Thread Number: 74901  /  Tag: Other Home Products or Autos
Saturn LW300 woes..
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Post# 987131   3/18/2018 at 13:21 (214 days old) by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Man, been trying to track down a hard starting issue and I am simply flabbergasted at how many component(s) could be the cause.
Here is a list...oh scratch fuel filter, replaced and still hard to start. Currently I have ordered a new crankshaft position sensor, and since added "Evap purge solenoid" to this list.
The spark plugs were an epic ordeal to replace for the first time in this cars life (16 years 58k miles), and a first for me working on the motor in this car. If one is charged $200+ labor for the job the mechanic earned every penny imo.
Imagine that, 6 silly spark plugs? Special inverted torx sockets a must btw. Bloody knuckles should also be expected.

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This post was last edited 03/18/2018 at 21:35

Post# 987153 , Reply# 1   3/18/2018 at 15:58 (214 days old) by jamiel (Detroit, Michigan)        

Unfortunately not one of GM's better was a real mash-up of parts from around the world with the Saturn polymer body draped over it....

Post# 987166 , Reply# 2   3/18/2018 at 17:50 (214 days old) by speedqueen (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

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Have you hooked a scan tool to it to check if it threw a trouble code?

Post# 987168 , Reply# 3   3/18/2018 at 17:52 (214 days old) by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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I do have a scan tool, no codes...yet.

Post# 987170 , Reply# 4   3/18/2018 at 18:53 (214 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        
I do have a scan tool, no codes...yet.

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I remember having a starting problem in one car (among too many other problems, which ultimately doomed the car). I did some online research, and found that one common cause was a sensor. I think crank position, but that doesn't matter. What got me was that there were people saying that the sensor in this particular car could act up, and the only way to rule it out for 100% certain was to replace it. I don't know if they were right, but I assume they know more than me (which isn't hard to do). I recall shuddering at the idea--the sensor was something like a 2 or 3 hour job. I multiplied that by the going labor rate (I don't feel I have the ability and I certainly don't have the tools to do it myself). $300 or whatever...which might not fix the problem... 


Of course, a mechanic could start by ruling out things that are easier/faster to check.


One other "joy" on this car was another starting problem that it always had during the time I owned it. If the car sat for more than a couple of days, it would be hard to start, and ran poorly. Once warmed up, it would be back to normal. A cold start the next day would be just fine. This car had belonged to the wife of a mechanic, and he said it was hugely frustrating for him. His wife had the same problem I did, and she'd come to him to complain. But, by that point, she'd driven it enough that the gremlins had gone away.  He'd get in, and the car would behave. (One suspects that he could probably have banished the problem if he got really aggressive. But it probably didn't feel worth it, given that the car ran just fine when driven regularly.) 

Post# 987221 , Reply# 5   3/19/2018 at 06:59 (213 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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The injectors themselves?  Fuel pressure regulator?  My GMC Jimmy was having a problem dying...I had to drive it with two feet to keep it running, no big deal since my VW is a stick anyway so easy to drive with two feet.  But anyway, it was the idle air control valve.  I changed that and it's been fine ever since. 

I used to change spark plugs in our previous Devilles with the 4.9L V8 by lying on my back under the car and reaching up to the back of the engine....

Post# 987228 , Reply# 6   3/19/2018 at 08:32 (213 days old) by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Take Asko lover's advice;

try a good in the tank fuel injector cleaner, if that doesn't help, a fuel pressure regulator is about $20 and takes 5 minutes to change. Very easy.
Is the air filter very dirty?
My buddy has a Caddy Northstar. It was hard starting, and stalling. One shop analyzed it and wanted $1,200.00 to change about everything on the fuel system, coil pack, and sensors. Guess what it was? Fuel pressure regulator.
GM mark of excellence. (kidding)
The Saturn L300 wasn't that bad. My sister had one after her SC coupe. She liked it. The engine is of Opel 60 degree V6 lineage, as was the platform of the first or second generation Vectra.

Post# 987437 , Reply# 7   3/20/2018 at 17:51 (212 days old) by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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This car doesn’t stall. It does start better if you tun the key on position before cranking and wait for about 10 seconds. The car also lacks slow off the line.
The ful pump was replaced rcently as the original one was leaking. I am begining to think the replacement pump is not up to snuff. The pump is in tank and costs about $200 to r & r.

