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Saab 9-3 Problems

Find the most common issues based on Saab 9-3 owner complaints.
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Most Common Saab 9-3 Problems

2.0L engines may become low on engine coolant with no cause found for the coolant loss. Our technicians tell us than in some cases the engine block may require replacement due to porosity.
A knocking noise while turning and/or a banging noise when driving on rough roads may develop in the front suspension. This type of noise is commonly caused by a front strut thrust bearing damaged ...
The anti-lock brake system (ABS) and/or traction control light may illuminate. This can be caused by corrosion in the (ABS) wire harness connector at the right front wheel speed sensor due to water...
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2 Known Saab 9-3 Brakes Problems

The anti-lock brake system (ABS) and/or traction control light may illuminate. This can be caused by corrosion in the (ABS) wire harness connector at the right front wheel speed sensor due to water...
On two wheel drive vehicles the electronic stability program (ESP) Off light may be illuminated storing a trouble code C013108 with no apparent related problem. Our technicians tell us reprogrammin...

3 Known Saab 9-3 Drive Train Problems

A well-documented and well-known issue with the Saab 9-3 built between 2003-2011 is harsh shifting from the 6-speed automatic transmission, and slight slippage between gears. This has been noted as...
Slow or sluggish gearshift operation may be noted on vehicles equipped with a six speed manual transmission. Our technicians remind us it is important to ensure the correct Saab approved gear oil i...
Vehicles with a manual transmission may develop a whining noise in third gear (30 to 40 mph). Our technicians tell us this is commonly corrected by replacing a bushing in the shift cable.

7 Known Saab 9-3 Electrical & Lights Problems

Our technicians report failures of various components in the audio system. Speaker, control unit, and steering wheel button failures are all possible.
If the ignition switch is turned to the "lock" position when the vehicle speed is over 5km/hour, the ignition key cannot be removed from the lock cylinder. This is not a defect, but a normal design...
The third brake light and/or license plate lamp may fail due to wiring damaged from rubbing on the trunk lid handle. Our technicians tell us the repair involves correcting the damaged wiring and is...

15 Known Saab 9-3 Engine Problems

2.0L engines may become low on engine coolant with no cause found for the coolant loss. Our technicians tell us than in some cases the engine block may require replacement due to porosity.
The direct ignition cassette can fail causing the engine to die while driving, and/or it will crank but start. Diagnosis may also discover trouble codes for random misfires.
Oil leaks from the timing cover, valve cover, and/or rear main seal may be due to excessive crankcase pressure. An updated PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) kit was released to fix this concern.

1 Known Saab 9-3 Exhaust & Emissions Problem

The exhaust flex pipe can fail causing excessive exhaust noise from the front/center area of the vehicle. The flex pipe is a flexible joint in the exhaust that allows for engine movement.

5 Known Saab 9-3 Heating & Air Conditioning Problems

The thermo contact in the AC compressor can fail, which means the compressor may fail to engage or disengage.
The shaft for the air blend door can fail creating the inability to adjust the AC or heating temperature. The AC or Heat will not maintain the proper temperature.
The air blend system in the heating, ventilation and AC (HVAC) system can have problems, which can cause the AC controls to be stiff, or a lack of HVAC control.

0 Known Saab 9-3 Maintenance Problems

0 Known Saab 9-3 Miscellaneous Problems

3 Known Saab 9-3 Suspension & Steering Problems

A knocking noise while turning and/or a banging noise when driving on rough roads may develop in the front suspension. This type of noise is commonly caused by a front strut thrust bearing damaged ...
Snapping or popping noise heard from the steering shaft usually means the steering shaft joints need to be removed and re-installed using thread locking compound on bolts.
Code C155037 (control module internal fault) may set in the steering control module due to low battery voltage. Our technicians recommend a complete inspection of the starting and charging systems ...

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Known Saab 9-3 Problems & Complaints

Oil leaks from the timing cover, valve cover, and/or rear main seal may be due to excessive crankcase pressure. An updated PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) kit was released to fix this concern.
2.0L engines may become low on engine coolant with no cause found for the coolant loss. Our technicians tell us than in some cases the engine block may require replacement due to porosity.
The anti-lock brake system (ABS) and/or traction control light may illuminate. This can be caused by corrosion in the (ABS) wire harness connector at the right front wheel speed sensor due to water...
With reverse gear engaged, the parking assist may not function correctly. Our technicians tell us updated parking assist software is available which can correct this concern.
A well-documented and well-known issue with the Saab 9-3 built between 2003-2011 is harsh shifting from the 6-speed automatic transmission, and slight slippage between gears. This has been noted as...
The air blend system in the heating, ventilation and AC (HVAC) system can have problems, which can cause the AC controls to be stiff, or a lack of HVAC control.
The Check Engine Light may come on because the electronic throttle body has failed. Other symptoms include loss of acceleration, a high idle or failure to return to idle, and difficulty starting.
If the ignition switch is turned to the "lock" position when the vehicle speed is over 5km/hour, the ignition key cannot be removed from the lock cylinder. This is not a defect, but a normal design...
The Check Engine Light may illuminate because of air injection pump, and/or check valve failure. There may be no drivability symptoms detected.
The Check Engine Light may illuminate because of oxygen sensor failure. There may be no drivability symptoms detected though gas mileage may suffer.
The thermo contact in the AC compressor can fail, which means the compressor may fail to engage or disengage.
A knocking noise while turning and/or a banging noise when driving on rough roads may develop in the front suspension. This type of noise is commonly caused by a front strut thrust bearing damaged ...
Our technicians report failures of various components in the audio system. Speaker, control unit, and steering wheel button failures are all possible.
If the engine will crank but not start, it may be the fuel pump has failed. Diagnosis may find no fuel pressure when attempting to start the engine.
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