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Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on Volvo XC90s. The XC90 proved to be very popular, and very good for Volvo's sales numbers, since its introduction in model year 2003 (North America).
songzunhuang
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songzunhuang

Brake fluid level issues?

Post by songzunhuang » Thu Dec 22, 2016 11:27 am

OK, this may be a controversial idea regarding the brake fluid, but I have done this with all my 4+ cars over a decade when I change pads and I have had no issue.

Before I push my caliper pistons back to make room for new pads, I simply unscrew the cap on the brake fluid reservoir to break the airtight seal. As I push in the caliper piston, usually using a clamp or a brake pad tool, the brake fluid is forced back into the reservoir. If your brake system is sealed and you haven't added more fluid as the brake pads were wearing, you should just end up at the "full" level when the caliper pistons are fully retracted.

I've read posts of people loosening the bleeder and even taking some fluid out to prevent leaks. I am not understanding why this is necessary. It certainly makes the job more messy.

OK, I know opening the system can potentially introduce moisture as brake fluid absorbs it, but honestly in the numerous brake jobs I've done the moisture has never been an issue. I've not noticed any compromise in braking performance. Maybe because I live in California where it's mostly dry and we are in a constant drought? In any case, you can change the brake fluid after several years and the system will get flushed anyway.

Just my 2 cents.
Song Huang
www.thehuangs.com
2004 XC90 T6 AWD Ruby red
1998 V70 T5 - Hurt your eyes red
2000 S2000 - the non Volvo
1984 BMW 633CSi - I'm diversifying

cn90
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Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by cn90 » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:50 pm

1997volvo850 wrote:Here's a photo of my caliper. After I return from the auto parts store with my Lisle 7mm I'll try to pry this baby off.

Displays with correct orientation when I enlarge. I'm not sure how to correct orientation in forum post.
This type is easy, similar to BMW caliper.
BTW, you said 2014 XC90 in your earlier post, is that correct?
Last edited by cn90 on Sat Dec 24, 2016 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
2004 V70 2.5T 100K+
2005 XC90 2.5T 110K+

cn90
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Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by cn90 » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:54 pm

@songzunhuang,

In my experience, if the fluid is at MAX after installing new pads with the pistons fully retracted in the bore.
As time goes on and the 4 pads wear down to minimum, I have found that the fluid usually drops below Min, creating a light on the dash.
I usually add a bit of fluid at that time so it is slightly above Min, knowing that I will do the brake job soon and I am avoiding sucking brake fluid out during the brake job. If fluid is added back to Max, then yes, you need to remove some fluid when squeezing the piston inward.

I always check the boot, if it is intact, then chances are the piston surface is not rusted and the fluid is not contaminated.

As mentioned earlier, there are 2 ways to bleed it:

1. Gently clamp the brake hose and open the bleeder valve when squeezing the piston inward.

2. Complete the brake job, then perform brake bleeding as usual.
2004 V70 2.5T 100K+
2005 XC90 2.5T 110K+

1997volvo850
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1997volvo850

Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by 1997volvo850 » Fri Dec 23, 2016 9:11 pm

cn90 wrote:
1997volvo850 wrote:Here's a photo of my caliper. After I return from the auto parts store with my Lisle 7mm I'll try to pry this baby off.

Displays with correct orientation when I enlarge. I'm not sure how to correct orientation in forum post.
This type is easy, similar to BMW caliper.
BTW, you said 2014 XC90 in your earlier post, is that correct?
I checked three nationally known auto parts stores and did not see the Lisle 7mm. I did find one that is longer. It didn't work.
Looking closer at the hex screw with a light and mirror it really looks larger than 7mm. I tried all of the hex sockets and L wrenches
I have and none of them work though one of the large ones almost seemed like it might catch.

The vehicle is a 2014 Volvo XC90. The caliper has VOLVO printed on it. I wonder when the brakes changed on the XC90.