Post# 987439 , Reply# 8   3/20/2018 at 18:08 (212 days old) by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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Turning the key to the run position to cycle the fuel pump to build fuel pressure is a classic symptom of a failing/weak fuel pump. I had it a few years back on my 97 Chevy Blazer. Id cycle the key two or three times and it would start normally. If I tried to start it w/o cycling it would crank but not start. Usually after getting it started first time in the morning it would be okay until it sat for many hours. Then it would bother again. I installed a new pump and no more problem. If your Saturn uses whats commonly called a spider in the intake for fuel delivery it could also be that it's leaking, causing it to lose pressure, which will cause the same symptom.

BTW...Wonderful modern stuff to work on. Years ago the fuel pump was bolted to the side of the engine. Easy to get to and replace when needed. Having the pump in the tank makes it a joy to replace. I didn't go the PITA route of dropping the tank like recommended. I removed the back seat and cut a hole in the floor to gain access to the pump.

Sorry, had to rant a little.

Post# 987511 , Reply# 9   3/21/2018 at 06:53 (211 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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Hey Ken,

I had the same thing go wrong with my 2001 GMC Jimmy but I had zero symptoms.  We went to the lake one night, launched the boat and floated all night,  pulled the boat out of the water next morning and drove home.  Parked the Jimmy and went to bed.  Got up and went out to start.  Checked fuel pressure with gauge and it was way too low.  Priced pumps and labor...ordered new Delphi pump on Amazon for $150 and spent a day dropping tank and replacing.  Wasn't too hard just tedious and had to solder new updated connector on.  But fired right up!  I read online from forums to avoid Autozone and Advance Auto parts fuel pumps because they are crap so went with Delphi who makes the Delco one for GM.

Post# 987515 , Reply# 10   3/21/2018 at 08:14 (211 days old) by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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I also got a Delphi pump from Rock Auto. They have great prices only you have to pay shipping which can be a little high. But many times even with shipping total cost is less than your local parts store.

Post# 992112 , Reply# 11   4/25/2018 at 16:53 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Still working on sorting out this Saturn. Today went down to my mechanic and he installed the new crank position sensor which I had hoped would solve my didn't. That's the third time the fix that worked for other people describing similar problems with this same model car, didn't work for me.
EGR valve was first, engine temp sensor next, now the crank position sensor.
He cleaned the MAF sensor, the intake, checked the fuel pressure, and fiddled around with various other things. Finally after he noticed it usually started much better on the second try he decided it was probably the fuel pressure regulator. When he pointed it out to me it's location on the motor I also noticed a cracked vent hose, so that too may improve things.
If he is right (have to order part) then I wasted about $200 in parts and labor costs, and hours of my own labor trying to sort this thing out replacing some parts needlessly. No doubt one of the most annoying car problems i can remember dealing with.

This post was last edited 04/26/2018 at 03:11
Post# 992173 , Reply# 12   4/26/2018 at 07:28 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        

it will be a good car for a college student, etc.
Ever heard of "One owner car guy"? He is in San Diego, and Montana. He has lots of youtube video's under "cereal marshmallows".
Buyer beware, always!

Post# 992178 , Reply# 13   4/26/2018 at 08:33 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
It does sound like some sort of problem with fuel delivery.

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And you have my deepest sympathies. When I was having problems with my '98 Buick 3.1, I got the same list of do this, do that, do the other thing.

I've got the tools and ape-long arms, so was able to work through them. The crank position sensor replacement helped - those things are apparently a weak point of GM's Excellence in Engineering (cough, cough), but what finally did it was something totally different.

You'll get it. There are pressure tests, by the way, before one spends the money. Not even difficult or expensive - they should start there.


Oh, and here's something which might be causing this and you might not have checked it - the anti-theft systems GM used throughout the '90s up to 2005/6 sometimes would not trigger a security display but still not activate the fuel pump every time. That could be part of it.

Post# 992188 , Reply# 14   4/26/2018 at 09:43 by RevvinKevin (So. Cal.)        

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Robert, I hope this new fuel pressure regulator solves your problem!


