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Old 01-29-2006, 05:59 PM   #1
Razorbak
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1996 SL2
Default How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

This is not a difficult task, other than access to the sensor.

It's mounted by a single 10 mm bolt on the intake side of the engine block, hidden behind the starter. Access the sensor from below the vehicle. It helps to use an automotive extension mirror to see behind the starter.

Once you get a socket on it, your almost home.

This is what it looks like from below, using an automotive extension mirror...



Here's a close-up of the sensor itself... The CPS is the long one on the bottom right...


When installed, it's located on the intake side of the block (rear of the engine bay, near the firewall), between the two oil galley plugs behind the 3rd and 4th cylinders, just above the mail oil galley...



Since is has an O-ring around the shaft, if it's been in place for very long, you may have to twist it a bit to break it free. It's a good idea to replace the O-ring to prevent leaks, and lube it with a drop of oil to prevent it from being nicked during installation.

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Old 03-21-2006, 04:58 PM   #2
AJgeo
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

What is the torque spec for the 10mm bolt?

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Old 03-28-2006, 11:08 AM   #3
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

Nevermind about the torque, I doubt you would be able to fit a torque wrench in there. I used a racheting box 10mm wrench and it worked great. It is quite tight in there, I did it mostly just by feel. I had a friend watch from the top of the engine with the intake hose removed, to make sure I didn't damage anything else in the area. It would have been very hard to find this without the how-to article, thanks! So far, so good, ~60 miles since the change and no stalling!

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Old 03-28-2006, 02:39 PM   #4
DeCaff2006
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

is it the same for SOHC and DOHC?

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Old 03-31-2006, 12:01 AM   #5
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1996 SW2
Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

Quote:
Originally Posted by DeCaff2006
is it the same for SOHC and DOHC?
Yup. Same block.

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Old 04-01-2006, 07:54 PM   #6
Razorbak
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

Quote:
Originally Posted by AJgeo
What is the torque spec for the 10mm bolt?
Sorry I didn't see this question earlier. I've been on the road for several weeks.

The torque spec is 9 Nm (80 in-lbs).

Quote:
It would have been very hard to find this without the how-to article, thanks! So far, so good, ~60 miles since the change and no stalling!
Glad you found it helpful. Congratulations on a successful repair!

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Old 04-02-2006, 02:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

Rb, Thanxs for an informative thread.

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Old 08-26-2006, 08:17 AM   #8
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

SATURN Crankshaft Learn Procedure

1) The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) uses crankshaft velocity calculations to
determine engine misfire and to operate engine misfire self-diagnostics. PCM
must know precisely the variation between notches on the crankshaft. PCM
contains crankshaft learn procedure which learns the variation between notches
on crankshaft. The crankshaft learn procedure must be reset if PCM,
crankshaft, or crankshaft position sensor are replaced.


2) If crankshaft learn procedure is being performed as a result of replacing the
crankshaft, reset crankshaft learn procedure using Scan Tool equipment and
manufacturer's instructions. If replacing PCM with a replacement PCM,
procedure will be prompted automatically. Allow engine to idle until SERVICE
light flashes. Hold engine speed between 3000-4000 RPM until light goes off after
about 10-20 seconds.

NOTE: If any Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC) exist that relate to an engine
misfire, crankshaft learn procedure will not be initiated. Any DTCs for engine
misfire must be corrected before performing crankshaft learn procedure.

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Old 05-29-2009, 09:05 PM   #9
acemueller
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1992 SL2
Happy Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

This thread was really helpful since I couldn't even see my CPS on my 92 SL2. Just a couple layman's observations:

1. Believe Razorbak! You have to get at it from the bottom. If you pull the feed to the air cleaner, you may get a visual on it; I found it thereputic to look at it now and again; but as he said, it's done entirely blind! I had the car on 6" ramps, and on my back with my feet sticking out forward, and my head well behind the engine, I was able to get the best access.

2. Razorbak also mentioned twisting. That was the real salvation for me. Even that was hard at first, but twisting got progressively easier very quickly, so don't give up! Then it poped right out.

3. The last post mentioned the Crankshaft Learn Procedure, but it is a little vague. Research on other posts on this site suggest that one need not mess with that except maybe in the case of a 1996. In my case (1992), I did nothing and it has run fine so far.

Thanks all for the tips!

Thomas.

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Old 10-07-2011, 07:24 AM   #10
MrWhsprs
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

I just did this procedure yesterday on our '99 SW2, and I knew most of what to expect thanks to the helpful resources of this forum (this thread being a good example), and these videos by richpin on YouTube:

Replacing(CPS) Crankshaft Position Sensor
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PVTFFOwqNZM

Crankshaft Position Sensor Location
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKb_TTQo0J4

A couple of notes from my experience:

Some (including richpin in his video) recommend removing the starter but I didn't, so with the starter in place, replacing the CPS is done blindly, reaching up and around the starter.

