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Old 07-20-2014, 10:46 PM   #1
kdeinv
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Default Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Hello

Just bought a used 2009 Saturn Aura with 65K miles on it for $11,000 out the door. I have made the sale contingent on an inspection but from what I can see the car looks and drives pretty good.

It has the 2.4 Liter engine and I guess the 6 speed trany, which I believe is the same combo with the chevy malibus. Bought it for my 17 year old son as it has good safety ratings.

What should I have a mechanic look for as far as problem areas. I know the 6 speed trany can have issues but it seemed to shift smooth on the interstate as well as downshifting.

The electronics (Windows, door locks, horn, power mirrors, wipers) all seemto work. The carfax report said the trany was flushed at 56K miles and new front brake pads were installed and rotors were resurfaced. It looks like the dealer put new Primewell tires on it and they appear to be noisy. The car seemed to drive straight so hopefully no alignment issues.

The dex cool in the overflow looked OK. I did play with the cruise control and it engages but could not get it to increase or decrease with the buttons.

The oil pan was a little wet but not too bad.

Anything else that I should be aware of? I doubt their will be anything major wrong but I want to steer the mechanic to some obvious issues.

Thanks In Advance

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Old 07-20-2014, 11:09 PM   #2
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

This is a good start

http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/owners/SearchSafetyIssues

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Old 07-21-2014, 02:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

First thing I'd personally do is dump those cheap, Chinese tires. I'm good friends with a Firestone dealer who sells those tires and he admits they are garbage. Especially when snow is part of the equation (not sure where you're located) as they provide zero traction. All the safe accolades of the Aura are moot if you're riding around on sub-par tires.

Second thing I'd do is give a local GM service dept a call with your VIN to check for any outstanding recalls. The only one that may impact you is a brake light switch one.

Sounds like everything else has been addressed. Maybe check for strut leaks or other loose/worn suspension bits. Also make sure the there are no "bumps" or noises when steering as you may need to change the intermediary steering shaft. There's a revised part from GM.

At 100K, I'd change the plugs, DexCool, brake fluid and do another transmission fluid change. Other than that, there's not much else to do.

More common issues/weak points are failing door lock actuators, dead key fobs, INOP front speakers and camshaft sensors (will throw a P0011 code).

Other not as common issues are bad instrument clusters, clogged catalytic converters and water leaks into the cabin.

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Old 07-21-2014, 08:51 PM   #4
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Thanks

Had the car looked over by a mechanic and the only thing they noticed was the loud noise of the Chinese made tires Primewell P900s. Also they needed to replace the battery as it must have gotten weak sitting on the lot as it could not keep a charge.

The other thing I noticed was the vanity mirror case on the drivers side was broken and would not turn the mirror light on when you lifted it up.

Also I noticed that when driving with the cruise on the + and - buttons on the steering wheel were not working to raise or lower the speed. (Not sure if the switch in the steering wheel controls was bad or not)

Other than the noisy tires and the battery the car looks to be in good condition.

I live in GA so normally snow is not a big factor except for last year's incident.

Hope the transmission and engine lasts a long time. The transmission fluid was flushed per carfax about 12,000 miles ago.

Have to see if I can get some better tires for it.

Thanks

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Old 07-22-2014, 05:18 PM   #5
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Just got the car back from the dealership. They replaced the battery and detailed the vehicle.

Checking over the owners manual for the 2.4 liter XE.

Dexcool Antifreeze (How frequent do you flush and refill this). Is there a procudure outlined somewhere on this site on how to do this?

The car has about 66K on it so I am thinking about replacing it althoough it looks pretty clean in the resevoir (Red color). I have some Havoline Dexcool that is Orange in color. Is it OK to mix the 2? Not sure what has been used or if it has been replaced.

I guess the Oil filter is a cannister style from what I can tell. Also what 5W30 oil do you use. (I use 5W20 Motorcraft oil in my other cars - semi-synthetic)

I also realized that the 2.4 liter does not have a trany dipstick which seems strange to me. Just a plug to determine if the level is proper.

No power steering fluid to leak but I guess the electic motor can go bad.

The trany shows as being flushed at 58K. Not sure what the entailed but probably not dropping the pan and changing the filter.

Overall the car looks good I am just worried about how the trany will hold up.

Thanks

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Old 07-23-2014, 08:47 AM   #6
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Scroll down the Aura General section and find my thread regarding 2009 Aura Maintenance.

In there you'll find all the info you're looking for regarding the transmission and more.

Basically - there is no filter you can drop the pan to access. Apparently it's built up into the transmission and is not serviceable.

The fluid level must be checked in a VERY detailed and specific way. If I were you, I'd at least check it per the specified method you'll find in the thread I mentioned.

The oil must meet "dexos1" standards I believe. I used Mobil 1 full syn, it had an approval for dexos1 right on the label.

The antifreeze is said to be good to 100k miles. Mine is at 115k and previous owners DID NOT maintain the car, so I know it was never flushed, and it's still nice and clean so I'm not too worried about it, but I do plan on doing it soon.

The oil filter is a cartridge type - accessed from under the hood, just below the plastic intake manifold - you'll see a black cap - 32mm nut size, requires a special socket tool to remove cap and change filter.

