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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone!
Just bought 2001 Saab 9-5 Aero with automatic transmission.
It has a few problems which may be related to each other.
1) Multiple misfiring
2) Hard Brake Pedal
3) Smoke under the hood (small oil leak)

After reading some of the posts here I came to conclusion that my Brake Booster is no good. So I went to local Junk yard and pulled one of 1999 Saab 9-5 witch looked fine and had some re-manufactured stamp on it. However after disassembling it I found some amount of oil in it and also saw that check valve was not good there on Vacuum line from the pump.
Ether way I disconnected my Booster and checked valves which was fine (letting air thru only one way - from booster) and after cleaning that "new" one installed it my car.

Same time I pulled spark plugs and they did not look bad but has some mileage on them. I re-gaped and puy them back.
I also notice some small leak in exhaust most likely around second cat converter did not look close enough to find where exactly.

After all this I took it for a short drive to local Autozone to have CEL checked and it first ran fine with some misfiring here and there but after one mile it would die on every stop sign and I had to restart it every 50ft.
So I stopped and asked my friend to pick me up and went to get new spark plugs and brought DI cassette with me (pulled it from same car on Junk yard).
After I pulled my plugs they was all black. Installed new ones and barely made it back to my parking lot. Car was running a bit better with new plugs but my front brakes become locked up so I had to stop every minute so I would not overheat my rotors.
I disconnected plug to MAF and car would stay running pretty good. I tried to switch with good one but had exactly the same symptoms: multiple misfiring.
I'm going to check my vacuum pump today and will try to pull one of junk yard to see if that will cure my brake problem.

With all this said I would greatly appreciate anyone advise on this! As I understood many members had experience similar problems before with their 9-5 and may be found the solution to this problem. Any info would be helpful!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
UPDATE:
Well misfiring and rough idle problem is fixed.
Turn out to be a loose intake pipe and battery cable.
But the stiff brakes are still there and on 2 mile run they got all locked up again. I checked vacuum pump and it is working - I disconnected line from it and it was sucking air pretty hard.

I don't know if it has to stop at some point or it is running all the time while engine is on? so may be someone can answer that question.
Leaking oil is also there and it is dripping right on cat converter with bunch of smoke. I would have to bring it up on the lift to find out more...

My other question would be about booster, since it had some oil in it before I installed it (tried to clean it all out with brake cleaner spray) will it function again normal after that?

Thanks a lot in advance everyone!
 

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The oil can damage some seals. Is the pedal hard? or soft?
With the brakes locking up I am thinking you may have too much vacuum?.
If you plugged the vacuum hose to the booster and then drive do you know if they still lock up?
Pedal will be hard so be careful.
If it is not locking up, I still think it would be a booster issue.
The booster also has an adjustment on the back side which is nearly impossible to get at.
hope this helps a little.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Hi Srmoose,
Thanks for your reply.
Brake pedal is getting hard after very short drive. That's what happening when everything is hooked up like it should. If I disconnect vacuum hose from booster then brakes still would feels like they locked up plus the pedal will have no assistance at all. However If I leave my car overnight then I can start and drive it for a short drive like normal until brake will get locked up again.

When I disconnected my original booster I measured the distance between booster and locking nut and on "new" booster it was exactly the same.
That booster removal is such a PITA! I really hope that it is a vacuum pump related problem, not a booster...
What else may cause this?
 

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Shameless bump ;)
I had the same issue, I could not track it down at all.
Neither could my Indy (Trolhotten trained).
Extremely frustrating.
I ended up changing the, TB, The Intake, The injectors and fuel rail.
the MAF, spark plugs, DICs, the Cat and some sensors including O2.
And it now works fine, actually great!
All that being said, I have a parts car (2003 V6) and after it was driving me crazy not being able to track it down.
(Indy worked on it for 4 hours but didnt charge me because he could not figure it out)
I decided to swap every part I could less the Booster because it is really as you say a PITA.
One of these things fixed it. but I have no idea which 1 part or maybe all parts or maybe some parts.

For this reason I did not reply earlier, because I have no idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I had the same issue...
For this reason I did not reply earlier, because I have no idea.
Thank you for your input anyway!!!

I got vacuum pump of junk yard and planning to replace it and see if it will cure it. I also want to put new rubber rings for this part.
Will cross my fingers!!!

