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B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's stylish, distinctive "P2" platform cars.

2001 - 2007 V70
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2001 - 2009 S60
2003 - 2007 S60 R

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Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:35 pm
Year and Model: 2002 S60 AWD
Location: halifax, NS
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Volvo Repair Database B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by coflynn »


I recently replaced the B4 servo cover, and thought I'd share a few tips about how I made it easier on myself.

You can buy the cover from IPDUSA, which also has a step-by-step guide (http://www.ipdusa.com/products/5538/107 ... ver-update). I won't repeat information in that guide, and please read that guide first as I reference it.

1) Get a GOOD set of snap ring pliers, I used Lisle 49200, get from Amazon for $22 (USA) or Princess Auto (Canada). Removing old ring required a creative use of tool - had to attack at an odd angle due to all stuff in way, so using that tool for example let me put the two sides at different lengths so I could attack at an angle:
Snap Ring Pliers, I had to attack at odd angle, so ability to adjust one side out more than other was instrumental to success in removing old snap-ring.
Snap Ring Pliers, I had to attack at odd angle, so ability to adjust one side out more than other was instrumental to success in removing old snap-ring.
snapringpliers.jpg (88.57 KiB) Viewed 13116 times
2) Put some bubble wrap or cloth down, as the plunger might pop right out as mine did. If you plan on taking skid pad off (recommended, makes it easier as can slip a big screwdriver in to compress plunger) do this AFTER taking plunger out, since there is less space to fall this way. Remember when re-installing plunger that it might fall out again so keep lots of bubble wrap and cardboard around at all times:
Bubble Wrap
Bubble Wrap
P1040335.JPG (222.15 KiB) Viewed 13116 times
3) As described in linked guide, remove old cover and possibly plunger. Install new O-Rings on new cover, and replace O-Ring on plunger if required. To remove O-Ring use something sharp (dental pick) to carefully 'skewer' it - don't damange O-Ring seat!
4) I tried using top hole for bolt originally, but couldn't get snap ring in easily by myself. If you built little jig with perpendicular bolt which would compress plunger this would have worked great. Ended up stripping top bolt hole, stuff in the way made very difficult to correctly tighten this bolt I found anyway. An idea I had: you could use a small (1" or 2") C-Clamp pushed against that bolt to tighten the B4 Cover. I didn't have a small C-Clamp so use a larger one pushing against lower down in the frame:
C Clamp Detail
C Clamp Detail
cclamp_close.jpg (82.32 KiB) Viewed 13116 times
5) I Ended up using bottom-rear bolt hole to do this, as shown in the linked guide. It is out of way and easier to tighten bolt into (can fit socket onto bolt). Remember you are only tightening into transmission (aluminum) so don't overdo it, use torque wrench if you are a newbie like me. I used big screwdriver to compress spring, and then a 4" C-Clamp which I cut the little handle off, which could be adjusted to hold the plunger in a compressed state. Now at your leisure put the snap ring in. Don't worry if you haven't compressed plunger enough - you just want the snap ring to at least be sitting above the groove:
Press with Screwdriver then Compress (I've staged this photo: when performing this step wouldn't normally have Snap-Ring in yet).
Press with Screwdriver then Compress (I've staged this photo: when performing this step wouldn't normally have Snap-Ring in yet).
Where I rested C-Clamp Against
Where I rested C-Clamp Against
6) Once snap ring was mostly in, I used screwdriver to further compress plunger so snap ring would go into groove.

My cover was of old design but not defective, transmission serial was 01J, Car is 2002 S60 112K miles. So ended up replacing for 'preventative' reasons I guess. Shifting was same as before, presumably in other cars transmission is trying to adapt to broken cover so needs to learn how to shift again properly with fixed cover. In my case nothing to re-learn I assume...

Hope my method is useful to someone! I found it a lot easier to have a way fo first compressing the cover and holding it shut, then working the snap ring it.


Posts: 59
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2010 4:40 pm
Year and Model: XC90 2.5T '05
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Re: B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by boksalg »

Great post Colin!
I take it the lack of replies are due to the horrors of the job.
I'll get the parts and add it to my task list. Should I be worried?

