Saab 9-3 Engine Trouble [Archive] - SaabCentral Forums

: Saab 9-3 Engine Trouble


Dajur
11-09-07, 07:07 PM
Hey everyone, I have been looking at the forums for awhile, but haven't posted yet. I have a problem with my Saab 9-3 and I would like some help/advice.

Today, I was driving and my engine started to sputter and gasp, as if I was running out of gas. I pulled over, and the engine died shortly after. I tried starting it again, and it turned over for a few seconds, but didn't start. I popped the hood to check out the engine, and I noticed a little smoke coming from the connector on the side of the engine near the top (a few inches from the battery). I went to turn my hazard lights on, and they stayed on for a few minutes, then they turned off. I turned on the key and tried to turn it over, and the car battery was dead. The battery is fairly new and hasn't had any problems before. I'm thinking that either the engine got fried, or there is some sort of electrical problem. Does anybody have any ideas as to what is going on? I could really use the help before I call a tow truck and have it towed to the Saab mechanic. Thanks.

-Dan

ppap
11-09-07, 07:55 PM
Check the serpentine belt. These cars have plastic idler pulleys that seize and chew up the belt which leads to battery failure from lack of charge as well as loss of power steering, water pump and AC.

av8ndoc
11-09-07, 08:07 PM
if you have a bad alternator (which could have caused the demise of the old battery as it was failing) that failed, it could have then discharged the battery to the point that the engine could not get a good spark and died. There'd still be enough juice to run the hazards a bit but the headlights would have been pretty dim! Then the battery would be dead.

I can't explain the bit of ?smoke -- maybe from alternator? Check to see its belt is not melted, tearing, etc.

IF that's what happened and there's not a belt problem, I'd think you could start the car and run it off a new battery or a jump from another car. If you use a battery you'd need to know it will quickly eat up the battery, but you could then use the running car to diagnose it as a dead alternator. You could just keep it jumped to the adjacent car a few minutes to check the alternator output too. Most auto stores have a device to read the alternator output to see if it is dead.

so you may be able to diagnose it as an alternator this way, or it could be something else; but from the info you gave I am thinking alternator--unless there's more to tell . . .

earthworm
11-09-07, 08:10 PM
Not the pulleys nor belt, but the CID, but I cannot believe this shorted enough to drain a battery....

As the alternator brushes are 7 years old, with over 100K miles, it is much more likely that these are due for replacement, and also the DIC is finished....that smoke is ominous..

Dajur
11-09-07, 09:20 PM
I just went and checked out my car (I had to ride my motorcycle since the car is about 8 miles away) and checked the belt. It is fine. I hooked up a booster jump starter to it, and it turned over, but didn't start. No smoke came from the engine or anything, and it turned over with enough power that it should have started if nothing was wrong with it. I'm pretty sure it isn't a cracked block, it isn't the alternator, it didn't throw a rod, there is plenty of coolant and oil. Gas tank was a 3/4 full. I would probably think it was a fuel pump or fuel line problem if I didn't see the smoke coming from the electrical connector going to the engine. The dash display keeps telling me about the front left headlight that is out, but it isn't saying anything about the car not starting. Go figure.

Tweek's Turbos
11-09-07, 10:14 PM
Find another saab, and swap the big red thing on top of the engine and see if that fixes anything.

The smoking connecter, was that the one going to the red rectangle?

Dajur
11-09-07, 10:22 PM
Yeah, it is the connector on the right just under the red rectangle on top of the engine.

hkayssi
12-09-07, 03:31 AM
Yeah, it is the connector on the right just under the red rectangle on top of the engine.

Sounds like a bad DIC. Earthworm and Tweeks are right again :cheesy:

Frank_Drebin
12-09-07, 07:49 AM
If you have a good local Saab dealer AND you ask nicely, they may stick their blue test cassette on it to see if it's the cause. Heritage Saab here in Atlanta is pretty good about that kind of stuff but the "other" local Saab Dealer has a reputation for not being so helpful.

Dajur
12-09-07, 10:24 PM
If you have a good local Saab dealer AND you ask nicely, they may stick their blue test cassette on it to see if it's the cause. Heritage Saab here in Atlanta is pretty good about that kind of stuff but the "other" local Saab Dealer has a reputation for not being so helpful.

Yeah, I am in Seattle, and there is a really good Saab mechanic in town. I had the car towed there (150$ 11 miles), and he put a used Ignition Cassette on, and that is what the problem is. He didn't seem upset that I was more interested in getting a used DIC (ebay 20-80$). Although, in the end, I'm just going to buy a new one from him for 270$. Thanks for the advice.

-Dan

KSpark
12-09-07, 11:55 PM
Yeah, I am in Seattle, and there is a really good Saab mechanic in town. I had the car towed there (150$ 11 miles), and he put a used Ignition Cassette on, and that is what the problem is. He didn't seem upset that I was more interested in getting a used DIC (ebay 20-80$). Although, in the end, I'm just going to buy a new one from him for 270$. Thanks for the advice.

-Dan

You could definitely get a better deal on a new DIC, but given your situation you're not really in any spot to wait for a good price to come up. Be wary of used ones as they could fail any time (as you just figured out the hard way).


PS: Scanwest Autosport is a good place around here, but they charge a lot. Another place I'd recommend is Moe's Automotive, and I've heard good things about Europa Bellevue as well.

Dajur
12-09-07, 11:58 PM
You could definitely get a better deal on a new DIC, but given your situation you're not really in any spot to wait for a good price to come up. Be wary of used ones as they could fail any time (as you just figured out the hard way).


PS: Scanwest Autosport is a good place around here, but they charge a lot. Another place I'd recommend is Moe's Automotive, and I've heard good things about Europa Bellevue as well.

My car is in the capable hands of Moe, of Moe's Automotive.