Issue with a 97 Saturn SL1

Discussion in 'Saturn S-series' started by CuriousOnly, Jul 13, 2004.

  1. CuriousOnly

    CuriousOnly Guest

    I am having an issue with the switch located underneath the clutch pedal in
    my Saturn. Or at least I think it's the switch.

    Here's the issue: Sometimes I turn the key and nothing happens, as if the
    clutch pedal isn't being pressed. If I work it enough times (sometimes
    enough is once or twice, sometimes enough is 30 or 40) the engine will
    finally start.

    Here's what's been checked: It has been confirmed that the battery (which
    is now fairly new), the alternator, pretty much the entire charging and
    electrical systems are fine. Everything is good there. Mechanic even
    suggested that the floor mat was the problem, as it was sliding up
    underneath the pedal. Okay, fine, except that since that day I check the
    floor mat everytime I get in the car.

    MY theory, is that the little black switch located underneath the clutch
    pedal is faulty. For those that are wondering, this is the switch that
    prevents you from starting the car while it's in gear, so it doesn't jump.
    Are these expensive to replace? Do I have to go to the dealer? I can see
    that it doesn't look difficult to actually replace it, but has anyone else
    had experience with this?

    Thanks for any information
    CuriousOnly, Jul 13, 2004
  2. The easy way to check this is to unplug the switch and use something to
    complete the circuit that the switch would have been plugged into. You
    could also remove the switch and use a multimeter to test the switch's
    continuity as you work the mechanism.

    It is also possible that the switch is fine, but the connector has come
    loose over time. If needed, the switch should be relatively inexpensive
    at your local auto parts store.

    If the starter has never been replaced, it is around that time in the
    vehicle's life when it may be a culprit.

    richard hornsby, Jul 14, 2004
  3. CuriousOnly

    Jerry Guest

    Why don't you just jump that switch temporary?
    Jerry, Jul 14, 2004
  4. CuriousOnly

    uknewwho Guest

    take the clutch start switch connector, and use a jumper wire to bypass the
    switch. use a 4 wire-gauge jumper, inset one end into each of the pins in
    the connector, if the engine starts, the swtich is faulty, if not, your
    problem is some where else.
    Side note, this is what has to be disabled to install a remote start.
    however, and i'm not sure about this with saturns, if you disable this, your
    cruse control will not work, nor will any shift light, because the ecu
    thinks the clutch is in all the time.
    uknewwho, Jul 14, 2004
  5. CuriousOnly

    CuriousOnly Guest


    If the starter has never been replaced, it is around that time in the
    actually, the starter was also tested, and it appears to be fine...but
    thanks for the suggestions..
    CuriousOnly, Jul 14, 2004
  6. CuriousOnly

    CuriousOnly Guest

    I will try this little test....thanks for the info

    Yeah, my car is cool enough to have cruise control....HA!! I
    wish!!! :)

    I wouldn't mind seeing that little shift light disappear,
    that's annoying.
    CuriousOnly, Jul 14, 2004
  7. CuriousOnly

    Jerry Guest

    If this is correct, then it may help to disable the shift-up light
    (some folks just hate that light).
    Jerry, Jul 14, 2004
  8. CuriousOnly

    Dan Duncan Guest

    I don't have cruise control, but can anyone else confirm the
    behavior with the shift light on Saturns? My switch works fine, but it's
    worth bypassing if that shift light goes away and there are valid
    reasons for wanting to crank the starter with the car in gear. I
    don't think I've ever forgotten to push in the clutch when starting,
    but there have been times I would like to start the car in neutral,
    like when I'm working on it and would like to start it by reaching
    through the window and turning the key.

    Dan Duncan, Jul 14, 2004
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