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Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

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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MoVolvos
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Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by MoVolvos » Sat Jul 04, 2020 4:22 am

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Son mentioned that the air conditioner was not cooling while he and his co-worker, neighbor, former high school classmate and cross country teammate sat in the car waiting for their midday shift to start.

The following day I went out to check on the car right before he left and saw a puddle on the ground while the car was idling. Looked under and saw the lower radiator hose completely disconnected and nothing flowing out of it. It may have popped off due to having been soaked in transmission fluid that continually seeped through a pinched O-Ring from the upper transmission cooler line. I did clean some grease like dirt from the inside of the radiator hose where the clamp had tighten it before reattaching it.

The car was purchased with the bottom full of oil / fluid and the O-Ring finally gave out one day leaving a trail just as the car left the house. That was repaired over a year ago along with a filter change, flush and shift kit.

Went ahead and put in less than 2 Gallons of distill water and have driven it a couple miles here and there. So far the needle is below mid-level and a little gurgle in the dash. Did run the heater hoping to purge all the air. Car runs great, no noise or loss of power and starts right up as if nothing happened. Planning to run it for a bit before forking over money for coolant.

Has anyone ever ran the engine without coolant and nothing happened? Son's work is mostly freeway and both destinations (home, work) are about 1.5 miles from freeway.
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BKM

1998 S70 T5 - Donated
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2019 Atlas SE 4 Motion

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by bronco » Sat Jul 04, 2020 11:03 am

is there a puddle where they were parked? If not then it probably blew off on the way home , I would imagine there is more water pressure . You could have got lucky.

I lost all the coolant in an S80 once from a leak. I replaced it with water then we had a cold snap and it froze! That took out the water pump but there was no lasting damage from that either

They are made of stern stuff it appears

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by MoVolvos » Sat Jul 04, 2020 2:34 pm

bronco wrote:
Sat Jul 04, 2020 11:03 am

is there a puddle where they were parked? If not then it probably blew off on the way home , I would imagine there is more water pressure . You could have got lucky.

I lost all the coolant in an S80 once from a leak. I replaced it with water then we had a cold snap and it froze! That took out the water pump but there was no lasting damage from that either

They are made of stern stuff it appears
Thanks Bronco, that gives me hope! I will have him check the next time he goes to work but the rains might have removed any traces by that time if it did indeed happened there. I am thinking due to the inside of the hose taking on the trans-fluid it slowly leaked and being slick and now with the increased pressure the hose blew off. Hopefully it was on the drive home.

Hopefully it is not a headgasket problem either. I'll drive it for a bit and test it, I have the kit.


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BKM

1998 S70 T5 - Donated
2003 S80 T6
2003 GS300
2003 Odyssey
2008 C30 T5
2019 Atlas SE 4 Motion

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by abscate » Sun Jul 05, 2020 5:12 am

You have about a minute from loss of coolant before the head warps. But, you can win the overheated engine lottery m and it sounds like you did.

Compression test , inspect the rest of those hoses, replace anything 10 years old, genuine Volvo for hoses and clamps.
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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by MoVolvos » Sun Jul 05, 2020 10:12 pm

abscate wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 5:12 am

You have about a minute from loss of coolant before the head warps. But, you can win the overheated engine lottery m and it sounds like you did.

Compression test , inspect the rest of those hoses, replace anything 10 years old, genuine Volvo for hoses and clamps.
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The lottery has never treated me well nor rewarded me unfortunately. After shopping at Costco I checked the level and topped it off. The street parking at home is at a good incline so I have not been able to check the coolant level before driving. After getting home and parking (front facing down hill), I see rapid dripping under the car.
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Leak.jpg
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Cut the old section off and reconnected the hose. BTW that's a brand new Volvo tank which I installed after finding the lower radiator hose disconnected. The fan is working when I turn the AC on and that's about all the time I had. Will do the hydrocarbon test at my neighbor's level driveway and if it's OK then I'll test the fan thermostat. Have never tested nor change one so will have educate myself on that one.

If I make it to the compression test and all is well then all the hoses will get a refresh. Thanks.
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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by bronco » Mon Jul 06, 2020 5:51 am

i just recently found some crumbled wires on a 2002 right at the plug on the electric fan that prevented it from coming on. It was actually 1 wire that was corroded on both sides of the same plug.
The car would overheat if not being driven so that air was forced thru the radiator.

it fell behind on temp and got steadily hotter. Idling stationary with the AC on is just the sort of thing that will expose a weak or non functional fan

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by MoVolvos » Sat Jul 11, 2020 2:53 pm

bronco wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 5:51 am
i just recently found some crumbled wires on a 2002 right at the plug on the electric fan that prevented it from coming on. It was actually 1 wire that was corroded on both sides of the same plug.
The car would overheat if not being driven so that air was forced thru the radiator.

it fell behind on temp and got steadily hotter. Idling stationary with the AC on is just the sort of thing that will expose a weak or non functional fan
After trimming the older section of hose and reattaching it everything seems good. Will idle the car till the fan comes on and off before shutting the engine shut off. Fan will also come on with the AC. Couldn't find the Hydrocarbon leak tester so son will check the coolant level each day after work all next week to see if the level remains the same. It's the only time the car is on level ground and completely cool. If the level maintains then we've dodged the bullet.
Blessings,

BKM

1998 S70 T5 - Donated
2003 S80 T6
2003 GS300
2003 Odyssey
2008 C30 T5
2019 Atlas SE 4 Motion

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by bronco » Sat Jul 11, 2020 4:28 pm

maybe you are good , might want to order a lower hose and put it in the trunk

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by MoVolvos » Sat Jul 11, 2020 9:50 pm

bronco wrote:
Sat Jul 11, 2020 4:28 pm
maybe you are good , might want to order a lower hose and put it in the trunk
Good idea thanks. I'll just replace it when adding coolant as it's still on distilled water till I know the headgasket is good.

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1998 S70 T5 - Donated
2003 S80 T6
2003 GS300
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2008 C30 T5
2019 Atlas SE 4 Motion

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Re: Total Coolant Loss 03 S80 T6

Post by SuperHerman » Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:33 am

Running straight water is not the best for the car. Besides allowing corrosion of the system and improper lubrication the boiling point (overheat) is lowered.

See here (nice graphs on freezing and boiling): https://www.carid.com/articles/antifree ... ained.html

I understand you are troubleshooting, but straight water in the current heat may be dangerous.

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