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Old 01-23-2018, 08:21 PM   #1
Hackettbr1
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Default Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

1997 SL
1.9L SOHC engine
116k Miles

When i stop at anytime, the gas pedal sticks up. It is very difficult to press down, and sometimes requires me to stomp on it to break it free. I've cleaned out the the throttle body and have no ideas where else the issue could be coming from. any suggestions???

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Old 01-23-2018, 09:14 PM   #2
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

You must have a kink in the throttle cable that is getting hung up.

Should be able to get a replacement at most any autoparts store.

It's not all that difficult to replace, that is, altho getting it through the firewall grommet (that is usually stiff and hard to reseal weather tight).

Rarely, is the throttle itself the issue, but you should be able to determine if the sticking is occurring at the spring/pivot or not.

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Old 01-24-2018, 10:07 AM   #3
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hackettbr1 View Post
1997 SL
1.9L SOHC engine
116k Miles

When i stop at anytime, the gas pedal sticks up. It is very difficult to press down, and sometimes requires me to stomp on it to break it free. I've cleaned out the the throttle body and have no ideas where else the issue could be coming from. any suggestions???
Did you take it off and completely scrub it out with TB cleaner and an old toothbrush or just spray some crap and figure it's done. Odds are you did the latter. You cannot truly clean it on the car

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Old 01-24-2018, 04:24 PM   #4
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

I will try the throttle cable, and yes the throttle body was completely removed from the car and cleaned on both sides. though cleaning both sides did help relieve some of the pressure holding the gas pedal up

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Old 01-24-2018, 06:51 PM   #5
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

I have never in close to 50 years of wrenching seen a throttle cable go bad BUT I have seen the throttle shaft wear out and bind. But honestly I would not be surprised if something was missed during cleaning

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Old 01-24-2018, 06:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

Quote:
Originally Posted by underthehood View Post
I have never in close to 50 years of wrenching seen a throttle cable go bad BUT I have seen the throttle shaft wear out and bind. But honestly I would not be surprised if something was missed during cleaning
Back in my younger days in the UK I had a car that always had a jerky acceleration. Being young and not particularly knowledgeable I could not figure out what was wrong. I took sprayed some penetrating oil around the carb linkage down to no avail. Then one day I found the problem. The accelerator metal inner cable had become unwound inside the outer sheath and was causing the stickiness. I bought a new cable and all was good with the world again.

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Old 01-25-2018, 04:43 PM   #7
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Happy Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

Quote:
I have never in close to 50 years of wrenching seen a throttle cable go bad BUT I have seen the throttle shaft wear out and bind.

I can't say that I haven't seen a throttle cable go bad.
My 1971 Mustang ate them periodically, and usually when somewhere far from home.

But I totally agree with the worn throttle shaft and binding.
I have seen that happen many, many times.
The only solution (sort of replacing the throttle body) is usually to adjust the idle stop screw so that it barely doesn't bind.
However the prevailing wisdom on the forum seems to be that if you touch that screw the car will explode (it won't).
I have adjusted them on literally dozens of cars including my SC2.
I haven't had one go up in flames as a result yet......

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Old 01-25-2018, 06:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

If you live in a moderate temperature climate with minimal temperature excursions you will never discover what that adjustment is actually for. For the ~$20 a P&P TB cost just replace a worn out throttle body as there are plenty of good ones left.

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Old 01-25-2018, 07:31 PM   #9
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Happy Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

If you have them readily available from P&P's I suppose that may be true.
Around here they seem to disappear fast.
But also the ones I have seen at P&P's are often not in much better shape.

I never have cared for the steel-on-zinc casting "bearing" surfaces in most throttle bodies to begin with.
Cheap cheap cheap.
If it lasts through the warranty period the manufacturer won (and you lose).
I have rebuilt several of them over the years using Oilite bronze or PTFE-lined bushings.
Once rebuilt they seldom ever need attention again.
Unfortunately you need a mill (or at least a very good drill press) to do it properly.
And some patience and finesse.

