98 Saturn SL2 has electrical issues

98 Saturn SL2 w/ 106,000 miles. Lately when I try to start the car it will not turn over. Instead everything goes dead and the radio stations and clock reset. This has happened 5-6 times in the last 2 weeks and it happened twice this morning. My mechanic has replaced the ignition and the part connected to it but neither has solved the problem. Any ideas?

If Your Mechanic Hasn’t Done So Already, I’d definitely Disconnect The Battery Cables And Clean The Cable Ends And Battery Terminals And Reattach Them.
While doing this, inspect the cables for condition.

Should this fail to be a solution, another easy thing to try would be to connect one end of a jumper cable to the negative ( - ) battery terminal only and the other end to a good clean spot on body metal. Do this when it fails to start. Then move the end from body metal to good clean engine metal and try it. Should this work, you’ve got a bad battery to engine or engine to body ground.

Be sure you know what you’re doing so that you don’t damage the car’s electrical system or injure yourself.


Thanks, I will call my mechanic and see if they have tried this yet. I thought they had but maybe not.

If the suggestions from CSA don’t solve the trouble then look for a faulty power connection between the battery and the power panel under the hood and also to the fuse panel inside the cab.

Well guys it looks like it was a bad battery ground. My machanic said it was really corroded. Cleaned it and sent mem on my way free of charge. Thanks for your suggestions! I made sure to pass them on.

Thanks for the feedback.

K Wolfe, Thanks For Getting Back Here. I Hope That Takes Care Of It.