Maintenance FAQ for 7xx/9xx/90 Cars
Raising the Engine:
[Tip: Bill Aileo ] Some folks carefully
jack up the engine from below the short distance necessary to assert news
one (after making sure at least one side of the old ones is not connected.
I prefer to use a 2x6 cut to fit snuggly over the engine compartment on
top of the strut mounting area. [See Dick Riess' lift design in Special
Tools.] The 2x6 is positioned like a joist and a hole for a piece of threaded
rod is drilled near the center to line up with the lifting hook on the
front of the engine. Put a piece of threaded rod about 12-18" long
in place through the hole. Figure out a way to attached one end of
the rod to the lifting hook and slip a large washer and nut on the other
end. Then simply tighten the nut to raise the engine. Replacing
the mounts is then easy.
[Another Tip:] Instead of raising the
engine by using a board between the jack and oil pan , I cut an angle at
the end of a 2x6 and raised the engine at the front of the oil pan. The
angled part of the 2x6 was pressed against the oil pan bolts at the front
of the engine, the other end was square against the floor jack. I didn't
want to risk damaging the oil pan. I also had to use a small hydraulic
jack to help the engine raise straight. It worked fine and with new mounts
my brick is running smoother now than it has in 10 years.
How to Change the Mounts:
[Procedure from Christopher Ascoli] Using
the jack and wood block method should be sufficient for lifting the engine
to remove the mounts. I did this procedure just a month ago and it worked
My mounts were the hydraulic mounts. As
for tips, I have only 2. First and foremost, make sure you buy VOLVO or
comparable HYDRAULIC mounts. Second, I remember not being able to reach
all of the bolts from above which tie down the mounting bracket (that the
motor mount sits on ) to the car's frame. Chilton's made it sound like
all you had to do was unbolt the top and bottom of the mount and yank it
out. If you haven't done this before, you must:
remove the top nut on the mount
raise the engine (the bracket that sits on
the mount does not have to be raised all the way so it clears the top of
the bolt. you will remove the entire lower bracket with the mount so you
have some play)
I think you can get to 2 of the 3 bolts of
the bracket that the mount sits on, the last you'll have to get at from
underneath the car
once all 3 bolts have been removed, lift the
mount out (with the bottom bracket still attached) and you'll have access
to the last nut that connects the mount to the bottom bracket.
if you find that there still isn't enough
room to remove the mount, you can remove the engine top mount bracket (or
remove 2 of the 3 bolts and swing it out of the way) and then extract the
installation is simply the reverse.
[Procedure from Joshua Block:]
same as the drivers except you don't want
to mess with the upper bracket. It connects WAY too many things to be screwing
around with it. I didn't have touch the top bracket at all. This side was
definitely easier. You may have to reach 2 out of the 3 bolts from underneath
on this side. The job is not technologically challenging, but depending
on when the mounts were last changed, you could be in for some blood and
sweat. I'm sure the Arizona heat will not help your plight. Just be careful
not to strip the lower bracket bolts when removing (for obvious reasons),
and some anti-seize compound on them when they go back in could make the
next mount change a lot easier on you or the following owner. Good luck!
I hope this helps. The procedure is pretty
straight foward. Very little room for human error. Mainly a
Before you jack up the engine, unscrew the
top bolt on each motor mount. I also removed the bracket with each mount
due to clearance. The bottom nut on right side mount by the turbo was completely
unaccesible with the bracket attached to the crossarm. I took the left
bracket off because of clearance. If the mounts are OEM the nuts are on
rather tight. Have a piece of metal pipe to get extra leverage with your
socket wrench or use the muscleman wrench trick with two wrenches.
I used a 2x4 between my hydraulic jack and
the oil pan to protect it. Jack the engine up favoring one side. The engine
should lift off of the mount. Lossen the three nuts on the bracket. Remove
the mount and bracket together. Loosen the mount's bottom nut and remove
the mount from the bracket. (This was the hardest part on both sides) It
may be helpful to use a vice to hold the bracket while removing the nut.