Question, is it hard starting all the time, hot or cold?   Or only after it sits a few hours?  (edit: I missed that you noted it's sluggish off the line.  Does power improve as RPM's build?)


My best friend has an early-mid 2000's Chevy truck which had an issue like this.  If it sat more than 10-15 minutes after driving, he'd have to crank & crank (15-20 seconds) before it would start.   After replacing the fuel pump (non-OEM), he would like you, have to turn the key on about 10 seconds before cranking and it would then start.


Bottom line in his case, it was a check valve in the fuel pump, allowing the fuel pressure to bleed off after sitting 10-15 mins.  The replacement aftermarket pump check valve worked better, but not perfect.  So after living with it for 9-10 months, he sprang for an OEM pump and it now starts as it's supposed to every time.



Post# 992210 , Reply# 15   4/26/2018 at 13:32 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
GM had some very good

engineers. They weren't the problem. Bean counters were.
heard of magnaquench? GM engineers invented it. Shrank magnets in motors by 2/3 the size.

Post# 994807 , Reply# 16   5/21/2018 at 10:08 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Wow, new fuel pressure regulator AND a new MAF sensor, and it's still not working right.
Now I am down to fuel pump check valve, vacuum leak, or something else.
The idle is completely stable so I doubt vacuum leak, so next up, in goes a $10 inline fuel check valve.

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Post# 994815 , Reply# 17   5/21/2018 at 12:18 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
A vacuum leak

doesn't always cause a rough idle. Often just a higher idle, or a whistle.
There is one other item not on your list there. Air mass flow sensor in the forward throttle body or air intake on the engine side of the air cleaner.
Sometimes the throttle body plate just need cleaning.
I just said farewell to our 2003 Impala 3800. Donated to charity. Original plugs even, and still fires right up. 155,220 miles only.
I see people driving cars around not even firing on all cylinders, so if that Saturn runs and doesn't stall, it may well serve a needy person dependable point A to B transportation until their luck turns for the better.
I once had to drive an AMC with bad door hinges, and springs. Parted that one out.

Post# 994832 , Reply# 18   5/21/2018 at 15:05 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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What you are referring to as "air mass flow" I am calling it's been taken care of.
The throttle body/plate has been cleaned, and the idle is not high, except after cold start for a moment as is normal.
When the mechanic put the new fuel pump in the tank he may have disturbed sediment which in turn is now interfering with the fuel pump check valve operation. My hope is by simply adding a post tank check valve I will save the cost of dropping the tank again.

Post# 994883 , Reply# 19   5/22/2018 at 04:50 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        

how about the BMP sensor? Fuel filter should collect sediment, unless it's clogged.
Get what you can for the car if you are selling it. Not worth all that much.
Our kids had an L 200, and the exhaust smell was aweful. They didn't want the baby riding in it, so they donated it.

Post# 994962 , Reply# 20   5/22/2018 at 19:30 by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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BMP, what does that stand for?

Post# 994989 , Reply# 21   5/23/2018 at 08:11 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
BMP sensor means

barometric pressure sensor. As air density changes with pressure and humidity, so should the air/fuel ratio. Otherwise, rough idling occurs, more severe than when the other sensors are adjusting to the changes in ambient, and operating temps. and humidity.
The optimal "stoicheometric" air to fuel ratio for a gasoline engine is 14.7% to one percent fuel.

Post# 995003 , Reply# 22   5/23/2018 at 10:27 by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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As I said, i don't in any way have a rough idle so it would seem the bmp sensor is ok.
I am not selling the car, I am trying to fix it. At 58k miles, It has another 100k to go.
But thanks for your ideas, I obviously need better ones than what I have had so far!

Post# 995014 , Reply# 23   5/23/2018 at 13:39 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Ok, are there

changes in idle speed? Surging?
I dunno, you may have to live with that.

Post# 995015 , Reply# 24   5/23/2018 at 13:45 by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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The idle is fine, I have no problems whatsoever with idle...let's just stop any and all thoughts about idle. This was never about idle.
It will on occasion start and stumble at an extremely low idle, and input from the gas pedal will stall it. Restart and all is fine, or you can wait it out and it will recover on it's own without needing restart.