I disconnected the battery since getting to the CPS involves working so closely to the starter (I believe that at times my arm was touching the wires).

Aside from the process of getting the front of the car safely up on jackstands, the most time-consuming aspect for me was disconnecting the electrical connector to the CPS. I was afraid of breaking the tab on the connector by brute-forcing it. So, I was trying to gently pry the tab AND pull the connector off simultaneously, using one hand (I found it too cramped to get both hands to the CPS). I tried that for a while but it didn't seem to be working, so I gently wedged a thin tool in between the tab and the CPS and then was able to wiggle the connector out.

Once the connector was off, the rest of the job was quick and pretty easy, again given that the whole thing is done blindly.

I used a small 1/4" drive ratchet, and getting the 10mm bolt out was easy. In terms of providing clearance to use the ratchet I found that a regular (short) socket was too short, and the short socket on a short (2", I think) extension was too long. So I used a deep 10mm socket and that was perfect. Long enough to put the ratchet at the right height to clear the starter but not too long that other things were in the way.

I twisted the CPS to break it free, and then twisted it back and forth some more while pulling on it, and it came free with a POP sound.

The CPS I bought (~$25 including tax, at Carquest) came with an O-ring already installed so I didn't have to swap it over from the old one. I smeared a little engine oil around the O-ring on the new CPS, inserted the new CPS and pushed until it was fully seated.

I threaded the bolt by hand until finger-tight, and snugged it down with the ratchet. Snapped in the electrical connector on the CPS, reconnected the battery, and started the car!

...
<>< Mike
2000 SL2: 133,016 miles as of 2014-08-24
Gone: 1999 SW2: 269,454 miles when totaled on 2014-06-14

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Old 11-22-2013, 11:58 AM   #11
Consultant
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1996 SL2
Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

Just did this procedure on a 1996 SL2 - had the 'dead car' (crank but no start everything checks OK) - CPS was indicated by process of exclusion and resistance test.

Tip - the plug in the front of the Program Control Module (PCM) has the purple and yellow leads that go to the CPS - you can measure resistance there. (Just remove the little plastic pre-heat air box to get to it) Mine had very high resistance - 1740 ohms. Should be 700-900 ohms

Really can't see doing the replacement without first removing the starter (which I had previously replaced) but your mileage may vary. Watch the RichPin videos on both removing the starter and replacing the CPS - you're all set

Watch RichPin's technique to get the CPS connector off - just gently pry the little clip in the back and at the same time gently the connector out with a screwdriver. Twist the CPS and if necessary - slip a screwdriver under it to pop it up. Not much force required in any of this.

reassembly is pretty quick - which RichPin's video for the hidden bolt technique with the starter's upper bolt (use tape in the socket to hold the bolt in.)

Checked to see that all the DTCs had been cleared (I have an aftermarket scan tool that plugs into the ODB socket)- didn't get any relearn (flashing service light) indicator - just started (a bit flooded due to some cranking while dead) and let idle.

After that - let it warm up and drove around the neighbor hood - seemed a lot more responsive - better shifting and pickup. Starts immediately.

Tip #1 - if you are replacing the starter - may as well replace the CPS at the same time. CPS cost $16 at AutoZone (slightly less at Rock Auto) - Come to think of it - may as well replace the starter (if you haven't already) when replacing the CPS. If you don't - what you save in money today you will pay for in aggravation later when it fails.

Tip #2 - you can get the Saturn Powertrain Contols service manual on eBay for $15-$30. Short money if you are going to diagnose problems with a Saturn - and want the factory info.

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Old 08-01-2014, 11:32 AM   #12
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Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

I do not like stepping on toes kind of thing. Great info, however, if you take off the starter, which is simple. it makes it way easier to get at the CPS.

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Old 08-28-2014, 03:29 AM   #13
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1999 SL1
Default Re: How to Change the S-Series Crankshaft Position Sensor (CPS)

I do not do well operating blind, so razorbak's technique was beyond me. Couldn't find my telescoping little auto mirror, which I imagine might've made this possible for me.

I tried removing the starter, per richpin's video and posts in this thread, but that nastily-hard-to-get-to upper bolt flummoxed me.

However, here is what worked nicely: I removed the passenger side tire/wheel and plastic splash shrouding. That allowed me to get a very clear view of the sensor, its clip, and its bolt.

Hope that helps others .... it made this task v. easy ....

-- stan

Last edited by Stanley_Krute; 08-28-2014 at 03:38 AM..

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