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Old 02-10-2016, 09:53 PM   #1
iamdigitalman
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1998 SW1
Default Bringing home an Ion

Hello folks.

Haven't been on this site for some time. My old 1998 SW1 is still running, though I just had to have the timing chain adjusted and the catalytic converter bypassed, so she's a bit noisy. Almost thought she bit it but she keeps on going.

Anyway, been looking at getting a newer car for some time now. I wanted something less than 10 years old, and something I could use to make money with ridesharing. This black beauty came up for sale, a 2007 Ion 3. Last year it was made, with 97k on the clock. I wanted to get a 2007 redline, but those can't be used for ridesharing (lyft says the car needs to have 4 doors that open inside and outside, and the quad coupe wouldn't fit). Shame, I like the look of the redline better, even the front clip.

it's specced out with almost every option as far as I can tell, even has the 2.4 liter engine and (I think) leather seats, sunroof, traction control, side airbags, and the rear spoiler. Only downside is it has the manual, and I don't know how to drive stick. But I'm gonna learn when I go to pick it up and bring it home tomorrow.

Car is in Ohio, about 3 hours from me. But it was such a good deal for it, and it's in fantastic condition.

Also, I do remember years ago as a kid, a friend's dad had just gotten one when they first came out. I thought the center cluster was a stupid idea, but it looks like it might provide better visibility. I know Toyota did this on the first gen Echo at least.

So, here's a pic. Just need to come up with a name. My SW1 is Sadie, my 87 Mercedes Benz 190D is Rudolf (though I'm gonna probably transfer the plate off that car and sell it). It will have a Ohio temp tag on it for the time being until I figure out what to do. Could get a custom plate... But transferring would be cheaper.


...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-11-2016, 12:21 PM   #2
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2005 ION Red Line
1999 SC2
Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Very nice, and sounds like it's pretty well loaded.

As for the center gauges, when I got my Red Line, it took me about 10 minutes to get used to them, and after an hour I preferred them. I still use the space in front of me, as I ended up attaching my GPS to the top of the steering column.

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Old 02-11-2016, 01:26 PM   #3
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

I have the hardest time getting used to the left turn indicator on the dash blinking at my right eye! lol. The echo, yaris, and the Scion XA all have that center cluster.

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Old 02-12-2016, 12:40 AM   #4
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Alright, I brought it home tonight. It drives beautifully, and I learned how to drive stick on the way back. Stalled it about a half dozen times, mostly getting into first. But after that it wasn't bad.

It's dark now, but I'll take and post some pics later.

On the way back, I found a few items that don't function. None are deal breakers, but none was mentioned in the listing. Just need to fix them. Here they are listed in order of severity:

- Cruise control doesn't work. I go to engage it, but nothing happens. The light comes on, but nothing else. No message, or anything. I'll check the fuse, but it might be a switch by the brake/clutch from my brief research.
-Map lights in front don't work. Either one. Probably just a fuse hopefully.
-No manual in glove box. Might be somewhere else. If not, I can print it off. Found a PDF version.
-Shift indicator on instrument cluster docent work. It doesn't even come on for the bulb check. Could just be a burned out bulb. Thought they were LEDs, but at least the ones for the turn signal indicators appear to be incandescent. I'm learning to shift without it though.
-I'm not sure, but I think the switches on the drivers door should be lit up, and they aren't. The ones in my other saturn aren't, so I don't know.
-When I went to put down the visor on my side, the vanity mirror nearly fell off. Looks like the pegs on the left side don't attach anymore. I don't know if they click into the visor or what. Might just put some glue on them and press them into the holes.

Thats all I can think of. Car is awesome. I love having something with so few miles and made in the last decade again. Now I just need to work on refining my shifting, and this will be a great commuter/ridesharing vehicle.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-12-2016, 11:14 AM   #5
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Damn, that's a beautiful Ion. Issues aside I'd say you've got a great newer vehicle.

...
2004 Ion Coupe 3 Quad - Wife's
2004 Jeep Liberty Sport - Mine

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Old 02-12-2016, 02:45 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Well I checked the fuse box in the engine bay, nothing there for the interior lights or cruise control. Theres probably a secondary fuse box inside somewhere. I'll look at the manual. Thank goodness I have a laser printer, will make it easy to print that booklet out.

And while I was looking at the fuses, I was head scratching where is the battery? I saw the fuse box has a post on it for the positive terminal, for jump starting. I figured it would be in the trunk somewhere, some cars do that now. Looked on both sides, found the XM module (found out it has XM radio by accident. dunno if I'm gonna activate it, same with Onstar). Then I pulled the carpet up on the bottom, and boom! in the bay with the spare tire. How weird. And it looks to be original. ACDelco brand. Might be getting old. The one in my SW1 is from 2009.

