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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

After tracing ignition problems (crank, intermittent start, quick to stall) we have determined that we need to replace the "hall sensor".
My car is a '91 c900 non-turbo, 2.1l 16v Saab, that has been sitting unused for approximately 12 years, and my job is to get it up to daily driver status.

My problem, is accessing the hall effect sensor located behind the crankshaft pulley in between the engine and the firewall. I've done some digging around, and I haven't found threads that explain what I see.
What I see, is when I roll under the car and look up, I can see the crankshaft pulley, and the bolt I have to get to, but to get to the bolt, it appears I have to move/remove the steering rack and sway bar.

Has anyone else done this job? Tips and tricks would be much appreciated.


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It's a painful job... most people (I think) just install a distributor with hall sender from an earlier car and call it a day. It's a lot less painful!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It's a painful job... most people (I think) just install a distributor with hall sender from an earlier car and call it a day. It's a lot less painful!
I heard somewhere that doing that required replacing the MAF as well? Also looking at cost efficiency as well.

Thanks for the quick reply!

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The ignition and the fuel are unrelated in a c900... two totally separate systems. You just install a different distributor, splice the wires together. That's it.
 

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You Access The bolt for the crankcase pulley from the top .

There is no need to touch the Power steering mounts .

It is a tight space but avery achievable , The Socket size varies on the year , but it will be 27mm or 30mm . Cant recall what year was which size .. I think you will be 30mm

It requires dexterity and a bit of patience , but it isn't a big job .

My opinion is that fitting a Dizzy with the hall sensor mounted is a backward step .

New sensors are available and can be spliced into original loom .

Search Crankcase sensor replacement and look for a very good tutorial by Rodentmaster
 

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you don't have to remove the rack, you have to get a 30 or 32mm socket that is cut down about 5mm to get it over the end of the bolt on the pulley, you will need to lock the wheels to apply enough force to undo it. with a manual you can put it in gear but with auto you cant, but can lock the engine with a clamp on the flywheel teeth, removal and replacement takes max two hrs, about 90 mins second time when you know the tricks. The three wire colours on a turbo distributor are different to the one's from the CPS(connector under inlet manifold), I don't know if you use a turbo distributor, if you just block the advance retard off, or put a double connector on one of the single vac hose pieces.
 

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I don't think I'm going to change the direction you are looking to proceed with here 're: swapping out distributors' but in any case I would like to share this.......

Crank mounted hall sensor is far more accurate for timing processes.....yes, the crank signal can be sourced off a distributor but this introduces small elements of timing error ie: timing chain stretch, distributor mechanical lash wear blah blah.... you may not be able to discern this error/offsets at face value but it adds to the work load of the EZK module which is not primarily designed to function with a distributor.....in any case, it does give you a 'get out jail card' in restoring the engine to a running state.

If the notion of replacing the crank mounted sensor is considered.....unless you have a sturdy car lift to work under with safe and ample working height, it is not advisable to attempt such a task under the car. Even if you were to be in a position to work under the car, removing the steering and other suspension items is not required.
The usual approach is to perform the task from above the engine. Once familiar with the items and parts to remove/navigate with to replace the sensor, it can be done within a few hours if you are careful and well prepared......or it can take longer -depending on any unknowns or wild cards you may come across......
Along with the usual box of tools, you will need a long torque bar (at least 750mm), a 32mm socket with shortened shank to release the crank bolt.

As a general approach performed by some, the task is a good opportunity to tackle other known conditions while attacking that part of the engine.
To give an example...a scope of parts for the task could be as inclusive as.....
Alternator mounts/rubber bushes (helps restore optimum alignment of pulleys/belts)
Water pump (if weeping - known to contribute to crank sensor failing)
Crank pulley (if the engine "squeals" when cold, pulley is on it's way out)
Crank pulley oil seal - very common requirement
Crank sensor

In the opinion of this backyard hack over here, if the task replacing the sensor is to be considered and you can afford such a step, replace what you can manage to throw at it.........you don't want to have to came back to the area again in the near future for another issue (like the crank pulley) that could have been eliminated and sorted while the opportunity was there.....
I took the approach that I only wanted to to the job once and get back to driving....

For the car to be a daily driver, restoring the items above to some point of known faithful condition or benchmark goes a long way to improving the robustness of that idea.

Good luck in which ever step you take.


edit.....heh heh ....others above have said pretty much the same while I was typing - waffling on...........
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I agree the crank mounted sensor would be more accurate. After reading the replies and doing a little more searching, I'm feeling more confident about going at the crank mounted sensor.
I suppose I should do some more planning before I tackle it. Didn't think of preventative maintenance aside from the belts. I did hear a short squeal/moan that could be the crank pulley going. I'll make sure to look at those parts as well.

Thank you all so much for your replies! They help a ton!