Attach the new mount to the bracket using
anti-seize compound on the bolts. (Anti-seize can be purchased in a tube
at Pep Boys for about $3) Install the bracket and bolt it in.
Let the engine down making sure it sits on
the mount correctly. DO NOT ATTACH THE TOP NUT YET!
Jack the engine up on the other side. (repeat
Put the top nuts on both mounts. Make sure
everything is tightly attached. Enjoy the smoothness of your ride.
muscle job. --
Other Ideas to Help the Work:
[Tip from Don Foster] When
I do mounts, I offset the jack to favor the right side, and do the right
mount. Then offset it to favor the left side, and do the left mount. In
this way you avoid tugging on a good mount as you lift the motor.
As you lower the engine onto the new mounts, you may need to "persuade"
the stud into the bracket. Because of its angle, it doesn't naturally engage
with the hole.
[Tip from David Steffy] You
don't say whether you have a turbo. Our '88 is, so the left mount was easy
and the right was a very tight spot. I took the brackets off with the mount
in both cases, but didn't really need to for the left mount--just take
off the upper nut and jack away. On the right one, I had to move the oil
lines to get access to the bolts. Messy on my old gunky engine, a bit slow,
but not a bad job overall. Without the turbo it's probably a lot better.
[Accessing the Mounting Nuts: Dick Riess]
In my experience it is necessary to take off the belly pan to get at those
front nuts on the drivers side. You also will have better access to the
bolts, but a universal joint on your socket will help. I have had to attack
from the front of the mount by the power steering rack and also from the
rear. On the pass side, for me it helps to take off the oil filter
to get at things and you may as well take off top and bottom mount brackets.
Believe one of the bottom is bolted through the crossmember and you have
to unbold from under the car. Jacking up your engine a little at a time
helps access. When reassembling, tighten the mount to the bottom bracket,
but leave the top loose so you can move it around for alignment to the
Preventive Maintenance Tips:
[Tip from Ed Kucinski] Just a reminder,
when changing oil, keep the oil off the rubber motor mounts. Especially
when changing the oil filter, some tends to get down there. Wipe
it clean. Its the oil that deteriorates the rubber and speeds failure.
Failure. In the entire thread re: blown head gaskets,
there were a couple of really good answers on determining whether it was
blown or not. I liked Steve MacSween's suggestion of a chemical analysis
of the oil. However, there are times when the head gasket can be blown
WITHOUT exhibiting any of these types of visible symptoms (oil in the coolant
or vice versa). It all depends on where you have actually toasted the gasket.
There are actually several diagnoses that can be done on the car that will
nearly pinpoint the trouble spot. (And tell you if it is indeed a head
gasket or something else) The first is a carbon dioxide test performed
on the coolant in the radiator/cooling system. This little test easily
tells you if you are getting combustion by-products into the cooling system.
Again, there may not be any *visible* leakage but the excess CO2 in the
coolant is a tell tail sign. The most likely culprit of a "too high" reading
on this test is a bad head gasket. (This method does not necessarily indicate
the location of the leak though.)- The second, usually performed after
a "failing" CO2 test, is a leak down test of each of the cylinders. This
is *similar* in nature to a compression test but this actually will measure
close to the exact location of compression leakage in the cylinder. Often
times, what might be construed to be a head gasket leak could actually
be seepage past a bad valve guide/piston ring, etc. In this scenario, a
test of the motor oil (as suggested by Steve M.) will usually reveal inordinate
amounts of combustion by product in the oil. (Then again, if any of these
are bad, the head gasket's gonna be removed anyhow.
Note: the above two tests are generally
not shadetree mechanic things performed as the cost of the one time use
equipment can be prohibitive. Well equipped shops can handle these types
of tests. Sometimes it's worth it just to have a pro shop diagnose the
problem, even if you are planning to do the r&r yourself.