Just needs new wiper blades, and i'll get an oil change so i know when it was last changed, and it'll be ready to work for me.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-12-2016, 03:02 PM   #7
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2007 ION-2 Sedan
2001 ION-2 Sedan
Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Congrats on the new ION. Looks like my '07, same color & standard too. Got mine with just over 97K and it now has almost 190K.
On your issues:
- Cruise control doesn't work. I go to engage it, but nothing happens. The light comes on, but nothing else. No message, or anything. I'll check the fuse, but it might be a switch by the brake/clutch from my brief research.
Don't use mine, so really can't help you on that.
-Map lights in front don't work. Either one. Probably just a fuse hopefully.
If not fuse may be the bulbs. I had issue withe sunroof on mine leaking and water dripped down along headliner windshield and assume it blew out one of mine.
-Shift indicator on instrument cluster docent work. It doesn't even come on for the bulb check. Could just be a burned out bulb. Thought they were LEDs, but at least the ones for the turn signal indicators appear to be incandescent. I'm learning to shift without it though.
I think they are little incandescent like the ones that light up dash. Couple of mine are out. I don't use the indicator, follow the RPMs on the tach.
-I'm not sure, but I think the switches on the drivers door should be lit up, and they aren't. The ones in my other saturn aren't, so I don't know.
Mine don't light up either. I go by feel.
-When I went to put down the visor on my side, the vanity mirror nearly fell off. Looks like the pegs on the left side don't attach anymore. I don't know if they click into the visor or what. Might just put some glue on them and press them into the holes.
Did the mirror itself fall off or the cover? The cover on mine broke, but no issues with the mirror itself. Should not fall out unless someone messed with visor.

I like the center gauges on mine. Did not take any getting used to them.

...
John
'03 Ion2
'07 Ion2
'00 SL1 (just died)

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Old 02-13-2016, 10:34 PM   #8
iamdigitalman
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Quote:
Originally Posted by lt230s View Post
Congrats on the new ION. Looks like my '07, same color & standard too. Got mine with just over 97K and it now has almost 190K.
On your issues:
- Cruise control doesn't work. I go to engage it, but nothing happens. The light comes on, but nothing else. No message, or anything. I'll check the fuse, but it might be a switch by the brake/clutch from my brief research.
Don't use mine, so really can't help you on that.
-Map lights in front don't work. Either one. Probably just a fuse hopefully.
If not fuse may be the bulbs. I had issue withe sunroof on mine leaking and water dripped down along headliner windshield and assume it blew out one of mine.
-Shift indicator on instrument cluster docent work. It doesn't even come on for the bulb check. Could just be a burned out bulb. Thought they were LEDs, but at least the ones for the turn signal indicators appear to be incandescent. I'm learning to shift without it though.
I think they are little incandescent like the ones that light up dash. Couple of mine are out. I don't use the indicator, follow the RPMs on the tach.
-I'm not sure, but I think the switches on the drivers door should be lit up, and they aren't. The ones in my other saturn aren't, so I don't know.
Mine don't light up either. I go by feel.
-When I went to put down the visor on my side, the vanity mirror nearly fell off. Looks like the pegs on the left side don't attach anymore. I don't know if they click into the visor or what. Might just put some glue on them and press them into the holes.
Did the mirror itself fall off or the cover? The cover on mine broke, but no issues with the mirror itself. Should not fall out unless someone messed with visor.

I like the center gauges on mine. Did not take any getting used to them.
The mirror was detached from the left side, the whole mirror, not just the cover. I pulled it off the rest of the way for now, broke some of the plastic pins in the process. It's in my glove box. Might just put some glue on the posts and push it back into place. My SW1 never had one on the drivers side, only the passenger, and no cover over it. Never really had a need for it, but I would like to repair it.

How hard is it to take out the cluster? Might just do an LED conversion, I'm sure others have done that. I swear the fasten seatbelt one looks to be LED.

Did the switches on yours ever light up?

I do know where the secondary fuse box is, it's on the drivers side. I'll pop it open and have a look. My other saturn has 2 as well, the second one is on the inside. Had to have that replaced years ago because the body fuse connector burned up. On those they ran the 12 volt outlet through the body fuse, and I used to run an inverter. Too much current. And it prevented the whole car from starting. Not a good design.

I am getting used to shifting without the indicator. Not that hard. Only been driving stick for 3 days, but it feels so natural. Went to drive my wagon today, and I was having a hell of a time with the clutch. Then I realized there wasn't one. lol.

