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Old 11-27-2016, 04:44 AM   #1
Hunter2002
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Default Engine surge


I have a 1998 sw2 with 262k and a replaced auto trans with 139k. My problem started with the engine surging when I shifted to neutral or park. It would go from its normal 800ish idle up to 2000 and right back down again, every time. Next I noticed a small surge as it was automatically down shifting. Next I started experiencing a rough idle which has gotten so bad it has become difficult to drive the car because it shakes and vibrates at idle in drive to where it is even dying now. The idle stays at 900 rpms but the engine runs rough especially under load when shifted into drive. Once I apply the gas it runs great, has lots of pep and cruises at freeway speeds with no problems. I'm at my wits end with searching you tube and other forums. A list of the things related to this issue I have done so far with no luck - new plugs (ngk), new wires (acdelco), cleaned throttle body, changed fuel filter (wix), changed engine ects, changed trans fluid/filter, tested iacv by covering the air hole engine idle drops to 400-500 range uncover hole surges to 1500 and back to 800-900.
The last repair I did prior to this problem was change the water pump. Also I have been chasing a continuous 303 code for the past year which at first I thought was caused by oil leaking down into the plug wells. Cleaning and new plugs didn't get rid of the code.
One thing I find curious is the idle speed does not change as the engine is shuddering and/or dying. Am I looking at a charging system or ground problem? I replaced the battery in May 2016 but the alternator hasn't been replaced since Dec 2002. Could a failing alternator cause this stuff?
Any advice is appreciated.
Thank you.


Last edited by Hunter2002; 11-27-2016 at 04:52 AM..
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Old 11-28-2016, 09:32 PM   #2
sc2sick
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How does the throttle position sensor read while hooked to a scan gauge?
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Old 11-29-2016, 01:30 AM   #3
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I don't have a scan gauge can you recommend one?
Thank you.
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Old 11-29-2016, 02:29 AM   #4
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RPM yo yo ing

Almost sounds like a auto tranny shift flare, especially if it occurs while driving and shifting through the gears......
--------------
How do the RPMs behave at startup? What rpms are you at starting from a cold engine, and how do they behave as the car warms up?
-------------
For the P0303:

a)have you checked for vacuum leaks around the intake manifold near #3?
b)have you verified spark and fuel? Is the #3 plug oil fouled or fuel soaked after the car enters closed loop operation?
c) remove the #3 plug wire with the vehicle at idle. Does it change the way the engine runs?
d)after checking the above, you might want to do a compression test across all cyls if you have not already done so.

e) Wild Ass GUESS: Have you tried Techron Fuel system cleaner? Sounds trite, but if you have a mostly clogged or malfunctioning injector AT IDLE on #3, the other 3 are trying to make up for the lean condition sensed by the front O2, thus increasing the injector open interval to the point that you may be approaching flooding in the other 3 cyls---hence the poor performance at idle.
Once you give it gas, if the injector starts behaving again, the overly rich condition no longer exists, everything goes back to normalish, and the engine runs smoothly. = GUESS
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Old 11-29-2016, 03:43 AM   #5
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Yes it does seem like a shift flare except it only occurs on deceleration and shifting D-N and R-P. I found a thread in another Saturn forum that suggested the TCC solenoid was the cause and swapping it might help. Today I swapped the TCC with the #3 solenoid and it did not help.
Cold start rpm's run about 1200 then drop to 800 after a few minutes. rpms at idle always stay the same around 800-900 except in the 'flare'

a. I have sprayed carb cleaner down around the intake with no change but I maybe I should try propane... and maybe I'm not hitting the right place.
b. spark good on all four. not sure how to check fuel delivery to each. plugs all look the same and normal, no wetness.
c. yes I have pulled the wire from each and the engine chugs and runs rough until I put the wire back.
d. compression gauge ordered and on the way. will do compression on all and possibly leak down on #3.
e. have not tried Techron but I will try anything at this point.

Thank you for your time to respond. I appreciate the help.
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Old 11-29-2016, 07:46 PM   #6
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I'm partial to the ELM327 generic scanners that run with the Torque app on Android devices. I paid under $10 for mine. Has worked great for years.
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sc2sick View Post
I'm partial to the ELM327 generic scanners that run with the Torque app on Android devices. I paid under $10 for mine. Has worked great for years.
Great thanks I ordered one.
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Old 12-09-2016, 04:26 AM   #8
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Well I ordered an elm ELM127 but I guess I bought the wrong one because it won't work with my iPhone. Can someone suggest an scanner software combo that works with the iPhone? Thank you.
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Old 12-09-2016, 01:38 PM   #9
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I purchased an OBDLink II MX from ScanTools.net.
It works fine w
Torque,
DashCommand,
OBDLink, (comes with the adapter)
Car Gauge Pro (which has mutated into Car Diagnostics Pro)
ForScan
FordSys

and hopefully anything I am yet to discover.

The dongle is $80 but has a 3 yr warranty.
Additionally, many of the newer cheap chinese ELM327 clones are, as I understand it, being built w a firmware version that is incompatible with the software apps that are out there.

If sc2sick's is many years old, that would explain why he is not suffering the same issues that you are.
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Old 12-09-2016, 06:01 PM   #10
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I'm sorry -- I missed the iPhone part.
The OBDII MX does not support Apple/iOS

you can try the apps above to see if they work w Apple. (minus OBD link)
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