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Hey Guys,

First time Saab owner here. I got scammed into buying a busted 9-5 Saab from a private seller.

2001 with only 40K miles, He said it was in perfect working condition, not leaking oil, needs nothing, ready to go. Car seemed to run good and is otherwise clean.

On the ride home CEL comes on. I check the engine codes which are P1312, P1334 and P0340. My understanding is that my DIC isn't working properly:lol: The CEL will turn off spontaneously, stay off for a while, then come back on.

We park it in drive way and notice a small drip of oil under the car!:eek:

Jack up the car and get under it and OMG! Lot's of oil! how does a car with only 40K miles blow a head gasket? I don't know if the guy tampered with the Odometer somehow, but he knew for sure that the thing was leaking oil and I'm sure he knew about the CEL too.

So, I got screwed. No use crying about it I guess... but priority #1 is to stop the leak at the head gasket, #2 is to fix DIC codes.

Just a little background on me... I'm NOT an ASE certified mechanic... but I can work on cars. I just rebuilt the cylinder head for my 1998 Toyota Tacoma... so I'm not a total newb, I can turn a wrench... but I'm totally new to SAAB's

My understanding is these cars have great head gaskets and they aren't know for blowing heads. The car doesn't burn oil, and no coolant has mixed with the oil. My understanding is these cars have crap head bolts that stretch and can come loose causing a characteristic leak as shown here
http://www.saabnet.com/tsn/members/gallery.html?do=show&id=6202&memberID=112

This is exactly where my engine is leaking oil. apparently this is known to be a common issue with these 9-5's? ... and if I re-torque the head bolts and tighten them correctly... (or better yet just replace the head bolts as I don't want to snap off a head bolt in the engine) then the gasket should seal and stop the leak.

Am I correct in thinking this? or am I just grasping at straws here... I haven't taken the valve cover off yet to look at it.... but I'm gonna go nuclear if I have to get the whole top end done

Then there's my DIC.... I know these things are pure crap that just love to fail.... my question is.....

really?
40K miles and it's failing.... could it just be that I need new plugs and need to gap them correctly? maybe reseat everything and clear out the codes and see if it works?

Here's my problem. I'm in Hawaii... the super ripoff state.

SAAB dealer want $585.66 for a new DIC!!!:evil:

$23.87 for eack NGK PFR 6H-10 spark plug.

and about $90 for a new set of Head Bolts.

I could really use some advice here.
I'd like someone to confirm these are the correct spark plugs.

I can start by swapping and gapping them and resetting the codes and see if that works... if not where is the best place I can get a good price on a new OEM DIC?

or should I just get this cheapy and hope for the best... only $89
http://www.ebay.com/itm/01-00-99-sa...assette-94-05-02-03-04-97-/251165050571#rpdId

and most importantly.... if I tighten (re-torque) the head bolts can that fix my oil leak? or am I just smoking crack?

Thanks in advance for any input guys.
 

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I can't comment on the oil leak, however in regards the misfires, the correct NGK plugs are less than $3.00 @ at Advanced Auto. I would try that first, and make sure you gap them before installing. All four of mine new plugs were gaped wrong.
Do this first because it is the cheapest item. Then start looking at the DIC. It is very probable it is on it's way out. The aftermarket ones do not have a good rep with the users on here. I sourced a good used one for $130. and it is working fine. I kept the old one for an emergency. Hope this helps a little.
 

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Yes, that oil leak is common on the early 9-5's. Tightening the head bolts can help, but it won't stop that leak. The only way to really stop it is to pull the timing cover and seal it, which means you have to pull the engine. Or, there might be a chance it's the timing chain tensioner seal. Or, it could be the oil pump o-ring or crank seal.
 

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I'm guessing the oil leak is from the timing cover and the tensioner O ring.
You do NOT have to pull the engine to fix this.
I just replaced my timing and balance chains and sprockets and did it in the car. WIS http://saabworld.net/f29/timing-chain-balancer-chain-car-saab-9-5-a-757/
Link to my head gasket replacement; http://saabworld.net/f9/head-gasket-replacement-28961/
It was started by another guy that unfortunately had the timing set wrong and bent his valves... Ouch!
I wouldn't go to all that trouble without confirming ware the leak is coming from. I washed down my engine with engine de-greaser and then power washed. That will let you find the leaks.
I found a leak from the crank shaft seal at the oil pump on my 03 AERO. Super easy and cheap fix!
Good luck.
 