Through search on the forum I found one tread similar to my brake issue
Guy ended up changing booster and it fixed it. BUT what bother me is fact that after putting new booster in wouldn't it be filled with oil again? So Before I do that I'm thinking on replacing vacuum pump and see if it will change anything.
It sucks that exchanging it with used parts doesn't give you any guarantees but for $20 Ill take a chance :)
 

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On your oil leak, I think I have the same problem as well.

Or rather I've had two different problems that act similarly?

A while ago I had a seal go on an unnamed sensor (So the indy told me). They put a new o-ring or something on it, and that fixed it for a while, but the other day I was doing some hard driving testing my boost gauge, and when I parked the car I was getting smoke from rear of engine. I'm guessing that something else has blown loose, as I now have a pretty stead leak from rear of engine, but it hasn't leaked enough to cause smoking. I put some cardboard under car over night, and had two baseball sized oil spots on the cardboard.

I'll follow this thread hoping for insight, I don't have a great place to work on it, so I'm trying to avoid taking it to the indy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
On your oil leak, I think I have the same problem as well.

Or rather I've had two different problems that act similarly?
...
I'll follow this thread hoping for insight, I don't have a great place to work on it, so I'm trying to avoid taking it to the indy.
Hi,
I looked under the car a saw a good amount of oil on back cat converter.
That what makes all of the smoke under the hood.
I also found similar problem and it turn out to be well known problem for 9-5's. You have to check Oil Pressure sender/sensor which is located exactly above cat converter. Check out this tread with smoke problem.
Here is link to tread where replacement is discussed.
I'm thinking to do it and foundNew sensor on eBay for under $30
 

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I figured it was something sprayed onto the Cat.
I'm wondering if this was what was happening last time too? Though the Indy told me it was on the front of the engine. Who knows...
Sounds like a PITA to replace, let me know how it goes. An hour isn't too bad though I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I figured it was something sprayed onto the Cat.
I'm wondering if this was what was happening last time too? Though the Indy told me it was on the front of the engine. Who knows...
Sounds like a PITA to replace, let me know how it goes. An hour isn't too bad though I guess.
If it is in front of the engine then it probably was a CPS (Crankshaft Position Sensor) which is also located above cat converter (front one). That sensor is a lot easier to reach though. I just pulled one out as a spare from junk yard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Today I installed vacuum pump. I didn't tried it just yet because I decided to take off brake booster since I was there and it was a good idea because once I took it out there was a lot of oil again. I will wait till I get new booster and update here.
 

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If you're getting oil in the brake booster check all of the check valves and your PCV system. Something may not be routed correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Update
Today I installed my old booster back and while I was there I looked at oil sending unit and it was all covered in oil. So it is definitely reason for my smoke under the hood (at least partially!). I should receive my sensor soon and will bring it up on the lift for small exhaust leak and will install it at the same time.
However car is running perfect and I have no more hard brake pedal and brakes no longer getting locked up on me. So what I basically did is changed my vacuum pump and that took care of my hard brake problem. I know now that my other booster from junk yard car that I tried to put instead of my original was in bad shape (I should of know just by looking at amount of oil in it! :roll:). I think that oil got clogged up all of the filters and corrode all rubber seals (all of the foam on back part of it was soaked in oil) I was hoping that If I clean it by spraying some brake cleaner it might be good again. It didn't work.
Before I've put my original booster back today I notice that one seal on the back side was partially out so I tacked it back in and installed it. Worked perfect!
I hope that it will help someone in the future!
Do not try to clean your booster if it has some oil in it just get another. I almost ended up buying one from local junk yard for $40 (they pulled it) but decided to try my old booster back first. If you have oil in your booster it most likely your vacuum pump and of course check valves failed.
I will update on my sending unit once its done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I took apart my old vacuum pump just to see how it works. It reminded me the rotor engine (Mazda RX-8). However I did not see any obvious damage and everything looked fine but apparently something wasn't right. Don't know what though.
Before I installed my new used pump (took it of 2001 9-3 SE) I purchased two new O-rings and swapped them.
 

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I took apart my old vacuum pump just to see how it works. It reminded me the rotor engine (Mazda RX-8). However I did not see any obvious damage and everything looked fine but apparently something wasn't right. Don't know what though.
Before I installed my new used pump (took it of 2001 9-3 SE) I purchased two new O-rings and swapped them.
My indy told me he has had to fix a lot of cars with the Vac pump. because the pump worked too good and ended up sucking up oil and throwing it into the system everywhere destroying turbo cat etc.
 
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