99 Saab 93 Cranks but no start - Here is my story... - The Saab Link Forums

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Old 10-08-2009, 07:02 PM   #1
SAAB Road Master
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 303
99 Saab 93 Cranks but no start - Here is my story...

So I have 1999 Saab 93 woth 120K miles. Its a 5 speed. T5. I listed it for sale a little over a week ago. Sure enough the next day it won't start... And I am stuck driving my Jeep Cherokee.

So here is my story...

5 days ago: I wake up one morning (It was more like the early afternoon, I don't get to bed until late... I hold TSL accountable for my sleep deprivation!) to head to the store. I'm craving some Wheat Thins and maybe a Pepsi (brand placement anyone? Cha-ching...). I get into the car to head out and ugh... the dreaded no start. She's cranking strong for sure, but not catching. I pump the gas, tried jumping it, checked my fuel level to be sure and then went back inside and back to bed.

3PM: I woke up and got in my mechanics jeans and led zeppelin t-shirt ready to do battle. It started with me pushing my 3000+ pound vehicle up my 20 foot driveway into my garage. Damn, why don't I just park in the damn thing! Thats what I have it for!

3:30PM: I get the car in the garage and contemplate my course of action. I could hit up TSL for a pretty decent check list of things, or just rely on my feeling at the time and go that way. I rely on my gut (proved to be a mistake later.. keep reading) and take out the DIC to check the plugs. They're a little dark, but the gap is good. I look around the engine bay and see that my BPV vac hose is disconnected, so I reconnect that and give it another shot... Still won't start.

3:45PM: Check the fuel pump. I can hear it when I turn the ignition to the ON position and while cranking. I check all the fuses with a test light. They're all good.

4PM: Remebering a common failure is the crankshaft position sensor, I try and unplug that and end up breaking it. I should've just tested it first...

4:15PM I order a replacement CPS from rockauto.com with expedited delivery

Fast forward two days.

9AM: (I was eager to get this thing going) The CPS is in and I am having trouble getting the old one out. Not enough room... Damn. I buy just the right length extension from our local AutoZone along with some PB Blaster and she pops out, new one in. I go to start and!.... she just keeps cranking...

10AM: I cave in and hit up TSL. Find Ari's checklist and give it a go. My DIC tests fine. My spare DIC tests fine. I'm getting injector pulse with my test light. I swapped in a few spare relays to the injector relay, starter relay, and fuel pump relay. All are good.

1PM: Grab some starting fluid and spray some into the throttle body. She cranks hard, starts up and dies after a few seconds. I try again while pumping the gas and suddenly VROOOOOOM she comes to life. I am utterly confused but hey... she's running. I let it run for a few seconds. She chokes and coughs and the smooths out. I let it run for 10 minutes, engine gets up to temp. I turn it off and back on. She starts right back up, no pedal pumping required. Runs fine. I drive her around the block for a bit to check for issues, all the while expecting to stall out in front of my cranky neighbors with their 94 Honda Civics. Nope, she makes it to the store (Did you think I was going to forget about my Wheat Thins?) and back home again. I try and start it a few more times over the course of the next hour, varying the time in between each start from 5 to 20 minutes. She fires up every time.

5:30PM: I hop in the car and WTF, she won't start! Cranks, but again... a no go. I pump the pedal, still nothing. Aggrivated, I head inside to do some more hunting on TSL.

Next day...

10AM: I take all the hoses and air intake pieces out of the engine bay for detailing and to make room to test the injectors. I finally get the fuel rail out, reinstalled everything I had taken out earlier (except now its all nice and shiny. Anyone ever used Mothers back on black? Its nice stuff), and get my brother out to come crank for me. Sure enough, the injectors are spitting out a very small amount of fuel. I'm talking VERY small. (I have a fuel pressure gauge but no adapter). I replace the fuel filter and... VROOM she starts, then sputters, then dies. I do this a few more times and finally she gets running smooth. I have a CEL, but the car starts and I'm claiming victory.

2PM: I go to start it again and she sputters and dies... I pump the pedal after a few tries and she fires up and stays running smooth. This pattern continues for the next day... and here we are.

Some more background info...

1) I have the access hole cut in my backseat for the fuel pump. I had to replace it earlier this year, but I grabbed a used one from a friend's parts car. It works great, and it was free.
2) I have replaced the fuel filter about 2000 miles ago (as previously stated). The car has run fine since the fuel pump and filter replacement. (Up till now of course).
3) I did a compresson test. 180 average on all cylinders.
4) I replaced the battery a few mins ago. No change.
5) I ran a new set of plugs as well, NGKS, properly gapped. No change.

So she starts up after a few tries of cranking. The pump works. I have spark. She runs smooth once past the 3 seconds of rough-starving for fuel-issue...

This may seem rather obvious, but is this something to do with my fuel pump? Any ideas on how to test something else or fix this issue?

I appreciate the help guys.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:24 PM   #2
SAAB Road Master
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 303
Thanks anyways guys, I figured it out.

It was the fuel pump check valve. Starts right up.
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Old 05-05-2014, 10:13 AM   #3
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 1
How did you know it was the check valve?
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