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Old 10-18-2019, 02:50 PM   #41
98SaturnSL2Bett
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by trottida View Post
I did have a no start condition that was related to a bad cell in the battery. However, the symptoms were no crank. It sound's like you are getting crank.

I also had one experience where the car died on the street and wouldn't start. I had it towed to my mechanic and it started up right away off the tow truck. I drove that car for years after that happened and never experienced the problem again.

Well, I've had two tows in two weeks to my shop with this happening. Doesn't/won't start for us at home for days and then starts fine at the shop for days. I can't keep driving that car home and towing it back to the shop. I just can't.

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Old 10-18-2019, 03:01 PM   #42
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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I don't think it's the battery. Dad's been charging it at home after working on it, though I'm pretty sure that didn't happen last night --
yeah, I didn't think it was a battery or charging /alternator issue, either, just does not sound like it.

Thought maybe something the shop was doing when they charged it - jostled a wire or something - "fixed" whatever was causing the problem. And that in normal driving, loosens up again or something, causing the no start after a while.

But there is nothing I can think of off hand that being loose or jostled would cause a crank but no start/no spark condition

***
I don't know about MN, but in MI, AAA auto club allows 4 free tows a year. I think the membership is $40/year

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Old 10-18-2019, 03:01 PM   #43
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Well, I've had two tows in two weeks to my shop with this happening. Doesn't/won't start for us at home for days and then starts fine at the shop for days. I can't keep driving that car home and towing it back to the shop. I just can't.
I hear you. That would be extremely frustrating. It's a good possibility that it is the coils and its related ignition control module (ICM). That what I was betting on. I'm curious if they actually tested them or if they are blindly changing them out.

So no response to ZuluKono's blatant advances? They made me laugh somewhat. I was hoping for an equally laughable response.

...
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:05 PM   #44
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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So no response to ZuluKono's blatant advances? They made me laugh somewhat. I was hoping for an equally laughable response.
She was very classily ignoring that, after the first one

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Old 10-18-2019, 03:10 PM   #45
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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She was very classily ignoring that, after the first one
I agree. However....


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Old 10-18-2019, 04:18 PM   #46
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

98SaturnSL2Bett, as you can see, members here are very supportive of anyone driving a Saturn. Perhaps the aura of the 'Saturn experience' of new car buyers in the past has carried on within this site.

What wasn't mentioned from your link five years ago was replacing the engine coolant temperature sensor. Although you listed parts ordered, is the coolant sensor in that list? Was it replaced? One of two things occurred since your update on your repair shop successfully starting up several times after the battery was recharged. Either they replaced the coolant sensor to explain every startup was fine or you're still having intermittent starting issues which may be related to more than one problem.

If you can, please update on what the repair shop did as this is crucial to keeping everyone here with present info about starting. I completely understand your expensive frustration with towing fees each time your car fails to startup but that's past history and presumably before new parts were put in. I cannot stress enough the coolant sensor possibly contributing to the wet spark plugs, drowning high voltage spark when it's the number -1 reason for almost every S-series hard starting problems. When your repair shop described wet plugs needing to be wiped off before starting, this is one hint of the original faulty coolant sensor.

We're all spoiled in a way. And that is due to electronic fuel injection virtually guaranteeing instant starting whether in hot and humid summers or freezing cold winters. That's what you should expect from your Saturn - it's fuel injected and all electronically controlled. When it works, instant starting, parked on level ground, uphill or down hill.

Last edited by fdryer; 10-18-2019 at 04:24 PM..

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Old 10-18-2019, 04:23 PM   #47
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

As Alordofchaos commented on about the shop charging up the battery, maybe there is some very active battery drain going on. Need to find if there is a parasitic current still flowing when the car is turned off that pulls stored battery voltage way down. Put a voltmeter on the battery now, then check battery voltage again in 12 hours or more. It should remain stable at 12 plus vdc.

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Old 10-18-2019, 04:38 PM   #48
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

ECTS has recently been replaced (past week, see post 23 for parts list) with this:
https://www.oreillyauto.com/detail/b.../29386/4506605

Parts list includes ECTS connector - looks like cousin is familiar with Saturn S series

Cranks normally (not slowly / weakly) - I thought it might be related to something else when charging, rather than parasitic loss.
Though it would not hurt to have a free check.

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Old 10-18-2019, 05:42 PM   #49
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

^ Yes, I saw the list but that doesn't mean those parts were replaced. I try not assuming too much when presented info and no follow-up on stating those parts listed were replaced. Im asking for clarification so we're all on the same page...... I prefer step by step replies to confirm or deny new posts following up on previous info.

