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Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Help, Advice and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's extremely popular car line -- Volvo's 1990s "bread and butter" cars -- powered by the ubiquitous and durable Volvo inline 5-cylinder engine.
1992 - 1997 850, 850 R, 850 T5-R, 850 T5, 850 GLT
1997 - 2000 S70, S70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70, V70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70-XC
1997 - 2004 C70

Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Postby Ozark Lee » 07 Jan 2007, 19:33

Fuel pump relay failures are a common and frustrating occurrence with the Volvo 850. A failure effectively immobilizes the car and many owners, myself included, carry a spare relay in the car so as to not get stuck on the road miles away from any Volvo dealer. The relays are unique to Volvo and cannot be purchased from a standard auto parts store.

The signs of a bad relay vary but a failing relay will often emit a "buzzing" sound as it chatters.

Once the fuel pump relay has been diagnosed as the problem with the car it must first be removed from the upper electrical center. On North American cars it located under the fuse panel cover, under the hood, on the drivers side of the car. Access to the relay is achieved by removing the four T-25 torx head screws and lifting the cover panel off of the electrical center.


DSC02110.JPG


Upper electrical center.


DSC02112.JPG


Upper electrical center with the panel removed.


The fuel pump relay is relay 103. I have trouble getting my fingers around the pump relay to extract without first removing the 101/102 relay combo.

Once the relay is removed it is possible to actually repair the relay. Credit to Guy200 who first pointed out his successful relay repair.

The first step in the repair process is to remove the relay cap. This can be accomplished by carefully prying outward on the base of the cap with a pair of small screwdrivers on the sides that are adjacent to the labeled side of the relay. The cap has no real give to it so it is necessary to pry both sides at the same time.


DSC02113.JPG


Prying off the relay cap.


Once the cap is removed a small printed circuit board and the relay itself is revealed. Check for any obvious signs of bad things such as burned components, pitted or burned contacts on the relay, or loose solder joints. Assuming you find no obvious signs of damage the repair from here is to identify the two electrolytic capacitors. On my relay (898769000) the two capacitors were 100 µF and 22 µF respectively. The 898797000 relay may have different value capacitors.


Relay 1.gif


The suspect electrolytic capacitors.


Although not exact replacements I was able to locate suitable replacements at Radio Shack, exact replacements can be procured from either on line parts houses or a good electronics supply house. The Radio shack replacements carry the part numbers 272-1028 for the 100 µF and 272-1026 for the 22 µF. The Radio Shack replacements are both rated at 35 Volts which exceeds the voltage rating of the originals. The 22 µF replacement is exactly the same size as the original but the 100 µF Radio Shack replacement is slightly shorter and it has a slightly larger diameter than the original.


DSC02106.JPG


Size Comparison between the original and replacement capacitors.


Electrolytic capacitors, almost always, are polarized so be sure to note the polarity of the capacitors before removing them. My relay had the negative side of the capacitor oriented to the top of the PC Board and the positive side oriented to the base side of the relay.

Removing the capacitors requires unsoldering four solder joints on the bottom of the PC board as shown in red circles below.


Relay 2.GIF


Capacitor solder joints.


There are a couple of acceptable methods for unsoldering the joints. One method is to use a solder wick and the other is to use a solder sucker. I used a wick and still had difficulty getting the old capacitors out since the PC board is double sided and has the solder connection on both the top and the bottom. A solder sucker might actually be preferable. Get the joint good and hot but not so hot that the PC board gets damaged.


DSC02105.JPG


Unsoldering the capacitors.


Once you get the capacitors out check the lead holes to assure that they are open and not blocked with residual solder. If they are blocked they can be opened with the solder wick or the solder sucker.

From here it is a matter of installing the new capacitors. The originals capacitors were mounted so that the base of both components sat nearly flush with the PC board. Since the Radio Shack replacements are not the same size, and further so that I could assure that solder flowed to the upper PC board, I installed them so that there was about a 1/16 inch gap from the circuit board to the bottom of the capacitors. Double check your polarity as you are installing the new parts.