Think I only stalled a few times today, getting into first is getting easier. But reverse is a bit of a dance. Also filled it up for the second time, first time I accidentally reset the trip so the mpg wouldn't be accurate. Got 26 I think. I'll add my fuelly trackers for both cars to my signature.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-13-2016, 10:50 PM   #9
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

So I just went to go update info about this car on my Fuelly account, and when I put in what trim it was, it said it needs premium gas in the 2.4. Whoops, I've been putting in regular. I did notice a slight rattling, and from what I have been reading its because of the spark knock. I'll fill it with premium from now on.

I did hear a whirring sound as I accelerated from a dead stop. Maybe that was part of it too. Thought it was a turbo, sounds almost like one. But theres no mention of the 2.4L being turbocharged online or in the manual.

Also, I was wondering, if these cars ever came with floor mats. My other saturn did, but I didn't get any in this one. I have some all weather rubber ones in my other saturn i'll put them in there for now. Might try and get some custom weather tech ones. I have heard those are the best.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-14-2016, 11:30 AM   #10
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

The switches don't light up. The cruise could be a fuse (inside the console on the driver's side), brake lights out, or a brake/abs fault indicator light is on (you have both and tcs, any errors disable cruise control) do these lights work during the bulb test? It could also be one of the two clutch switches. The visor screws in, not just push in. Get the right screw. I believe lights out on the dash require replacing the instrument panel, you would have to disassemble it to confirm. The trunk mounted battery has to be the proper vented battery, please don't just put any battery in it.

...
2007 Saturn Ion 2
2003 Chevrolet venture lt

trifecta dealer for the U.P. and WI. There is no two door ion. Proudly driving one of the last saturns produced before gm killed the brand.

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Old 02-16-2016, 07:25 PM   #11
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

That looks like a beautiful car!

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Old 02-17-2016, 11:48 PM   #12
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Great Ion you found and bought, congratulations!Just FYI - the upshift indicator light was disabled on the cars equipped with the 2.4 engine. I've never seen mine come on after 10 years of driving it.

...
2015 Buick Verano Turbo
5 - 2006 Ion 3 Sedan, Manual, Storm Grey
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:33 PM   #13
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tethys View Post
Great Ion you found and bought, congratulations!Just FYI - the upshift indicator light was disabled on the cars equipped with the 2.4 engine. I've never seen mine come on after 10 years of driving it.
Really? Any reason why? In the manual it doesn't say that. but then again the manual is wrong about my car in one other way, as you will see further down. I guess they wanted you to have fun with the car? I know another car based off the Delta platform, the Cobalt XFE's shift light comes on around 2k. According to Regular Car Reviews, its due to the fuel efficient nature of the car.

So, I finally had some time to pop open the map light housing, and I feel like such and idiot! There were no bulbs installed! A quick run to Advance, and much cursing later (I accidentally pushed to hard on the right socket, and can't get it out. Was trying for 15 minutes with a pair of pliers, accidentally shorting it a couple times until I wrapped them in some paper, but I managed to get the bulb in it). I went with LEDs so I won't have to worry about replacing them again. I went with cool whites, and I'm thinking of doing a LED conversion on at least the remaining interior lights. I know the middle one is a different bulb (might be the same as in my other saturn), and I couldn't find a LED for it. Also going to do the trunk light, and maybe the license plate light for now. That one is the same bulb as the map lights, and the one that is there works but is dim.

Here are some pics of the operation:


Housing after I took the cover off. Was easy enough to figure out. 2 clips in the back, hinged in the front.


New LED bulbs installed. You can see the one on the right is at a weird angle because the socket is pushed in now. If I have some more time I will try using pliers and a flat blade screw driver to try and pop it back out. Hopefully the clips aren't broken on the sides of the socket.


Cover back on, I really like how they look, more energy efficient and cool white, not warm white/yellow.

Also, I popped the left cover off to get to the interior fuse panel. I discovered something interesting. First off, let's look at el manual, page 376:


you can plainly see a fuse marked "cruse" on the left side, above the air bag fuse.

Now let's look at the diagram on mine:


As you can see, same spot where the cruse fuse is in the manual, is one labeled CLTCH/BRK. And yes, it was already starting to peel off when I pulled the cover off.

Is this specific to Ions with a stick? Do they not have cruise control? If not, what are the buttons on the steering wheel for? Too cheap to put in a different wheel or blanks?

Or is there something I am missing here? of all 3 of my cars, all have cruise control, but none work. My other saturn's PCM was replaced, and it hasn't worked since. My Mercedes, I fixed the module under the foot well, it worked for a month, then the stalk broke. I really miss that feature.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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Old 02-23-2016, 09:58 PM   #14
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

If the wheel has the buttons, you have cruise.