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Old 07-23-2014, 10:49 AM   #7
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Thanks for the info.

I tend to change my own oil and do other maintenance myself.

My Kia Sedona minivan has a cartridge filter as well. Easier to access from the top. Based on the carfax the transmission was flushed about 12K ago at 53K. It has 65K now.

My biggest fear is having trany issues. Hopefully I will not encounter any issues and the car lasts my son through 2 more year of high school and possibly college.

The car was leased and looks like it had been taken care of from what I can tell.

Do not like not having a trany dipstick to at least check the fluid level.

Thanks

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Old 07-23-2014, 11:37 AM   #8
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

I'd probably do the tranny again at 75k, then every 25k after that. It's somewhat of an extensive job to do the drain/fill yourself. My local GM shop wanted $200 to do the "flush" method. For $35 in fluid, I did the drain/fill myself. Took about 2 hours in the driveway. You can only recover about 4.3 quarts out of this method.

FWIW - GM says the fluid and filter in these transmissions are "lifetime" and require no maintenance.So anything you're doing to it is far and above what GM said it needed.

I can assure you, calling it lifetime fluid is a joke, at 114k when I drained my trans, the fluid was pure black and had very little lubrication properties. It was like black water. Of course, the GM specified Dexron VI that you must put in there came right out of the jug like red water. lol So hey, at least I serviced it. Drove the car around the neighborhood a few miles to come back and check proper fluid level and it was already dark black again. I'm going to do mine at each oil change for the next 3 or 4 times.

I'm like you - biggest fear is transmission issues!

...
John
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Previous - '01 SL1 daily driver and '96 SL2 auto 40+mpg hypermiler.

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Old 07-23-2014, 02:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

That's a lot of overkill on frequency in regards to changing the transmission fluid.

There were issues with the wave plate in 6T70 which is what the XR's 3.6L is matted to. For 2009 the XE/XR's 2.4 is matted to the 6T40 which has proven to be very reliable.

As long as the correct Dexron VI is used, you can go 50K or more between changes (GM recommends change intervals of 160,000 km/100,000 miles normal, or 80,000 km/50,000 miles severe.)

http://www.gmpowertrain.com/VehicleE...DEXRON-VI.aspx

http://www.gmls4.com/index.php?topic=604.0

Additionally the use of Dexos1 is not required on the 2.4. You can use what ever oil you'd like as long as the change frequency is sufficient. GM uses Dexos1 as a "global" oil beginning with the 2011 MY. This was a result of overconfident oil life monitoring systems GM installed which led to all the 3.6L timing chain failures. I never trusted mine and changed as 60% or 5K miles, what ever came first.

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Last edited by golftango; 07-23-2014 at 02:52 PM..

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Old 07-23-2014, 03:15 PM   #10
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

FWIW - I have been informed that "Flushing" the transmission is not a good idea as it can move debris around in the transmission possibly clogging the micro-engineered valve system causing shift change problems.
The recommended oil change process is "drain and fill".

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Old 07-23-2014, 05:33 PM   #11
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seasoned View Post
FWIW - I have been informed that "Flushing" the transmission is not a good idea as it can move debris around in the transmission possibly clogging the micro-engineered valve system causing shift change problems.
The recommended oil change process is "drain and fill".
Only Honda does not recommend this. If you use a "flush" method which extracts/refills via the transmission cooling line, then you're good. A back-flush machine is what you want to avoid.

And OP, Dexcool is good for 100K.

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Old 04-17-2015, 09:03 PM   #12
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Hello

My son's 2009 Saturn Aura XE still has a rattling diesel sound when you first start the engine and put it in reverse. He did get a check engine light and I replaced both the Intake and Exhaust actuators. The code is gone but the rattling sound is still there.

I am thinking that the Timing belt tensioner needs to be replaced and it appears to be simply a screw in type of bolt with a piston. I believe the 2009 models have the upgraded one. PArt No 12608580.

I have found from other forums that replacing this tensioner stops the startup noise. Has anyone replaced this part and is it simply just unscrew the old one (32MM) and put in the new one? I hear that this part has a piston that you want activated once screwed in. I just do not want to mess up the timing while removing the old and replacing with the new.

Any advice?

Thanks

Thanks

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Old 04-17-2015, 10:42 PM   #13
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

plus and minus on the steering wheel is for shifting not cruise control.

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Old 04-27-2015, 02:57 PM   #14
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Default Re: Just Bought a 2009 Aura XE with 65K

Quote:
Originally Posted by kdeinv View Post
Hello

My son's 2009 Saturn Aura XE still has a rattling diesel sound when you first start the engine and put it in reverse. He did get a check engine light and I replaced both the Intake and Exhaust actuators. The code is gone but the rattling sound is still there.

I am thinking that the Timing belt tensioner needs to be replaced and it appears to be simply a screw in type of bolt with a piston. I believe the 2009 models have the upgraded one. PArt No 12608580.

I have found from other forums that replacing this tensioner stops the startup noise. Has anyone replaced this part and is it simply just unscrew the old one (32MM) and put in the new one? I hear that this part has a piston that you want activated once screwed in. I just do not want to mess up the timing while removing the old and replacing with the new.

Any advice?

Thanks

Thanks
There's no timing belt on the Aura.

You mean the accessory belt tensioner?

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