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Yep, crank pulley, alternator bushings, power steering bushings, belts, shift coupler. Maybe crank seal & oil pump o-ring. An unfortunate amount of rubber back there. ;)

Study the photos of the area well - a fair amount of the work ends up getting done semi-blind. ;)
 

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There is no difference which it's getting signal from. My '91 EZK Turbo (Frankenblue) has had turbo dizzy as CPS for 22,000 miles cause 6 in one hand half dozen in other. I have extra CPS sensors, if was problem Id rise to occasion. Drive a longer screw through one of the locking clips on dizzy (used to hold cap) to block advance and it'll run like a top all day.
 

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Its not a terrible job, I used a older drop wrench to get to the crank bolt and that worked fine, the wire is usually plugged in up next to the starter, and runs under the intake down to the holder, its not a terrible idea to do the oil seal, but unless it is showing signs of leaking I wouldn't worry about it to much, belts are a good idea, and water pump/alt bushings are cheap insurance, easiest way is to do it all from the top, and just fold the ac compressor over ontop of the fresh air inlet, then line the parts up along the side of the car in order you take em off. reverse to put back on and your good to go, Euro parts has the cheapest one i found, was ~70 bucks iirc, shouldn't take but a good evening to get done :) good luck mate! they are very fun daily drivers, I pulled mine out of a junkyard last year and after doing some work to her she has done over 20k miles since I got her, never once skipped a beat, and shes been all over the country plus last time I checked I had less than 1500 in her, and that includes good toyo tires :)
 

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What about replacing the crank sensor and putting in an earlier distributor as suggested? Have it all wired up (but not connected) and ready to go if the crank sensor failed. Would give peace of mind and save towing expenses...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Greyghost111
Thank you! I look forward to having it up and running.

Spydergear
I may replace the distributor at a later point. At the moment the distributor works just fine and I'm looking to save money while getting the car properly running. Maybe next year I can look at what parts I want to swap out.

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Discussion Starter #16
We're in! (mostly...)

Yesterday I removed the belts, thanks to a great write up I found (here: http://www.saabcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=55452 )

Tonight, the job was to get the crank pulley bolt off. Mine is a 27mm, and though we have an open end wrench, it would not make it into the pulley, and onto the bolt.
Went and bought a short well socket, and cut it down further, only to realise that there was no way I saw to get a breaker bar in there with the socket. The socket by itself will fit, but not with a way to turn it.(just too small in there). So what do we do? Improvise!

I Took the socket to the grinder, and ground in a flat spot on either side so that I could get an open end wrench on it. Then took some advice, and ground in 4 more sides so that we could slide the box end of the wrench onto it. It's definitely not pretty, but it sure does the job.

Lowered the car, put it in gear, had someone hold The wheel with a breaker bar, and went in. Put the socket on the bolt, then put the wrench on the socket. I ended up climbing a bit onto the car to get enough torque, but I managed to get it loose enough to unbolt by hand.

At this point we were going to pull the pulley off, but we found that the outer pulley has to come off independently to allow the rest of the pulley enough room to slide out. That's where I'm at right now. 3, 10mm bolts holding the 2 pulleys together. Seems to be the same predicament as the main bolt. Not much room, so I have to improvise. But that I will leave for the next day.

Progress!


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Discussion Starter #17
And thus, the crank sensor is removed.

Had to shorten a 10mm socket to remove the outer pulley. A 1/4" drive wrench will fit in between the pulley and the firewall. Its just a cramped area. once that was removed, the whole thing came right off. Still a tight fit, but 3rd try brought it up and out. The housing that the crank sensor sits in, behind the pulley, was simple enough to remove, 2 T20 torx screws. Taking that off, and pulling the wire harness through with a piece of wire to mark its path.
There are 2 T10 torx screws on the back of the housing that hold a plate down to secure the sensor. The new sensor will replace almost the whole wire harness, with the exception of the 3 pin connector on the other end. Easy enough to splice in. I will be insulating the new harness with a piece of extension cord insulation.

Overall pretty simple once you get to it.


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well done to tackle this .......
you definitely need a new oil seal.....
I'm guessing the oil seal is still att'd to the pulley...?....or was it missing?
and don't lose the woodruff key....!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
The original white oil seal came off with the pulley, and I have a new one to put on when I get the new pulley in. (cracking on the rubber in between the 2 pieces indicates its getting old and worn out.) I'm going to have to Google what a woodruff key is...

Edit: I googled what a woodruff key is

I haven't payed much attention to that lol. I'll have to make sure I keep my eye on it. Thanks for the tip!
 

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I have a 92 turbo vert. Does it have a crank position sensor? I don't see it.

I took my crank shaft pulley off tonight and also the oil pump. (I'm replacing pulley, water pump, oil pump seal and o-ring, idler pulley.)

I took out the two small torx screws, the 8 bolts and the 2 12mm bolts and removed the oil pump.

However, I do not see the Hall sensor (crank position sensor).

Am I missing something, or does my 92 turbo not have one? It's in original condition.

Thanks,
 
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