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Old 08-17-2018, 09:35 AM   #1
mikay
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Default New 99 SC1 owner

Hi all,

New to the forum, not new to Saturns. Bought a 01 SC2 and a 01 SL-1 new. SC2 went to my ex wife in a divorce, SL1 was sold 7 years ago with 350,000 miles on it.

Recently bought a 99 SC1 with 195,000 on it to drive to and from work - long commute.

Fdryer mentions "the infamous original two wire coolant sensor" in another thread. How/where do I check for that? This one runs with the temp at 1/4 and the engine light on. Otherwise, a smooth runner.

I also will be looking at front wheel bearings (not a surprise, my SL1 front wheel bearings went out at about the same mileage) in the near future and new tires, no biggie.

I also need to replace the winshield washer pump...saw a youtube viddie on it, doesn't look too bad.

There's a funny vibration on this one, sounds like it's coming from underneath. I don't *think* it's a motor mount, the motor doesn't shake or shimmy at idle at all. This seems to vibrate at idle and at lower speeds. Past 35-40 I don't hear it.

Do the sound systems (stock) sound like crap in these by default? No bass. Sounds tinny as hell. This one has the cd player with 5 band eq.

Anything else I should check out? I'll be putting about 120 miles per day on this old girl.

Mike, Wisconsin

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Old 08-17-2018, 09:46 AM   #2
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

I

nope, can't embed

link
http://www.saturnfans.com/photos/sho...cation/cat/500

http://www.saturnfans.com/photos/sho...closer/cat/500

have a few pics in my gallery

<-- click there, I'll also try and embed but it doesn't always work

Right below the EGR, can see it easier if you remove the plastic intake tube (you can just unclip the airbox, the hose from the valve/cam cover, loosen the tube and lift it up out of the way)

You can find videos by searching;

richpin06a Saturn youtube [part or info you are searching for]

"richpin06a Saturn youtube ECTS" will get you

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cucm7QGlsYs

...
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11/2016 red 2002 5 spd SC2 124k DD
7/2010 Craigslist white 1997 SC2 project
12/2008 eBay silver 1998 SL2 5 spd 102k, now 201k+ miles

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Old 08-17-2018, 09:57 AM   #3
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

check the 2nd sticky thread (new and returning Saturn owners) in the General forum
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=79

Quote:
There's a funny vibration on this one, sounds like it's coming from underneath. I don't *think* it's a motor mount, the motor doesn't shake or shimmy at idle at all. This seems to vibrate at idle and at lower speeds. Past 35-40 I don't hear it.
Could still be the motor mount, either the top one, or one of the other three. Could also be a worn exhaust hanger or something along those lines.

Quote:
Do the sound systems (stock) sound like crap in these by default? No bass. Sounds tinny as hell. This one has the cd player with 5 band eq.
Blown speakers? My stock CD player sounded pretty good; no worse than mose OEMs

Quote:
Anything else I should check out? I'll be putting about 120 miles per day on this old girl.
Oil level. Driving 120 miles a day, I would check every day at first, first thing in the morning on a cold engine. Overfill slightly, roughly in the middle of the word FULL on the dipstick. Use one of the oversize/extended length filters. I'm using Purolator PL20195 but there are other brands/ equivalent sizes

My SC2 has around 140k miles, I'm adding about 3~6 oz of oil a week but mu daily commute is about 34 miles round trip.

I drove about 180 miles a few days ago for an unexpected trip and went from a little above the top line (just below the word FULL) to about 3 oz low on the dipstick

...
I'm not worthy to grovel in the shadow of Signmaster's wisdom

11/2016 red 2002 5 spd SC2 124k DD
7/2010 Craigslist white 1997 SC2 project
12/2008 eBay silver 1998 SL2 5 spd 102k, now 201k+ miles

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Old 08-17-2018, 10:15 AM   #4
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Fdryer mentions "the infamous original two wire coolant sensor" in another thread. How/where do I check for that? This one runs with the temp at 1/4 and the engine light on.
Could also be a bad thermostat (tend to fail open on these cars)

It's an odd thing to do when it is ~90F outside but after about a 20~30 mile drive, turn the heat on full - should be uncomfortably warm to the hand at the vents

...
I'm not worthy to grovel in the shadow of Signmaster's wisdom

11/2016 red 2002 5 spd SC2 124k DD
7/2010 Craigslist white 1997 SC2 project
12/2008 eBay silver 1998 SL2 5 spd 102k, now 201k+ miles

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Old 08-17-2018, 01:07 PM   #5
mikay
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Thanks for the info so far, everyone!