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The P1312 and P1334 codes are most definitely the DIC. In fact I'd say that the previous owner put in an off-brand DIC and that's what's hitting you. I'd get an OEM DIC soon and put that one in the closet as your "spare" that you can use should the new one go bad some day. (or if you can go back to the person who sold you the car and tell them that the DIC that they just put in is bad)

Before taking on the head torquing and the timing cover I'd first clean the engine really well and then watch to see where it's leaking.

(1) check the crankshaft pulley and oil pump seal, that's a realatively easy and cheap job to do

(2) check the chain tensioner O-Ring. Again, reasonably easy to do


Then re-torque (or replace the head bolts) and then if those three don't solve it you're probably in for a bigger job to take off the timing cover and/or just let it leak.
 

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Carquest has the OEM DIC for about $320. The own World Pak so they have many foreign parts.
The basic $2.50 plugs work "best" according to many. Replace every 30k; easy enough.
The DIC can have many hours on it and given the age, ignition parts will often break down (adhesives failing, for instance).
Good luck. Sounds like you'll be ok. FCPeuro.com, thesaabsite.com, eeuroparts.com have many Saab OEM and aftermarket parts.
 

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I'm guessing the oil leak is from the timing cover and the tensioner O ring.
You do NOT have to pull the engine to fix this.
I just replaced my timing and balance chains and sprockets and did it in the car. WIS http://saabworld.net/f29/timing-chain-balancer-chain-car-saab-9-5-a-757/
Link to my head gasket replacement; http://saabworld.net/f9/head-gasket-replacement-28961/
It was started by another guy that unfortunately had the timing set wrong and bent his valves... Ouch!
I wouldn't go to all that trouble without confirming ware the leak is coming from. I washed down my engine with engine de-greaser and then power washed. That will let you find the leaks.
I found a leak from the crank shaft seal at the oil pump on my 03 AERO. Super easy and cheap fix!
Good luck.
Your link talks about rolling in the chains with the engine in the car. Did you actually pull off the front timing cover with the engine in the car? I may have read that it is possible, but very, very difficult.
 

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And WhatHappened, that DIC on ebay could be okay, but it is showing six available and there are different numbers on them. I wouldn't have a problem (and have) purchasing used dic's. However, you for sure want the 3.7 version and the later the better. The four-digit code like 0446 on them means that it was made in the 46th week of 2004.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Thx for the responses guys.

Some background.
There is a recall on these DIC's... called the Saab dealership gave them my VIN and they told me they couldn't check it on the weekend and to call back monday. Monday they said it was recalled and the dealership replaced the part in 2006 at ~20K miles.... how convenient.

So the dealer replaced this POS 20,000 miles ago... and the OEM dealership installed DIC didn't last 20K miles. Sounds to me like a defective part... they said "No... Now cough up $600 if you want a new one."

This right here has made me loose all credibility for the much praised OEM parts and their price gouge.

As for the oil leak... I cleaned up the engine fairly well and then p o o f e d (p-o-o-f is not a bad word) baby powder all over the engine from all angles to identify the the leak.
So the engine was clean and dry with baby power and all I had to do was run it for 30 min and find the wet spot.

it's pretty darn clear where the oil is coming from... it's coming from right here.

but I can see where the oil is coming out and it looks like the picture leaking from the exact same place b/w the cylinder head and the block.

Yes, that oil leak is common on the early 9-5's. Tightening the head bolts can help, but it won't stop that leak. The only way to really stop it is to pull the timing cover and seal it, which means you have to pull the engine. Or, there might be a chance it's the timing chain tensioner seal. Or, it could be the oil pump o-ring or crank seal.
If the oil is leaking at the head gasket how would I seal it by pulling the timing cover??? wouldn't the head need to come off so I could machine the head and install a new gasket. Please explain.

Also how could it be the timing chain tensioner seal or the oil pump o-ring or crank seal if it's leaking from the spot shown in the picture above?

Carquest has the OEM DIC for about $320. The own World Pak so they have many foreign parts.
The basic $2.50 plugs work "best" according to many.
Links please... and could your verify I need the NGK PFR 6H-10 plugs?

And WhatHappened, that DIC on ebay could be okay, but it is showing six available and there are different numbers on them. I wouldn't have a problem (and have) purchasing used dic's. However, you for sure want the 3.7 version and the later the better. The four-digit code like 0446 on them means that it was made in the 46th week of 2004.
Thanks... I know I want later model DICs... after 2004 is OK? how can I tell if it is a 3.7 version? just the date?

thanks again for all the help.
 

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Thx for the responses guys.

