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Old 01-29-2008, 08:09 AM   #1
DRPowerStroke
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Default Just bought a 1998 Saturn SL2/Automatic


I bought a 1998 SL2 last night. Needed a commuter car so I didn't put the miles on my F250 lifted diesel

I think I got a fair deal. Not a steal, but a deal ($2500). Original 91k miles. Last 4 yrs she put 7k miles on it. She was a student moving to Spain. White in color and all one color. No accidents shown.

Ok. Had to replace the brakes today. Had them done. $135 new pads and turned all four rotors/drums. I did the tune-up myself (hadn't had to worry much about this in years with my diesel). Did NGK and new air filter and new hose from valve cover to intake. Cleaned out throttle body with carb cleaner and put fuel injection cleaner in the gas with 91 octane to clean her out. Did I miss anything?

All four tires were just replaced. So, I was saved there

Found out the radiator has a crack. Plastic I guess? Ordered it online for $79 shipped w/lifetime warranty. Straight forward install?

She also has a oil leak. It is coming from valve cover. Local shop wanted $200 to replace and replace some other item. Forget name, so the oil doesn't go into the plugs?

The car has ok HP. Am I thinking it should be more because I am used to driving my "chipped" truck? The hesitation seems to have left with this morning tune-up. Any tricks get get a few more MPG or HP?

I think the motor mount is bad. I heard someone say this might be an issues with these? Slight vib from motor. When I go from drive to reverse and do it quick there is a clunk. Motor mount?

The exhaust. It's loud and stock. I assume it has a hole? Or, is it more a exhaust manifold gasket? Which is more common?

Last, the fog lights. They don't turn on. Fuse or bulbs?

Thanks for reading and any input would be great

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Old 01-29-2008, 11:00 AM   #2
jonnyrocket92
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well, it sounds like you got a normal used saturn... ok 1st.. the valcover gasket should come as a compleat kit. "including the ones to go around the spark plug holes"
2. the radiator is a fairly easy removal, you can do it with only removing the cooling fan, it'll take maby 45min, and for the mount saturns are big on breaking them.. I know some ppl here have gotten the polyurathane "not to sure on the spelling" mounts. and I havent heard anything bad bout them and they don't brake. The only thing I can say about the leaky exhaust is to get under and check, they somtimes like to crack right at the flex pipe, or after... check there first.. as for fog lamps, get a circut tester, and check your fuses, under hood, and check the sockets.. it could be a switch as well...
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spoc pa prez.

ex-saturn mechanic.
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Old 01-29-2008, 02:08 PM   #3
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Where do I get the poly mounts? Which is common to go first?
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Old 01-29-2008, 03:18 PM   #4
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Where is the fuel filter located?
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Old 01-29-2008, 04:27 PM   #5
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It sounds just like the one I bought(1998 White SL2 automatic). I paid $700 for mine but it had a dead cylinder and has 156,000 miles. I swapped the engine out of my wrecked 97 SC2 and it's back on the road. I didn't pay attention to where the fuel filter was but it should be on the driver's side along the rail at the back of the engine compartment. My radiator is leaking too and I couldn't reuse the new one I had from the 97 SC2 because it was bent up. The other problems I am having is the passenger side rear window won't roll up or down and the power steering pump has a leak. Other than that, the car should be fine.

If you are new to Saturns, make sure you check you oil often and change the ECTS(engine coolant temp sensor) because they almost always are bad if it hasn't been replaced already. A bad ECTS can cause a whole host of problems.

Enjoy your new ride!
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Old 02-02-2008, 12:45 AM   #6
DRPowerStroke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackeagle View Post
It sounds just like the one I bought(1998 White SL2 automatic). I paid $700 for mine but it had a dead cylinder and has 156,000 miles. I swapped the engine out of my wrecked 97 SC2 and it's back on the road. I didn't pay attention to where the fuel filter was but it should be on the driver's side along the rail at the back of the engine compartment. My radiator is leaking too and I couldn't reuse the new one I had from the 97 SC2 because it was bent up. The other problems I am having is the passenger side rear window won't roll up or down and the power steering pump has a leak. Other than that, the car should be fine.

If you are new to Saturns, make sure you check you oil often and change the ECTS(engine coolant temp sensor) because they almost always are bad if it hasn't been replaced already. A bad ECTS can cause a whole host of problems.

Enjoy your new ride!
Cleared up most issues! Pretty cheap too. Impressed.
Radiator, hoses, t-state, green coolant - $100
Valve cover gasket, RTV - $50
Brakes (All four) - $135
Loud exhaust (Remove resinator. It was shoot) - $40
Next -
Fuel filter $35
Trans fluid & filter - $40 (mobil one fluid)
Total cost for 35mpg........................PRICE LESS ($2800)
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1998 Saturn SL2-91k miles/25mpg
2003 Ford F250-140k miles/Diesel/4x4/Crew cab/4" Turbo back exhaust/4" Donahoe lift/Stage III Hypertech "chip"

Last edited by DRPowerStroke; 02-02-2008 at 12:49 AM..
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