How to Troubleshoot Saturn Cars

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Saturn is a division of General Motors. The car company ceased production of its vehicles in October 2009. While Saturn placed a high emphasis on quality, in practice the vehicles' plastic molded panels were often defective. Several other common problems plagued Saturn vehicles. But before you take your Saturn to a GM dealership, you should try troubleshooting the problem.

  • Visually inspect all the body panels on your Saturn. The plastic body panels on the front bumper and side door (and other) trim are often defective. Replace any cracked or damaged trim.

  • Check to make sure your Saturn starts. A common problem for Saturns is engine reliability over 75,000 miles. Broken timing chains are common. These chains help keep the timing of the engine and the crankshaft in line. So if this chain breaks, your engine simply will not run; the pistons and the valve will not move in sync. A professional mechanic must fix this issue.

  • Check for transmission slippage. Many Saturn vehicles use an automatic transmission. A common problem with the Saturn transmission is a poorly designed transmission assembly, which results in a bent clutch disc over time. This will cause the Saturn to slip in and out of gear while you are driving. Eventually, the torque converter will fail; you must have the issue fixed by a transmission specialist.

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