Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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SAAB c900 Antenna Repair and Service, Pt. 1

Here's something that's probably familiar to most SAAB c900 owners.

Your radio is off, your car is off, yet your power antenna is still up! You can hear the motor churning away as it normally does, but the antenna doesn't retract (or raise). Mine wasn't retracting.

This is a pretty common issue and it's easy to remedy, fortunately. This is the first time Greeny's antenna has stopped working. Grey Girl (see her down the hill) is on her third antenna I believe.

So let's fix it.

There are three possibilities with regards to the issue. First, the motor may not be working. I think this is relatively rare, but it's possible. You would know that right away - you won't hear the familiar whir of the motor when you turn the radio on or off.

Second, the plastic mast toothed gear drive could have stripped teeth. In that case, you will be able to inspect it when you remove the mast. And you can compare its length to a new mast to determine that it's not broken. If the drive is indeed stripped, you can replace the mast without removing the motor assembly.

The third reason for the antenna failing is that the toothed gear drive is broken. If that's the case, you'll need to remove the motor assembly.

For either of the last 2 problems, you'll need a new antenna mast - eEuroparts offers the cheaper clones and the genuine SAAB part. I sprung for the latter.

First thing to do is remove the 17mm nut that holds the mast in place.

Now the mast and the toothed gear track will come up out of the antenna body.

My gear track looks suspiciously short.

Not to panic. I'll need to remove the motor and take a closer look.

If you are working on a convertible, you'll need to remove the spare tire to get at the antenna.

Remove the 19mm bolt holding the wheel to the bracket on the car.

I'm glad I did this actually. Turns out my original temporary spare tire is shot. You can see the tread is separating from the carcass! I need a new one.

Or I can just hope I never get a flat.

Then we undo the 3 trim screws holding the carpet on the left side of the trunk in place.

You can see a bit of the trunk spring on the upper left in the picture. The carpet goes up under the spring - when you put it back you'll need to slide it up under there.

With the carpet pulled away, you'll be able to see the antenna and its bracket.

Undo the antenna lead connector.

And separate the power connector. You'll also see that the connector hangs on the clip just above it in the picture. Be sure to clip it back in place when you reassemble it, otherwise the connector might rattle around and make you crazy!

Remove the 2 T-20 Torx bolts holding the antenna bracket to the car.

The whole antenna assembly will now drop down and you can remove it.

In the next installment, we'll get it on the bench and take it apart.


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