...
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2003 Chevrolet venture lt

trifecta dealer for the U.P. and WI. There is no two door ion. Proudly driving one of the last saturns produced before gm killed the brand.

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Old 02-24-2016, 03:59 PM   #15
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

To elaborate, there could be several things stopping the cruise from working. The buttons (pull them out and check with a multimeter), the wiring, the clock spring (does the horn work? ), the abs/tcs/brake error lights/messages cannot be present (burnt out bulbs? Do bulb check), you must have all working brake light bulbs, andyou must have a working clutch switch (you have two, one at each end of travel, afaik, can be checked with a multimeter), and of coarse, the fuses must be good.

I'm not sure about the labeling confusion, but this is a fairly simple system.

...
2007 Saturn Ion 2
2003 Chevrolet venture lt

trifecta dealer for the U.P. and WI. There is no two door ion. Proudly driving one of the last saturns produced before gm killed the brand.

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Old 04-22-2016, 04:16 AM   #16
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Default Re: Bringing home an Ion

ok, after owning this car for several months, I can honestly say it's been a great ride.

It's now got 101k on it. Still need to get the cruise control fixed, gonna just break down and take it to a dealer one day.

The mirror I ripped off I need to fix. It's been hanging out in my glove box since I bought the car. Haven't really needed it though, but it would be nice to get it fixed. Got some Methel Ethel Keytone from Lowes, it's supposed to weld plastic together. Gonna use it to fix the tabs on the dome light in my SW1, super glue doesn't work.

I need to get some onyx black touch up paint, I noticed a small scuff on the edge of the hood, and some scratches in the trunk lid, unless maybe some clear coat should work. Think those scratches are my fault for using a ice scraper to clean the car off one day.

I'm going to invest in a Scanguage II and a blend mount to mount it above the mirror when i get some money ahead. Would be nice to know real time fuel economy, among other info. Plus it can be used for clearing fault codes. I do have a regular scanner in the SW1 I ran on this car, it found nothing. Though I did enroll the car in Progressive Snapshot (did it on my SW1 end of last year, they couldn't save me any money because I rarely drive that car), so that will be occupying my OBD port for the next month or so.

I also need to get a replacement shift boot, the one on mine flaked off on top, and a few other places are starting. I know the original is vinyl, but I found a aftermarket replacement on Amazon for $50 that is real leather. And they have different colors, so if I don't want black with black stitching, I can do something else. Maybe a light tan to match the rest of the interior.

I will also be investing in a aftermarket TPMS soon. I dunno why Saturn never bothered to put them on the Ions, since it was mandated for the 2007 model year I thought, but maybe there was some loophole for cars that weren't going to be produced after 07. I found a nice system, the sensors act as valve caps, and they lock down, which is good because someone stole one of mine. And the display mounts to the dashboard, which with the 12 volt outlet where it is, that's nice.

Going to have to figure out my power situation soon. I routed a 6 foot micro usb cable behind the trim, around the steering wheel in the gap where it raises and lowers, and the end comes out above that little pocket to the left of the wheel, for my phone. However, i drive for Lyft, and I need another USB for a passenger in the front, and 1 in the back. I bought a couple 4 in one retractable cable off amazon, so I will have one for the front seat, and one for the back seat. I also need a 12 volt socket for the TPMS, and at some point I want to get a dash cam (waiting on the LyfeLens to drop), so that's 3 USB in the front, plus a extra 12 volt socket. I want something low profile, as there isn't a lot of room down by the socket. Right now I have a low profile 2 port USB adapter. The Scanguage will get it's power from the OBD port, and automatically shuts off.

Also found out the trunk is large enough to swallow a wheel chair, which is nice, as I had a passenger with one last week. Of course it was the first time my trunk was used on the job, and of course I had something else of mine back there. I did find the space around the spare tire is big enough to keep most of my misc stuff, my 12 volt hand vacuum, a gallon of windshield solvent, and my snow brush, but I can't fit my jumper cables under there. They are pretty thick and long. Might have to figure out how to strap them to the top of the trunk.

My next thing to do to this car, is to finish the LED retrofit. I want to get bulbs for the dome and trunk light, and I bought one for the license plate (it's the same one as the map lights), but one of the screws is rusted and stripped, so I need to get my hands on a drill and one of those bits that can get those screws out. I am debating on doing other exterior lights, but maybe the brake lights so I don't have to worry about them going out.

...
1998 SW1 gold/charcoal bumper with 168,000 miles on it (grandmother's car). originally had 21,266 miles on it when I started driving it.

My baby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM0AYfRbgM8

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