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Old 01-19-2017, 09:46 PM   #1
Duhminic
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Default 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Hey everyone I'm wondering if you guys can help me. I have a 2000 Saturn sl SOHC, getting really bad gas mileage now like I can see it fall when I drive, recently the service engine soon came on (p0442) for Evap, but I'm wondering what I can do to fix my gas Mileage. What I've done to the car is removed the stock air intake replaced with a custom cold air intake. Replaced fuel filter with a duralast filter (heard wix is the best one). New oil and filter. Also replaced ECTS with a brass junkyard one, and a brand new thermostat. Just wondering why my gas mileage is so bad ??

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Old 01-20-2017, 08:01 AM   #2
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

First get rid of all that aftermarket crap on the car. That is number 1. That crap does absolutely NOTHING good for you. Put it all back stock. Make sure the engine is TRULY operating at proper running temps, make sure you have a new ECTS then and ONLY then get back to us here and report your mpg. Until then all you're doing is pi$$ing into the wind and wasting your time and all you'll get is further frustration.
You have to decide if you want it to be a gas hog pseudo ricer or a good running dependable little economy car (which is really all it is) or should be anyway

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Old 01-20-2017, 09:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Quote:
Originally Posted by underthehood View Post
First get rid of all that aftermarket crap on the car. That is number 1. That crap does absolutely NOTHING good for you. Put it all back stock.
Yep - this car is fairly new to you, right?

Whenever doing things with a car, go slow and steady. Create and record a good baseline performance measurement, then change one thing at a time, test for a while, then do the next thing.

What was your MPG before you did all those changes? If you can't provide an exact number, what you have done is, "Hey, I changed 10 things and my car isn't running right, but I don't know which of the 10 things I did may be the cause, or maybe it was a problem before I changed those 10 things and not related to what I did, so can you guys over the internet tell me which one thing is the problem?"

I bought an '02 SC2 a few months ago, had a few issues (high 3.5k rpm idle, poor mpg, and battery died overnight, for starters). Some of the first things I did were remove the aftermarket air intake/filter, throttle body, and stereo, and replaced with OEM parts (except the stereo, removed the aftermarket stereo the previous owner installed and put my aftermarket own in).

Voila! the high idle went away and the battery stopped draining over night.

I've measured out two gas fillups (fill with gas until it clicks off, reset the trip odometer to zero. At next fillup, fill with gas until it clicks off, write down the miles travelled, reset the trip odometer, then divide the miles travelled by gallons need to fill. Repeat).

So, after two fillups, I know for a fact that I am getting 29.5 mpg*. This is my baseline (based on my other Saturn and driving, I should be getting about 34~35 mpg). I will next make changes, record mileage, and then I will know how I am doing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duhminic
What I've done to the car is removed the stock air intake replaced with a custom cold air intake.
Other than looks, provides no benefit. The stock air provides plenty of flow, is a cold air intake already, and almost certainly does a better job of filtering.

Quote:
Replaced fuel filter with a duralast filter (heard wix is the best one).
If you were getting good gas mileage before, this might be your problem. Read here, particularly posts 9 & 11
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=202222

Quote:
New oil and filter.
No worries here.

Quote:
Also replaced ECTS with a brass junkyard one, and a brand new thermostat.
Probably OK. Leave these for now pending further testing
Quote:
recently the service engine soon came on (p0442) for Evap
Check your gas cap is on properly tight, and that the rubber seal is not cracked, then read here:
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=74121

(when ever you have a OBDII code, best course of action is to search for the code - for example, put this in google:

P0442 site:saturnfans.com

The "site:saturnfans.com" part of the search string restricts the search to the saturnfans domain, so that your search results don't include, for example, how to deal with P0442 in your Ferrari

MPG is affected by a ton of things, including how you drive, where you drive, and a few dozen things in your car. We've had people ask the exact same question, and after some guessing and questions, find out they are driving 100% city stop & go and have an automatic transmission - and their mileage is 100% normal for that type of driving.

*edit: why does knowing that it's 29 mpg matter? "I am getting really bad gas mileage" doesn't tell me if you are getting 35 mpg when you normally get 40, or if you are getting 6 mpg when you normally get 37. "Bad" means different things to different people, under different circumstances. If I were getting 29 mpg in our minivan, I would be ecstatic

As mentioned, I drove a nearly identical car, my 5 spd '98 SL2 and know that I normally get 34~35 mpg commuting. So, when I say I get "bad" mpg, I mean I am getting 29 when I normally get 34. I know it's not a gas leak because my "bad" mileage would be worse; I know it's not an alignment issue because either my mpg would be higher or I would feel the alignment issue when I was driving, if my alignment were that far off.