I plan on replacing the valve asap. If that doesn't do it, then I'll do the T-stat. I'm pretty mechanically handy, but I'll probably have the wheel bearings done by a third-party garage, as I don't have a bearing press or a ball joint separator or air tools. What's a reasonable ballpark price for getting that done?

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Old 08-17-2018, 03:32 PM   #6
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikay View Post
This one runs with the temp at 1/4 and the engine light on.
Welcome!

Yea, get the ECTS changed.

The Temp Gauge being at 1/4 "usually" is the Thermostat. Get a Stant.

Let us know what you do & what the results are!

...
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Castrol Edge EP + M1 Ext Perf. Oil Filter.

Owned 4 other S-Series.

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Old 08-21-2018, 10:23 PM   #7
brian74
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Change the ECTS but also consider the ECTS pigtail connector. My connector was corroded and caused a high idle issue even after changing the sensor. New motor mounts. Get the factory ones. Huge difference over the Anchor pos ones in colder weather. The Stant thermostat everybody recommends works well.

...
2001 SL1 215k miles; daily driver
2002 SC2 166k (sold)

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Old 08-21-2018, 11:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikay View Post
Thanks for the info so far, everyone!

I plan on replacing the valve asap. If that doesn't do it, then I'll do the T-stat. I'm pretty mechanically handy, but I'll probably have the wheel bearings done by a third-party garage, as I don't have a bearing press or a ball joint separator or air tools. What's a reasonable ballpark price for getting that done?
I paid something like $20 for mine, just bring in the knuckles with new bearings +- a new wheel mount and its generally cheap when you bring'em in Ready To Swap.

Tekton torque wrenches are pretty much everywhere, but I can guarantee you'll find some at Menards or Ace. A breaker bar too, just be sure to work the bolts back and forth and not just twisting in one direction if it starts dragging/binding.

Tie rod end might be meh unless you got multiple tool sets, I have a specialty set so I can get away with using one 81 piece set for everything, even stripped a whole car with it once with every bolt and nut removed.

...
If any user helped you, be sure to rep them.

Late 99 SC2 2.5 Gen, 237k miles

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Old 08-22-2018, 06:27 AM   #9
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Change the ECTS but also consider the ECTS pigtail connector. My connector was corroded and caused a high idle issue even after changing the sensor.
Just did this, gained 5MPG and a normal idle. I'd do the ECTS and connector before the t-stat as it is a lot easier, and may be why the temp is below 1/4.

...
Bryan Cotton
'99 SL2, 5SP bought new
Rebuilt at 204,067 September 2017
Engine, subframe, diff pin mod, brake lines, headliner, alternator, and so on!
'98 SC2, 5SP bought 2018

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Old 08-22-2018, 07:55 AM   #10
trottida
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Here's a photo of the location of the 2 wire ECTS for a Gen2 and Gen3 (side note: Gen1 also has a 1 wire ETCS but the 2 wire is located same as the Gen2/3)....



Here's some information from another thread to help understand what it does and how it would affect mileage...

Quote:
Originally Posted by trottida View Post
The 2 wire temp sensor measures the coolant temperature of the engine. If it fails then it sends the wrong signal to the computer and effects engine management (fuel delivery). If it signals a lower temperature than actual, then your engine is running rich and your gas mileage is poor.

Replace the ETCS, check that the connector is not fouled and if there is evidence that it has been replaced prior. If it has then ensure that the connection has been soldered and not crimp connected. It's important to have good signal from the ECTS to the computer. If the connector is fouled then it needs to be replaced. If it is crimped then remove the crimp and solder and shrink tube the wire.

If you've completed above and your temperature is still reading low then it's likely that your thermostat is stuck open and it needs to be replaced.
A Stant 14279 thermostat is highly recommended as a replacement thermostat. Thermostats tend to fail open allowing the coolant to pass through the radiator which makes the car run cool and decreases fuel economy. Here's a test to determine if your thermostat has failed open.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trottida View Post
It's relatively easy to test if the thermostat is failing. From a cold engine the coolant hose just after the thermostat should remain cold until the coolant temperature reaches 195 degrees at which time the thermostat will begin to open. So if you keep your hand on that hose after a cold start and the hose gets warm rather quickly then your thermostat is leaking and needs to be replaced.
The temp gauge at operating temperature for a Gen2 and Gen3 S Series should look similar to the photo below when at operating temperature. This photo is of a Gen3 (2000-2002); the Gen2 (1996-1999) may run a touch cooler but never at the 1/4 mark or less. Keep in mind that the gauge is not terribly accurate and may be off a few needle widths either way.



