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Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on the Volvo S80 model. Sometimes called an "executive car", the S80 was and continues to be Volvo's top-of-the-line passenger car.
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Nubcake
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Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 8:24 pm
Year and Model: 2002 Volvo S80
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Volvo Repair Database Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by Nubcake » Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:02 pm

So this is my first Volvo. I am happy with it for the most part as it is a nice comfortable cruiser. Due to some financial restraints, I traded in my 2012 Hyundai Veloster (was brand new) and downgraded to a 2002 Volvo S80 2.9 T6 as I wanted to get rid of the payments. It had 1 owner and was driven 144000 miles when I got it. There were a few "minor" issues that needed to be resolved. It needed brakes and rotors, some tires, and the muffler was just sort of hanging there. After hearing about how expensive some of the repairs could be down the road, I decided to try and fix things myself. However, I'm just really not that mechanically inclined and what may be simple for some, takes a bit longer for me.

1st issue:
I've replaced the sway bar links after hearing the clunking sounds in the front of the car. After replacement, I still get a clunking sound near the front passenger side of the car. I rechecked my sway bars and they were fine. I'm going to guess that bushings are bad and I need a new sway bar? Car is still very much driveable and the links were indeed broken, but would this still be a minor issue if I was to leave it for a bit?

2nd issue:
One day my blower motor went out...at the start of winter. I ordered parts and had full intention and putting them in. Then the blower motor started again and I had heat. I was thrilled. I took my car out to the country and just had some fun cause I was excited that it was fixed again. Then the check engine light came on and went away. Weird. Drove home and smelled oil. Checked under the hood and there was oil everywhere. That sucked. The engine bay was pretty damn immaculate when I bought it. Now it's covered in oil. Research says I need to change the PCV breather box. Looked into it and decided I don't know if I have the time/skill to do it. Some people state that it's a $500-800 job due to labor. Called the Volvo dealer near me and they quoted $1400. wtf. So now i'm trying to figure out if I should attempt to do this or ask my regular mechanic who isn't too sure of Volvos. How difficult is this job and is there a guide somewhere? I changed oil recently to synthetic and I have a very slow drip that has developed around oil pan (i think or close by) and I think having a clogged PCV is the reasoning.

There's another issue with my window regulator being bent and useless, but I feel the other issues are higher priority. Love the site btw.



850TurboTurtle
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Year and Model: 96 850T, 05 S80T6
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by 850TurboTurtle » Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:31 am

Check with other guys here, but clunking can be the spring seats in the front suspension too, I believe. I think that was the problem on my 96 850. Or it can be bad control arm bushings. It would help the real mechanics here to know exactly when it makes the sound (corners left and or right, acceleration or deceleration, bumps, etc) to isolate the likely problem.



850TurboTurtle
Posts: 251
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:52 pm
Year and Model: 96 850T, 05 S80T6
Location: Tacoma WA
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by 850TurboTurtle » Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:32 am

I did the breather on my 850 and it wasn't really hard, just tedious. Lots of parts to remember exactly where they go when you reassemble. Marking and photos on disassembly is key for part time mechanics like us.



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Legofan
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Year and Model: 2001 S80 T6
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by Legofan » Sat Apr 15, 2017 2:16 pm

I have the clunking too, it's the front struts. There's a bearing and rubber spring seats and at 144k they are def worn out. Find an import indie and use them. Dealers will charge a premium, but with that premium comes a lifetime warranty(at least at my dealer).


2001 S80 T6 Moondust sent to auction for scrap

Nubcake
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 8:24 pm
Year and Model: 2002 Volvo S80
Location: Minnesota
United States of America

Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by Nubcake » Thu May 03, 2018 1:36 pm

Can't believe I posted this a year ago...

Anyways I managed to fix the clunking noise. I replaced the Sway bar links, the control arms, and ball joints and it seems to have fixed the noise. Also replaced those pesky steering stops so I stop the rubbing in the wheel well.

I bought parts for the PCV replacement from FCP Euro. They also have a video on Youtube of them replacing it on an S60. How much differance is there going to be between a my S80 and the S60 in the video? I know i have more plastic tubing to remove, but it should be pretty similar right?



I really want to get this done as It has been bothering me forever. The volvo right now is just a spare vehicle as I recently bought a Land Cruiser which is also a bit of a project car.



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mrbrian200
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by mrbrian200 » Thu May 03, 2018 6:17 pm

Seeing as you're not expressly familiar with these cars just quite yet the noise on the front right could be just about anything. Took me 2 years to differentiate between different noises on the front end of mine...

Why... just this week I discovered what it sounds like when one of the rear e-brake shoes has worked loose inside the rotor and needs to be rebuilt. Not being familiar with that particular 'noise' yet I initially thought along the lines of a loose heat shield around the muffler. A very loud rattling and banging over bumps sort of like someone beating on a 50 gallon barrel with a hammer back there. I never heard it until it was warm enough to drive with the windows down yesterday. It's probably been doing it for months.

You'll want someone to look at the front end before committing to ordering suspension parts unless you decide to refresh/replace everything. I don't think it's humanly possible to spend anything near the total of 48-60 months worth of a new car payment to keep a modestly aged Volvo in top shape..even if you're using higher priced dealer service.



Nubcake
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 8:24 pm
Year and Model: 2002 Volvo S80
Location: Minnesota
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by Nubcake » Thu May 03, 2018 9:29 pm

I got the suspension problems worked out. The bushings on my control arms were bad as well as my driver side ball joint. It glides nicely over rough roads now. I'd drive it more if my PCV wasn't clogged so i'm trying to sort that issue :)



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SuperHerman
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by SuperHerman » Fri May 04, 2018 12:46 am

Nubcake: I have not done the PCV on your car, but I did do it on a non-turbo 2004 S80 2.9 and on a 2004 XC90 2.9T (plus on a few other 2.4 cars). They are pretty much the same. Nothing too difficult, just have to remove a few items.