[Note 2:] There are several ways
to detect whether your engine's head gasket is OK. The best method
is to have a service shop, or a friend who owns a block test kit test your
system for a compression leak to your cooling system. If unavailable this
test kit can be purchased from a Snap On dealer or contact the manufacturer
for dealer in your area. This is a test unit and test fluid that changes
color with the presence of exhaust gas in the engine coolant. The
kit costs about $40 to purchase and is good for many tests.. Ask for either
Snap-On YA2000 "Head Gasket Testing Kit" or GA170B Block Combustion Leak
Tester Kit. The latter adds the ability to pinpoint which cylinder
is leaking. Another test that should be completed is a coolant system
pressure test Test your system for leaks with nine to twelve
psi pressure. It should not show any appreciable pressure loss within 5
Gauge Acts Oddly: Leaking Headgasket? [Query:] When I first get
going, the temperature gauge will get into the middle, and stay there
for few minutes. Next, it will rapidly shoot for the “red” zone.
It will do this in seconds. The moment the red zone is touched, the
gauge falls just as fast to the middle, where it will stay for duration
of the trip. Next day, same situation. Should I be concerned, and
replace the thermostat ?
[Response: Robert S.] You may have an
air pocket during startup due to leaking head gasket or antifreeze leak.
Try flushing cooling system to get junk out. Pressure test your cooling
system to eliminate the possibility of the blown head gasket. When
you first start your car leaking head gasket will introduce gas into the
head cooling space. It will replace fluid from the area. The thermostat
is closed so the gas has no place to go. The gas acts like an insulator
so it will delay heat transfer to the thermostat. But other parts of the
engine covered with the fluid blanket will heat the water up to the boiling
point. Finally engine is hot enough to cause thermostat to open and
let the gas go into the radiator. After the gas goes the overheated water
and that's what causes your needle to rise on the gauge. Further operation
is normal because thermostat is open and the gas goes to expansion tank
as soon as it gets into the system. You need to repair the leak as soon
as possible if that's the cause or you will end up with warped head due
to spot overheating. [Response 2: Art] I might add a note to suggest
you squeeze the radiator hose early in the warm up cycle. If it is a bad
exhaust leak it will have pressure long before the engine is warm.
Spark Plugs. [Query:] One plug is stuck and cannot be removed.
How do I get it out? [Response 1: Steve McChesney] Penetrating oil.
[Brickboard penetrating oil preferences: PB Blaster, Kroil, Liquid
Wrench, in order of effectiveness.] Soak the area, and run the engine.
Let the engine cool off, and soak it again before you go to bed at night.
Do this again and again and again. 30 or 40 times over the next few
weeks would not be excessive. No need to have the stuff dripping
all over, just use a little bit at a time. It's likely that the temperature
cycling and vibratiion of the engine, with gradual penetration of the oil,
will loosen the corrosion of the threads. The stuff is magic, but
only if you have plenty of faith and patience.
If the plug was cross-threaded, you have
a different problem entirely. See Spark
Plug Hole Re-Threading. The head will need repair. Typically
this mandates removal, but I have had good luck with high mileage cars
by going ahead and using an impact wrench, starting off at a low ait pressure,
and working upward as necessary. Again, liberal penetrating oil is
a help. If you are commited, the ceramic insulator can be broken
off the plug for better access. Once the plug is out, setting the
offending cylinder piston to BDC and filling the cylinder with a foamy
shaving cream will catch all the chips made when you helicoil -- or possibly
only re-tap if the threads are not too bad. Crank the piston back
to TDC slowly with a good shop vacuum covering the spark plug hole.
