ION, L-Series, S-Series 1999-2005

Starter

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The starting system is designed to start the engine. The battery provides power to the starter motor to crank the engine when starting. The system consists of a starter motor with a solenoid, a starter relay, a transaxle mounted park/neutral switch (automatic transaxle) or clutch pedal actuated switch (manual transaxle), a crank contact in the ignition switch, and associated wiring.

With the ignition switch in the START position, the starter relay enabled and the transaxle in the P (Park) or N (Neutral) position, power flows to the small terminal of the starter solenoid. Power through the pull-in winding also flows through the starter motor. The motor rotates slowly at first so the gears mesh and the solenoid contacts close. This allows full battery power to flow directly to the cranking motor. With full battery voltage at the M terminal, the motor armature turns and cranks the engine.

When the ignition switch is released from the START position, power to the small terminal is cut off. The battery continues to supply power to the cranking motor through the pull-in and hold-in windings. The current through the windings flows in opposing directions so it creates opposite magnetic fields. The magnetic fields cancel each other out, releasing the driver mechanism. The shift lever returns to its at-rest position and the starter solenoid contacts open, cutting off power to the starter motor.

Removal & Installation



2.0L Engine
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the precautions section.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  4.  
  5. Remove the intercooler pump outer bracket.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the electrical connectors from the starter.
  8.  
  9. Remove the starter bolts.
  10.  
  11. Remove the starter.
  12.  

To install:

  1. Install the starter.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter bolts and tighten to 37 ft. lbs. (50 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Connect the electrical connectors to the starter.
  6.  
  7. Install the intercooler pump outer bracket and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable
  10.  

2.2L & 2.4L Engines
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the precautions section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:
    NOTE
    Spray the starter solenoid electrical connectors with penetrating oil before removal.



    Negative battery cable
     



    Starter electrical connections
     
    Starter bolts
     
    Starter assembly
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Install or connect the following:

    Starter to the flywheel housing and torque the bolts to 30 ft. lbs. (40 Nm)
     
    Starter electrical connectors and torque the solenoid ignition wire to 44 inch lbs. (5 Nm) and the positive battery cable to 13 ft. lbs. (17 Nm) and the S terminal connector to 27 inch lbs. (3 Nm).
     
    Negative battery cable
     

  2.  

Ion
2.0L Engine
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the precautions section.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  4.  
  5. Remove the intercooler pump outer bracket.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the electrical connectors from the starter.
  8.  
  9. Remove the starter bolts.
  10.  
  11. Remove the starter.
  12.  

To install:

  1. Install the starter.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter bolts and tighten to 37 ft. lbs. (50 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Connect the electrical connectors to the starter.
  6.  
  7. Install the intercooler pump outer bracket and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable
  10.  

2.2L Engine
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the precautions section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:
    NOTE
    Spray the starter solenoid electrical connectors with penetrating oil before removal.



    Negative battery cable
     



    Starter electrical connections
     
    Starter bolts
     
    Starter assembly
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Install or connect the following:

    Starter to the flywheel housing and torque the bolts to 30 ft. lbs. (40 Nm)
     
    Starter electrical connectors and torque the solenoid ignition wire to 44 inch lbs. (5 Nm) and the positive battery cable to 89 inch lbs. (10 Nm), on all models except ION. On ION models, attach the electrical connectors to the starter and tighten the battery terminal nut to 13 ft. lbs. (17 Nm) and the S terminal connector to 27 inch lbs. (3 Nm).
     
    Negative battery cable
     

  2.  

Solenoid or Relay



The Saturn original equipment starter and solenoid are a single unit, and must be replaced as an assembly if the unit fails.

Removal & Installation

The Saturn original equipment starter and solenoid are a single unit, and must be replaced as an assembly if the unit fails.

Testing & Troubleshooting



Before testing the starting system, perform a preliminary visual check. Inspect the wiring and connections for the battery cable and the starter solenoid, then check the ignition switch for proper operation. When the switch is turned ON , the instrument cluster lights should illuminate and accessories such as the radio may be operated. Check the instrument panel junction block for blown fuses. The ignition fuse "IGN3'' must be intact.

Before testing the starting system, perform a preliminary visual check. Inspect the wiring and connections for the battery cable and the starter solenoid, then check the ignition switch for proper operation. When the switch is turned ON , the instrument cluster lights should illuminate and accessories such as the radio may be operated. Check the instrument panel junction block for blown fuses. The ignition fuse "IGN3'' must be intact.

Clutch Start Safety Switch

On vehicles equipped with a manual transaxle, a clutch safety switch is mounted on the clutch pedal bracket to prevent starting the vehicle unless the pedal is depressed. If the switch is suspected, check it as follows:

  1. Detach the electrical connector from the switch and position a digital volt-ohmmeter to test resistance through the switch.
  2.  
  3. The circuit should be open (infinite resistance) when the clutch pedal is in the clutch engaged or upper position.
  4.  
  5. Fully depress the clutch pedal and check resistance; if the switch is good, resistance should be below 2 ohms.
  6.  

Neutral Start Safety Switch

On vehicles equipped with an automatic transaxle, a neutral safety switch is mounted on the rear side of the transaxle bell housing to prevent starting the vehicle unless the shifter is in NEUTRAL or PARK . If the switch is suspected, check it as follows:

  1. Detach the electrical connector from the neutral safety switch that contains only 2-pins. These should be terminals A and B .
  2.  
  3. With the transaxle in REVERSE , 3RD or 2ND , measure the resistance of the switch across terminals A and B ; the circuit should be open (infinite resistance).
  4.  
  5. With the transaxle in PARK or NEUTRAL , the resistance across the two switch terminals should be less than 2 ohms.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Electrical schematic for the starting/charging system

  6.  

 
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