...
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Last edited by alordofchaos; 01-20-2017 at 09:45 AM..

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Old 01-20-2017, 01:42 PM   #4
gen3thirdowner
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Stick to the stock air box and filter for mpgbut what helped me was making sure my tires were at the right pressure as well as swapping out the plugs and o2 sensors but I had the downstream go then the upstream. After a new filter and denso copper plugs as well as denso for my o2

Granted I just did a pcm swap so my car hasn't gone through a cycle yet so I'm getting poor mileage at this exact moment but I also took out my jack and the spare tire and am thinking about removing the passenger seat since I drive alone. Besides a bad gas cap do you think you have an exhaust leak? Mines bad enough now it probably plays a role

But that's just me a car that's new to me will probably need a tune up before it's truly ready to shine with the previous owners I have encountered


Here's the show stopper it works with android and is only 20$ sadly I don't have one but you better believe I will soon since I'm certain this is the code scanner that does fuel and air ratio and whatnot

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0..._rd_i=15707381

It even supports windows phones .....wow

Last edited by gen3thirdowner; 01-20-2017 at 01:51 PM..

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Old 01-20-2017, 10:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Quote:
Originally Posted by gen3thirdowner View Post
Stick to the stock air box and filter for mpgbut what helped me was making sure my tires were at the right pressure as well as swapping out the plugs and o2 sensors but I had the downstream go then the upstream. After a new filter and denso copper plugs as well as denso for my o2

Granted I just did a pcm swap so my car hasn't gone through a cycle yet so I'm getting poor mileage at this exact moment but I also took out my jack and the spare tire and am thinking about removing the passenger seat since I drive alone. Besides a bad gas cap do you think you have an exhaust leak? Mines bad enough now it probably plays a role

But that's just me a car that's new to me will probably need a tune up before it's truly ready to shine with the previous owners I have encountered


Here's the show stopper it works with android and is only 20$ sadly I don't have one but you better believe I will soon since I'm certain this is the code scanner that does fuel and air ratio and whatnot

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0..._rd_i=15707381

It even supports windows phones .....wow
Thanks for the info. I put the stock air intake back on. I read that the fuel pressure may be too high? i have a duralast fuel filter on. When i have the money I'm thinking of getting the wix fuel filter, maybe that will help out? and anything else i should try to do?

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Old 01-21-2017, 07:47 AM   #6
underthehood
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Why did you ever bother with the filter in the first place? Waste of time and $$$ for most part. Unless you've knowingly put a load of bad fuel in the tank. I have not changed a fuel filter in like 15 years. All my cars either went to car heaven or were sold with the original filter in them. (most with well over 200k miles) and no issues. They either dies from rust out or accident.
If you still have the old one put it back. Save your $$$ for repairs that you will REALLY need not for troubles you cause yourself

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Old 01-21-2017, 08:25 AM   #7
gen3thirdowner
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duhminic View Post
Thanks for the info. I put the stock air intake back on. I read that the fuel pressure may be too high? i have a duralast fuel filter on. When i have the money I'm thinking of getting the wix fuel filter, maybe that will help out? and anything else i should try to do?
Only replace something if you have proof it's faulty. Listen to these members that have high post count they have saved me from my **** ups. Honestly I would just hook it up to a device that can monitor whatever sensors you need. I have had strange situations where my fuel or air ratio seems borked and as soon as I pay off my first stupid ticket I'm getting that 20$ sensor and have a friend monitor on a ride along

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Old 01-21-2017, 12:01 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2000 Saturn sl bad gas mileage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duhminic View Post
I read that the fuel pressure may be too high? i have a duralast fuel filter on. When i have the money I'm thinking of getting the wix fuel filter, maybe that will help out?
For anyone driving a Saturn S series, we assume money is a factor.

You've already put the Duralast filter, so we don't know if your fuel pressure is an issue, it's just a possibility. A good possibility based on other's experiences, but that's just a guess from the internet. And you never want to spend money based on a guess from the internet if you can avoid it.

Here's a good general rule - testing is cheaper than throwing parts at a car.

Most auto parts stores (Oreilly's, Advance Auto, Autozone, etc.,) have a free loaner tool program. Put a deposit down for the price of a tool, you get to take the tool home and use it for free. Get a fuel pressure tester and test your fuel pressure - that is the only way to know for sure whether your fuel pressure is too high or not. Cost = $0 compared to a new Wix filter, which will run $50~80

OldNuc has posted the fuel pressure procedure several times. Someone will post a link for you if you can't find it- I'm just on a short break from class right now

...
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7/2010 Craigslist white 1997 SC2 project
12/2008 eBay silver 1998 SL2 5 spd 102k, now 201k+ miles

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