
*The CPS is the heart of the entire EFI system. No cps = dead EFI system*
*There's more to a/c than just a few cans of refrigerant*
*There's more to brakes than just replacing parts*

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