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  1. #11
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    09 Mar 2017
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    Lacey Washington
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    19
    Saab(s)
    2002 9-5 Aero
    Thumbs Up:   0
    Okay, so I spent the majority of Saturday diagnosing my 2002 Saab 9-5 Aero. I took the cobra pipe off and it was clean. Clean pipe, and clean behind the butterfly. So then I was thinking PCV system. Yes, I have the 6th generation. I took the canister out from underneath the car, and save for just a couple mayonnaise sludge spots, it was also clean and free of sludge. Next I decided to check compression. All 4 cylinders read about 190 PSI. Under the oil cap the top of the filler tube had more mayonnaise on it, so I checked the oil. The car had been sitting for a week so if there was much water in the oil water would have come out when I cracked the drain plug on the oil pan. All that came out was fresh, clean oil. Have I narrowed it down to the head gasket? All I can think of at this point is that oil is seeping past the head gasket and into the combustion chamber. I really don't want to take this head off unless I am certain that is what the issue is. Is there any other test I can perform that will definitively point at the head gasket? Thanks so much!

    -Monte

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  2. #12
    Saab Enthusiast
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    19 Jul 2015
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA
    Posts
    218
    Saab(s)
    1997 NG 900 SE
    Thumbs Up:   40
    Usual ways oil gets into the combustion chamber is piston rings are not sealing, specifically the oil control ring, through the valve seals, or if a turbo, through the oil seal on the impeller (the impeller has seals like piston rings). Saabs of your model year did have issues with oil leaking from head gaskets, but that was external leakage. Internal leaking would usually be coolant , and usually involved one cylinder more than the others.

    The other way is excessive crankcase pressure caused by the PCV valve or system failure. Even though it has the latest upgrade, recheck the components for proper operation. Special attention to the check valves, make sure they are routed the correct way.

    There are anecdotal stories of owners installing PCV#6 and having excessive crankcase pressure causing excessive oil consumption among other things. I've read of one owner that put his old PCV system back on, but using only synthetic oil to help prevent sludge. Not exactly definitive diagnosing, but please make sure you verify as best you can before big $$$ and/or busted knuckles come into play.

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  3. #13
    Saab Enthusiast
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    19 Jul 2015
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA
    Posts
    218
    Saab(s)
    1997 NG 900 SE
    Thumbs Up:   40
    Found this entry on saabnet.com search on crankcase pressure: http://www.saabnet.com/tsn/bb/9-5/index.html?bID=262024. May be others that might be helpful.

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  4. #14
    Bruno
    Saab Addict swisssaabist's Avatar
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    18 Nov 2016
    Location
    Cheeseland or TICTAC land
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    603
    Saab(s)
    9-5 ARC Wagon 2002 2 t auto engine B205E
    Thumbs Up:   56
    the head mech at Saab says to me when i have swapping my engine do not put the #6 coz doing more problem than solution.

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  5. #15
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    09 Mar 2017
    Location
    Lacey Washington
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    19
    Saab(s)
    2002 9-5 Aero
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    So what generation PCV system would you recommend I get? Rings are definitely good, got 190 PSI in all cylinders. Cobra pipe is good and clean, doesn't that mean my turbo is not the problem? Any other ways oil can get into the combustion chamber besides head gasket? I mean, if a valve seal got compromised, I will still have to do a head job. Next non-rainy day I will inspect the check valves in the PCV system and post my results. Thanks for all of your help!

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  6. #16
    Saab Enthusiast
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    19 Jul 2015
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    Charlottesville, VA
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    218
    Saab(s)
    1997 NG 900 SE
    Thumbs Up:   40
    Have no recommendations other than checking the components of the PCV#6, to see if they are working correctly. Oil still can come in through head gasket, it's just not common like coolant. You may need the head gasket. Probably would not hurt. Check the cylinders again, this time before you crank it. Pull the plugs and look into EACH cylinder with a strong light, looking for oil. A head gasket that could leak that much would surely leave some evidence.

    Turbo could still be into play, but they usually smoke when seals are done. I wouldn't change the PCV system, just replace a component that's bad. Main thing, check the tubing direction and check valves. Don't want the crankcase overpressurizing.

    Swisssaabist may be better to advise you on PCV system. His mechanic obviously dealt with this.

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  7. #17
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    09 Mar 2017
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    Lacey Washington
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    Saab(s)
    2002 9-5 Aero
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    I already pulled all the spark plugs out...it's pretty dirty in there. Darkish/sludge ish. Not sure what you mean about the turbo, didn't you say if the cobra pipe was clean and no oily residue behind butterfly turbo is okay, or at least not leaking that bad? And about the PCV system...what do you mean check the tubing direction? Are you just referring to the fact that the tubing comes shaped and is meant to go on a certain way?

    ...so grime under spark plugs is indicator of head gasket, or just proof that oil is getting into the combustion chamber?

    I feel like I may be getting close! Thanks again!

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  8. #18
    Saab Enthusiast
    Join Date
    19 Jul 2015
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    Charlottesville, VA
    Posts
    218
    Saab(s)
    1997 NG 900 SE
    Thumbs Up:   40
    You're right about the turbo, if the cobra pipe and intake manifold are not oily, chances are it's not the the turbo. If they were, that's where the oil would be coming from, and those passages would be oily. So the oil is coming from elsewhere. When I mention the check valves and PCV tubing, if a check valve has been routed wrong, it will allow pressure to build in the crankcase which will push oil into the cylinders. It's got to go somewhere, so it goes there. If you have/had oil seepage around the outside of the head before you re-torqued the head bolts, your head gasket is probably done. Tricky to be definitive, because the PCV issue can give similar symptoms. But if it's good, the head gasket is most likely bad.

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  9. #19
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    09 Mar 2017
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    Lacey Washington
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    Saab(s)
    2002 9-5 Aero
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    No oil seepage around the outside of the head gasket. Now I'm thinking the issue may very well be a faulty check valve in the PCV system. I would think too much crank case pressure would just blow one of those PCV hoses off instead of push oil into the cylinders, but I'll take your word for it. I will try and test the check valves this evening. Thanks again!

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  10. #20
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    09 Mar 2017
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    Lacey Washington
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    Saab(s)
    2002 9-5 Aero
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    Okay, so I found an issue. There is a small hose coming from the valve cover that has a check valve that was routed to what I thought was a nipple, but turned out to be a mounting post. Oops. Don't I feel smart. Now I have verified that the check valve is okay, and that the flow is going the correct direction (from the valve cover to wherever it is supposed to go), but nowhere can I find where the other end of this hose is supposed to go. Any ideas? I'm going through the PCV system with a fine tooth comb right now.

    Thanks!

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