1998 Saturn no start

by James Grady
(Minneapolis, MN)

1998 Saturn SW2

1998 Saturn SW2

1998 Saturn no start intermittent when hot. I have a 1998 Saturn SW2 with 4 Speed Automatic Transmission and a 1.9L DOHC 16 Valve 4 Cylinder Engine. Air Conditioning, Anti Lock Brakes W/Traction Control.

I do not drive this car in the winter so it has been in storage for about 7 months.

For about the last year or so I have had a problem. When I have been driving for a while and stop to shop or whatever, when I try to start the car the starter does not turn. The dash board lights up with all the warning lights but the engine does not turn over.I have replaced the battery and it still happens occasionally, drive a while, stop and no start.

After a short while it seems to turn over and start but it can be a pain. I carry a small socket set to try to tighten the battery cables but that is not the solution.

Any solutions?

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Apr 10, 2010
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Re: 98 Saturn No Start
by: Anonymous

Hello James: Often starter motor problems are amplified by heat. In the auto repair business this is some times referred to as a no crank after a hot soak.

Starters have brushes and windings that can develop dead spots that can cause these intermittent no crank conditions. One way to verify this as the problem would be to tap the starter with a hammer when it refuses to crank.

This is best accomplished with a friend holding the key in the crank position while the starter is tapped. If it begins to crank then the 98 Saturn will need a new starter motor.

2 notes about this procedure. Depending on your experience level you may want a professional mechanic to perform this tap test! If you do it yourself Make sure you stay clear of any moving parts to stay safe.

Also note that other problems can cause this condition and the starter problem mentioned above is just the most common issue with a no crank after a hot soak (not the only possible cause).

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