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George H.
George H., ASE Certified Technician
Category: Saturn
Satisfied Customers: 18307
Experience:  ASE Master Tech 15+ Years
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I have a 1998 saturn sl2. I'm having problems with the car

Customer Question

I have a 1998 saturn sl2. I'm having problems with the car mis firing and having trouble with acceration
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Saturn
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

Hello I will help,

Were the spark plug wires covered in oil?

Was the coil replaced due to the terminals being corroded?

Did you pull the ignition module when the coil was replaced?

What plugs did you install?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
The plugs were covered in oil but we cleaned all of it out before putting the new ones in. I replaced the coils just thinking that it would solve the problem but it did not, there is no ignition module on my car, and I used ACdelco plugs
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

If the plug wells are leaking oil then you need to replace the valve cover gasket.

The coils are mounted on the ignition module. The back of the module has to be clean and the pad where the module mounts on the transmission as well. Di- electric grease is applied to the surface to keep it clean and conductive.

The plugs are good but any oil in the wells will conduct hi voltage to ground rather than through the plugs and you will get the miss under load.

Last thing be sure the plug wires are installed to the coils 4,1,2,3 looking from left to right as you stand in front of the car.

Is the check engine light on or is it flashing when you feel the miss?

Let me know how I can help

Thank you

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I forgot to mention that I did replace the valve cover gasket, and I did clean the back of the ignition module when I pulled it off. There is no check engine light at all and the plug wires are on the correct plugs. I may try the di-electric grease if we can't figure out any other possible problems causing the misfire
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

What about the check engine light?

What happens when you accelerate is the conditions in the cylinder change so it takes more voltage to jump the plug gap. That high voltage jumps out of the plug wire if there is any oil present or if the wires are poor. I know you have new ones, it is tough to get good ones now. If the plug body or the wire has any oil or grease on it you will have this issue

What about the check engine light?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
when I first start accelerating its fine but once I continue to accelerate the car starts to skip and it bogs down and I have to almost fully accelerate before it starts going faster but once I do that it no longer skips.
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

So what about the check engine light? Is it on? Is it flashing when this happens?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
The check engine light does not come on at works but it doesn't come on
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

Thank you,

You have an ignition misfire, it comes on at high load and goes away when the load is reduced.

Try my suggestions above, it is in the ignition.

When you replaced one coil is the other showing whitish corrosion or rust on the plug wire terminals?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
no there was no corrosion at all on the coils at all
Expert:  George H. replied 2 months ago.

Ok, good. Then it has to be in the mating between the module and the transmission or the plugs in the wells. Something is not conducting the voltage to the plugs.

Let me know how I can help you with this

Thank you