Post# 995051 , Reply# 25   5/24/2018 at 03:37 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Ok, it's been a long thread;

Sounds like a fuel injection issue. One or more injectors may be dirty, clogged, or not functioning at 100%. Even though you've run a quality cleaner through in the fuel tank, one may have a lodged particle that didn't dissolve.
Otherwise it's electrical. Older cars wiring gets brittle, more so in the hotter south west climate.
My neighbor in Phoenix had a near mint 1982 BMW 325i 6 cylinder. He was driving on I 17 one hot day, and it just burst into flames under the hood.

Post# 995058 , Reply# 26   5/24/2018 at 07:51 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        

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Does it ever mysteriously cut out when being driven?

If so, it might be the 'fuel injection relay'. I had one go bad on my car -another brand altogether. The fault was cracked solder on the solenoid legs, the car would just conk out completely.

Funnily enough, my sister had a similar problem with a completely different make of car - at exactly the same time as me. Her problem was corrosion/crystallisation of the solder - but it had the same effect - car just conked out for no apparent reason.

Post# 995589 , Reply# 27   5/29/2018 at 21:07 by Maytag85 (SoCal )        

The Chevy 350 small block that is going in my 1986 Chevy Camaro is carbureted, and I really won't have to deal with any computer no sense or trouble codes. I might have the Chevy 350 small block that is going in my '86 Camaro might stall a couple of times, but it's easy to fix a carburated vehicle that stalls compared to a newer vehicle that has issues stalling for no reason at all.

Post# 995611 , Reply# 28   5/30/2018 at 05:20 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Sure, a carburetor

is simple, and most who can assemble a model kit can rebuild one. Even the ones with mixture control solenoids worked well. The reason being for their demise is fuel efficiency and emissions. You also get way longer spark plug life with fuelie engines.
There is always a reason for stalling. With a carb., it can be the choke, floats, accelerator pump, or dirty jets. With feulie engines, it's either pressure related, or electronic.
So pick your poison. better perfornmance, economy, cleaner air to breathe, or simplicity.
An old drivers training book showed a womans purse hanging off the choke lever on the dash, and her complaining about bad gas mileage.
Todays mechanical and electrical engineers have been able to squeeze so much more miles out of a gallon of fuel. The latest technology being direct injection, and either mechanical or hydraulic variable valve timing.
A 3.5 litre 6 cylinder Ford Cyclone V6 has the performance of a former large displacement V8, and economy of the oldest 4 cylinders. The 2.7 litre eco boost turbo version even better by 35 horsepower and a bit more torque.

Post# 1004824 , Reply# 29   8/25/2018 at 15:55 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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It is scary how difficult so many things on this car are.
So, STILL trying to fix the same problem, but FINALLY the car is getting worse...meaning maybe I can finally diagnose this bitch.
The idle speed now bounces, or surges and the engine will die at low speed. YES, what I so vehemently denied being a problem earlier the car is very much doing now. Thank god I thought, that seems rather specific...ran to the internet, EUREKA, IDLE AIR CONTROL VALVE. Well, not so fast.
I order the part, specifically for my model, motor and year, it arrives...but dang if I can find where it is located on the motor. Not only that, but nowhere can I find a diagram on the internet. And even worse, i then read in a Saturn chat room: “the L300 HAS NO IAC
So either that guy in the chat room is wrong, or the parts stores listing the part “for my vehicle” are wrong.
Anybody got a clue? Know a guy who might have a clue? Ready to roll it off a cliff at this point.

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This post was last edited 08/25/2018 at 22:09
Post# 1004874 , Reply# 30   8/25/2018 at 22:21 by dartman (Portland Oregon)        

When I thought my IAC valve was bad on my 95 Neon coupe I bought a cheap new one on eBay and no difference at all. By the way it should mount on the throttle body about the middle somewhere if it is similar to the Neon setup. My symptoms were dying every time I rolled to a stop. No codes at all except issues I was already aware of that had nothing to do with the problem or affected run quality or drivability. It turned out to be the EGR valve was probably crudded up and sticking open or something. I fixed it by unplugging the electrical plug for the valve and plugging the vacuum port that helped operate it. It still passes emissions tests and hasn't died at stop lights since. It's possible your issue is tied in with the IAC valve has it was claimed to be one of the causes for the dying problem on my Neon and mine never had cold start or warm start issues.
Good luck and probably just plugging a vacuum hose or port for the EGR valve without even unplugging the connector might cure it IF it is similar to the issue mine had. Good luck, finding intermittent or oddball problems like that can be frustrating and sometimes down to a lucky guess.

