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> Common Issues With The Volvo 240
robert240
post Dec 2 2009, 01:26 PM
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If you just recently purchased a Volvo 240 or are considering one, here is a list of the common issues they tend to have. The 240 is a well made car and with proper maintenance will run for a long time but any car that is 20-30 years old is going have problems. I created this list from how often an issue is asked about on the forums and my own personal experience.

1. rust – its hard to replace parts when the hardware is fused together, holes in the floorboards, etc.
2. wiring – mid 80’s 240s had bio-degradable wiring insulation under the hood, later fixed by Volvo
3. charging circuit – wiring problems or worn alternator brushes/voltage regulator
4. lack of overdrive in automatic cars – the relay, transmission solenoid, or wiring
5. oil leaks – clogged PCV system (flame trap)
6. worn rubber parts – motor mounts, front and rear suspension components
7. A/C – most systems used R12, marginal performance after converting to R134a.
8. The cabin blower motors fail.
9. problems with the rear lights – wiring, poor connections, fuses
10. dead odometers – the plastic gear break or the DC motors fail

This post has been edited by robert240: Apr 30 2012, 02:55 PM
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Doogwhan
post Dec 2 2009, 10:51 PM
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That's a roger on #'s six through ten...(IMG:http://www.tamemymind.com/blog/images2007/smiley-bangheadonwall-yellow.gif)
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robert240
post Dec 3 2009, 12:13 PM
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QUOTE (Doogwhan @ Dec 2 2009, 08:51 PM)


For me it's been 2,3,4,6,7,9.

What I didn't put on the list was problems with my in-tank pump, replacing the main pump and relay, the fuel pressure regulator that started dripping gas, and the power steering rack that died because I didn't want everyone to think my 240 was a peice of junk (IMG:style_emoticons/default/laugh.gif)
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Doogwhan
post Dec 3 2009, 09:30 PM
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That's why I describe 240's a durable, not necessarily reliable transportation.


If you think the brick is PITA, try maintaining an S60 too.
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Phreakshew
post Dec 5 2009, 11:20 PM
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I have some of those probs as well - the cabin blower motor has been out for some time - I just use a 12volt fan plugged into the cigarette lighter during the summer and a 12v heater during the winter. Sucks cause I have to sometimes hold the heater thingy against the window to defrost it and then drive with the windows down. BRRR!
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240Dave
post Dec 9 2009, 11:00 AM
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I'm new here, but I have experienced 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, and 10.
Nice to see I'm not alone!
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benski
post Dec 29 2009, 12:28 PM
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2,3,5,6,8 &9 from here. I've gotten better at all of them over time. There are times you'd think you were working on some British car from the '60's!
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Doogwhan
post Dec 30 2009, 10:20 PM
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Nah- Not enough rust!!!
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85-volvo-245
post Jan 9 2010, 12:51 AM
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luckily, i haven't had ANY of those problems on my 85 except oil leaks on the front and rear seals. after saying this they will all probably fail AT ONCE! (IMG:style_emoticons/default/laugh.gif)
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Ali1990-240DL
post Jan 19 2010, 11:54 PM
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i'll end up getting NY state out of it's deficit with the amount of tickets i keep getting for my tail lights CONSTANTLY being out... (IMG:style_emoticons/default/grin.gif)
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Doogwhan
post Jan 20 2010, 02:03 AM
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My 245 eats left ones every two months... I should buy a case of 1157LL's
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captbayer
post Jan 22 2010, 07:48 PM
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New here, but have owned 4 volvos now. I have experienced most of the list. My first two were from the 70's and both had a steel braided grounding strap at the bottom of the engine rot out, causing a symptom like a bad battery.
Also have had to replace speedo on the same two, now on my current one as well.

Rust was an issue. My'71 wagon rusted completely around the back hatch allowing exhaust fumes into the car. My '78 sedan had no rear quarter panels below the trunk deck.
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mike_281
post Jan 23 2010, 09:41 PM
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I've had mine for a year and a half, and have survived #5 thru #10 successfully.

Life is good now, and I love my-- OH CR*P, she just went #3 on me!

