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Old 09-18-2012, 11:32 AM   #21
madpogue
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1996 SW2
Default Re: Bad PCM?

Decommission the manual fan control and revert to the original wiring _now_. The fan is controlled by the PCM, and if it was not wired exactly right, a manual wiring job like that can end up providing bogus information to the PCM. From the behavior of the temp gauge, that's exactly what's happening. And that can affect how the engine runs.

Your most likely ultimate source of failure is a bad ECTS - engine coolant temperature sensor. Check the sticky threads in the How-To Library for more information on this sensor. It affects engine performance along with controlling the fan.

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Old 09-18-2012, 11:36 AM   #22
alordofchaos
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Default Re: Bad PCM?

Hi, Glenn,
Welcome to the forums. You may want to bookmark and visit often, as it is one of the most informative general forums for S-series Saturns that I have found.

It's usually best to start your own thread, rather than append a question to an old one. What happens is, people start reading from the original post from 2009 and start commenting on the original question, rather than responding to yours Sometimes it confuses people.

One good possiblity for your issue is the ECTS, or Engine Coolant Temperature Sensor. The factory suppied these cars with a resin-tipped sensor in the head. They all will crack eventually, leading to incorrect readings and possibly corroding the connector.

The good news is that the fix is cheap ($10 for the new, brass-tipped part, maybe $15 in Canada) and easy (about the equivalent of replacing one spark plug). First, though, you should undo whatever that backyard mechanic did.

Here's the richpin video on How to find/replace the ECTS . The How To Library will also have pictures

If you need to replace the connector, it will require soldering and shrink wrappiing the connections.

the ECTS provides some of the input for setting the idle speed and when to turn the fan on and off. Normal failure mode is to show the engine colder than it really is (meaning the fan will not turn on based on engine temp, but will when AC is on) and running rich at start (flooding, hard starting). It may cost you a few mpgs, too.

edit: 3 posts with good answers in a matter of minutes.... another thing I love about this place! A lot of forums, you check back a week or two after you post to see if anyone answered.

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Old 09-18-2012, 11:41 AM   #23
magtec
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Default Re: Bad PCM?

well, at least it's something everyone can agree on

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Old 09-18-2012, 01:44 PM   #24
GlennB
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Default Re: Bad PCM?

Gentlemen, thank you for your prompt responses. Now that the weather is turning to fall like temps, I will have the backyard mechanic restore the wiring. The video is excellent.

It's great to know that, for once, such a small (and inexpensive) part can have such far reaching effects.

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Old 09-18-2012, 02:13 PM   #25
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Default Re: Bad PCM?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
The video is excellent.
Don't forget to come back and post the results Next person that finds this thread will wonder if that was the right answer, otherwise

Our friend richpin has a lot of How To videos. Watch them, say "Hey, that looked easy" and get tempted to start fixing things yourself. That is how a lot of us got started... that is the only reason I undertook adding OEM cruise control to my car... it looked so darn easy (and was!)
http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=richpin06a

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