98 Saturn SL2 1.9L 113k mi - 3 codes

Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 SATURN SL2
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 113,000 MILES
Service Engine and Service Engine Soon lights are both on. Hard to start. Once started, car idles way down and dies. If I start it, rev it up for a little bit, then let off the gas, it idles down to about 400 rpm but stays running. It seems under-powered unless I really get on it. Three diagnostic codes came up P0133 02 sensor circuit slow response bank 1 sensor 1, P0341 camshaft position sensor range performance (I can't find any info on this repair in my Chiltons or from my local parts store), and P0708 Transmission range sensor circuit. Should I start with the 02 sensor? If so, which one? Is there a camshaft position sensor?
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Thursday, February 24th, 2011 AT 12:43 AM

11 Replies

Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
For the P0133 it's usually bad o2 sensor the one in the exhaust manifold it's called the front o2 sensor. The code p0341 there is no cam sensor that code is usually caused by black carbon on the plug wire end's or plug's or corroded coil tower's. The P0708 is probably a bad neutral safety switch. The best way to test those is with a scan tool that can read the transmission gear position when you shift into each gear. As far as the starting concern I would try replacing the coolant temp sensor there only 10 really common on that car that they go bad. Also inspect the connector going to it if it's corroded it will have to be replaced too. The sensor is located just below the upper hose where it goes on the head. It's screwed into the head has two wire's going to it a yellow one and black one. Let me know what you find.
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Thursday, February 24th, 2011 AT 3:04 AM
Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
Alright, I disconnected the battery. I changed the front 02 sensor and the coolant temp sensor. I started the car and I thought it was fixed - the 'check engine soon' light was off and it was running fine. I drove it for a few miles, the light came back on. I scanned it and one code came up: P0708. The neutral safety switch seems like a pain in the ass. How can I test it with the scanner? I've only turned the key to the ON position and hit the READ button to get DTCs. How do I read the transmission gear position as I shift each gear?
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Thursday, February 24th, 2011 AT 6:42 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
It sound's like you only have a basic code reader that doesn't read live data just the code number's?To check to see if the neutral safety switch is reading each gear you will need a scanner that can read live transmission data on your car. There pretty expensive but if the code set's instantly like you say is happening then it should be hard to diagnose. The neutral safety switch is easy to change it's located below the master cylinder on the transmission it the shifter cable going to it.I posted the trouble tree for that code for you plus a wire diagram. Also I posted a pin out it tells you which pin's on the neutral safety switch should be ground in which gear position. Start on the trouble tree by skipping down past the check it with a scan tool to make sure the gear position's read correctly on the scan tool. You will start by checking that seperate ground wire that attaches to the neutral safety switch you will use a ohm's meter on low scale to ground to test it plus that's how you test that ground pin out I posted. Let me know what you find.
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Thursday, February 24th, 2011 AT 8:08 PM
Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
The neutral safety switch was physically broken at the single wire connection. I've installed a new one, but I'm having trouble adjusting it. Near the single wire connection is an extra tab with no wire going to it. To adjust the new switch, I install it (but not tight), shift the car into neutral, and check for continuity between the tab with no wire connection and the tab with the single wire connection - correct? I can rotate the new switch until I get the continuity between the two tabs - right? Problem is, I can rotate it back and forth all the way and never get continuity between the two. Am I missing something?
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Friday, February 25th, 2011 AT 5:04 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
You put the gear selector in the next gear over which is drive that's your problem then with the two bolt's just loose enough to move the switch left to right adjust it till you get continuity between the two tabs with that one wire that goes to that one tab not connected. Let me know how you make out.
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Friday, February 25th, 2011 AT 5:17 PM
Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
My Chiltons manual says put the transaxle in Neutral, then check for continuity. I can't find continuity from the neutral position, so you must be correct. Check for continuity with the transaxle in Drive?
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Friday, February 25th, 2011 AT 6:39 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Yes it's drive the saturn service manual's say put it in drive4 that's how I have been adjusting them for over 16yrs and never had a problem adjusting one. The chilton manual's aren't known for being correct every time I have even found error's in saturn service manual's over the year's. Let me know how it goes.
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Friday, February 25th, 2011 AT 6:43 PM
Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
Alright - First, I appreciate the ongoing assistance - thank you. Here is the deal: I have installed the switch several times. I've noticed that the switch fits over the shaft loosely. This "play" makes it difficult to adjust. The adjusted point where I get continuity depends on which direction I am rotating the switch. In other words, there is a small space in between the black plastic center of the switch and the shift shaft. So I roll it from the driver side fender to the engine, I get continuity at one spot. If I roll the switch from the engine to fender, I can get continuity in different spot. Another example: One time I installed the switch, the car would work fine if I shifted it from D3 to D4, but if I shifted it from park or neutral to D4 (from the other direction) it would physically shift into D, but as I sped up, it wouldn't shift to the next gear (rpms would increase w/out shifting beyond D1). Can I determine where D4 is on the switch by performing the continuity adjustment with the switch NOT INSTALLED IN THE CAR - like in my hand? Should I test the new switch? Should I buy another switch, try it and return the switch I have now? Or should I bite the bullet, and bring it to my local shop?
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Tuesday, March 1st, 2011 AT 2:58 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
You shouldn't have a lot of looseness around the shaft and the switch. Is your old switch tight around the shaft?You could test the new switch you have to adjust the switch on car bolted up to the transmission. Here is how I do it I install the switch on the transmission tighten the bolt's as tight as I can and still be able to barely move the switch left and right. Then I put the car in the D position on the shifter which is right below neutral position.I then hook up the ohm's meter to the two tabs on the neutral switch put the ohm's meter on the lowest setting or if you have a continuity setting use that. Then you move the switch left and right till you get continuity then tighten the switch down and your all set. Let me know what you find.
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Tuesday, March 1st, 2011 AT 4:02 PM
Tiny
ADKADLEC53
  • MEMBER
The part was bad. Thanks for all your help. My donation will be larger next time. The service was awesome - saved me a bunch of $$. THanks again
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Thursday, March 3rd, 2011 AT 12:22 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Your welcome glad to hear you got it all worked out that's what were here for. If you have another question later and want me to answer it just start the question by saying this one is for saturntech9.
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Thursday, March 3rd, 2011 AT 2:12 AM

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