Check the fluid ( reg oil 5 w 30 or 10 w 30 )by checking the check point when the car is cold ( not run for 6 hours) on the passenger side bold under the exhaust manifold. I think it is 19 mm. you should have 3 quarts. Also there is a filter on the rear cover that has a magnetic trap that needs to be replaced. Also you need the rear gasket if you are taking that panel off. dont reuse paper gaskets! they will always fail.
in that transmission shift gear first, then give gas. it is not very forgiving.
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I've had a similar problem, and it was the rubber bushings in the
shifter link; as some particular ones age they get sloppy and 5th gear
seems to be the one that suffers. Others will age and disintegrate,
then you won't be able to shift at all. If all the other gears are fine
(no grinding, judder, popping out of gear or other untoward behaviour) I'd look to these
rubber bushings, and replace them all while you're at it. They're
replaceable at much less cost than a tranny rebuild, and are most
likely that cause, i.e. after rebuilding tranny, you still won't get
into 5th because the shifter won't have been rebuilt, just the contents
of the gear box!
Check the "Bentley Bible" aka the Saab 900 Official Service Manual,
costs about $40 from Amazon, for info, it's an invaluable resource!
To check the oil level open the boot - at the very back remove the 4 plastic clips that hold the carpet in place. Slightly to the left of the center there are 2 holes - shine a light in the bottom and look through the top one to check the level.
To add oil - fold down the seat backrest. Remove the plastic trim - held on by 4 screws and 2 pop out plastic cllips.
Undo the 8 large bolts that hold the cover in place - 2 on top and 3 on front and back.Then lift up the cover from the front edge. You will then be able to get to the resevoir - you will need a funnel to poor fluid in.
There is a transmission dip stick on the side of the engine, this is used to check the trans fluid level. The engine oil dipstick has a large diameter plastic cap, and is on the left/driver's side of the car (in North America); the trans dipstick has two notches at the bottom when removed and a label telling the fluid to use.
The best source of info on this car is the "Bentley Bible" aka the Saab 900 Official Service Manual, costs about $40 from Amazon!
16 valve manual: http://www.amazon.com/Saab-900-Valve-Service-Manual/dp/0837603137
8 valve manual :http://www.amazon.com/Eight-Official-Service-Manual-1981-1988/dp/0837603102
get the appropriate manual for your car and enjoy the Saab!.
If this helps, please give a "thumbs up", thanks.
Hello. I had the same problem when the Check Gearbox light came on, it would be very sluggish. It turned out to be a small sensor in the transmission that lets the car know what gear it is in. It started to go out slowly and only sometimes would send the information.