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Cold weather start but won't stay running...CTS ?

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
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Cold weather start but won't stay running...CTS ?

Post by SonicAdventure » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:15 am

The past two days have been pretty cold here in PA, low 20’s. Coldest temps I’ve tried to operate the 850 I bought this summer.

Last night and this AM, it would start up and immediately stop. Last night it was in the 30’s but it eventually stayed running after a few tries and didn’t give any more problems.

This AM it would start right up but immediately stall after reaching 1,000 rpms. It’s 21 degrees right now.

The fact that there has been such a temperature drop and the immediate presence of this start but not stay running issue leads me to believe it’s probably CTS related as that is the only sensor that could cause a no spark condition strictly by temperate readings, right?

I have an older CTS (maybe two) from other cars which I’ve tested resistance on. However, I’m inclined to just buy a new one. What is the acceptable resistance for these anyway? I’m not getting a check engine light for CTS...would it throw one if this was for sure the issue?

It’s supposed to go up into the 40’s today, so I’m going to try again later.


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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ??

Post by RickHaleParker » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:31 am

Engine Coolant Temperature sensor (ECT).

My '98 C70 did the same a few years back. It was a Altitude sensor that crapped out when it got cold. Any sensor the the ECM uses to make Air/Fuel calculations can do the same.

Try pulling DTC codes now when the problem is active.

Leaks in the Air induction that gets worst when it is cold can do the same.

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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ??

Post by Chuck W » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:51 am

Have you checked the CTS plug for corrosion? That could be causing a false reading also.

Had this issue with my '97 T5 last winter.

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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ?? 9186486 ?

Post by abscate » Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:37 am

Pull the connector and check for corrosion per Chuck

Then search the forum using the part number (invented by the Mongols in 850 BC) to find the resistance chart

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=79330&p=427389&hili ... 86#p427389

I believe its 9186486 for the -1998 (for reference its 9125463 from 1999-end of P80 line)

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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ??

Post by erikv11 » Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:40 am

+1 on the ECT dirty connector idea. Had it on my 95 about 3 winters ago, it's a pretty common problem.

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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ??

Post by E Showell » Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:45 am

Spray contact cleaner followed by a very small dab of dielectric grease could be your friend under those circumstances.

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Re: Cold weather start but won’t stay running...CTS ??

Post by scot850 » Thu Nov 14, 2019 10:08 am

Is your car an NA or turbo? There may be another issue in relation to turbo cars and cold temperatures.

Turbo engines can have an issue with the intercooler freezing.


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