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:06 PM   #50
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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^ Yes, I saw the list but that doesn't mean those parts were replaced. I try not assuming too much when presented info and no follow-up on stating those parts listed were replaced. Im asking for clarification so we're all on the same page...... I prefer step by step replies to confirm or deny new posts following up on previous info.
Yes, I included all of that stuff because I purchased and we replaced all. Wait, except one thing didn't need replacing so I still have it to return. It was the wire set (?) for one of the sensors. The one the cousin had to do under the car.

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:08 PM   #51
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by toggenburg View Post
As Alordofchaos commented on about the shop charging up the battery, maybe there is some very active battery drain going on. Need to find if there is a parasitic current still flowing when the car is turned off that pulls stored battery voltage way down. Put a voltmeter on the battery now, then check battery voltage again in 12 hours or more. It should remain stable at 12 plus vdc.
I don't think it's the charge of the battery. Other than last night, Dad's been charging it like the shop does after we work on it and it still won't start at home the next day. On another, older thread they talked about connections maybe being loose due to gravity when on an incline, so we took the battery out and kind of checked all of that stuff the best we could yesterday. Didn't help.

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:13 PM   #52
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

Quote:
Originally Posted by alordofchaos View Post
ECTS has recently been replaced (past week, see post 23 for parts list) with this:
https://www.oreillyauto.com/detail/b.../29386/4506605

Parts list includes ECTS connector - looks like cousin is familiar with Saturn S series

Cranks normally (not slowly / weakly) - I thought it might be related to something else when charging, rather than parasitic loss.
Though it would not hurt to have a free check.
Cousin's actually unfortunately NOT familiar with Saturns. He's just a good sport. Got the ECTS tip from you guys, so that's one of the things we changed.

One of the two sensors we changed my Dad tested once we had it out and it was bad. Sorry, I don't know which of the 2 it was.

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:16 PM   #53
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
98SaturnSL2Bett, as you can see, members here are very supportive of anyone driving a Saturn. Perhaps the aura of the 'Saturn experience' of new car buyers in the past has carried on within this site.

What wasn't mentioned from your link five years ago was replacing the engine coolant temperature sensor. Although you listed parts ordered, is the coolant sensor in that list? Was it replaced? One of two things occurred since your update on your repair shop successfully starting up several times after the battery was recharged. Either they replaced the coolant sensor to explain every startup was fine or you're still having intermittent starting issues which may be related to more than one problem.

If you can, please update on what the repair shop did as this is crucial to keeping everyone here with present info about starting. I completely understand your expensive frustration with towing fees each time your car fails to startup but that's past history and presumably before new parts were put in. I cannot stress enough the coolant sensor possibly contributing to the wet spark plugs, drowning high voltage spark when it's the number -1 reason for almost every S-series hard starting problems. When your repair shop described wet plugs needing to be wiped off before starting, this is one hint of the original faulty coolant sensor.

We're all spoiled in a way. And that is due to electronic fuel injection virtually guaranteeing instant starting whether in hot and humid summers or freezing cold winters. That's what you should expect from your Saturn - it's fuel injected and all electronically controlled. When it works, instant starting, parked on level ground, uphill or down hill.
If I'm remembering correctly, I believe my shop did change the engine coolant temperature sensor out once already several years ago. Probably 2012 or 2014.

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:20 PM   #54
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
98SaturnSL2Bett,

If you can, please update on what the repair shop did as this is crucial to keeping everyone here with present info about starting..
The first time the shop had it last week. They charged the battery because it was drained from us working on it and they dried out/off the wet new spark plugs we put in. That's it. They were able to start it there at their shop DOZENS of times over the 3 days they had it. They charged me $100 for labor for all of the messing around with it they did.

Today/Monday they're going to do the 2 coils with new parts and the ICM (?) with a new part. Problem is, when it starts for them after these replacements, like it's been starting for them anyway, and I take it home . . . . is it going to start for me?????????????

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Old 10-18-2019, 09:24 PM   #55
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by alordofchaos View Post

***
I don't know about MN, but in MI, AAA auto club allows 4 free tows a year. I think the membership is $40/year

I know, I had thought about joining AAA with the older car now and just never got around to it.

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Old 10-18-2019, 11:17 PM   #56
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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The first time the shop had it last week. They charged the battery because it was drained from us working on it and they dried out/off the wet new spark plugs we put in. That's it. They were able to start it there at their shop DOZENS of times over the 3 days they had it. They charged me $100 for labor for all of the messing around with it they did.

