1996 Saturn SW2 Repair and Maintenance

A guide to problems, costs, maintenance and repair for your 1996 Saturn SW2

1996 Saturn SW2 Problems

A/C off for Engine Protection and Engine Reads Cold

The 1996-2001 Saturn SW2 may display the warning message "A/C off for Engine Protection" on the instrument panel. This may be accompanied by illumination of the check engine light and the temperature gauge reading cold at all times. This is a feature of the engine that is activated by the power control module when it detects the engine warming up too slowly. The OBD trouble code P0128 may also be stored. 

The cause is simply a worn out thermostat that stays open at all times, preventing the engine from reaching the proper operating temperature. 

Replacement of the thermostat will correct the issue. 

Contamination of extended life coolant
Extended life coolant may become contaminated and require cooling system service before the recommended 100,000 miles.
Check Engine Light Due to Gas Cap Issue

Illumination of the Check Engine Light can be caused by a loose or worn gas cap.

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1996 Saturn SW2 Questions

Having trouble finding the wiper arm (the arm, not the wiper/blade) for the back (2 answers)

Need the arm for the back/rear window wiper. Have the wiper need to blade to attach the wiper to. I've searched rear wiper blade, back wiper blade, and about 6 other options. I found a video that shows how to remove it but that's as close as I've come. on youtube Pictured is the arm ...

Plugs/wires/engine and transmission mounts/ battery + TB cleaned. Now runs so smoothly that passengers ask if engine is still on. Used to run that way even from cold start. Now, before warm, engine runs rough & idles fast. PCM idle relearn needed? (1 answer)

Replacement parts needed for the Passenger wiper assy (2 answers)

According to the repair shop the wiper motor is fine as the driver side wiper works fine. But the passenger side is shot. I tried to tighten the nut but that wasn't the problem so I took it to the shop. Apparently the assy from the motor to the passenger side is shot and would cost over $300 ...

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1996 Saturn SW2 Recalls

Horn Failure

The horn could fail and overheat. resulting in a possible engine compartment fire. Dealers will replace the horn assembly free of charge to resolve the concern.

Roof Panel Welds Insufficient

The roof panel welds may not be sufficiently made to prevent panel separation in an accident. Dealers will reinforce the roof flange with structural fasteners free of charge to resolve the concern.

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1996 Saturn SW2 Reviews

Rated
based on 1 customer reviews
Bought it with 140,000 miles and really bonded with my Saturn on a 3000 mile trip last summer. It's been a reliable car. It gets great mileage and the only thing mechanically I have had to do was replace the brake disc rotors. I was able to do the work myself and it cost me less than 100 bucks. The only other negative issue I have had is the rear window wiper quit working and the front window w...

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