Some background.
There is a recall on these DIC's... called the Saab dealership gave them my VIN and they told me they couldn't check it on the weekend and to call back monday. Monday they said it was recalled and the dealership replaced the part in 2006 at ~20K miles.... how convenient.

So the dealer replaced this POS 20,000 miles ago... and the OEM dealership installed DIC didn't last 20K miles. Sounds to me like a defective part... they said "No... Now cough up $600 if you want a new one."
Is finding out whether your DIC has been replaced just a matter of calling a local dealer and providing your VIN? I picked up a 2003 9-5 last week and ordered a DIC to deal with what seem to be the typical symptoms and codes. I figured it was way to late to ask for a new one from Saab, but will do it if I can.

Anyone else been able to get one from them lately? And how likely is it that a car with 82k on it will still be on the original DIC?

Thanks - and thanks for the thread - I have the same issues minus the leakage.
 

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Your DIC codes can be caused by bad plugs start there with the NGK BCPR7es they are 2.50 or so from most places

Your timing cover leak could be from a hole worn by a chain. Try some JB weld for starters
 

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Your link talks about rolling in the chains with the engine in the car. Did you actually pull off the front timing cover with the engine in the car? I may have read that it is possible, but very, very difficult.
Sorry wrong link... http://saabworld.net/attachments/f2...lancer_shaft_and_timing_chain_replacement.pdf
I forgot it's a PDF. It is a link off that page.

Difficulty=6-7
Just follow all the steps. I tried to get away without undoing the motor mounts.... Wrong! Wasted allot of time.
I'm ready to drop the head on (I took it off to do the gasket and valve stem seals. 363000 km... It's time.) as soon as I can get my driveway back. My neibor has commandeered my drive while having a pool installed. So my car is in his drive. (It's new paving stones. I don't want to spill or leak on it. And its 65' form my garage and the tools.)
 

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hey Whathappened
You sound just like me, ha
For guys like us the $898 dealer offerings are never the right thing.
On the other side of the coin, you see a wheelbarrow of sids piled up at 40 apiece at the car meet,
or a fender and door, in matching paint for the car, for $110 at a junkyard.

The two worlds are far far apart.

I know you are in Hawaii. But you still get priority flat rate mail when you need to.
Me I live about as far from nowhere as you do. I live 3 hours from the nearest good junkyard, and there isn't likely to be a single Saab in said yard! It will probably be more like 8-10 hours by car ( Portland, SF or Sacramento) so I need good mail order just like you.

I would tighten my head bolts and see. What have you got to lose?? If you break them they probably won't break off flush, and even if they did, that is what easy outs are for. Worse come to worse, once the head is off the bolts won't be tight anymore if they did break.

I can't wait to hear what you do about your dic.
I am wondering if relocating the thing would make it last longer? I am hearing a lot of stories about them.
I had a lot of trouble with early AMC ignition modules, until I began to just cut the harness, splice on some wire, and put the thing inside the car away from the heat! I have no idea if Saab dics are being cooked under the hood or not.
It sure worked for me with one kind of ignition though.
yours Scott
 

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That's the spot!

I have seen a "HillBilly" fix.
I'm told it works... I have not tried this......
Clean that area very well to remove all oil and grease. Do from the back of the engine to mid front of the timing cover. Sand a 1/2 to 3/4" along that area.
(Here is the real HillBilly part.) Take JB Weld and mix according to the pack. form a 1/2 wide layer of JB to cover the seam.
Let dry.
Supposedly the JB Weld will just break or chip off when and if you ever remove the head/ timing cover.

Would I do this to one of my SAAB's? Sure. In a pinch.
The gasket that is on top of the cover is only the head gasket. I don't think It pushes hard enough.... Or if it ever did... I think an aluminum cover bolted to the side will move or flex allowing the leak.

Since I have my engine apart and am replacing the head gasket. I am going to use that liquid locktite gasket stuff. It's what is used as a gasket for the sump and the sides of the timing cover. I'm going to add a 1mm bead to the cover and to the top of the gasket. (Insurance)
Pic. is my timing chain cover. Note the top Torex bolt converted to 14mm. I stripped that one taking it out. By the way is everyones cover and bolts painted like mine?
 

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This right here has made me loose all credibility for the much praised OEM parts and their price gouge.
You have to feel sorry for a manufacturer that has to outsource for specialist parts supply (and they all do, have to), and then gets lumbered with a component that has an inherent weakness that doesn't show up in development, only after there are lots of cars are already 'in the wild'.

