Question about Saturn SL

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My 1994 Saturn SL has a manual transmission. So of course you have to depress the clutch to start the engine. But over time it got to where you had to pin the clutch pedal to the floor to start the car and sometimes -Nothing. No sound or anything. Now even when the clutch pedal is on the floor the car will not start. But we can push it and pop the clutch and it runs just fine. Originally we thought it might be the ignition or the starter, but I'm sure it's something else. What could it be? Maybe the clutch pedal needs to be adjusted? Or god forbid, the transmission. Please let me know what you think. Thanks.

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  • merrie kearns Sep 13, 2010

    I bought a new switch, it was just 5.99. But putting it in is a whole other can of worms!!! The old part came out after about 10 minutes of prying. But I spent well over an hour trying to get the new part in. It has two knobs that have go through the holes and then just slide down to secure. Easy right?? There is not enough room under the dash to use two hands, and there's a tension spring. So even if I push the knobs thru the holes, the spring is pushing back and I just can't get the thing to slide down. Is there an easier way to do this? Help me!!!!



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Your interlock switch is somehow installed above the clutch pedal, but I can't find a picture of how it's installed. The switch itself looks like this:
My 1994 Saturn SL has - b048505.jpg It has apparenly been slipping and needs to be adjusted. I'm sorry I can't tell you more, as I have never seen this design and don't understand how it works. If you can send a picture of it inside the car, perhaps I can tell you how to adjust it.

Posted on Sep 11, 2010

  • 2 more comments 
  • merrie kearns Sep 11, 2010

    Would that be inside the car or under the hood? I'm going to take a picture. Where do I send it to?

  • Jeff Turcotte
    Jeff Turcotte Sep 11, 2010

    inside the car under the dash, above the clutch pedal. can you load the picture into the interface at Fixya? I'm not supposed to use email...

  • Jeff Turcotte
    Jeff Turcotte Sep 11, 2010

    I've taken a closer look at the switch and I think I understand it now. It lloks like it has a button sticking out. The clutch arm has to push that button in for you to start the car. My guess is, when you push the pedal all the way down, it is no longer pushing this button in. If that is true, see if you can somehow move the switch back to where iot should be.
    On the other hand, if the clutch IS pushing the button in, then just get a new switch. The price is less that $10 at the sites I have seen.
    One more thing. If you want to drive the car in the meantime, you can defeat the safety feature by pulling the connectopr off the switch and using a paper clip to connect the 2 terminals in the connector. This will fake your car into thinking the clutch is in. If you do this, do be carefull not to accidentally try to start the car with the clutch out, or the car will move.
    If you have more questions, please reply. I know it is hard to get the picture to me. I have been asking them to change the rules.

  • Jeff Turcotte
    Jeff Turcotte Sep 13, 2010

    I wish I could see what you're talking about, but I'm not sure I could do any better. Repair is not always the first consideration of designers. What I would try is to use a tool to keep the spring back, if I could. Maybe a vise grip or a screwdriver that would hold the spring depressed. I asked our computer guys about sending photos, and they said that part of Fixya is temporarily not working. If you can take a photo of the bracket, please send to my email at and I will see if can provide any better ideas.



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