DSC02108.JPG


The replacement capacitors installed into the PC board.


Once the replacement capacitors are installed in the PC board it is simply a matter of resoldering the joints and trimming the excess lead length with wire cutters. Use a generous amount of solder and hold the heat on the joint for an extra couple of seconds to assure that the solder flows to the component side of the circuit board.

The last step is to reinstall the cap. The PC board rides between two grooves that are molded into the cap itself so be sure to align the PC board with those groves while sliding it back together.


The relay can now be reinstalled in the car and tested.


The relay I repaired here was one that croaked on me a month or so ago. I put it back in the car and it works perfectly. The total cost was $2.67 at Radio Shack.

...Lee
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Previous: 1989 740 GLT
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Postby CarVolvo » 07 Jan 2007, 19:38

hey Ozark... who said volvo repair isnt as exciting as rocket science!

Thanks for your valuable contribution!
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94 854 20v non-turbo 215,000 KM ..new engine

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Postby MadeInJapan » 07 Jan 2007, 20:00

Excellent job and write-up, Lee! Wowsa! :D

Obviously, this is going into the repair database. :idea:
'98 S70 T5 Emrld Grn Met/Beige Tons of Upgrades Mobil-1
'04 V70 2.5T Red/Taupe Some Upgrades Mobil-1
94 850 Sedan NA Drk Blue/Tan
'00 V40 Purple/Grey Mobil-1
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Relays

Postby Rob3 » 09 Jan 2007, 01:11

Is there any chance that one of these other relays controls lighting?

Perhaps it can be similarly repaired?

Any ideas?

Thanks.

Rob3
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Postby Ozark Lee » 09 Jan 2007, 06:03

Rob,

Assuming you are talking about this one:

Image

Light control relay top.


Image

Side view of light control relay.

I would say yes.

That relay has four electrolytic capacitors on the PC board. I
'94 850 N/A
'96 850 N/A
'96 Platinum Edition Turbo
'98 S70 T5
'99 V70XC - RIP Killed by a drunk driver.
Previous: 1989 740 GLT
1986 740 GLT
1972 142 Grand Luxe
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Postby MadeInJapan » 09 Jan 2007, 22:08

Lee,
Any extra fuel pump relays for the cost of freight? :oops:
'98 S70 T5 Emrld Grn Met/Beige Tons of Upgrades Mobil-1
'04 V70 2.5T Red/Taupe Some Upgrades Mobil-1
94 850 Sedan NA Drk Blue/Tan
'00 V40 Purple/Grey Mobil-1
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Lighting Relay

Postby Rob3 » 13 Jan 2007, 02:43

Ozark Lee,

Thank you for the excellent Pictures and Information. I will save this.

My problems are due to the Relay marked "J" in the earlier Pictures. You can see 3 Relays marked with a "J". The center "J" Relay is not getting Power applied to the Coil from the Key Switch. This Relay runs the Headlights, Dash Lights (when Headlights are On), Backup Lights, Seat Belt Reminder, Rear Window Defogger, Rear Fog Lights, Turn Signals and ??

I'm fairly confident that the Key Switch is bad, but I haven't confirmed this. I did heat the Key Switch with a Blow Dryer and the Lighting started to work immediately.

I'll post when I get this fixed so that it might help others.

Anyway, thanks to you and to all who contributed.

Rob3
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Another variant of fuel pump relay

Postby Jarkka » 11 Mar 2007, 08:28

For those of you wondering why their relay does not look like the one pictured.