Today/Monday they're going to do the 2 coils with new parts and the ICM (?) with a new part. Problem is, when it starts for them after these replacements, like it's been starting for them anyway, and I take it home . . . . is it going to start for me?????????????
At this point with the shop able to restart the car several times over the course of three days, seems to eliminate whatever was problematic. I believe they did the best they can and allowing them the opportunity to start the car any time at random at least says the car starts unlike when you experienced. It might be helpful if they drive the car around the block or two, perhaps running an errand but solely to remain close by their shop in case something fails and leaves the driver stranded if the car won't restart. While not required to do this, all you can do is pick up the car and see what happens. It's not a good feeling with an unreliable car that was fine before problems appeared but things have changed and possibly for the better with some new parts.

If replacing ignition coils helps to ease your doubts, by all means replace the old ones. Convincing you to start using the car again may be with trying a local errand and parking where you can leave it if it won't restart. Small steps to build up trust again if the car restarts without fail. Hopefully, repairs corrected any outstanding issues to make this car reliable again.

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Old 10-18-2019, 11:22 PM   #57
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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At this point with the shop able to restart the car several times over the course of three days, seems to eliminate whatever was problematic. I believe they did the best they can and allowing them the opportunity to start the car any time at random at least says the car starts unlike when you experienced. It might be helpful if they drive the car around the block or two, perhaps running an errand but solely to remain close by their shop in case something fails and leaves the driver stranded if the car won't restart. While not required to do this, all you can do is pick up the car and see what happens. It's not a good feeling with an unreliable car that was fine before problems appeared but things have changed and possibly for the better with some new parts.

If replacing ignition coils helps to ease your doubts, by all means replace the old ones. Convincing you to start using the car again may be with trying a local errand and parking where you can leave it if it won't restart. Small steps to build up trust again if the car restarts without fail. Hopefully, repairs corrected any outstanding issues to make this car reliable again.
Thanks for this. I was able to use it to run errands after picking up the car. I just could not get it re-started after being parked nose-up on an incline in the driveway overnight.

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Old 10-18-2019, 11:24 PM   #58
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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Originally Posted by alordofchaos View Post
PCM = Power Control Module = car's computer. In your year, is a small silver box kind of behind the instrument panel. If you take off the top of the dash, you can see it

MAP or TP sensors, or at the EGR valve - these are all under the hood. Locations are shown here
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...7&postcount=12

Thanks for the explanation. I appreciate it. And you did it without making me feel dumber

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Old 10-18-2019, 11:28 PM   #59
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

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So no response to ZuluKono's blatant advances? They made me laugh somewhat. I was hoping for an equally laughable response.
Well, to be honest, I didn't see that 3rd line of his/her first attempt until after I'd replied to what he/she said in the first two lines. Probably a good thing. He/she is identified as being in Idaho after all, so not sure how seriously I was supposed to be taking these attempts. Now, Iowa, or Wisconsin, or one of the Dakotas, or Manitoba or something I could see as having potential.

And, all he/she knows about me is that I'm a frustrated owner of a 1998 Saturn in Minnesota with an ex-husband and an ex-boyfriend. That could make me a straight female or a gay male. ???

And he/she lives in Idaho. !!!

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Old 10-19-2019, 03:01 AM   #60
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Default Re: 1998 Saturn SL2 won't start when parked on driveway incline

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
98SaturnSL2Bett, as you can see, members here are very supportive of anyone driving a Saturn. Perhaps the aura of the 'Saturn experience' of new car buyers in the past has carried on within this site.

What wasn't mentioned from your link five years ago was replacing the engine coolant temperature sensor. Although you listed parts ordered, is the coolant sensor in that list? Was it replaced? One of two things occurred since your update on your repair shop successfully starting up several times after the battery was recharged. Either they replaced the coolant sensor to explain every startup was fine or you're still having intermittent starting issues which may be related to more than one problem.

I have clear memories of picking out our Saturn and driving it out of the dealership with the balloons and cheering and clapping and "Congratulations" card, etc.


Alright, I found a bunch of my old Saturn records, going back in time with things that might be relevant (not including any of the most recent fixes that we've already discussed in this thread):

2019: new Fleet Farm battery; new engine valve cover gasket & new PCV

Between 2014 - 2019, I don't think there were any major repairs, just basic maintenance.

2014: another new fuel filter (GM OEM part this time with regulator); replaced belt, tensioner pulley, idler pulley; new PCV & another new valve cover gasket; new exhaust & muffler; new valve cover gasket

2012: new starter assembly (OCA N6445, 2-yr warranty); new neutral start switch; new fuel filter & spark plugs; check charging system & electrical; clean cables

2011: replaced thermostat & coolant/fan sensor

2010: new front & rear O2 sensors; new muffler & exhaust

2007: new spark plugs & ignition wires; new transmission fluid

2006: new water pump, belt

2005: poly cog belt

2004: new PCV

2003: flushed cooling system

2001: replaced spark plugs

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

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