Post# 1004919 , Reply# 31   8/26/2018 at 06:45 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        

before you push `er off a cliff, like the one one your east end of San Diego, where those kids were playing Pokemon go, and fell off and died because they didn't see it;
Try researching a UK Opel service tech guide, for the V6, or a German one in English.
Also not all of them done by mechanics may be accurate. The L200 may not have that IAC valve, and an L300 may have one.
Another issue older cars have is a dirty throttle body that causes poor starting, idling, and performance. There is a critical sensor on it as well.
At that age, a check engine light trouble code diagnosis can lead no where other than an evaporative canister purge valve, line or tank leak, gas cap missing, or coolant sensor.
Have you also had the catlayst inspected for clogging? If the car is now lsoing power, and won't reach a speed of about 25, have it checked.

Post# 1004931 , Reply# 32   8/26/2018 at 10:19 by D-jones (Western Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh Area))        
Timing chain or timing belt?

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Quite a few years ago I had a Plymouth Duster with a 318 v8. I loved that car, but it began to have trouble starting and was making me crazy. It had fuel, it had air, and it had a good hot spark. So not being a properly trained mechanic yet I was really puzzled. But the thing I found really odd was that I would turn the key into the start position and the car would crank and crank and crank without ever starting. But as soon as I gave up the effort and backed the key off to the run position it would start, almost as if the car was mocking me. This didn’t happen every time, but frequently. Then my dad used a timing light to see where it was firing. I don’t recall how many degrees before top dead center the number one cylinder was supposed to fire, but it was all over the place; sometimes well before the timing mark and sometimes well after. My dad was puzzled and said he’d think it over a bit and see what he could come up with to explain what we were seeing. I drove the car to school the next day and on the way home I pushed in the clutch and the engine stalled. This time I couldn’t get it restarted so it was towed home. Finally tearing into the engine revealed the problem. The timing chain had either stretched or the nylon gear affixed to the cam shaft had word down. Whichever it was the result was the same. Too much slack had caused Crank and cam to be randomly out of sink by a small amount which caused the hard starting. On the way home from school that day they became way out of sink, the pistons came up and smacked all the valves and bent all the pushrods and the engine was done. So with that in mind, have you checked the timing?

Post# 1004934 , Reply# 33   8/26/2018 at 10:30 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Duster problem

sounds most like a missing flywheel tooth. Did post 1971 models have electronic ignition like full size Chryslers?
If the Opel 2.5 and 3.0 V6's have no spark distributor, and have a coil pack there isn't that type of timing adjustment. They do have a crank position sensor though, which works with the engine computer which energizes the coil pack for firing order. If one or other is faulty, poor or no operation.

Post# 1004938 , Reply# 34   8/26/2018 at 11:04 by D-jones (Western Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh Area))        

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Mine was a 75 and had electronic ignition. Don’t see how you arrive at a flywheel problem since the car had no problem cranking, but just to be clear the Dusters problem was definitely to much slack in the timing chain which ultimately jumped a few teeth on the camshaft drive gear with catastrophic consequences. As Roberts car is getting worse I think if timing hasn’t been looked at yet it should be, if for no other reason than to rule it out.

Post# 1004945 , Reply# 35   8/26/2018 at 12:26 by cuffs054 (MONTICELLO, GA)        

Robert, perhaps you should be looking at the Mirage not me!

Post# 1005231 , Reply# 36   8/28/2018 at 15:26 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Well FINALLY this story comes to an end...
do LW300’s even have IAC’s, was it by cliff or crusher? So many questions. Here is what happened.
A friend I worked at a gas station with one summer—35 YEARS AGO—mentioned to me the mechanic, Bentley, was still there working as he ever was...”Bentley always knew his stuff”, I thought, and more importantly, I trusted him.
So after three and one half decades I rolled into the nearby Shell station and told the whole sorted tale...he sorta remembered me, and said “I’ll check it out”. Two hours later I had THE answer I have been waiting months for...three letters...any guesses?