D'OH!!!
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Teenonator
post Jan 25 2010, 08:38 AM
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Drives: 91 240 wagon, 87 245 waiting for resurrection, 85 245 ready to be someone's parts car



The rubber molding around the rear lights on my 91 240 wagon are pretty beat(leaf mold.....Pacific NW car, ya know), & I'm going to remove the fixtures & clean them up. Would anyone have an idea where I could view or download a decent wiring diagram? The diagrams in both the Chilton & Haynes manuals stink. Thought I might splice in some additional length to the wires so I can attach the connectors while the assy's are out of the car. Cheers
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BigChewie
post Feb 9 2010, 01:28 PM
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Definitely had fuel pump failure, steering rack replacement, and multiple wiring issues. But I'll take that on any car w/328K miles. Thank goodness Grandma took care of the ol' brick.
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coonmanx
post Mar 22 2010, 10:39 PM
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I have to put a piece of foil in between the crappy tail light electrical connector and the circuit board connector so that my left brake light works. It works until the foil degrades. Next time I will use heavy duty foil. I have always wanted to change out those tail lights for some older Mercedes lights that look like they just might fit. What kind of crackhead designed those things?

Wiring in the engine compartment is bad and today the mechanic ripped some electrical tape off of the wiring harness and exposed bare wires. Can of worms.
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domandlids
post Mar 24 2010, 01:55 PM
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Hey everybody,

Is there a list of items to upgrade proactively to avoid breaking down?

My car is being towed to the mechanic as I write this. I'd like to feel safe driving 16 hours to Atlanta from NYC... Right now I don't feel that way.

Number 2 was fixed w/ a recall or w/ newer models? If it wasn't fixed w/ a recall is there anything I can do? I have a 1983 so I'm assuming that qualifies as mid eighties.

So far I'm facing a lot of intermittent issues and I've noticed they happen a lot more in the rain. I've felt electricity flowing through the exterior around the same time the overdrive stops working and the car doesn't seem to go beyond 3rd gear.

Do I need to accept the car isn't reliable and fix as needed?
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robert240
post Mar 24 2010, 02:57 PM
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This explains the issues with the wiring harness:
http://www.davebarton.com/volvoharnesses.h...WireHarnessFAQs
I'm still using the original one from the factory. I have taped and used heat shrink tubing to repair all the exposed wires.

The easiest way to solve the overdrive problem is with this:
http://www.ipdusa.com/Volvo-200/Transmissi...9-266-672-1891/
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coonmanx
post Apr 17 2010, 01:15 PM
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Watch out when you go to a mechanic that they don't mistake common problems for real issues. I am aware of all of the common problems including the wiring harness issue. In fact up until a couple of weeks ago I had some taped up wires in the wiring harness at the firewall. I recently had a problem where I lost boost and then idle in my car. I took the car to a new mechanic who came fairly highly recommended. One of the things that I asked them to do was check everything on the turbo. Well because the car didn't idle correctly the guy starts looking at the idle control motor first. He then follows the wires back to where they are taped up and rips open the wires. Of course the insulation on those wires is bad and the they start telling me that I need a $900 wiring harness. They never looked at the turbo. They got it to idle by simply turning the little screw. Two weeks later I am changing the air filter and since I still have no boost I decide to take a look at the turbo. It turns out that the diaphragm on the turbo is just hanging there with one bolt completely missing. I am pretty steamed since I specifically told those guys to look at the turbo and they obviously did not. I went back and told the mechanic to his face that he screwed up. The look on his face was priceless. They bolted it up and presto I have boost and I was able to turn the idle back down to where it is supposed to be (more or less 1000). A couple of days later I called the business back and demanded $50 back from my $150 bill. They screwed up and I will never go back to them. After 3 separate calls I finally spoke with the owner and at first he refused to give me any money back. I reminded him that I was the one that had correctly diagnosed the situation and not his "technician". Finally I just said, "Well you can give me back $50 or I can file a complaint with the BBB and stand out in front of your business with a sign". He had a sudden change of heart. I think that they probably should have given me more back since they really didn't do much, but they did straighten out a few vacuum lines. Does anyone else get the excuse of "There's lots of things wrong with that car"? I know that these old Volvos have issues but that is no excuse for poor work. Fight back. That wiring had nothing to do with the actual problem and after they were done they left the wires bare. I had to go buy some liquid electrical tape to coat them and protect them. Find somebody old school to work on your brick. These new guys just don't do proper diagnosis. If I can find the problem then why didn't the mechanic. And don't let them blame their poor work on an old car with "a lot of issues". These old bricks may have issues, but they keep going and going and going.
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mountaintaz
post Jul 3 2010, 08:50 PM
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I got my Grandpas 1985 240 DL it has 135000 km's. It has none of the listed problems. I will now keep an eye on them.
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