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Old 12-06-2009, 10:12 AM   #1
JoeFromPA
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Default Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

Hey all,

My father in laws 03 Saturn Ion (now with Zero bearing noise!) is now acting up again.

I'm familiar with the basics: ignition switch relies on grease for conductivity. Grease hardens in ~32 or less weather. Trips security system. Wait 10 minutes and sometimes starts up like there's no problem.

I need to fix this for them fast: I work full-time and I'm in business school as well finishing up finals right now.

Here's the unique aspect: the original owner of the car has this special Saturn security system that has a unique fob you need to have on your key ring. Says "Identity" on it. Supposedly cost $600 or so and is an anti-theft device.

Does this make anything different about replacing the ignition switch? How about re-programming the passlock sequence?

Lastly, I'd like to re-confirm the sequence of fixing this:

1. Remove cover on top of steering column (plastic cover) by pulling up.

2. Remove lower cover of steering column by removing a few 7mm screws/bolts and pulling down.

3. Remove black-box ignition switch under the steering column via a torx 15 driver.

4. Either replace the black box with newer design, or...

4a. Take apart black box, wipe off some old grease somewhere in there, and replace with new di-electric cold temperature grease?

5. Reverse installation and then follow pass-lock re-learn sequence.


On #5: is there a possibility of seriously screwing up the car if the sequence is interrupted for any reason? I just want to cover my bases.

Joe

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Old 12-06-2009, 10:30 AM   #2
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

Search the links at the bottom of this page, I bet the answer is in there...

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2001 SL1 Auto 298,252 miles
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Old 12-06-2009, 02:40 PM   #3
JoeFromPA
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

I've spent an additional 20-30 minutes looking through stuff and I did find some nice how-too videos.

However, I have yet to see any mention of the "identity" key fob that needs to stay with both the remote lock/unlock fob and the car key.

Is anyone familiar with this system and whether it modifies the ignition switch replacement procedure?

Thanks,

Joe

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Old 12-06-2009, 02:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

I've never heard of an additional security package when I went to build my car on the website, nor any mention of an "identity" labeled fob.

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Old 12-06-2009, 04:44 PM   #5
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

Hmm, well crap. I guess that makes it a dealer add-on (all I know is that it was bought at the dealer at the urging of the salesperson).

Guess I'll just replace the ignition switch as normal and pray that they don't have some bizarre security system that disables the car

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Old 12-06-2009, 04:45 PM   #6
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

just replace it, don't waste time trying to clean/regrease it. And yes, that extra system you have is an add-on, it did not come from the factory.

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Old 12-06-2009, 05:22 PM   #7
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

Quote:
Originally Posted by plato View Post
just replace it, don't waste time trying to clean/regrease it. And yes, that extra system you have is an add-on, it did not come from the factory.
how? if they get a new switch, it's possible the aftermarket system feeds off the passlock signal from the switch. when you get a new switch, the resistance changes, making passlock send a "bad" signal. hopefully this will not stop you from being able to setup passlock.

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Old 12-07-2009, 12:00 PM   #8
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Default Re: Servicing or replacing 03 Ion Ignition Switch - Looking for some unique help

I guess it all depends on what you think is easier/better. Buying a new ignition switch for 30ish dollars and taking your car apart to get it in. Or taking apart your old ignition switch and cleaning/regreasing it with the correct grease that might cost a couple dollars. I did the latter a while back and its worked fine ever since. Either way you have to take a few things apart, whats one more thing (the ignition switch) going to hurt? The switch can be a little bit of a pain to take apart and put together, at least it was for me, I was trying to be careful. But slow and steady works, and if you are even a little mechanical and look at the videos on the internet it should work.

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