I always apply a thin coat of anti-sieze
compund to plug threads, especially when dealing with aluminum heads. [Editor's
Note: See Spark Plug Installationbelow
for warnings about this practice.] In addition, most
folks put in spark plugs WAY too tight. Check the specs, Volvo says
about 9 ft-lbs on the six and 18-ft-lbs on the four cyclinder engine. (700
[Response 2: Paul Grimshaw] I suspect
that jammed spark plugs would be a much more rare event if folks used a
bit of anti-seize compound [see Spark
Plug Installation below], started the plugs by hand (socket
& extension but no ratchet handle), and used a torque wrench to tighten
the plugs to specification.Strangely enough though, factory torque recommendations
are based on a dry fit (ie. no lubricant or anti-seize)??!*!
Should one use some type of lube on the thread, try backing off a couple
of pound-feet of torque to avoid stressing the thread in the cylinder head.
Heads with dirty or damaged spark plug
threads can be cleaned up with a thread chaser. Smear vaseline on
the chaser. Carefully thread the chaser in and out of the head. The
chaser will clean the threads and capture any metal bits or carbon in the
Plug Hole Re-Threading. [Query:] I finally changed
plugs in my aluminum-head B230F to find that my number two plug was somehow
cross-threaded by a previous mechanic ( the plug was tough to remove, and
the new plug tough to install.) Using a plug hole thread chaser did not
solve the problem. Any solutions? [Response:] The best repair is
to use a product called Time-Sert. This is an insert that can be installed
without removing the head and also is a quality, permanent repair. Check
with one of your local foreign repair facilities, they most likely will
have heard of the product and can turn you onto where to get it. You will
also have to have the kit of tools to install the sleeve. Kit consists
of drill bit to presize the hole, a countersink flycutter, step tap
to create the threads for the sleeve and a roll tap to install the sleeve.
The cost of the kit may exceed the justification to repair just 4 holes,
so you might just have someone do them for you.
Hints for Sparkplug Hole Re-threading.
[Tips from Larry:] Here are a couple of things to watch out for:
1. When you tap in the new threads, you'll
want to catch as many of the metal shavings as possible by completely packing
the tap with grease. Scrape the shavings off the tap several times and
re-pack with grease each time.
Blow out the cylinder with compressed air.
If you don't have a compressor, buy a can of "dust off" from a photography
store--it's used to blow dust off of negatives. It's important to have
#4 at the top of it's compression stroke--both valves will be closed, so
you're less likely to get metal shavings into the intake or exhaust manifold.
Clean the new threads VERY THOROUGHLY with
carb cleaner (toluene) and starting fluid (ether). The carb cleaner will
dissolve the grease and the starting fluid will wash away the carb cleaner
and evaporate completely. If the threads aren't clean, the cement for the
heli-coil insert won't adhere.
Plug Installation. [Tips from ACDelco] Use the following
four steps to properly install AC Spark Plugs:
STEP 1: Make sure that cylinder head threads
and spark plug threads are clean (figure 14). If necessary, use a Thread
Chaser and Seat Cleaning Tool.
STEP 2: Make sure that the spark plug
gasket seat is clean, then thread the gasket to fit flush against the gasket
seat. Tapered seat spark plugs do not require gaskets.
STEP 3: Use an AC Gap Guide to make sure
new spark plugs have the correct gap setting.
[Editor's Note:] Volvo B230F/T and B234: 0.028"-0.032" or 0.7-0.8mm
Volvo B280: 0.024"-0.028" or 0.6-0.7mm
STEP 4: Screw the spark plugs finger-tight
into the cylinder head. Use a torque wrench to tighten spark plugs following
manufacturer's recommendations. It is most important that spark plugs be
seated properly for correct heat dissipation properties. Seat the spark
plug too firmly and the shell could be stretched, allowing combustion blowby
to pass through the plug. It will be difficult to remove a spark plug in
this condition from the engine. Seat the spark plug too loosely and it
[Editor's Note:] Volvo B230F/T and B234: 18 +/-3 ft-lb or 25+/-5
Nm "not lubricated" per manual
Volvo B280: 9 +/-1.5 ft-lb or 12 +/- 2Nm "not lubricated" per manual
NOTICE: Do not use any type
of anti-seize compound on spark plug threads. Doing this will decrease
the amount of friction between the threads. The result of the lowered friction
is that when the spark plug is torqued to the proper specification, the
spark plug is turned too far into the cylinder head. This increases the
likelihood of pulling or stripping the threads in the cylinder head. Over-tightening
of a spark plug can cause stretching of the spark plug shell and could
allow blowby to pass through the gasket seal between the shell and insulator.
