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Discussion Starter #1
New to me ( a few weeks) 9 5 is having cold start issues.
Today it was 36 deg F and it took awhile to light. Cranked over normally, but would not catch and when it finally did, it stumbled a bit and then died.
Turned the key a couple of times more and it eventually lit. Drove in to work (25 miles) on the highway and zero issues. When I stopped at work I tested it again and it started fine.

Full tank of Premium fuel.

Background info: Previous owner put new plugs in and receipt shows them as the correct NKGs. A few days ago it threw a P1110 code but after clearing it went away and hasn't come back. No issues when it was warmer out but I don't know if that means anything.

TIA
 

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Before the starting issue, did you start the car and run it only briefly, like to move it in the driveway, and then shut it down for the day?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No, it was first thing in the morning after sitting overnight (no garage) and I've been using the car for my 50+ mile highway commute for about a week. This afternoon when leaving work it started up just fine and I drove home without issue.
 

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I've also recently developed a cold start issue on my 2006 9-5 sedan. Every morning, the first start from cold, it starts up and immediately dies. Always starts up and runs fine the second attempt. I also have a check engine light for a p0456, small evap leak. Which I cannot figure out even after smoke testing.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Ok, so again this morning it did the same thing: Cranked, but no start at first, and then a crank and stumble, and finally, a crank and it was running. Car runs great, mileage is great, but the starting issue is getting old. AFAIK, three things are needed to run: Fuel, compression, and spark. Which one of those is most likely to be influenced by colder weather? I'm thinking of swapping out the three-year old battery and putting in something more robust. I don't think compression would be temperature related, but a sketchy battery could make the DIC act a bit flaky....I don't like the idea of throwing parts at it and hoping but no codes are displayed.
 

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The coolant level is staying constant?

The P1110 is probably a different problem, but maybe check for any leaks in the intake system?
 

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SAAB 95 2004 Linear Wagon
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my money would be on the battery being the cause (but is just based on personal experience of a similar problem 2x recurring over 6 yrs, each time eventually solved by replacing the battery after testing/replacing several other items)

when in previous yrs i did lots of searching/reading to try and resolve my own cold start problem, i did find technical reports that the saab 95 is partic susceptible to a weakening/aging battery causing cold start problems. the battery. might still read ok with a volt meter in the morning prior to trying the first start, but if load tested with a professional device, it will show its weaknes in not being able to hold its amperage overnight. the battery rating recommenced for the 95 is 620 CCA iirc , so last yr i installed a 750 CCA and put a date sticker on it to see if it now will last longer (3 - 4 yrs i think is the predicted average). on my old 900 they could last as long as 6 yrs. extreme heat (like we experience in australia) or extreme cold can age the battery faster (or not using the battery heat shield cover etc..)

it could also be that if there is some other minor electrical/electronic fault present in the same car that is not symptomatic with a healthy battery and/or alternator, and it could make that car more susceptible to start having issues with a weaker battery (i tried to check some of the main earth/ground connections for ex)

disclaimer: just sharing my observations, i have no great mechanical knowledge :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Since the battery is a no-name brand and three years old I'm going to try a new one. Every.Single.Morning I now have the same exact issue: 1st: crank, no start. 2nd: crank it stumbles. 3rd crank: lights right up. It hasn't been all that cold, under 40deg F but not freezing. We usually get snow around the end of October so I need to get this squared away.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you all for the replies. In an effort to troubleshoot the fuel check valve it is recommended to "prime the pump" but I have no idea if I'm doing it correctly: I just turn the key to "on" but not to "start" a couple of times? I've tried that and nothing changed, it still is behaving the same way: First attempt to start just spins the engine over without any ignition, the second attempt causes it to light but stumble and die, and the third (or fourth) is always the charm. It reminds me of when a car runs out gas completely and it takes a couple of attempts to get it going again. But, with this Saab, it NEVER happens in the afternoon when leaving work, and the car has been parked for 6 or 7 hours. I would think that is long enough for a bad fuel check valve to leak down but maybe not?
 

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It's likely fuel related. I have this issue on both my 06 9-5 wagon and my 07 9-5 sedan. Both have over 215K. The issue happens to me every spring/fall when the temp is above 60F during the day and drops below 40F at night - so for me it just started again this week. Once the weather turns cold/hot all day and night, the problem will go away. Been dealing with this for 3+ years now with no adverse affects on performance. I have to cycle my key about 5-7 times to prime the fuel pump before staring when this occurs or it will just crank and crank. I verified this last year by putting a fuel pressure gauge on the rail and letting the car sit overnight. The pressure would drop off and not hold during cranking until the system was primed multiple times. Probably some thermal cycling check valve that acts up only when there is a large temp swing when the system is not running. Can't say for sure, but I just ordered a new fuel pump assembly for the sedan so I will know soon if that is the culprit or not.
 

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In my case, priming the fuel pump does not seem to help. I tried cycling the ignition a couple times and it will still stall. However, my car does not crank for long. It starts right away, then immediately stumbles and dies. This problem seemed to start after I replaced the evap check valve by the power steering reservoir. I don't know if this is coincidence or if the two are related.
 

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My car starts and dies on the first attempt as well. I used to be able to prime it 1-2 times after that and start on the second attempt but over time it has gotten to the point where I need to prime it 5-7 times after it stalls if I want it to start on the next crank. If I remember to do it, I can usually prime it a bunch before the first crank attempt and keep it running but it still stumbles. Seems to me like the entire fuel line is draining back to the tank. Now that the fuel gauge died I'm going to replace the assembly and see if that fixes it. For anyone running into this issue I would recommend getting a fuel gauge and set it up so you can monitor what is happening when the stall occurs. If it's stalling, it's losing spark, air or fuel, and my guess is fuel.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, so I'm beginning to narrow the problem down bit by bit. Today I did not drive the car at all. It has been sitting for over 24 hours. Plenty of time for a leaking fuel check valve to drain. The car started immediately when I turned the key. The only difference is that today it is 79 deg and previously it was in the high 30's, low 40's. Soooo unless the check valve is influenced by temperatures, the problem is elsewhere. Next, I will spray the intake after sitting all night in low temps with a starting fluid. My guess is that it will start immediately. If it does, I have a fuel delivery issue that is temperature dependent.
 
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