The relay on my 1993 850 GLT has a relay with a different component layout. In the side view picture, the capacitors would be the other way round, as well as rotated 90
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Postby MatDesign84 » 22 May 2007, 03:14

This totally worked for me rock and roll and many many many thinks to the man who posted this. My friend btw over engineered mine for me meaning he beefed it up with higher rated parts so it shouldnt happen again.
Mat Design
Currently: 1997, 855 T5 | 1990 Volvo 240 DL
Previous: 1997, 850 GLT | 1993, 850 GLT | 1988, BMW 325i
"That's good to know though in case they let loose again, but I swear if they do, I'll punch something." -jblackburn
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Re: Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Postby Volgrrr » 04 Feb 2008, 09:03

[quote="Ozark Lee"]
The Radio Shack replacements are both rated at 35 Volts which exceeds the voltage rating of the originals.
There are only two types of car owners - those who own Volvos and those who wish they did.
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Postby luketrash » 28 May 2008, 02:06

I fired up my soldering iron for the first time in years. My car has been randomly dying on me, and one of the symptoms is that the car is really hard to start afterwards. On a hunch, I jumpered the fuel pump relay circuit and the car fired right up. So I performed this task tonight.

Let's just say that watching me solder is painful at best. I ended up surface mounting the capacitors to the board because I couldn't get the leads through the circuit board. My soldering iron tip is broken and jagged. My solder wick is so old that it doesn't suck up solder. And my solder sucker iron must have been left at my parents house in 1995 when I went to college.

Oh well.. It works now. At least the car runs anyway, so I assume things are working??

I'll keep my fingers crossed and my jumper wire close by, haha.

Thanks for the excellent write-up with the shopping list. Radio Shack had both capacitors in stock tonight.
'94 Gunmetal Gray 855 2.4L 100% stock. This is Volvo #7.
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Re: Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Postby marcusantonus » 14 Dec 2008, 02:07

1996 Volvo 850 R Wagon-

6 Months ago replaced the MAF with one from Ebay because mine died. Wife was driving and car died on fwy and did not want to restart. When it did the engine would rattle with poor idle 200-700 rmp and choke out. Symptoms of the bad MAF in my experience is irratic idle, choking, rich fuel smell, and engine wont want to start if you gas it sound like not all of the cyls are hitting.

Anyway the used MAF fixed that issue. Now, recently starting having slightly the same issue as mentioned above. Except now we randomly experience 2-3 sec choke outs where the engine bogs out when throttled. Once left it in neutral whlie drving and watch the rpms go up and down between 700-1000. A couple times it was a servere shut down, where i could get no power from pushing on the gas, engine sounding likes it missing.

Here is what i have checked and changed so far:

New spark plugs
MAF (cleaned w/ ipd cleaner) and/ applied used MAF (no effect)
applied used cam sensor (no effect)
applied used fuel pump controler (no effect)
cleaned throttle body
check hoses, elbows
applied used O2 Sensor (no effect)

Have read that changing the fuel pump does not help, no really thinking that is the issue since previous owner changed it and I have inspected it. It primes up and delievers plenty. Recently upgraded ECU 95 850R had no effect on the mentioned issues, thought at one time perhaps the Original ECU was the issue.

Seems like the problem is like fuel issue since OBD not showing any error codes. Previously had a Ebay 02 sensor and threw an error code and would keep the check engine light. So replaced that with a used 02 sensor.

So just won Ebay MSD Coil, hopefully this does the trick. ALthough most of the feedback says that coil did not fix the problem.

Am i missing something here? Seems like all of the major items associated with this problem were tested yet have no solved the problem.

Recleaned the MAF sensor with IPD sauced cleaner, used a Q-Tip, good amt of dark dirt/ residue on Q-Tip. Ran it a mile and it hickuped/stall for 2 sec. Hoping maybe it was getting a good prime after the cleaning.

Last most recent test, did the radio shack upgrade on Fuel Pump Controler Relay, oddly enough there were no hickups on last test drive. Has the IPD chip for 95 R and still run sweet with my 97R setup. IPD tech said it wouldnt work.
Thank you.
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Re: Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Postby bonampak » 21 Dec 2008, 17:52

thank you,thank you,thank you,
my mecanic didn't know about the fuel pump relay causing cold weather start failure.
we changed fuel filter and he was ready to do the whole tune up number....$$$$$
I ordered a fuel pump relay on ebay $19,1 week later,my car starts, -25 degrees celcius no problem.
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Re: Fuel Pump Relay Repair

Postby zuni97 » 20 Oct 2009, 23:13

Is there any way to test the fuel pump relay?
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