Over-tightening also results in extremely difficult removal.
Valves in 740GLE Head with Hydraulic Lifters. [Problem Diagnosis by
James Rothe] At about 90k miles, my 740 GLE started a recurring burnt valve
problem. Three times (!) did I have valve(s) replaced before we found out
what the problem was. I should add that throughout my ownership of the
car it has burned oil -- slowly, so that you could not see blue smoke --
but as much as one quart per 1000 miles. The previous owner
reports the same. The dealer said that was "within normal limits."
What we finally found out was that early
B234 engines, with their "hydraulic valve lifters", had an infrequent
manufacturing defect in which the holes for the valve guides were
made ever-so-slightly oval. The problem, as it was reported to me, is that
the hole in the head itself, into which the guides are pressed, was oval.
It's an infrequent defect that reportedly occurs in both 740 and 850 heads
with hydraulic lifters. That's a very different situation from having defective
valve guides or seals.This is not exactly a perfect fit for a circular
valve guide, so it allowed a small amount of oil to seep onto the valve.
The speculation is that this burned onto the valve, caking up the valve
with carbon deposits, and prevented the valve from properly seating. Without
proper contact with the cylinder head, the valve could not transfer its
heat to the head and it burned.
My mechanic, a family friend who works
as a mechanic at a Volvo dealership very nearby Volvo's North American
headquarters in Rockleigh NJ, found out that Volvo is aware of this problem
in the 89 740 GLE and in other Volvo engines with hydraulic lifters, like
the 850 series, but that "the problem is not statistically significant
enough to justify a [costly] recall campaign." Or so says Volvo Customer
We didn't find out about this manufacturing
defect until after two top-end rebuilds, by which time the car had over
120,000 miles on it. Needless to say, Volvo declined my request for
"goodwill" service. Part of their argument was that "this problem
usually shows up within the first 10,000 miles." My response was
"perhaps, but if it's been going through oil for all of it's life, and
that condition stops after the valve guide hole is corrected, doesn't it
make sense that this oil control problem at the valve guide would adversely
affect the valve, just like your 'statistically insignificant' manufacturing
defect is known to do?" I also added that I was the first owner to do extensive
hi-speed highway mileage with the car. The previous owner may have never
got the head as hot as I do every day. "It didn't matter."
They finally put it to rest by saying that
it may have been damaged or improperly serviced during one of the previous
head rebuilds. I can't say for sure that it wasn't, but I'll stand by my
mechanic's abilities. He's been a Master Mechanic for Porsche/Audi/VWs
for years, and has a similar history with Bricks. I can't say I blame them
for declining to service my car, but they did at least acknowledge that
there is a problem with the heads in the hydraulic lifter engines.
For those of you who have experienced similar
burnt valve problems to be able to check the valve guide holes in the cylinder
heads. A fix can be implemented, if the "oval shaped guide hole" is suspected,
by overboring the hole and installing oversize guides.
Head Valve Train Oil Holes. I decided to clean
the "basin" in the valve cover compartment; there are four compartments
and two holes (finger size) per compartment. Inside these little basins
& holes, the oil had hardened and coked up, I had to scrape it out
with a dental-probe type tool. At first I was amazed, but then I realized
that these little basins never drain. Every time you shut off the engine,
the heat from the exhaust (which is right under it) comes up and does a
little more cooking of what's there. I used a syringe to suck out the oil.
