hard to start, almost impossable in cold weather

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Slayer
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by Slayer » Tue Dec 29, 2009 10:51 pm
1998 SC2

when it is cold outside, my car is hard to start, almost impossable. it will crank and crank, sputter a little and then do the same.

eventuially i will mash the gas and keep cranking, it will finally fire up... anyone know what may cause this?

I know purplerain has a similar problem our first cold snap, and I gave her 2 new coilpacks ( i beleive this remidied the problem)

however, I don't want to buy new coil packs if this isnt the issue. mine were just put on when i first got the car about 1.5 months ago to clear a code. used units,

anyways can anyone think of another reason the car will be so hesitant? like it take sme about 3-4 mins of almost constant cranking, this cant be good for the starter, or the motor.

thanks

did any of these cars ever come with a block heater?

 

andrew88
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by andrew88 » Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:36 am
Yes they did come with a block heater, i have two (dont know if they work). Kinda to the left / behind the dipstick you can see a bolt hole on the block, that is where they bolt to.
My wifes 01 sl2 is doing this right now and I noticed her fan is coming on but when it does get going the temp guage reads fine. So I am thinking iat or tts is off. Will let you know what I find this weekend.

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 10:41 am
ok thanks,, i will take a look for the block heater area, anyone know what these go for? im at work now and no time to part search lol

thanks

 

Rear-Vue
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by Rear-Vue » Wed Dec 30, 2009 12:26 pm
blockheaters with the cord are like 20-40bux depending on where you get it. and chances are your flooding it aka the fuel cant get burnt cause when your put your foot to the floor it cuts fuel. so then it will start. probally need plugs and wires, cause if it starts and stays started chances are its getting fuel, air is coming in, and if ti doesnt run like a bag of shit you got compression. so all that is left is spark.

battery good?
plugs wires any clue how old? they any good?
chances are if your coils solved the other problem those arent your issue.

so i would check the plugs and wires and go from there.

otherwise might be a sensor starting to crap on you was their a code?

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:58 pm
plugs and wires are brand new i just put them on.

the car runs and drives fine, it just doesnt start in cold weather. the only way to get it started it to hold the gas and crank it constantly.. after a couple mins of cranking (like 30 second intervals it will finally sputter to life, and be fine after that, it'll even re-start perfectly fine after running for about 5 mins warmup.

 

Rear-Vue
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by Rear-Vue » Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:20 pm
hmm then i would say just try some gas line antifreeze cause something is blocking the fuel. could be defective plug? or 2 large of a gap. last thing i would check is the crank position sensor. i forget but i think it uses the cam sensor for position info for when to fire the plugs. did you ever sand down/ clean the backside of the coil pack a not complete ground could cause it to act stupid. kinda hard to figure out without being their.

i cant see it being any sensors like aic or coolant sensors cause 98% of sensors arent used when first starting the car cause its in open loop mode aka computer reads from a set of parameters until it warms up then it reads from the sensors.

ok just did some quick searching and found out that the saturn does use the cts for part of the reading on open loop. their pretty cheap would try that or could just test it to see if it funky. usually they test cold aka dump fuel hence why people get bad gas milage, but if it really messed could test 2 hot and not enough fuel for cold weather.. but ya... i am just pulling shit out of my ass at the moment.

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:32 pm
the plugs were replaced 2 times, my brother pulled mine out and put new ones in when he saftied it, he would have gapped them, but the issue seemed to start before he did that anyways.

Crank / cam sensor is brand new

gas line antifreeze was my first think i added.

I could tryt o sand down the back of the coils to get a better ground, but im guessing thats not a issue.. can't hurt tho right.

this is kinda strange, and i dont want to spend $400 x 2 on coil packs and possable $600 on the module, the car only cost $300 + a windsheild ($275) i can't spend more than the car is worth on coil packs, and going used again is not worth it either

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:37 pm
I was looking at block heaters, what would be better, coolant heater or oil heater....

in also thinking about oil heating, would is be benificial to switch out to a thiner oil, or a synthetic, to help prevent it from thinkening up?

it makes me think to, the engine doesnt sound like its cranking any slower (aka trying to push too thick of oil) so i dunno if that would be a help even?

 

Rear-Vue
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by Rear-Vue » Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:58 pm
cheap things first.

oil 5w30 normal stuff dont waste your $$ on synthetic. so dont change that. coolant heaters are way more common and easier with the coolant being warm it warms up the whole motor. (cause the coolant is everywhere vs the oil is just in the pan.)

try the cts test or just replace it and see wht happens. their like 10-15bux and takes 2mins to install it. ya clean up the coil packs and go from their i got the moduale, and both coils for 150bux from a junkyard that came with a 30 day money back/ exchange garranteed. but like you said the car runs fine afterwards i cant see it being the coil or moduale.

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 5:15 pm
i see a couple coolant heaters advertised at CTC, but im not 100% sure how they work, do they heat the coolant, and pump it throughout the engine, or just radiant heat the coolant throughout?

eg:

http://www.canadiantire.ca/AST/browse/4 ... Heater.jsp

http://www.canadiantire.ca/AST/browse/4 ... Heater.jsp

http://www.canadiantire.ca/AST/browse/4 ... Heater.jsp

hopefully those links actually work, ifnot search for coolant heater

 

andrew88
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by andrew88 » Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:01 pm
Ya the cts is definably used on saturns during closed and open. If you have an obd II saturn and wondering if the sensor is on its way out your temp gauge will read funny when fully warmed up. Get an ohm meter on it to check and compare resistance a chart, haynes manual has one I am sure its on the internet somewhere.
As for the block heaters, the stock one in located on a water jacket and thus heats the coolant. Oil heaters and more important for a diesel than gas engine because the oil is used to fire the injectors.. and its usually 15w40!!

As for the crappy tire block heaters, the smaller and cheaper two look like they just use the heat to circulate it, where as the funny looking big one says in the description that it pumps the coolant.

And for the module and coil packs there are some tested to do with ohm meter to help see if they are on their way out, I've found after cleaning dielectric grease really helps. Scrapyard here charges 40$ for wires,coil pack and module ;)

Wish you luck because its cold and crappy out!

Andrew

 

Slayer
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by Slayer » Wed Dec 30, 2009 8:08 pm
I bought a new CTS its only $16 so we'll start there, i'll look up how to check the coil packs if the problem persists, but as Mike was telling me the CTS is used iun the startup.

 

01saturnsc1
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by 01saturnsc1 » Wed Dec 30, 2009 10:31 pm
I had that same problem with mine last winter changed out my cts and she was solid after that
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