Tomorrow I will try to more accurately determine the hex size. I hope the rotors and pads I ordered are correct. I'll have to take them out
of the box and check. They asked for my vin when I ordered but given how things are going...maybe I need to order BMW parts. :)

1997volvo850
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1997volvo850

Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by 1997volvo850 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:58 pm

1997volvo850 wrote:
cn90 wrote:
1997volvo850 wrote:Here's a photo of my caliper. After I return from the auto parts store with my Lisle 7mm I'll try to pry this baby off.

Displays with correct orientation when I enlarge. I'm not sure how to correct orientation in forum post.
This type is easy, similar to BMW caliper.
BTW, you said 2014 XC90 in your earlier post, is that correct?
The vehicle is a 2014 Volvo XC90. The caliper has VOLVO printed on it. I wonder when the brakes changed on the XC90.

Tomorrow I will try to more accurately determine the hex size. I hope the rotors and pads I ordered are correct. I'll have to take them out
of the box and check. They asked for my vin when I ordered but given how things are going...maybe I need to order BMW parts. :)
So I figured out my 2014 Volvo XC90 front caliper takes a 9mm hex socket for the slide bolts.

My rotors are 328mm (there are three size choices) and I found my exact caliper online.

I have my new rotors and brake pads in hand. The only critical information missing are the torque specs for the 18mm caliper bracket and 9mm hex slide pins. In another thread someone suggested 40-50 ft/lbs for slides and 100-110 ft/lbs for 18mm bracket bolts. Does anyone have access to actual Volvo torque specs for the 328mm rotor caliper on a 2014 XC90?

Once I have the torque specs I'll start this job by attempting to pry off the retaining spring from the middle. I'm imagining this will rotate the spring away from the hub to the point it flies off. Not clear to me that installation will be easy at all.

I've been holding off until I have collected all of the information needed to complete the job. Getting close...

1997volvo850
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1997volvo850

Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by 1997volvo850 » Fri Dec 30, 2016 9:50 pm

328mm 2014 XC90 front brakes are done. 9mm hex for slide pins. Retaining spring pops off as soon as you lift end out of hole.Went back on easy enough. Almost too easy.

The 77 ft/lb plus 60 degrees was difficult. I don't think I made the 60 so I'll have to check in a few weeks. Did 44 ft/lbs on slide bolts.

The old rotors are thick and didn't seem too warn compared to the new ones. Need to measure once I find my tool. I'm wondering if I should get them turned for the next full rotor/brake jobs. What is the minimum required for turning?

Rides great. No more grinding. These will be on my regular DIY list for our XC90. This was my first DIY job on the new XC90 so I was a little worried it would be radically different from my 850...almost as easy...but with larger everything.

Next up: rear brakes and rotors. Maybe next year...

cn90
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cn90

Re: Volvo XC90 Front Brake Job

Post by cn90 » Sat Dec 31, 2016 7:51 am

Yeah, the XC90 is heavier than the 850 for sure.

When dealing with any cars, especially SUV, I use 2 jack stands:

- The standard 4-leg jack stand has to be at least 3-ton type on the subframe.
- Then another screw-type jack stand and crank it up until it is snug against the subframe:

I don't have a photo for the XC90 but below is a photo from my 1998 S70 GLT to show you the "screw-type jack stand": this is the type people use to jack up a sagging floor joist in a house or railroad car etc. This jack stand is very strong but the base is small (don't forget to chock the diagonal tire). Then I add the standard 4-leg jack stand (not shown in photo) where the BLUE caption saying "Under Subframe".
Now I have 2 jack stands on the SAME side of the subframe.

- Just do a google search "Jack Stand failure" and look at some of the photos of death and injury from failed jack stand. Yes, jack stands do fail, if it cracks, it usually cracks at the weld. Your life is worth more than the weld. BTW, slide the tire (+ a few pieces of wood on top of the tire) under the car as an added safety net.

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