I couldn't get everything out because there is a lot of dirt - almost solid
particles that my syringe couldn't suck in, so I used a shop vacuum to
finish cleaning it. I attached a small plastic hose to the end of the vacuum
tube and wrapped it with a duct tape and it worked perfectly.
Adjustment on B230 Series. [Tips from John Kupiec]
Frequency of Valve Adjustment. [Query]
How often should the valves be adjusted on a B-230F non turbo and should
they be adjusted hot or cold? [Response: JohnB] They should be CHECKED
every 60K or so and adjusted as necessary. I've used synthetic oil
on both B230FT engines and haven't had to have either one of them adjusted
in 150K on one and 50K on the other. So check valve clearance
yourself with engine hot when you have to do a cam cover gasket replacement
(which works out to about every 3-4 years and 30-40K on my cars or when
I do a timing chain/seals replacement, whichever comes first) and adjust
as necessary. Changing shims is trivial with the IPD rental kit.
[Response: Paul Seminara] I have found that Volvo valve adjustments don't
"drift" much. Unless there is a serious wear issue, and after a good "initial"
adjustment, some cars have gone over 100K miles and the valve adjustment
is still in spec. [Response] You are correct in thinking that B230FT engines
rarely need valve adjustment. Valve adjustment on B230 engines is done
via shims. It is easily within your ability to check the valve lash on
your engine. All you need is a feeler gauge, a replacement valve cover
gasket (about $20 or so), some BF pliers and the procedure.
Valve Clearance Adjustment Procedure.
of valve lash check procedure on B230 engine appears below. While Volvo
says the procedure can be performed when the engine is hot, I am in agreement
with the late Joh Muir (How to Keep Your VW Alive...) who wrote that the
only way to get a correct reading on valve lash is to check the engine
when it is stone cold.
Remove spark plugs. Remove valve cover.
Use LARGE pliers (e.g, Channel Lock makes
a great set for this) to turn the engine clockwide. The grab point for
the pliers is the outside surface of the mount for the cooling fan on the
end of the water pump.
Timing order is 1-3-4-2. Number 1 is at the
front of the car, number 4 is back by the firewall.
Turn engine until TDC indicator on timing
gauge (down near the crankshaft pulley) is around zero degrees. Number
1 is at TDC when mark on crank pulley is at zero on timing gauge AND cam
lobes for number 1 point out and slightly upward in opposite directions.
Think perky ;-) and you'll get the idea.
With number 1 at TDC, use the feeler gauge
to probe the gap between the cam lobe and the lifter. Volvo says the valve
lash should be between .3 and .4 mm when the engine is cold. If a feeler
gauge setting of .4 won't go, and one of .3 will go easily, the valve lash
is within spec. If your feeler gauge doesn't have .3 and .4 mm, use what
you have, and interpolate accordingly.
Turn engine 180 degrees so that the cam lobes
from number three are perky and pointing in opposite directions. Repeat
step 5 for Number 3.
Repeat steps 5 and 6 for cylinders 2 and 4,
taking note of any readings that are out of spec. If they are out of spec,
use the feeler gauge to determine the actual gap.
Reseal valve cover, using new gasket.
If one or more of the valves is out of spec,
you will need shims. Some dealers and independent shops will sell individual
shims. Find a shop a give them your readings, and they should be able to
give you the correct shim. You will need a shim removal tool. KD sells
one for about $30. Or, you could have the shop replace the shim.
You may wish to re-tighten the valve cover
nuts after a few days. I find that doing so helps stop any leaks. Torque
on the valve cover nuts is not that high. 10-12 lb-ft should do it.
Adjustment Technique if No Shim Kit At Hand. [Great Tip from
Jim Bowers] I assume the technique is the same as on my former diesel.
Shims of different thickness set between the cam lobe and the top of a
tappet on the top of the valve stem & spring assembly and adjust the
clearance. Its important not to go too long as the valve seats usually
wear faster and reduce the clearance which will lead to burnt valves! A
shop assortment is very expensive at several $100!
