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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I called Country Imports in Neosho (WI) on Tuesday morning to see if they could check my car out, just a general check over. For those who don't know, Country Imports only works on Saabs. I've owned my 9-5 for just over a month-and-a-half. There was a few things bothering me about the car and I had failed emissions due to my coolant temp sensor throwing a CEL.

The guy I talked to on the phone (forgot his name) was really nice, told me to bring it in sometime in the afternoon. He said it would cost $40 to check the car over. My response was "That's it? $40? Fine with me!".

Got to the shop in mid-afternoon... not what I expected to say the least. It's in the middle of the country (so it's not just a clever name) and it's a bit run down, has a gravel driveway, has semi-truck parts and trailers scattered about...basically it looks kinda like a salvage yard. 1st impressions aside I walked in and let the man behind the counter know what I was there for. A mechanic came up front and pulled my car around back to start checking it over. In the meantime the man behind the counter left the waiting area and went outside. This gave me a chance to strike up a conversation with a fellow Saab owner who was there for repairs. I told him how this place was NOT what I expected. He chuckled a bit and asked me if I had ever seen the Horse Whisperer. I've only seen bits of it and don't remember much. So, puzzled, I answered that I hadn't seen it but knew the premise of the movie. He continued on with these words- "What Robert Redford was for horses, that man out there is for Saabs. He is the Saab Whisperer". I laughed a bit, the customer smiled, but I realized he was serious. The short of it? They pulled the car in, did a general check over. Poked around under the hood, took it for a test drive. Pulled it back in, checked it over again. They informed me about the Coolant Sensor, which I knew about. Also letting me know that there was mis-fire codes on the front bank but they cleared and didn't come back. Also that I had some bulbs burnt out. Other than that there was nothing wrong with the car. From what I understood, they do have Tech II. The nice gentleman behind the counter (hereafter known as the Saab Whisperer) discussed the codes, sensor, lights, etc. and was very pleasant to deal with. In parting I asked how much for everything... he said $20. Being honest, I told him that's not what I had been told earlier. I was told it would be $40. He said it wasn't a problem and asked for $20 again. I gave him his $20 and was on my way.

-Overall Impression of Country Imports- Looks are deceiving. From listening to *the Saab Whisperer* on the phone and talking to customers and his mechanics, the guy knows his stuff. If ever there's anything on my 9-5 that I can't handle on my own, I will be going back to them.

Maintenance and things accomplished today at 113,251 miles-
1. Spark Plugs x6 NGK BKR 7ES-11
2. Amsoil Engine Flush
3. 4.75 qts Amsoil Euro 5w-40
4. Napa Gold Oil Filter #1348
5. Front Signal Bulbs x2
6. Trunk Lamp x1
7. License Plate Lamp x1
8. Coolant Temp Sensor

Found out that whoever did the previous oil change had used a Car Craft oil filter and the old oil was dirty and really dark. Granted the flush may have done this to a certain extent, but it was not pretty. The plugs were well used, but not used up.

Also discovered that the Coolant temp sensor was not as much of a PITA as I thought it would be. Aside from losing 2 quarts of coolant and dropping 2 washers (2 separate tries) while trying to shove the temp sensor in to stop the flow of coolant, it wasn't too bad. Used a 19mm deep socket, a swivel, a 3 inch extension, and had to remove the rubber hose that sits in front of the TB. After all the swearing and yelling over the dropped washers and the mess on the garage floor, it was easy to do.

End result of flush/switching oil/changing plugs- I can barely hear the car run. This thing is so quiet and so smooth. Before, you could feel the car idle. You could feel it in your back against the seat, your butt in the seat, back seat, front seat, whatever. The car vibrated. No longer. Now sitting in the car you can feel a very slight tremor when your feet are flat on the carpet as close to the firewall as you can get them. And for anyone who wants to say it was the plugs that caused a vibration, the plugs were swapped out and the car ran before the flush and oil change. There was the same amount of vibration before and after plugs. I'm convinced. I'm sticking with Amsoil from here on out.

The bulbs were simple. Not much of note to say about them.

Ran a Matco OBDII diagnostics tool on the car afterwards. No codes. Everything cleared and the CEL is gone. Gonna try to pass emissions again on Wednesday, my next day off work.

Total cost for everything today? CASE of Amsoil oil, Amsoil Flush, Amsoil engine treatment (little bottle called Amsoil P.I.), plugs, oil filter, bulbs, and temp sensor came to about $170. Well worth it.

Blackberry question- is there any decent looking phone holder that mounts into/onto the dash area for our cars? Something with a 'factory' look to it? Also is there any way to route a Blackberry through our Saab's speakers?

