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peterpete190
peterpete190, Auto Technician
Category: Saab
Satisfied Customers: 27148
Experience:  Auto repair Technician with 17 years experience.Past ASE and other certifications.
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2002 Saab 9-3 convertible, speedometer quit, no other

Customer Question

2002 Saab 9-3 convertible, speedometer quit, no other issues, no check engine lights. Last mechanic had me replace transmission input and output sensors, I did this and it still doesn't work and now I am out about $200 plus the mechanic cost...... and other ideas?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Saab
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 6 months ago.

Hi my name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist with this today.In some cases I may need more info to assist better.I apologize for any delay.

Your speedometer receives a signal from the anti lock brake control unit on this model.The anti lock brake control unit receives the speed signal from the speed sensors.If there was a fault with the speed sensors,sensor wiring or anti lock brake control unit you would see an anti lock brake warning light as well as feel pulsating brakes when brakes are applied and possibly traction control indicators.So since none of these other issues are occuring with this fault here this sounds like the common fault of the speedometer itslef inside the instrument cluster.This speedometer gauge has a stepper motor that moves the gauge and this motor can fail as this is most common.

To correct this the instrument cluster gauge assembly needs removed and either sent in for repair to an authorized repair facility or removed and replaced.

If this was another component at fault this would cause warning lights or shifting and braking issues.

If more help is needed, use the reply tab to continue our conversation. If no further assistance is needed, kindly rate my service,your 5 star rating is appreciated.You can rate at any time and we can continue to work on your question as this will not close out your question.Keep in mind in some cases it can be difficult to fully diagnose or help repair your vehicle without seeing it and I work on delivering the best possible answer from what I see to work with.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Hey there, just thought I would check on what you would do if the speed sensor did not fix the broken speedometer?I replaced them both and it is still dead.ThanksJohn
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 6 months ago.

If the speedometer was not repaired or replaced this is the most likely cause here as posted above.If it was a speed sensor fault this would cause running or driving issues here.

Let me know if you need anything else and feel free to rate my help here as this is how I receive credit for my time.Your 5 star rating is appreciated

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Sorry for slow response was out of town. The speedometer was not replaced or repaired. So I would need more information since you are indicating it is bad. Can I simply replace it with a used one and it will work, or is there some kind of programming required? Is the car mileage retained on the speedometer itself or on the car computer? If there is some kind of programming required to make a replacement part work on my car can you provide the details?Thanks John
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 6 months ago.

It can be replaced with a used one but the mileage cannot be changed in a used one to match your vehicle and programming would be needed by a GM dealer.It is best to obtain a new or rebuilt one and have it programmed to your model to operate properly.The programming has to be done by a GM dealer and a new or rebuilt can be ordered with the correct mileage stored in it for your model.But this does sound like a faulty cluster needing replaced.

Let me know if you need anything else and feel free to rate my help here as this is how I receive credit for my time.Your 5 star rating is appreciated

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Ok, I want to be clear on this because there are several used ones for sale on ebay. So I can buy a used one and replace mine, and all will work just the odometer reading will be off?This will not cause any indicator lights or errors of any kind?If this is the case I prefer to do this and send mine out for repair, but will need to drive it while the existing one is being repaired.
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 6 months ago.

My info does show it needs programmed and it looks like after 2005 was when you could not put in a used one.So yours should be able to be replaced used but will need programmed.One place to get a rebuilt cluster is http://www.instrumentclusterstore.com/instrument_clusters.htm.

On some models the engine will not run with the cluster removed.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Can you tell me the details of what is needed/ what programming is needed, how the programming is done?
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 6 months ago.

The programming is done with a dealers Tech 2 scan tool plugged into your vehicle at the same time a wire/cable is run from the dealers GM computer to install the programming.Your vehicles VIN is input into the GM computer to then access programming to download into your model here.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
The one thing I guess I really need to be sure of is that the car will drive when I put the used one in, so I can drive it to get it programmed and don't have to pay for the install. Are you sure the car will drive with the used one in there?
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 5 months ago.

Looking at all of the info on this here the cluster does need to communicate with the engine computer before it will start the engine and if the cluster is not programmed then it will not start the engine.The cluster is also called the MIU unit on this model here.Here is the info I show and recall.

IMPORTANT: TWICE, MIU and the engine management system must be programmed together. If any system is changed, reprogramming is required.

These are 3 computers that have to be programmed at the same time by the dealer in order for the vehicle to run and operate.So unfortunately it cannot be installed then driven to the dealer.It needs installed at the dealer then programmed or installed by you then towed to the dealer for programming.

Let me know if you need anything else and feel free to rate my help here as this is how I receive credit for my time.Your 5 star rating is appreciated

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I have a friend with a Tech 2 device, can the programming be done with that, and if so would you have a procedure/how to instructions to do it ?
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 5 months ago.

It is done with the Tech 2 but the Tech 2 has to be plugged into a GM computer to do this programming unfortunately.It usually takes less then an hour to have the programming done.The GM programming computer is the computer a dealer uses.

Let me know if you need anything else and feel free to rate my help here as this is how I receive credit for my time.Your 5 star rating is appreciated

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Seems a lot to get a dealer to do this, can't imagine the cost... So the next question, I will try to find a replacement stepper motor for the miu assemble and desolder the old and resolder the new, would you have any idea of a replacement part number for the stepper motor?
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Seems a lot to get a dealer to do this, can't imagine the cost... So the next question, I will try to find a replacement stepper motor for the miu assemble and desolder the old and resolder the new, would you have any idea of a replacement part number for the stepper motor?
Expert:  peterpete190 replied 5 months ago.

Unfortunately my info doesnt show me the individual part numbers for these motors.You may have to contact an instrument repair facility to get the part number as well as see if you can obtain it.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Hi Pete, well that was a job and a half, you were correct and thank you. Removing the instrument cluster is a bear, then you have to unsolder the odometer which has about 20 pins just to get to the stepper motors. I purchased one on ebay for $10, unsoldered - resoldered and all works.