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Saturn intake gunk- throttle body

On a recent Car Talk show, a caller asked about stalling or rough running with a Saturn S-series. These engines (single cam and double cam) are prone to throttle body gunking. Clean every year at least. Remove the air snorkel and see the TB. Spray with aerosol carb cleaner.

If the plate sticks, there is a stop screw you can adjust A LITTLE BIT to back off the plate. But not too much or the check engine light will trigger.

Clean the TB first. You can easily remove the TB (2 small bolts and some electrical connections).

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If you have a throttle plate sticking clean it, DO NOT ADJUST ! It might stop the throttle plate from sticking, but it’ll raise idle, use more fuel, and probably change shift points on an automatic not to mention probably turn on the MIL. IMO

You never clean a throttle body with carb cleaner. Some throttle bodies have a special coating inside that prevents deposits from accumulating inside the throttle body. Carb cleaners can remove this special coating. That’s why they make throttle body/intake system cleaners.


Agree, do NOT adjust the throttle stop screw. It can cause the IAC to not work.

It is not necessary to remove the throttle body. Remove the snorkel, have someone hold the pedal to the floor and clean with throttle body cleaner and a paper towel.

Excess gunk can be from the EGR staying open too long. If its an SL or SL1, the intake manifold gasket is prone to leaking around the #1 cylinder due to bad design.