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1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

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
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1997 - 2000 V70-XC
1997 - 2004 C70

850 LPT
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by 850 LPT »

Lots of good info in this thread on how to get started in getting this car back on the road, but...OP said he knows less than nothing about cars.
I don't want to be negative Nelly here, but this is not the kind of car for people with no skills ( I know I'm making an assumption here )

A 98' XC can quickly turn into a giant money pit, I know this from my own experience. Mine cost me a ton of money over the years and it's running great now, but it wasn't an easy journey. Fortunately I was able to do a lot of work myself, I cannot even imagine the cost if you have to pay a mechanic for EVERY repair.

My suggestion is to sell it and get a simpler and newer car.

Dirk
96' 850 sedan, base, auto, pewter/charcoal, 117k miles
99' S70, base, 5-speed manual, nautic blue/ tan, 216k miles
04' V70, auto, ash gold/ tan, 233k miles, daughters car
05' V70, 5-speed manual, loaded, mistral green/ tan, 150k miles
79' Ford Capri S, Euro Spec 2.8 V6, T9 5-speed manual
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FLXC90
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by FLXC90 »

850 LPT wrote: Sat Apr 14, 2018 6:13 am Lots of good info in this thread on how to get started in getting this car back on the road, but...OP said he knows less than nothing about cars.
I don't want to be negative Nelly here, but this is not the kind of car for people with no skills ( I know I'm making an assumption here )

A 98' XC can quickly turn into a giant money pit, I know this from my own experience. Mine cost me a ton of money over the years and it's running great now, but it wasn't an easy journey. Fortunately I was able to do a lot of work myself, I cannot even imagine the cost if you have to pay a mechanic for EVERY repair.

My suggestion is to sell it and get a simpler and newer car.

Dirk
I agree on one hand, but it is a 98. With knowledge from the forum etc... I think OP has a good shot of at least getting it drivable, barring major repairs like a head or AWD stuff. At least to the point that he can recoup his investment. I know there are a couple others on this forum who started at zero and have made or kept their cars usable. It depends on OPs willingness, time, and access to tools .
Current Volvos:
1998 V70 T5, 112k sat 5 years, still in mechanical coma (finally at the top of the pile )
2004 XC90 T6 AWD: 186k, 60 on transaxle ( traded in )
1998 POS70 N/A: DD/training aid, 236k but really about 240k, I think...ABS module( passed on to son who sold it)
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by ecbsykes »

If you decide to part with it, hopefully you can find an enthusiast who wants it instead of junking it. =(

For your situation a cheaper Japanese car is probably gonna be more reliable/bang-for-your-buck than a Volvo.
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by wizechatmgr »

+1 on what ecbsykes said - I've seen folks that have rather good luck with Toyotas & Honda.

If you knew your way around a wrench you could salvage this car, but without the time and ability to do it yourself it could get very expensive very quick.
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by callahanoffroad »

I'll weigh in on this as well.
Wrenching is like Cooking, anyone can do it with enough practice and discipline. You need about $200 in basic tools to get started. You need a fairly comprehensive ratchet set, which you can grab for about $50 at Walmart. You need a special set of tools for this car called "torx bits" they look like stars. Those are about another $50. Some pliers, screwdrivers, a floor jack, jack stands and some other miscellaneous stuff. You don't have to buy the best tools in the world to get started, you can upgrade as you go. I have a Stanley ratchet set I've been using for about 10 years now to work on cars. Would I use it if I was wrenching professionally? No. But I use it to maintain my delivery vehicle.
The first thing I'd ask is, do you have a place to actually work on the car? If you don't have a place to work on the car safely it can suck really bad.
I'll be honest, Volvo's aren't cheap to own. In my experience between 140k miles and 180k miles is the most expensive stretch to own them. Especially when they are over 20 years old. My current car cost me $1200 to buy and I've put at least $4000 in maintenance and repairs into it. Would probably be closer to $6000-$10000 if a shop did it.
My last Volvo was the same way, but once everything was replaced it ran till 280,000 miles. So if I did the math it cost me $2750 (purchase) + $4000 (repairs) = $6750 total. Not including gas, oil changes and the like. I drove it 130,000 miles before it died. 6750/130,000 = $0.0519/mile
All cars need maintenance, esp ones in the $500-3000 range. That's why people sell them so cheap.

So that all being said, without seeing the car or knowing what's actually wrong or anything else, I'd say that you need to start by getting that throttle issue repaired and then evaluate if it's even driveable.

You've already sunk $650 into the car. Put another $100 of exploration into it. If the throttle is completely busted and you don't want to learn or don't have a safe place to reguarly work on your car, sell it for $750, and wait to buy a car till you have at least $4000 saved up.
Do you have any friends who like to work on cars? It's a lot more fun when you have friends helping you.
Also for the record, my wife had no mechanical skill at all when we got married and now she will actually help me out. I teach her as we go.
You should also post some pics of the car for us to look at and evaluate. :-)
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by WhatAmIDoing »

If you can get the throttle unstuck and ensure it's drivable, then post it up for sale for $1000 OBO. You know the engine starts, so that's always good. Use that money to buy a cheap Japanese/domestic and drive it into the ground.

These are relatively easy cars to work on yourself. I knew almost nothing when I got my Volvo, and I've learned a lot in the last 2 years. Unfortunately, you need to have the money to spend on parts, and Euro cars aren't cheap. If you can't/won't do any of the work yourself, it's better to just sell it. I'm sure there are a number of enthusiasts in New England looking for a '98 V70 XC, and your engine works, so shouldn't be a hard sell.
'98 S70 T5M - 282,000+mi - forever a project
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Re: 1998 V70 XC: Is it worth repairing?

Post by cn90 »

callahanoffroad wrote:...In my experience between 140k miles and 180k miles is the most expensive stretch to own them. Especially when they are over 20 years old. My current car cost me $1200 to buy and I've put at least $4000 in maintenance and repairs into it...
I can attest to this.


- Bought the 1998 S70 GLT at 145K for $2300, put in another $3000 in OEM, Lemforder, Bilstein parts with "blood and sweat labor"...

- At 189K, valve #3 burned, then trans loses Reverse.

- In retrospect, I'd buy a Volvo < 100K for $4500-$500 and done with. I just bought a 2004 V70 2.5T with 100K in great condition.

- So buy a $4000-$5000 2004-2007 model with 2.5T and < 100K miles and done with. Less headache or time lost repairing the beast.
2004 V70 2.5T 100K+
2005 XC90 2.5T 110K+
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