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Mike, UK Car Mechanic
Category: UK Car
Satisfied Customers: 39198
Experience:  Hi, I am a Car/ vehicle technician of 34 years. 29of -running my own repair/diagnostic business.
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SAAB 900 Turbo Convertible 1998 - Power roof problem Hi there,

Customer Question

SAAB 900 Turbo Convertible 1998 - Power roof problem
Hi there, my power roof does not wor and I am told that the motor is slipping the cogs. I have been quoted silly money for the repair which is more than the car is worth so I want to do the job myself. My problem is that I cannot find enough information about manual secure and opening of the roof (I can't even find the winding handle becaus ethe book says it is behind the seats and it isn't) and I want to order a reconditioned replacement and fit it myslef. I guess I will then have to visit a dealer with a Tech 2 computer to get it resynchronised. Any help suggestions or advice would be welcome, even if it includes "Don't do it" as a suggestion!!
Best regards XXXXX XXXXX for a great website service.

Neil Roberts
078 999 20001 [email protected]
Registration is RGH845L
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: UK Car
Expert:  Mike replied 8 years ago.
Hello Neil, Welcome to justanswer...

It is often a problem getting info for older models - even though 98 isn;t exactly what I would call "old"...

You say the motor is slipping the cogs - so I assume you get / hear like a whirring and a clicking noise from it... so , it may well be that the motor is failing - or - the roof is stuck somewhere in its mechanism and is stopping the motor from working.. so you need to check that really to be sure.. The handle as far as Im aware on these is or should be in the boot area - or under the rear seats - so check for that too..
If the roof is physically stuck somewhere either on one or more of the holding catches or perhaps a partial or full seizure of one of the roof mechanisms - then it will cause the motor to do what its doing - so again, you need to check that through because you wouldn't want to obtain a new motor only to find there is nothing at all wrong with that ..

To help you further - I will give you a drawing / schematic of the whole roof control system - hopefully that will be of some use to you too in your checking it through... that is here for you below -- click it to enlarge it..


Let me know if I can help you further , if I can, I will...

I Sincerely XXXXX XXXXX have helped you - Please ask me if you need more help...

Kind Rgds, MIKE


  • >>>>>>>>>Please don't forget ....Please press the ACCEPT button if you are happy with my answer/advice given - as that's how I get paid for my time, knowledge and expertise given. Thank you.


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Customer: replied 8 years ago.


Thanks for the suggestions but this is information that I already have. I know the motor is jumping the cogs because the teeth are stripped. My problem is that if I am going to do the job I need to be able to release the psiton valve pressure so I can manually move the roof, and I need to be able to find the handle. I know it could be in one of several places but I cannot find it. The schematic is nice, but what I really need is the physcal diagram for this car. I think I can leave the elctrics up to a dealer with a tech 2 I as I said before. I definitlet need to replace the motor, or I may be able to get away with replacing the curved steel toothed plate. Either way I think I will make and fit a steel bracket so that the asembly can't twist in future, because this seems to be the root cause of the problem. So thanks for the answer but at the moment it is not what I am looking for. Neil

Expert:  Mike replied 8 years ago.
Hello again Neil - Thank you for your reply...

You should have an emergency release behind one of the backrests...
I do have a fair amount of information on this - not diagrams but tech info form the factory - if you want it but it takes a lot of time etc to produce so with you saying thanks but no thanks - obviously I dont want to go to a lot of work , time for no renumeration if for some reason you do not want to progress with it..
If you want the information - I am more that happy to provide it and carry on here with you - so please let me know either way.

Kind Rgds - MIKE
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Mike, OK I will have a proper look at it tomorrow after the rain has stopped and then re-phrase the question so it less vague and easier to answer. Neil
Expert:  Mike replied 8 years ago.
Hi there Neil, thank you for your reply...

Im more than happy to help you all I can - thats why I "exist" ! Wink

Basically I have at least one SAAB Tech bulletin ( TSB ) if not two on the subject of these roof problems and you are more than welcome to them if you want / if they will help you --looking at them , I think they will... so just let me know..

Best Rgds - MIKE
Customer: replied 8 years ago.


I haven't clicked 'pay' because in asking the wrong question, you were unable to answer me. I have already the GM tech notes, but they also do not seem to cover this model. As I said before, I am going to wait until there are several days without rain and then investigate so that I can ask the right question. It just will not stop ******y raining and I have nowhere to put the car under cover. Even if I could find the piston, I could release the pressure enough to close the roof, or open it further so that I could get at the mechanism. Best wishes. Neil