Here is the technique I used.
First buy the valve depressor tool and the shim pliers from your Volvo
dealer. Then take off the valve cover and measure and record the clearance
between the cam lobe and the shim, (assuming you know how to properly set
the cam for this) Then using the tools, take out each shim in turn and
read or measure its thickness and put it back, also record these values.
Now put the valve cover back on using the old gasket for the few days you
will need to get the new shims. Use the data recorded to determine the
new shim value needed at each valve. (Always err on the loose side or more
clearance if you must err!) Compare the new determined shim numbers
to those available from other valve positions and allocate your existing
shims to as many locations as possible. The missing values are the ones
you need to order from your Volvo dealer along with a new cover gasket.
Once the new shims arrive, go back to the car and move the existing shims
to their new locations, install the new shims in the proper spots and save
the leftovers for some other time. The next time you can probably guess
which shims are likely to be needed and order them before starting the
project. Good luck. I got a lot of satisfaction in doing the job and saved
the cost of the tools the first time.
Adjustment on 95 960? [Query:] Seems to be some valve clatter
in my 960 wagon. It has 50 k on it. Do these engines need valve
adjustments? [Response: Zippy] No, hydraulic lifters as used in Volvos
are not adjustable. You might be hearing some lifter noise as the
lifters pump up with oil. I wouldn't worry about it as long as it goes
away once the engine warms up.
of Harmonic Balancer.
1. Operation and Construction
of Harmonic Dampener. [Tip from Tim] The front pulley on the
crankshaft is made up of three parts. The inner part is bolted to the crankshaft.
The center part is a rubber ring. The outer part is the one with the timing
marks and pulley cuts for the belts. These are all attached when it is
When this part fails, the rubber part becomes
dry, the two metal parts are then able to "slip" around this rubber part.
The timing marks are able to "walk" around the inner member. This does
not affect the timing, as the inner part is keyed onto the crankshaft.
Problem arises if you start to time the motor. The normal marks are then
chasing each other around the crank and make no sense at all.
You can hear a squalling from the pulley.
There can be a vibration from this part at times, cold start etc. If the
timing is not changed, you can wait for the part to fail to the point that
the belts to AC/PS and alternator all stop doing their thing. Another approach
is to just replace the part at the time you are already doing the timing
belt, seals, water pump and tensioner/idler. I know it costs more, but
are you in it for the long run or short run?
2. Symptom: Crankshaft Pulley
Shakes. [Query:] I've got a '85 760 Turbo with a B230 engine
and I've been noticing a rattling noise in the front of the engine. Upon
closer inspection, I saw that the crankshaft pulley seemed to be vibrating
somewhat and shaking intermittently while idling, in comparison to the
other pulleys such as the water pump and alternator. It appeared that the
rattling noise is linked to the vibration of the pulley. However with higher
RPMs, the rattling seems to go away. Currently I can grab the crankshaft
pulley with the car off and slide forward and back on the crankshaft with
my hand. There is about 5 mm of play in direction of the shaft forward
and back just applying hand pressure and with all the belts fully tightened,
much worse with the belts off. The metal portion doesn't move at all, its
just the pulley that’s moving. This results in its shaking during idle.
The center bolt is still there and tight so I guess it is the damper unless
anyone else has a suggestion. Or am I looking at the possibility of excessive
crankshaft endplay and faulty main bearings (the car does have over 120K
miles)? Or could it be just the pulley itself? [Response 1:
Burton] It's probably the pulley. It is a wear item, and I have replaced
a few on my cars. It's made by GM, and it has a rubber damping sleeve that
comes loose or otherwise goes bad. Usually it just allows the pulley
to spin on the shaft, making the timing marks inaccurate. I've located
the part $155 at the dealer (part num: 9135194) [Response 2: Don
Foster] Is the center bolt still there, still tight? Is the pulley actually
sliding on the crank, or has the pulley started to separate -- and you're
pulling the pulley apart? If the pulley is loose from the crank and spinning,
then it's likely the key is beat. The pulley will probably need to be removed
for repair (or maybe replacement) and to replace a battered key.