What bolt did you use to screw in the transmission and aid with compression of the plunger?
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:35 pm
Year and Model: 2002 S60 AWD
Location: halifax, NS
Been thanked: 3 times

Re: B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by coflynn »

The bolt came with the B4 Servo from IPDUSA. It appears to be a M10-1.5 bolt, length 10cm. Although length isn't too critical obviously.

You can read reviews on the IPDUSA site where people also have some comments: http://www.ipdusa.com/products/5538/107 ... aw55-50-51 .

Hope it works out for you!
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:43 pm
Year and Model: 2006 S80
Location: USA

Re: B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by GLSKUNKS »

I have a 2006 S80 which is currently at a foreign transmission mechanic. Problems with hard shifting and it then completely slipped out but was fine later (which is new). I bought the B4 Servo update kit. The mechanic called and said something about a pin of some sort that the cap sits against. He said he doesn't have the right tool to hold it in place so it's not damaged or broken as the cap is being put on. I haven't seen anything about that anywhere and I can't find any info. Said he found a clamp or something but it was not recommended for use with aluminum. Any idea what he's talking about? Also, the mechanic at the dealer said something about a similar part that's $150 or so... I'm not sure what he's talking about either. I paid $3800 for this car and we LOVE it, but I'm not ready to drop a $6000 tranny in it.
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 9:39 pm
Year and Model: 2003 S60
Location: Seattle, USA

Re: B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by FiatMortem »

This post was helpful to me, so I want to share my own tips.

I could not hold the cover in place with enough force AND get the snap ring back in place. We tried a few other methods online but nothing would work.

So I first tested with a depth gage to make sure the pin could go in far enough. I made contact with the band at about 80mm. With a long Philips I pushed it (similar to how the pin would) and got about 13mm of easy play before the bands stopped it, so far so good.

Then I went to the hardware store and got the following:
1. A 6 inch tubular turnbuckle with eye bolts
2. A 5 inch threaded rod to replace the right hand thread eyebolt, in my case 3/8x16.
3. Three nuts for same
4. A hardened wing nut for the rod.

About USD$11 total.

I replaced the eyebolt with the rod, then locked the wing nut on the end of the rod, to go around the big + on the cap and keep the rod centered.

I spun the other two nuts on the rod and ran the bolt into the turnbuckle as far as I could and then locked the two nuts together. This was so I could hold the rod with one wrench while using another in the turnbuckle. Wound up not needing this feature.

I put the whole thing in after the cover, putting the far end over the steering bar and jammed it into the sway bar clamp.

Then I just turned the turnbuckle carefully and drove it in until I got serious resistance. I was about 1mm beyond the snap ring groove.

For snap ring pliers, I used a cheap set from Harbor Freight with changeable tips, using the 45° set. I used pliers to bend the tips a bit inward to hold the ring better.

The trick with the pliers was to go in from the midline of the car, not from the wheel area. This way I could use both hands to place the ring, and it went in easily.

Hope this helps
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:39 pm
Year and Model: 2003 S60 T5
Location: Central PA

Re: B4 Servo Cover Replacement Guide

Post by willimax »

Did the B4 Servo Kit thing on my 2005 S60 2.5T AWD (65K) the other day. Think I got the kit from FCP. It is a PIA job but eminently doable by a shade tree. Had two different sets of snap ring pliers and went with smaller set b/c easier to manipulate in tight space. Even if you just get one leg of the ring out of the groove, you can then use a small screw driver to gently pry up the ring until it pops out; same on the re-install. Washer on inside of cap had not broken free (the stated cause of the 2/3 hard shift (or in my case, shudder)), but I did notice the O-ring on the plunger part was very loose. In fact, when I tried to re-install the plunger this O-ring would slip from its groove and position itself in a way to be pinched between plunger and housing. I replaced this O-ring with one of the new ones provided in the kit and then used the new cap with its 2 O-rings on the re-install. Upshot: it doesn't do the 2/3 shudder (and this usually occurred at 40 mph) as often as before and overall shifting seems better. Maybe the worn O-ring on the plunger caused internal damage to another component or my transmission has to "learn" how to shift again. One last thing, I used a 6" C-clamp to compress the new cap to the point where I could re-install the new snap ring. Explored the turnbuckle thing but C-clamp was easier. Just don't tighten the thing so much that you crack the cap or bugger the bevel point of the plunger.
2003 S60 T5
2005 S60 2.5T AWD
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