Search
 

Reply
 
 
 
  #1  
Old 05-28-2010, 12:40 PM
djbach djbach is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 9
Default '01 SL1 - intermittent starting

hi all! first time poster here so take it easy on me

bout 6 weeks ago i bought my wife a 2001 SL1 - over the past several weeks it has been starting intermittently...

...usually, can be driving it just fine and dandy, make a stop, go back to start it and nothing from the engine. get ALL the electrical but not even so much as a click from the starter or engine.

at first we would just wait it out for about 30 minutes and then voila! start right up and drive away. this has happened a number of times.

last week - my wife got stranded on her lunch break and i took her my car and stayed with the saturn and it took an hour or so before it would start back up.

last weekend - she had gone out to go run errands and it was the first the car had been touched all day and it wouldnt start.

i finally got fed up with it and have been making her take my car so she wont get stranded again -

my daughter and i went to the grocery store in the saturn not even a 5 minute drive - 30 minutes in the grocery store - go to leave (with frozen pie and ice cream of course) and it wont start. wait 30 minutes, still wont start. call aunt to come rescue me - go back first thing next morning - starts right up.

so lo and behold i drive the car to work - i get to work, i park the car, i shut it off and THEN (as i have done a number of times with mixed results) i turn the key again and it starts right back up. HOWEVER when i go to leave 4 hours later it wont start. so i leave the car at work...

...wife drives me to work the next day - want to start the saturn and send her straight home to park it so i can work on it. it STILL wont start - this is roughly 20 hours later. so, she has to come back and pick me up from work later that night - and when she gets there to pick me up, i try starting the saturn again and it starts right up (of course)!

*sigh*

went to have spare keys made for it today (in my other car of course) - bring keys home to try them in the door and ignition and it starts right up and did last night about 6:30 as well. but be damned if im gonna drive it anywhere.

now - first of all let me say - this problem becomes more persistant and prevalant the hotter the outdoor temperature gets. and so i am convinced that the outdoor temperature as well as running temperature is playing a hand in this.

the problem, im quite convinced, is somewhere between the ignition switch and the starter. however, we are on a very limited budget AND i really dont have much time (or money for that matter) to just start at one end of that path and replace part after part after part after part...

im rather convinced it is a purely electrical problem - being brought on by heat that is causing a contact or connection to expand and break circuit until it cools down.

could somebody PLEASE be so kind as to share knowledge of the commonality of this problem in these models and or advise?

thanks :-)

b
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-28-2010, 03:38 PM
derf's Avatar
derf derf is offline
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Out on the Tiles
Posts: 3,320
Default

if it was right after running (only) I would suspect starter on the fritz based on description and lack of solenoid in starter being active. Still a possibility...

Possibility of issues related to battery and or cables. It doesn't take much of a battery issue to not start these S cars. Inspect and check for corrosion on battery cables and terminal -- acid can wick up the center of the cable
__________________
I bet you think I'm doin' this all for my health
I shoulda looked again babe at somebody else
Feelin' like I've done way more than wrong
Feelin' like I'm livin' inside of this song
Feelin' like I'm just too tired to care
Feelin' like I've done more than my share
Could it be the way I've carried on
Like a broken record for so long.......

___________________
derf/Wash PA
95 SC2 ~232K
97 SC2 ~244K
'14 Ford Escape SE 2.0L ~9k

Last edited by derf; 05-29-2010 at 10:33 AM. Reason: removed erroneous ref to passkey security
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-28-2010, 05:47 PM
djbach djbach is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 9
Default

well - it was originally only happening after the car had been ran. but it did it the other day when the mrs. tried to go run errands and was the first time the car had been touched all day. parked on concrete about 90 degrees outside.

i suspect starter as well - just dont want to take the time and hassle if i dont have to. looks like im gonna have to.

i suspected the key as well. the original is so worn it can be pulled out of the tumbler when the car as running. had new keys made today, the new one cannot be pulled out when the car is running. the girl who made the key tested it and said there is no 'chip' in it.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-28-2010, 06:27 PM
OceanArcher's Avatar
OceanArcher OceanArcher is offline
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Riveria of America
Posts: 2,750
Default

I'm betting on bad battery cables .....
__________________
Mike -- MS Gulf Coast

'93 SW2 -- dark blue
'02 L200 -- gold
'09 Aura XE -- burnished gold
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-29-2010, 10:36 AM
derf's Avatar
derf derf is offline
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Out on the Tiles
Posts: 3,320
Default

per my post and OA's comment -- start simple and check the battery and cables first.

Also, please post all possibly relevant info so that we have all of it before trying to help you.....

thx
__________________
I bet you think I'm doin' this all for my health
I shoulda looked again babe at somebody else
Feelin' like I've done way more than wrong
Feelin' like I'm livin' inside of this song
Feelin' like I'm just too tired to care
Feelin' like I've done more than my share
Could it be the way I've carried on
Like a broken record for so long.......