An added bonus of rebuilding them is that they will no longer leak varying amounts of air around the throttle shafts.
That in turn can play havoc with other things including the IAC motor settings.

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Old 01-25-2018, 11:26 PM   #10
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

The S-Series runs on rather expensive ball bearings that have seals so you do not suck in dirt. Once they wear the seal opens up and the wear rate goes exponential. I grab a couple TBs every time I go to the yard on 1/2 price day. Low mileage SOHC are the best bet.

Bumpdraft and I discussed this at length on here and the process of remove and replace is rather involved as it is not designed for repair.

This is just like rebuilding the S-Series starter or alternator, requires machinery, time, and expensive parts. When I can buy a new one for just about what the pile of rebuild parts cost why bother spending the time to rebuild it.

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Old 01-26-2018, 10:33 AM   #11
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1997 SC2
Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

I haven't taken the one on my SC2 apart to look to be honest.
Perhaps it is fitted with ball bearings, I don't know.
But most GM (and other) ones aren't, particularly not anything mid-90's and older.
The old TBI bodies were notorious for this sort of problem, and there used to be a place in LA (Anaheim I think) that would "re-bush" them.
That, frankly is where I got the notion to try doing it.

Still, the OP's problem sounds like a binding throttle plate to me.
It doesn't take much to make the difference between sticking and not.
If the throttle shaft has noticeable radial play in it that is a strong clue, and is easily checked for.

The best way to approach this IMHO would be to turn the stop screw maybe 5 degrees of a turn CW and see if it fixes the problem.
If not, try 5 degrees of a turn more and repeat a couple of times if needed until the sticking stops.
Make only small incremental changes that are easily reversed (and keep track of them).
If it takes much more than that though, something else is probably wrong.

Your junk yards are better than our junk yards apparently.

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Old 01-26-2018, 12:01 PM   #12
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

I guarantee you every last Saturn TB is on ball bearings, expensive ball bearings and disassembly is not a trivial task.

If the OP has not actually removed the throttle body and properly cleaned it out then the problem is likely DIRT. it is also very easy to check for shot bearings and once cleaned you can see the wear on the lower portion of the TB throat.

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Old 01-26-2018, 12:35 PM   #13
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1997 SC2
Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

I'll take your word for it.
Still doesn't mean they can't loosen up.
My experiences with the lower end bearing on the steering column prove that.

I adjusted my SC2's idle stop screw as part of a general overhaul and related work a while back.

The most trouble I ever had with throttle sticking was with an old 4wd Chevy truck.
I could not keep the throttle from exhibiting exactly the symptom the OP described until I re-bushed the throttle shaft.
The holes in the pot metal body were positively egg-shaped.
Oilite bushings did the trick and I had no further problems in that regard after that.

And yes, witness marks inside the throttle bore tell the whole story.

FWIW........

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Old 01-26-2018, 04:22 PM   #14
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

The actual throttle body with the TPS removed: Is there a list available that shows which years of throttle body are compatible?

For example, if the OP is looking for a used throttle body with good bearings, and does not care about getting the TPS, which years would work for 1997?

TPS = Throttle Position Sensor

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Old 01-26-2018, 04:28 PM   #15
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

The bearings do fail and the butterfly does stick. The problem is there is NO fix that is economical.

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Old 01-27-2018, 01:15 AM   #16
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Default Re: Gas Pedal Sticks when idling

Quote:
Originally Posted by bumpdraft View Post
The actual throttle body with the TPS removed: Is there a list available that shows which years of throttle body are compatible?

For example, if the OP is looking for a used throttle body with good bearings, and does not care about getting the TPS, which years would work for 1997?

TPS = Throttle Position Sensor
They bolt on and the throttle cable connects the same '91-'99 DOHC and '95-'02 SOHC. Sometime between '95 and '96 the vacuum ports on top of the TB flip around, I didn't notice any issue's also swapping the vacuum line but there's probably a good reason why they did it and I just wasn't allowed to keep the car long enough to notice issues (dang rust overlords! lol).

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