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Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

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

the65dartguy1
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Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by the65dartguy1 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:40 pm

I have a 2000 V70R that has a strange coolant issue. It keeps on bubbling the coolant out of the reservoir. I replaced the reservoir and the two hoses going to it. Also replaced the main coolant hoses at the same time. Still get the same problem. I have swapped the cap ( it is a green one) with another know good cap and it still seeps out. Thermostat is also new and the temperature gauge stays rock steady at the center of the read-out.
Upon shutdown after a bit of a drive or after a bit of aggressive driving I can hear and see bubbles coming from the small hose at the reservoir.
My thought ( and fear) is that the HG is leaking exhaust gases into the coolant and super heating it or over pressurizing the system. There is no oil in the coolant and no coolant in the oil. No water vapor from tail pipe (except a little on start-up).
Any thoughts/ideas greatly appreciated.

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theWIFES_S70
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by theWIFES_S70 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:28 pm

How's your turbo doing?
1998 Volvo S70, N/A, 5-speed, 183K
2007 Volvo S40, 2.4i, 5-speed, 97K

the65dartguy1
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by the65dartguy1 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:30 pm

Turbo seems fine for what I can tell.

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theWIFES_S70
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by theWIFES_S70 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:45 pm

I've read about how a failing Turbo or a clogged or failing Turbo intercooler can cause headgasket-like issues. The oil in your crankcase is good? Any foam?
1998 Volvo S70, N/A, 5-speed, 183K
2007 Volvo S40, 2.4i, 5-speed, 97K

the65dartguy1
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by the65dartguy1 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:15 pm

Oil is good. Just changed it and the old stuff looked fine as well. The car moves plenty fast, so I doubt it's a failing turbo, but suppose it could be. It has 154k on it and I doubt it's been overhauled yet.

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theWIFES_S70
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by theWIFES_S70 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:25 pm

I hope it's not a head gasket, the65dartguy1! (Though, a turbo job isn't an easy (or cheap) job either...)

I'm sure the turbo experts will chime in soon. Good luck.
1998 Volvo S70, N/A, 5-speed, 183K
2007 Volvo S40, 2.4i, 5-speed, 97K

101
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101

Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by 101 » Tue Aug 16, 2016 6:26 am

Pick up one of those kits and check for combustion gases in the coolant. That will tell you if there is exhaust making its way into the cooling system.

The other thing to check would be the coolant reservoir. They get brittle over time which can cause cracks in the plastic. I've found mine last around 70K miles, so I will typically change mine when I do the timing belt on my 98's.
101

1998 white V70 GLT 230K "Elsa"
1998 white S70 T5m 180K "Anna"

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erikv11
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by erikv11 » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:09 am

What 101 said - check the coolant for exhaust gases. A positive result would be unambiguous.
'95 854 T5-R, Motronic 4.4, 185k
'96 855 NA, 145k
'98 S70 NA, 220k (living out west)
'98 V70, T5 tune-injectors-turbo, LPT engine, 286k
'06 S60 R, 167k
'99 Camry V6 :shock: 125k
gone: '96 NA 850 210k, '98 NA V70 182k

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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by scot850 » Tue Aug 16, 2016 12:51 pm

OP did say he had replaced the header tank and same result. But I agree on the gas test in the coolant is the way to go.

Neil.
2000 V70 R - still being an endless PITA
2006 XC70
2003 Toyota 4Runner V8 Limited
2015 Kia Sportage EX-L
1993 850 GLT -Sold
1998 V70 XC - Sold
1997 Volvo 850 SE NA - Went to niece in California - Sold
2000 V70 SE NA - New project and test bed - Sold

the65dartguy1
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Re: Symptoms of a dying head gasket?

Post by the65dartguy1 » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:04 am

Thanks guys... I have a test kit on order... should know soon. I fear the worst however.

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