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Post# 1005234 , Reply# 37   8/28/2018 at 15:37 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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S..E..X ??

Post# 1005284 , Reply# 38   8/28/2018 at 20:00 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Ah no...
Try M-A-P...
a small sensor that sits on the throttle body which I just recently noticed and started to think about before I threw in the towel and took it to a pro.

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Post# 1005287 , Reply# 39   8/28/2018 at 20:30 by D-jones (Western Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh Area))        

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Manifold absolute pressure sensor. I had to replace that on my Intrepid after the original was damaged while the manifold was off the engine sitting on the floor of my garage. The car would run at higher rpm’s but would not idle at all. Glad you were able finally get it sorted out.

Post# 1005294 , Reply# 40   8/28/2018 at 21:37 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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I replaced the MAF sensor so whenever I saw “MAP sensor” mentioned I thought it was a different name for the same thing (MAF) body control module BCM vs engine control module ECM, seems it varies depending on manufacturer.
Nope, MAP is it’s own animal, my bad.

This post was last edited 08/29/2018 at 05:07
Post# 1005335 , Reply# 41   8/29/2018 at 08:08 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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Glad you finally got it straightened it out. Problems like that can be a real PITA to resolve as you well know.

Post# 1006529 , Reply# 42   9/8/2018 at 19:25 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Decided to change (not flush) the trans fluid. On this car that means dropping the pan as there is no drain plug, or even a dipstick...other than the guy driving! The car only has 60k miles, but those are mostly stop and go. The manual says change at 100k for normal 50k for tough conditions...trailers, etc. so I figured it was time. Got bids from $130-$280. Ended up going with the low bidder, but had them use a premium pan gasket rather than the minimum they usually use, that added $8. It uses metal grommets around the bolt holes, and has a centering pin, rather than not.
My research said never flush auto transmissions (bad for seals), and be wary of even changing fluid in a high mileage unit. Sometimes high mileage transmissions need the grit and varnish to keep from slipping.
To fill, you shift through the gears and remove a particular bolt which will then start to leak fluid once the trans has been filled to where it should be. It took 8 quarts of new fluid, and man does she shift and drive smooth now. The trans capacity is higher but a significant amount of fluid stays in the torque converter and other nooks and crannies. Thankfully the service manager snapped a couple of pics to show me the job was actually done, and what the old fluid looked like...toasty but not too burnt. I would swear it’s quieter too, I wonder if she was a couple of q’s low. I doubt it leaked any, but was it full when it left the factory?

This post was last edited 09/09/2018 at 01:55
Post# 1006531 , Reply# 43   9/8/2018 at 20:01 by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        
was it full when it left the factory?

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If a car was assembled on Monday or Friday it might well be low on fluid leaving the factory. LOL

Post# 1006533 , Reply# 44   9/8/2018 at 20:03 by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

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be wary of even changing fluid in a high mileage unit. Sometimes high mileage transmissions need the grit and varnish to keep from slipping.


From what I've heard, it sounds like it isn't high mileage that's a problem. It's when it's high mileage with fluid that hasn't been properly maintained (e.g., a transmission with high miles that still has its original fluid).

Post# 1006536 , Reply# 45   9/8/2018 at 20:54 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        
No dipstick

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Not being able to periodically check the fluid level is asinine in my opinion.

Post# 1006537 , Reply# 46   9/8/2018 at 20:59 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Ya there’s the consideration that ATF is inherently detergent by nature, and that new fluid might loosen crap from a poorly cared for tranny, and then clog an artery or capillary in the transmission as it were.
My ‘97 mercedes s420 also lacks a dipstick, it’s next up for an ATF change.

Post# 1006539 , Reply# 47   9/8/2018 at 21:07 by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Which reminds me of a question i’ve long pondered: what is the shelf life of ATF? 10 years, 20, 50?

This post was last edited 09/09/2018 at 02:52
Post# 1006750 , Reply# 48   9/11/2018 at 05:33 by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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Well new fluids have improved components  in them.  Like Dexron 6 that can be used in an old car but Dexron 3 can't be used in a new car.  I'm sure the fluid itself on the shelf is perfectly usable but I'd personally rather have "new and improved" fluid in my old SUV.

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