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Old 05-20-2007, 10:46 PM   #1
92[SL2]
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Default How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

I read somewhere, though i couldn't find it in the search, that there's a way to check if your EGR and solenoid is bad, or if it's just your EGR... i think it had something to do with fuses? anyone know/remember?
I need to do this test, to see if i need the solenoid,

unless theres another way to test the solenoid... im getting code 26 and 32

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Old 05-20-2007, 11:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

According to one of the Saturn techs the EGR valve will open, allowing exhaust into the intake manifold, above approximately 1200 rpm and close approx. at 2500 rpm. At idle the EGR valve stays closed; testing the EGR is simply to add vacuum to the inlet using something to create a vacuum or by mouth, if the vacuum pulls the valve open the EGR is fine. A sticky EGR valve would have deposits on the shaft restricting free movement when closing affecting the idle to the point of engine roughness to stalling.
The electric EGR solenoid valve controls the vacuum to the EGR valve and works off voltage from the ECM/PCM. You might be able to check for operation with a vacuum gauge or finger over the output when revving the engine, not sure of this but its worth a try otherwise it has to be checked while driving. You may be able to apply 12v directly to the solenoid while idling and if the solenoid works the valve will open to let vacuum operate the EGR valve and the engine idle will drop immediately so be ready to remove the 12v power if you don't want to engine to die.

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Old 05-21-2007, 12:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

I'm not familiar with the Saturn EGR setup yet, but typically the vacuum from the intake manifold increases when you rev the engine causing the valve to open allowing some exhaust to enter the intake manifold from the exhaust manifold through some ducting in the manifolds and cylinder head.

The valve has to close at idle because it'll cause the engine to die. The old way of testing it was to disconnect the vacuum hose from the valve, and suck on it or apply a vacuum pump. If the idling engine starts to idle very rough and starts to die, then your EGR is functioning properly and the ducting is not clogged.

Typically the EGR valve and ducting tend to get clogged up with carbon deposits from the exhaust. I have never had to replace an EGR valve, but I've had to clean several and also clean out the ducting.

It sounds (from fdryer's description) as if on Saturns, that the EGR valve is still operated by vacuum, but that there's also some sort of solenoid shutoff that can control access to the vacuum. I would guess that it would be typical for the solenoid to fail in one position (either opened or closed). Typically when the EGR stops working, it's closed.

The EGR when either stuck closed, or clogged up with soot will not effect how your engine runs. Your engine runs quite well without exhaust entering the intake. However, this does effect the smog output of the engine, and that's why they always check your EGR when you get a smog check, and if there's something wrong with it, they'll fail you.

So anyways, if the solenoid is closed, I would guess that applying a vacuum to the EGR will do nothing unless you can remove the solenoid and apply the vacuum directly to the EGR. If you can, then you can use the same old test that's always been used to test EGR's. Apply the vacuum during idle, and if the engine runs rough and almost dies or dies, then your EGR is fine.

Then try the same test with the solenoid inbetween the vacuum and the EGR, and if it doesn't work, then your solenoid is closed. Then apply the 12v to the solenoid, and see if the test starts to work. If it does, then your solenoid is fine. However, I'd check with these guys to find out if it's OK to connect the solenoid directly to 12v, or if you need a resistor inbetween.

Also, if your computer says your EGR is bad, and you do the EGR test without the solenoid in the way and it shows that your EGR is fine, then you must assume that the solenoid is the problem (cause what else could it be). If your EGR is not fine, before you replace it, clean out the ducting and the EGR and then try it. Then if it doesn't work, replace it.

Last edited by oseberg; 05-21-2007 at 12:41 AM..

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Old 05-21-2007, 10:45 AM   #4
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

Quote:
Fm > Oseberg
The EGR when either stuck closed,
or clogged up with soot will not effect how your engine runs. Your engine runs quite well without exhaust entering the intake.
A slight rebuttal >>>> it should be stressed though, when the idle drops below the 1,200 rpm thrushold, the car's engine will run very rough, and stall, in what will appear to be a vacuum leak >>>>>> the EGR is stuck open and a 32 code will be set.

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Old 05-21-2007, 05:31 PM   #5
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

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Originally Posted by Luke View Post
A slight rebuttal >>>> it should be stressed though, when the idle drops below the 1,200 rpm thrushold, the car's engine will run very rough, and stall, in what will appear to be a vacuum leak >>>>>> the EGR is stuck open and a 32 code will be set.
That's if it's stuck open and the passages aren't clogged. I've never seen that happen. I guess it could.

The engine runs fine without exhaust being recirulated through the engine. It can run find at high RPMS with exhaust being recirulated. It will idle very badly or not idle at all if the exhaust is being recirculated. (Thus the test described previously to check if the valve is working by causing it to open during idle and noticing the engine run crappy or die.)

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Old 05-21-2007, 05:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

Well, take the EGR valve off, push the pintle with a paperclip. If there's resistance, it's faulty and clean it...

I don't think that's what anyone has in mind, but it worked for me...

Nevermind, now I see solenoid...

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Old 05-22-2007, 08:10 AM   #7
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

Quote:
Originally Posted by oseberg View Post
That's if it's stuck open and the passages aren't clogged. I've never seen that happen. I guess it could.

The engine runs fine without exhaust being recirulated through the engine. It can run find at high RPMS with exhaust being recirulated. It will idle very badly or not idle at all if the exhaust is being recirculated. (Thus the test described previously to check if the valve is working by causing it to open during idle and noticing the engine run crappy or die.)
On our car the only time you could tell at all was at idle. Driving even under part throttle was fine, but as soon as the revs dropped it wanted to die quickly.

I never bothered to figure out which way it was stuck, but cleaning it cured the problem.

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Old 05-22-2007, 09:29 AM   #8
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

Quote:
Fm > Oseberg
That's if it's stuck open and the passages aren't clogged. I've never seen that happen. I guess it could.
I've found it happening when the car has some mileage on it (+100,00) and is using oil.
Carbon will build up in the orifice which leads from the exhaust into the base of the EGR, with the results being that small bits of carbon will lodge on the pintle base, thus preventing the EGR valve from fully closing > setting a 32 code.
With this state, the engine will idle rough and want to die. [IE perception of a vacuum leak]

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Old 05-22-2007, 11:34 PM   #9
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

I already know all the symptoms of a faulty egr valve,
my question was for the solenoid, located beside the cam cover... i read a post, that theres something you can do to test the solenoid only....

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Old 05-23-2007, 10:49 AM   #10
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

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Originally Posted by 92[SL2] View Post
I already know all the symptoms of a faulty egr valve,
my question was for the solenoid, located beside the cam cover... i read a post, that theres something you can do to test the solenoid only....
Any solenoid can be tested by giving it power, use an ohm meter to figure out which two pins are for the coil (there may be only two pins I can't remember if there's some feedback loop in the circuit) put 12volts across the two pins that read the lowest resistance (as in close to 0 ohms) the solenoid should pull in, if it doesn't try reversing the polarity, if it still doesn't move your solenoid is bad.

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Old 05-23-2007, 09:37 PM   #11
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Default Re: How to tell if an EGR solenoid is faulty using the paper clip

Quote:
Originally Posted by 92[SL2] View Post
I already know all the symptoms of a faulty egr valve,
my question was for the solenoid, located beside the cam cover... i read a post, that theres something you can do to test the solenoid only....
You check the resistance of the solenoid using an ohmmeter. It should read about 50 ohms+/- across the two terminals. Most common time they fail is when hot.

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