FAILING TO TURN ON WHEN I TURN THE KEY IN THE IGNITION

  • Tiny
  • setsuko_firefly
  • 1998 Saturn SW2

Hello, I have a 98 Saturn SW2 that has recently been failing to turn on when I turn the key in the ignition. It comes and goes. Also, there is no clicking noise whatsoever. The lights/radio come on, but no noise.

When it happened the other day, I took it in to see if a lube place could assess what was wrong. They quickly noticed that both battery wires were loose--especially the positive wire.

After they tightened these, I turned my car on and off several times to see if there were any changes. It started up just fine each time, so I assumed the loose wires had caused the random dead car scenario.

Then just yesterday, I drove my car with no problems in the morning. I go to start it only forty-five minutes later, and it's dead again.I'm starting to worry and think it's the starter, but I also think maybe the wiring needs to be tightened, cleaned, or replaced.

Any ideas?

Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 7:29 AM

6 Answers

  • Tiny
  • fixitmr
  • Member

Stick or automatic? Neutral switch or clutch pedal switch may be fault.

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 7:33 AM
  • Tiny
  • setsuko_firefly
  • Member

It's automatic.

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 7:34 AM
  • Tiny
  • fixitmr
  • Member

When it fails to start, try putting it in neutral first.

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 7:55 AM
  • Tiny
  • fixitmr
  • Member

Could also be a starter/wiring/connections issue

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 7:56 AM
  • Tiny
  • setsuko_firefly
  • Member

Yes, I'm starting to think, as are others, that it could be the starter.

Last time I tried to take it out of park, the stick/lever wouldn't budge, and my brake pedal felt "tight."

I'm positive I tried again yesterday to move the lever, and it wouldn't move at all still. Is there a way to get it to unlock?

Does that rule out some of the possible problems?

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 11:20 AM
  • Tiny
  • saturntech9
  • Expert
  • 28,840 posts

Just to add to this one its really common for the starters to go bad on those cars. Its really uncommon for a neutral safety switch to cause that to happen. The first thing you need to do is have the battery tested. Then make sure your battery cables are clean and tight. If all that is good then make the battery cable to you starter is clean and tight. Then with the key in the start position when the starter is inop you should have battery voltage to the small purple wire to the starter. If you do bad starter. So you also cant get the car out of park?

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Monday, January 16th, 2012 AT 5:35 PM

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