Approach the project like you are changing the intake manifold gasket - after this point everything is there. If I recall one of the FireBox bolts (lower pass side) is hard to get to and some remove additional pieces. I had no issue, just used a swivel and extension 1/4". Most of the work is done with a 1/4" ratchet, 10mm swivel, 10mm socket and various extensions - hose clamps are 7mm or single use. The oil pipe bolt is either 12mm or 13mm and I think the banjo is 17mm. These two are tricky as they are upside and not easy to see - so approach with a mirror - see what you have then remove. I warn you of cross threading now and later.

Summary of VIDA (Sorry for the format - but I am summarizing their steps and they are lumped together at times): 1) Disconnect battery, remove plastic charge pipe and hose to charge air cooler, remove intake air pipe for the air cleaner from above radiator connection. 2) release fuel pressure and remove injector cover then fuel rail mounting screws then pull entire rail with injectors (put in plastic bag or cloth and flip aside - also vacuum area and/or blow area first then spray with WD40 or PB Blaster or what ever you have). At some point here you need to detach the fuel line from the nozzle pipe per VIDA, but I think I just flipped it up and kept it as a unit - you will have to see when you get there - I just don't remember clearly. 3) remove dipstick pipe mount on intake (I am pretty sure it is underneath the manifold - just follow pipe and you will see) - the next bolt is tricky - it is a banjo if I recall and it attaches a pipe to the intake - it is pretty close to the dipstick bolt. The hardest part is putting it back on - here if I recall I did it before I fully tightened the intake bolts so I had more wiggle room. Just make sure you start it by hand and do not cross thread! Tighten it up when you have the manifold fully installed so the hoses line up nicely. 4) Disconnect the throttle body connector and remove the charge pipe from the throttle body. How you attack this depends where your clamp is hiding. If I recall mine was pointing to your right from where you are standing - so drivers side - I ran a very long extension near the air filter area and I think a 7mm socket - it was a straight shot. On one car it was facing the radiator - here I loosened it and swung it around so I could approach it from the side. You may need a mirror and extra light to locate where the clamp is. 5) Remove the intake - remove top screws and the outer screws for the bottom - then loosen the rest of the bottom screws - at this point they need not come out and will hold the manifold. Once completed look to see what other hose is in the way and take care of those. Then lift the manifold off. If you are going to change the intake manifold gasket you will have to take off all the screws.

Basically - take off the snap on engine cover and remove the top plastic piping - I would add the air box so you know you have everything - plus you can pull much of the plastic and airbox out as one unit. Then disconnect the inner cooler charge pipe that attaches to the radiator and runs to the throttle body. Next take off the two passenger side intake manifold bolts that are on the front passenger side corner (dipstick and that banjo bolt). Then you have to remove the fuel rail. Then the intake manifold.

At this point everything is right there in front of you and if I recall the fire box has two screws securing it to the block. You may have a couple of hose clamps on the PCV hoses.

On assembly make sure to clean the throttle body (look up proper technique) and clean up the intake manifold holes where the injectors go - then lightly oil them so the injectors go in smoothly and sand and grit doesn't damage the seals.

When you are done there is a stubby hose/pipe that goes from the fire box to the block. When you pull this out you have to make sure the drain hole going into the block is clear. These get gunked up pretty good. Pull stuff out - do not push stuff in. Some people blow air into the port and listen for bubbles (assuming you still have oil in the pan). What I did was cleaned out as best as I could, drained the oil and left drain plug out with catch pan below and sprayed carb cleaner in there and then rinsed with gas. I tilted the car so that any fluid would go to the drain plug hole and out the car and not puddle in the oil pan. The object is to flush out any chunks you may have dislodged. I took my oil/gas mix and sent it to recycling. You will need some of the single use clamps for portions of the PCV system - order them - do not use hose clamps on anything you cannot see - you will regret it if you have a leak. Many of the sites have "suggestions" that tell you what the single use hose clamp is - I strongly urge you to buy them - it may add $10, but you will not have problems with leaks and the job will go quicker. You may have success reusing the originals - your choice your time and money. You can tighten these clamps with a wire cutter if you are careful and do not have the specialty crimp tool. Pay attention and take pictures and you will be fine. It may take you a day if you are cautious. If you do it for a living I would say two hours tops.

I think there may be a few videos out there on it, if not look up intake removal, alternator removal, air conditioner removal, radiator removal and you will see how to remove many of the parts. On the intercooler charge pipe that connects to the radiator - you may need to use a heat gun or hair dryer to soften the plastic (be careful) so you can get it off and then again to get it on - a little PB Blaster type spray helps also.



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ndphotonl
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Re: Always wanted a Volvo, but it's proving to be more a pain

Post by ndphotonl » Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:56 pm

I posted my pics before in the S80 section, but please perform this very important maintenance. Your engine will be very gratefull! This is how the breather holes looked on my 2.4T engine:

ImageVolvo S80 2.4T PCV Repair by Andy Ramdin, on Flickr

ImageVolvo S80 2.4T PCV Repair by Andy Ramdin, on Flickr

The gunk turned into rock solid matter. I decided to perform the maintenance after I noticed that my turbo intake was soaking in oil (see picture below). After repairing, the turbo intake is still clean (I checked not too long ago) and my oil usage is next to 0. Definitely a job worth doing.

ImageVolvo S80 2.4T Dirty Turbo Coldside by Andy Ramdin, on Flickr


Volvo S80 2.4T Wasa Limited Edition
Portfolio / FlickR / YouTube channel / Image

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