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Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

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
1997 - 2000 V70-XC
1997 - 2004 C70

Katie13711
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Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by Katie13711 » Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:44 pm

Hi everyone!

My 96 850 has started making a noise when accelerating. It is particularly loud when accelerating from a complete stop, but it is constantly there when accelerating. The engine also seems to be louder when I opened the hood to check my oil and transmission fluids. I have included one video of the engine idling and one of the engine while accelerating. I know listening to a video isn't the same as looking at a car, but was wondering if anyone had any ideas. The car has about 220k and I'm worried it may just be the engine or transmission failing.

Idle:


Accelerating:


Thanks :)

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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by abscate » Tue Jan 07, 2020 7:40 pm

Katie. Get some hose or clear tubing, about 1/2 inch size, and listen around your engine at idle to isolate the noise source

Did you get your gas tank sorted out last month ?
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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by polskamafia mjl » Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:48 pm

That second video sounds like the power steering pump to me but its hard to be sure. Can you tell whether the sound is coming from the passnger or driver side of the engine bay?
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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by abscate » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:07 am

The sound track is quite good - usually those arent too useful. You don't have major engine or transmission damage - thats a component noise of some sort.

I would go 95% with an alternator bearing or power steering pump low/old fluid, with the power steering pump (lives under that black tank with the cap on top) being the favourite.

Have your assistant gently turn the wheel while idling to see if the noise changes.

Then have them turn the lights on (high beam) at idle to see if you can hear the noise change.

You are trying to load the noisy component to see which one is grumbly.

If that doesn't work, get the hose out and use it as a stethoscope to source the noise.

You can also remove the serpentine belt and see if stops - that will tell you its either the alternator, AC compressor, or power steering pump.
The engine also seems to be louder when I opened the hood to check my oil and transmission fluids.
Engine oil
Transmission oil (engine has to be running to check this)
Power steering fluid
Coolant level/quality
Brake fluid level/quality
Washer fluid
Serpentine belt inspect2
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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by Katie13711 » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:23 pm

@ polskamafia mjl: I honestly did not even think about the power steering pump but that could be a possibility. Would the noise increase with acceleration though? It seems to be coming from the passenger side more.

@abscate : I will try to get a hose and pinpoint where the noise is coming from. I did not get my gas tank figured out yet - it is still on my list of things to do though. I have to get under the car and get a better look - I truly did not see any place where a support strap would go (as said in the post I had commented on). This sound has taken priority though as it truly does sound horrible. I would be so relieved it wasn't major engine or transmission damage! I must say while I wasn't a Volvo fan at first...I have grown to love this car!

I will try both turning the steering wheel and turning the high beams on to see if there is any change. I check my engine oil frequently and it looks okay. I checked my transmission fluid (followed Robert's guidelines - he has lots of useful Volvo videos) and while it wasn't bright red, it also wasn't brown. I plan on draining and refilling it a couple times as I don't think it could hurt. It might be the original fluid - I know it hasn't been touched while I've had the car so about 80k. Coolant is good. Brake fluid is good. Washer fluid was recently filled to the max (New England winters). I have not looked at the serpentine belt and will add that to the possible list.

Thank you both for your responses :)

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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by abscate » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:44 pm

Component noises will change with the speed of the engine.

I should have added that if you take the SERP belt off, you need a tool to put it back on so you should be near a garage or Autozone shop, it takes 60 seconds to put it back on, so no big deal.

Wizechatmgr and I just did a 8 liter flush on his XC today, that’s a good number to push through with the “ Gibbons method” ..more to come on that when you are ready. Don’t worry, no monkeys are harmed during that process.
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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by Katie13711 » Thu Jan 09, 2020 9:06 pm

I only had time to check the power steering fluid and try turning the wheel / high beams while idling. The power steering fluid level was fine, maybe a little over full. The color was good - a fairly bright red as it should be. In the video below, you can hear a slight difference in the noise when the steering wheel is turned all the way. High beams had no affect.



I do not hear any sort of noise difference when I am driving or turning though. It is only as I am accelerating, though sometimes the noise does linger after I stop accelerating. I suppose I will have to take off the serpentine belt to confirm if the issue is connected to the power steering?

I think I will flush the transmission this weekend regardless, it certainly can't hurt and will put my mind at ease. I was going to just do a drain and fill 3x. I know it won't flush all the old fluid out but from what I've read it will get most of it.

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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by abscate » Fri Jan 10, 2020 3:33 am

How flexible is your schedule during the day? Coming through Boston next week.

I heard the noise constant in your first video, it does change a bit when driving but that’s an engine rpm dependent noise.
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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by Katie13711 » Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:51 am

It is definitely an rpm dependent noise, constant but clearly increases with the RPMs.

I wouldn't want to put you out of your way (I live about 45 minutes outside of Boston) but that's so kind of you to offer! I think I'm just going to bring it to the mechanic next week. Once he identifies the problem, my fiance may be able to fix it (he usually does most of the work on my car).

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Re: Sound when accelerating / Loud Engine (Video Links Included)

Post by rguzz » Sat Jan 11, 2020 8:21 am

Almost certainly something that is driven by a belt is making this noise. Run down the list of those possibilities, remove TB cover, etc. There aren't very many. Cut the end off an old broomstick as a stethoscope to narrow down the field. I'd be very surprised if changing the trans fluid makes this go away. Try to pin down location as your guide otherwise it's all guesswork. A Darwinian test for the fiance, possibly. Can he survive the future demands of a P80 Volvo? Sounds like you can do this yourself, though.

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