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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
** Have a 1989 900 SPG which had been in storage for a few months.
** Tried to start it and nothing at the starter.
** Checked all conections and fuses ~ cleaned Ignition Control Unit contacts with electronics cleaner, etc. etc. ~ nothing...
** Removed the starter and took it to my local parts guy to test and he says "it's completly dead" I need a new starter, cool ~ so I replace it and still nothing...
** My thought now is the ignition switch but I replaced it less than 2 years ago and I hate the thought of tearing into that project and have that not be the fix.
** Any way to check igntion switch funtionality or any thing I've missed trying guys??
Thx!
Paul
 

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easy check if battery has life(but not neccessary enough to turn over) did your central locking work, when you opened car(if locked anyway) 2nd press horn, or put your lights on
 

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Silly question, but is the battery fully charged and serviceable?
X 2 on that. Before tearing into things, try a "known good" battery.
 

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Before 'trying' new parts, you might want to use a test light or voltmeter to find the problem.
Power at the battery? at the coil? at the starter? grounds?
All these things are measurable at much less cost and effort than parts-swapping.
Harbor Freight sells a perfectly adequate voltmeter for $3.99.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
** yes ~ battery fully charged and in good working order and radio, lights work when key switched on to first posistion ~ just nothing when you move it to start.
** But...all lights & radio etc. go off when I turn it to start but I'm trying to recall if that was normal or not as I think the system shuts those items off to send all power to the starter??
** not real handy with a voltmeter but I have one and I believe my Bentley manual has some tips on process there
Thx!
Paul
 

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** But...all lights & radio etc. go off when I turn it to start but I'm trying to recall if that was normal or not as I think the system shuts those items off to send all power to the starter??
Paul here is for first clue...that is not normal. You should not lose electrics while cranking. How are you certain your battery is good exactly? I would start with a voltmeter at the battery. The red lead is positive and the black lead is earth. If your resting voltage is less than 12.6v your battery is suspect.
 

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Uh huh, definitly would make sure battery is good, maybe another if you have one or borrow.
In a case where the battery is on it's way out it would easily have enough to run all the electrics apart from starter. I've had this loads of time 'cos I'm too tight to get a new one unless I have to :)
Soon as I turned the key it'd all go dead and even when letting the key go there wasn't much life either
 

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** yes ~ battery fully charged and in good working order and radio, lights work when key switched on to first posistion ~ just nothing when you move it to start.
** But...all lights & radio etc. go off when I turn it to start but I'm trying to recall if that was normal or not as I think the system shuts those items off to send all power to the starter??

Paul
Not normal on any car. Your battery may be fully charged but you need to check your main grounds as well as the connections at the starter. Also, pull the cables from the terminals, clean everything up and tighten them back down.
 

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Not normal on any car. Your battery may be fully charged but you need to check your main grounds as well as the connections at the starter. Also, pull the cables from the terminals, clean everything up and tighten them back down.
actually it is common for the acc feed to drop out when start is selected. Depends on the switch used and what the mfg wanted. North American vehicles (N-A made) had accory position and ign position. When in the run position both the acc and ign feeds were live, but when crank is selected, the acc drops out and ign and start feeds are live. the acc feed is restored when the key is back to the run position.
I'd have to go look and see what my Saab does, never paid it much attention.
 

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I'd get a good digital voltmeter, and start at the battery. Like has already been said, without the engine running, the battery should be reading over 12.5 volts in order to crank the engine over. Once started, it should be reading over 13 volts.

When I first got mine, I thought it might've been an ignition switch problem. But once I got a voltmeter, it became obvious it was the battery. I bought one of those Battery Tender brand trickle chargers (I use it on my motorcycles too), hooked it up for a couple of days, and it fired right up. If I know I'm not going to be driving the car for several days, I hook it up to the BT. If like you the car is going to be in storage, I'd definitely invest in a BT, or remove the battery altogether. I also pulled the fuse to the clock, so there isn't an additional constant drain on the battery. The clock wasn't working correctly anyway, so no loss there.
 

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No help to you I know, but drive the car EVERY week for 20 miles at least.....you just have to wait for a break in the weather at the moment in the UK
 

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** yes ~ battery fully charged and in good working order and radio, lights work when key switched on to first posistion ~ just nothing when you move it to start.
** But...all lights & radio etc. go off when I turn it to start but I'm trying to recall if that was normal or not as I think the system shuts those items off to send all power to the starter??
** not real handy with a voltmeter but I have one and I believe my Bentley manual has some tips on process there
Thx!
Paul
Yes... It is normal (as Geoff said) for most, if not all lights and stereo to go out while cranking. It is also quite possible for your batt to have enough juice to power these things and not enough to crank the engine. I assume the car ran fine when put into storage, so my first path would be down to the parts store to get the battery load tested... Then, if it checks out, clean and grease the terminals and see what happens after everything is tightened up.
 

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have you an immobiliser on it, as what you describe happens is exactly what happens on my wife's car with immobiliser, you can get ign light's and everything else to work but no power to start if you turn the ign to start position(as I don't have an immob ..hate them), so have you an Immobiliser you forgot about ??
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Okay guys, been too busy with Honey-Do list to work on the hobby car but back to it and here is what I have found so far:
** Battery definitely good (had it checked pulling 600 cold crank amps...)
** I've checked, dissasembled, cleaned every connection & ground I can from the battery to the starter ~ still no start (but power...see below)
** I was incorrect before or it is now fixed in that the radio, lights, etc do work when the key is turned to start...
** The APC solenoid above the radiator makes a "clicking" sound when I move the key to start. Is that normal?? I disconnected the wires to see if that would give me a start and no go ~ APC back to clicking hooked up...
** So ~ I tried jumping the starter with a screwdriver and I get the starter to spin but the solenoid will not engage. I do have the small wire from terminal 50 to the correct tang for sure as well. Tried having the wife turn the key to start both before and during "jumping" hoping it would engage and nothing. (starter is brand new...)
** Although I replaced the ignition switch about a year ago and have had 100's of starts with no problems here-to-fore, I'm thinking it's suspect and HATE the thought of tearing into that project again if that is not it ~ ARRG! :cry:
All input appreciated and considered valued ~ Paul
 

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Hey Pauly . .any progress on your situation? I was about to start a new thread until I came across yours. Im having the exact same problem. Mine is a '88 vert and a hobby car that has been in storage for some time now. At least once a month I would start it and always started first go . .that was until recently.
Same symptoms as yours now

Your question . . "clicking" sound when I move the key to start. Is that normal?? Yes

Do you have an after market alarm?
Do you hear the fuel pump when you turn the key to the on position (just before you try to start the engine)? I think my problem is most likely as a result of a malfunctioning aftermarket alarm system (manufactured by . .zenon her in oz). I'll do some electrical testing on the car this weekend and let you know if I find something that will be of some use to you
Cheers;ol;
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'm running!

Vass 011 ~ I am running again yes! The problem turned out to be the ignition swith housed below the key in the center console.

Just so something like this wouldn't happen, I had replaced the unit about a year ago when I had everything apart when I re-keyed the car but used an aftermarket unit (lesson learned there :nono; ). I had tossed the original in a box ~ found and reinstalled it and, presto!

I just didn't want to believe that could be the problem given the part was only a year old and I really wasn't wanting to have to change it out without knowing for sure as it is quite job pulling the seats & center console and literally tunring your ignition system upside down. Got it done in one long evening and took the opportunity to clean the carpet under the seats :D

Good Luck!!
 
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