Last thing, and I know some eyes are gonna roll on this one- The K&N from Taliaferro. I installed this setup just over 2 weeks ago. Up until today, the K&N assembly was the ONLY thing I changed on the car. Same gas, same driving habits, same parts highway/street, same everything. The difference? An extra 30-40 miles per tank of gas. Anybody wanna explain that? Because I am puzzled.

-Thank You and Happy Easter everyone
 

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What mileage is your car reporting?

I was on the freeway the other day doing 60 just goofing around trying to see how high I could get my MPG...

I was steady at 41 MPG... I was pretty much riveted. Problem is I like to go 75 then I only get 30 MPG. :p

The only "engine upgrades" I myself have are a similar intake and a 3" cat-back exhaust. I wouldn't be totally surprised if the ECU could take advantage of more flow to better the mileage, but from what I understand it really shouldn't make a difference.
 

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I called Country Imports in Neosho (WI) Also letting me know that there was mis-fire codes on the front bank but they cleared and didn't come back.

An extra 30-40 miles per tank of gas. Anybody wanna explain that? Because I am puzzled.

-Thank You and Happy Easter everyone
As a disclaimer, I don't own the 6, I own the 4 cylinder. But that being said, if the mechanic says you have misfire codes on the front bank, wouldn't that mean that your front DIC is on it's way out? I was told that if your DIC is misfiring, it can send unburned fuel into your Catalytic converter, destroying it.
An extra 30-40 MPG because of an air filter? That would mean you getting 5 to 10 mpg prior?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Sector 9,
I'm averaging just barely under 30 mpg. But my average speed is 10-15 over and on the freeway I average about 20 over (freeway speed limit here is 65). Bad, I know. I have a heavy foot and my driving record shows it. I hate moving along with everyone else. Always wanted to get a bumper sticker made that says "Sheep! You're all SHEEP!". Then maybe when I pull up to a stoplight and 1 lane is open, so I pull into it, but in that other lane there is 8 cars all in a row waiting for green. Maybe, just maybe, someone waiting in line will see that sticker, ask themselves what they are, and start finding that open lane.

Anyways, I digress. My SID readout says 21.5 mpg but I don't put any faith in that. When I first bought the car SID said 9.8 mpg and has been slowly, steadily rising.

Photo,
30-40 extra miles per tank, not per gallon.

Regarding the DIC, the mechanic cleared the code on Tuesday afternoon. Between Tuesday afternoon and Saturday afternoon I put almost 600 miles on the car. Saturday afternoon I re-scanned the car, and had no codes. I'm going to re-scan in another 8 days and see if anything pops up. If the DIC is going, what would be some signs?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You too Sparky and well done on the maintenece ;)
Thank You! Supposed to reach 70 degrees here today, so it will definitely be a Happy Easter. :D Maybe I can finish organizing my garage. :roll:

As far as the maintenance goes, if I couldn't do this, then I've learned nothing over the years. Granted this is the 1st Saab I've ever done anything to, or even rode in for that matter. I wrenched for 5 years in my step-dad's shop, learned a few things, and plan on doing most of the work on the car myself. Most. I'll be getting assistance with the timing belt/pulleys/serpentine system/water pump/thermostat at 120k. Anything else I should add to the 120k service? lol.
 

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Anyways, I digress. My SID readout says 21.5 mpg but I don't put any faith in that. When I first bought the car SID said 9.8 mpg and has been slowly, steadily rising.
Don't take this the wrong way, but you know you can clear the MPG readout and start the averaging over again... right?
 

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[...] Anything else I should add to the 120k service? lol.
You got it pretty well covered. Might need a Cabin Air Filter by then though if you haven't noticed it already. BTW...the reason the Country Imports were so nice is that they're hoping you'll be back for the more substantial things. Still it's nice to get something reasonably priced from an indie! :roll:

Don't take this the wrong way, but you know you can clear the MPG readout and start the averaging over again... right?
Okay! I'll admit it I'm ignorant. How do you do that? :confused:
 

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Okay! I'll admit it I'm ignorant. How do you do that? :confused:
If you hold down the clear button for something like 5 seconds, the SID with chime and then display "Cleared" on the screen. Your averages will then start over and you can see more-or-less instant mileage. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I finally checked the manual. ....what Sector said, lol. At 60mph, I was getting 42-43mpg. With the cruise at 75 it dropped to 29.4. I can't complain too much about that.

Regarding Country Imports, even before the owner and I discussed a price for the check-over, I told him I do all my own work on my vehicles. So he knew right away that he wouldn't be making much money off of me. That, and I've heard of his customers coming from Madison, Milwaukee, Fond du Lac. All places that are more than an hour from his shop. Maybe it's being overly optimistic, but just maybe he's a good guy?
 
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