___________________
derf/Wash PA
95 SC2 ~232K
97 SC2 ~244K
'14 Ford Escape SE 2.0L ~9k
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 05-29-2010, 03:02 PM
uncljohn's Avatar
uncljohn uncljohn is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Peoria AZ
Posts: 1,683
Default

While there are a number of things it "could" be, with some of them expensive, throwing money at it with out figuring out where to throw it could be very unrewarding.
Should this happen again. Before you go too far. To test a few things, turn on the headlights to see if they indeed turn on.
If they do, then with some on watching the head lights, check them while trying to start the car.
If the car does as you say >Nothing< which means does not even try to start
but
the head lights go out as soon as the key is turned and then possibly come back on again when the key is released the odds are you have a battery connection corrosion problem
or
a bad battery.
Both of which >can< cause this but a meter reading would help in the diagnosis.
The cheap suggestion would be to disconnect and clean the battery connections at the battery posts and where ever the other ends of these wires go to. The negative probably some where on the engine block, the positive end probably to a power distribution point and/or the starter itself.
If you live in an area of high humidity this problem his highly probable.
If this problem is a battery, it usually can be found by making a meter reading while trying to start the car. Normally a battery will measure in the area of 10volts D.C., while trying to start the car on a warm day. As low as 8 volts can be seen in the winter with snow on the ground. Anything lower than that is indication of an internal battery problem.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-30-2010, 07:22 AM
hoseppi's Avatar
hoseppi hoseppi is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Annapolis Md.
Posts: 270
Default

Those are classic symptoms of a starter going bad (usually the brushes wear out). If it has over 100k on it, that would be my bet. You can take a 18" piece of rebar or bipe and bang on the starter from the top next time it acts up to verify. The starter is really easy to change, especially if you have a lift or a pit. In the mean time (if it's a 5spd) start parking on a hill (I've done that more than once). As our Super Moderators and Uncljohn have previously stated, check out the cheap stuff first (you know i have to put a disclaimer in here somewhere).

Last edited by hoseppi; 05-30-2010 at 07:41 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-03-2010, 12:19 PM
djbach djbach is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 9
Default

Quote:
While there are a number of things it "could" be, with some of them expensive, throwing money at it with out figuring out where to throw it could be very unrewarding.
Should this happen again. Before you go too far. To test a few things, turn on the headlights to see if they indeed turn on.
If they do, then with some on watching the head lights, check them while trying to start the car.
If the car does as you say >Nothing< which means does not even try to start
but
the head lights go out as soon as the key is turned and then possibly come back on again when the key is released the odds are you have a battery connection corrosion problem
or
a bad battery.
Both of which >can< cause this but a meter reading would help in the diagnosis.
The cheap suggestion would be to disconnect and clean the battery connections at the battery posts and where ever the other ends of these wires go to. The negative probably some where on the engine block, the positive end probably to a power distribution point and/or the starter itself.
If you live in an area of high humidity this problem his highly probable.
If this problem is a battery, it usually can be found by making a meter reading while trying to start the car. Normally a battery will measure in the area of 10volts D.C., while trying to start the car on a warm day. As low as 8 volts can be seen in the winter with snow on the ground. Anything lower than that is indication of an internal battery problem.
have checked the battery/posts/connections - all very clean. but an internal battery problem didnt occur to me. it is rather hot and humid here in kentucky this time of year, and as i stated previously, the hotter and more humid it gets - the more often this happens and the longer it takes to restart the car. ill have to have this looked into as well.

Quote:
Those are classic symptoms of a starter going bad (usually the brushes wear out). If it has over 100k on it, that would be my bet. You can take a 18" piece of rebar or bipe and bang on the starter from the top next time it acts up to verify. The starter is really easy to change, especially if you have a lift or a pit. In the mean time (if it's a 5spd) start parking on a hill (I've done that more than once). As our Super Moderators and Uncljohn have previously stated, check out the cheap stuff first (you know i have to put a disclaimer in here somewhere).
the starter seems to be the general concensus and i have been waiting for it to do it again, which it has not in the past 2 days (figures) and btw - i have a piece long enough to tap it from the top. but where is the starter if im facing the car from the front from the top? i went to look underneath and there is all sorts of protective plastic casing...
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-08-2010, 02:39 PM
djbach djbach is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 9
Default

finally pulled the right splash guard off this car because the starter cant even be sighted from over the top - it is mid engine and can only be reached from the wheel well or underneath.

just now did this because i had new keys made and just by coincidence and have been driving it solid for a few days with only the new keys and it hasnt crapped out on me, was thinking maybe maybe the old really worn out key was tripping something anti-theft.

*sigh*

that was until yesterday - crapped out on me again, of course in the dumbest place possible. then got it home and it crapped out again. for hours. went out several times last night and it wouldnt start.

lo and behold - this morning, it fires right up...

...guess i better get up under it and change that starter
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-08-2010, 06:56 PM
sw2cam's Avatar
sw2cam sw2cam is offline
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,167
Default

A little secret ................. starters on "most" cars can't be see from the top.
__________________
INACTIVE ACCOUNTS ARE SHUT DOWN. START POSTING!

Joe: Arizona
2007 Quad Cpe 2.4L manual
White w/tan leather
Appearance, Enhanced performance, and Travel pkg
Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2010, 06:56 PM
 
 
 
Reply

Tags
2000, 2001, 97, announcement, bad, intermittent, l200, minutes, problem, saturn, service, sl, sl1, start, starter, starting, symptoms, technical


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


Auto Parts

- Exhaust
- Bike Carriers
- Car Vacuums
- Hidden Hitch
- Hitch Covers
- Dash Kits