Question about 1996 Saturn SL

2 Answers

Seems to have lost some of its power/acceleration. Believe there is also a leak in the radiator. Someone suggested acceleration decrase may be due to catalic converter?

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  • christlike37 Dec 11, 2009

    My son's car is a 1996 Saturn. He said the acceleration has decreased, and there is like a rattling noise. The guy at the used car lot told him it's probely the catalic converter. He got it at a buy here pay here, no warranty though. He thinks the radiator may be leaking also. Since we live in a county which doesn't require emmissions, a freind told him to just have the coverter cut off? Thank you

  • christlike37 Dec 11, 2009

    Yes, thank you very much.

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  • Master
  • 560 Answers

It is feesable to be the catalyst causing excessive back-pressure

If it is the cat a back-pressure test is needed to check this properly but a simple self diagnosis is as simple as listen for hissing sounds, hover your hand over the tailpipe while someone revs it (should get plenty of gas pushing at your hand) this will give you some idea as to whether the cat is blocked or not.

For the rad, try a stop-leak fluid or pellet but if it persists it will require a new radiator.





Posted on Dec 11, 2009

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  • Saturn Master
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How many miles are on it? That is a key question, Also have you noticed a change in the miles per gallon? The things that you need to check are the plugs, the wires, the fuel and air filters, the fuel pump pressure AND rate! The radiator has almost nothing to do with this. They are a pain and there is nothing to do but pressure test it with a kit and get it serviced or replaced. IF you dont you are asking for trouble,

Back to the catalytic converter. This is only and issue if it plugs up. If that is the case then the engine gets too much back pressure and it can produce problems with driveability. That said though YOU cannot take it out. This is a big no no and you should not be able to locate anyone that would take it out for you. They are a hgh warranty item though and by that I mean that it is almost for the life of the car. They are not cheap though either if you are beyond the warranty. THe only real way to check it is with a back pressure meter on the exhaust.

If you are going to really get into the meat and potatos of the performance issues then you should check the run out and lsh on the valves and the compress and leakdown of the cylinders.

Posted on Dec 11, 2009

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