Replacing the ECTS is the low hanging fruit...it's easier, inexpensive and they are known to crack and fail in all model years except 2002 where they used a brass tipped ECTS rather than resin. If you check it and it is resin then replace it with a brass tipped sensor. If it is already brass tipped then it has likely already been replaced.

...
2001 SL1 MT (417,500 km @ 05/2018)
1999 SL2 MT (260,870 km @ 05/2018)
2011 Suburban LT (111,176 km @ 05/2018)

Past Saturns
1993 SW2 AT
2001 LW200 MT
1992 SL2 MT

:canada:

Last edited by trottida; 08-22-2018 at 08:08 AM..

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Old 08-22-2018, 09:05 AM   #11
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

For comparison, here is my '98 coolant gauge after a new ECTS connector.

A little lower but above 1/4. With the same t-stat and the old connector it was below 1/4.

...
Bryan Cotton
'99 SL2, 5SP bought new
Rebuilt at 204,067 September 2017
Engine, subframe, diff pin mod, brake lines, headliner, alternator, and so on!
'98 SC2, 5SP bought 2018

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Old 08-22-2018, 08:05 PM   #12
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Originally Posted by Waiex191 View Post
For comparison, here is my '98 coolant gauge after a new ECTS connector.

A little lower but above 1/4. With the same t-stat and the old connector it was below 1/4.
That's exactly where it sits on my 99 SL2 with a new Stant thermostat.

...
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1999 SL2 MT (260,870 km @ 05/2018)
2011 Suburban LT (111,176 km @ 05/2018)

Past Saturns
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2001 LW200 MT
1992 SL2 MT

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Old 08-23-2018, 08:57 AM   #13
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

My '98 SC2 sits mid-way between that pic & 1/2.

It's at 3/8 or a needle width above.

...
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Old 08-23-2018, 12:03 PM   #14
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Default Re: New 99 SC1 owner

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikay View Post
Hi all,

New to the forum, not new to Saturns. Bought a 01 SC2 and a 01 SL-1 new. SC2 went to my ex wife in a divorce, SL1 was sold 7 years ago with 350,000 miles on it.

Recently bought a 99 SC1 with 195,000 on it to drive to and from work - long commute.

Fdryer mentions "the infamous original two wire coolant sensor" in another thread. How/where do I check for that? This one runs with the temp at 1/4 and the engine light on. Otherwise, a smooth runner.

I also will be looking at front wheel bearings (not a surprise, my SL1 front wheel bearings went out at about the same mileage) in the near future and new tires, no biggie.

I also need to replace the winshield washer pump...saw a youtube viddie on it, doesn't look too bad.

There's a funny vibration on this one, sounds like it's coming from underneath. I don't *think* it's a motor mount, the motor doesn't shake or shimmy at idle at all. This seems to vibrate at idle and at lower speeds. Past 35-40 I don't hear it.

Do the sound systems (stock) sound like crap in these by default? No bass. Sounds tinny as hell. This one has the cd player with 5 band eq.

Anything else I should check out? I'll be putting about 120 miles per day on this old girl.

Mike, Wisconsin
Concerning the sound system: Go with a decent set of 4-ohm/50-watt RMS speakers all the way around the car. The radio will have enough watts to decently power them(not enough to make you go deaf or get a ticket for noise ordinances, but enough to where you can enjoy your favorite tunes)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwn5DepRnVg

Concerning the vibrations, it may be the transmission mount with the mileage on the car, or the transmission dog bone. Check your transmission filter and see if it the stock, Saturn-branded red one or a white WIX replacement(most replacements are white but WIX is the recommended filter brand).

With the mileage, the VB(If automatic) has likely already been replaced. To replace it may require the transmission dog bone to be removed(easier removal of the VB cover pan but not required to service the transmission). If this is the case and that bolt has NOT been properly torqued, it may be the source of your vibrations or the mount has gone bad.

As far as the ECTS, it is mounted under the EGR, on the driver's side of the head. You need to remove your air filter assembly and the tubing to the throttle body, and use a deep well 13mm socket to remove it. Make sure you get the replacement square-tipped BRASS replacement.

...
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"He checks the gas, and fills the oil....."

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