I haven't noticed who actually makes the DIC, but a good e.g. might be the problems that Saab had with the ACC breaking flap control arms and shafts. The ACC was made by Valeo (at least that's the name on the mouldings), who have been supplying OE parts to manufacturers for long enough that Saab might have thought they wouldn't make such a basic error as to under-design such a simple thing as a flap control arm (it's the arm breakages that cause the shaft breakages).

All the owner knows is that it's a Saab and it broke, but is it actually Saab's fault, or Valeo's? Saab ends up with a hit to it's reputation, and dealing with warranty claims. I wonder what Saab management said to Valeo behind closed doors?

What I think might be considered Saabs fault is not offering replacements for parts that are failure prone due to inherent design flaws at more or less cost price, but I'm sure Saab is far from the only one who doesn't.

Regards,
John.
 

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Good Points, but be Aware that Manufacturers Push for Cost Cutting everywhere

A neighbor worked for an automotive supplier, the car companies were constantly giving him engineering drawings of a part made by a competitor telling him to build it for less. ... and blaming them for failures of other components added by other companies later in the process. Valeo, for example may have been given a drawing to make a piece not knowing what it even went to...

The engineer in charge of the climate control / heating / cooling is one step up from the dude in charge of windshield wiper systems for the platform...

However, the DIC should have been given closer scrutiny considering engine management was the main reason GM bought Saab. Cutting corners there that led to reliability issues was a big mistake.

You have to feel sorry for a manufacturer that has to outsource for specialist parts supply (and they all do, have to), and then gets lumbered with a component that has an inherent weakness that doesn't show up in development, only after there are lots of cars are already 'in the wild'.

I haven't noticed who actually makes the DIC, but a good e.g. might be the problems that Saab had with the ACC breaking flap control arms and shafts. The ACC was made by Valeo (at least that's the name on the mouldings), who have been supplying OE parts to manufacturers for long enough that Saab might have thought they wouldn't make such a basic error as to under-design such a simple thing as a flap control arm (it's the arm breakages that cause the shaft breakages).

All the owner knows is that it's a Saab and it broke, but is it actually Saab's fault, or Valeo's? Saab ends up with a hit to it's reputation, and dealing with warranty claims. I wonder what Saab management said to Valeo behind closed doors?

What I think might be considered Saabs fault is not offering replacements for parts that are failure prone due to inherent design flaws at more or less cost price, but I'm sure Saab is far from the only one who doesn't.

Regards,
John.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Your DIC codes can be caused by bad plugs start there with the NGK BCPR7es they are 2.50 or so from most places

Your timing cover leak could be from a hole worn by a chain. Try some JB weld for starters
Thank you. VERY helpful.

This is crazy.. I actually thought of JB Weld when I was lying awake in bed last night. Now I'm seeing in mentioned on the boards.

However I was under the impression that once the JB weld sets that it wouldn't come off... and if the head need to be removed later that would be quite a job... does anyone have some first hand experience with that???

In the link provided by gapost I read
...Permatex #8209 Spray N [COLOR=green !important][COLOR=green ! important]seal[/COLOR][/COLOR]. Comes in an [COLOR=green !important][COLOR=green ! important]aerosol[/COLOR][/COLOR] can, you need to blast any contaminants clear before you apply, but if you do that properly it sprays on a clear, varnish like coat that really does seal things like leaky [COLOR=green !important][COLOR=green !important]gaskets[/COLOR][/COLOR]. I haven't used it on my Saab, but I've used it to stop highly visible gasket leaks on my motorcycles with great success.

I have to admit, it offend my sensibilities as a [COLOR=green !important][COLOR=green !important]mechanic[/COLOR][/COLOR] to use such a product, but it does [COLOR=green !important][COLOR=green !important]work[/COLOR][/COLOR], if used properly.
I understand a little better now that there is a 3-way junction with the block, head and timing cover... and that the leak must just be at the timing cover, because my oil isn't frothy and coolant is clean... but that's STILL a head gasket leak.... However, since it's just a little leak at the timing chain cover then if the permatex #8209 Spray N Seal can stop the leak everything would be fine. here's to hoping.

I think this would be a dream come true if it works... anyone have any first hand experience with this??
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
why are my posts being reviewed and not showing up.

this is really frutrating....


EDIT:
WTH!... now my posts show up... I posted two posts earlier that said they would have to be reviewed before posting... that was many hours ago... I put important information in those posts and they are lost in cyberspace, and now I can post at will!?!?!

what is going on with these boards... I have two accounts and a double post because of similar problems trying to post my orignal thread.... are these forums just really buggy? or are the admins flagging my account? what is going on?
 
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