However, it sounds like you (and others) have it pegged -- unfortunately,
to a new front damper.
3. Symptom: Timing Marks Drift.
When the harmonic balancer fails, the timing marks drift. B230F's have
solid dampers, only the turbos have the two piece deal. The harmonic balancers
on both my 745T and 765T have a hard rubber cushion between the hub and
the outer grooved ring. Over time, this cushion will deteriorate -- the
rubber will dry out and crack, and will separate from the metal sections,
leading to a condition where the outer grooved ring will spin independently
from the hub. Once this occurs, it will have to be replaced -- for obvious
reasons. I had to do so shortly after buying my 765T. And from what I've
learned since, this is a relatively common repair on Volvos with 100k+
miles on the odometer. Thus, it's a good idea that one inspects the harmonic
balancer for signs of deterioration when the time comes for that 2nd timing
4. Replacement Tip [from Zippy]
Regarding overtightening of the harmonic balancer bolt, as a Volvo Master
Tech for 10 years, in all of that time I have seen one (1) ruined crank
and balancer due to improper tightening. As for using an air wrench
on the front crank bolt, that is the hard way to do it, the simple holding
tool Volvo has (PN 9995284 @ around $35.00 for those interested in making
the investment) is a much easier way to do it. Most harmonic balancer
failures are due to the rubber giving up, allowing the outer part of the
balancer to spin on the inner. The only fix is to replace the balancer.
It is a common repair on Volvos with ten years on the engine, regardless
Position on Re-installation. [Query:] I didn't mark the position
when I removed the flywheel to replace rear main oil seal. How do
I replace it? [Response: Abe Crombie] Turn the engine to #1 TDC (timing
marks in line on crank pulley to pointer on timing belt cover), then install
the flywheel so that the two rivet-like pins that are on flywheel inboard
of ring gear about 1+ inch are on the exhaust side of block roughly at
2 o'clock and 3:30 while the engine is at TDC.
You might find that at this position you will see a faintly stamped arrow
pointing at the crank sensor. Not all flywheels had this arrow for the
first couple of years, so you might not find it on yours. One bolt
hole in either direction puts them way out of this orientation.
The spot on edge of flywheel where the holed surface is interrupted will
be mostly lined up with starter when it is correct.
Shield Repair. [Problem: Cracked belly pan; they get brittle and crack
pretty easily at sub-zero temp. here in Ottawa. Repair or replace?] I have
had great success heat welding cracks in these things. I just refurbished
the one off my '84. I used a butane pocket torch and an old metal putty
knife to buffer the flame, heating the crack slowly and using the hot blade
to puddle and draw the plastic to the crack line. I also tried a regular
propane torch on real low, that also works. It's quite easy, no great skill
required. Do it outside though; it smells a bit like real hot wax. The
repair is as strong as original, if you do it from both sides. I was missing
a couple of corners and actually welded a couple of pieces in from an old
very cheap black plastic garbage pail, must have been the same stuff, as
it melted similarly, and was compatible. Don't know what it is, but it
has a low melting temp. and flows before it ignites. [Tip from
JoeB:] I cut pieces of galvanized sheet metal into the appropriate
shapes, and pop-riveted them into place. Then I drilled holes. The repair
is holding well!
Engine Splash Shield. [Tip:] A mechanic friend showed me a new
heavy duty variety he began stocking a few years ago. It is much
heavier gauge plastic than the original. Sorry, I don't remember
what they go for... The mechanic friend's name is Carl Drennen and
he is located in Ravenna, Ohio. SE of Cleveland and E of Akron
330-297-1297 I gave him a ring and he tells me they are sourced from RaMac
in Nevada and SAVE in California. Note: Both these suppliers do NOT sell
to the general public. They list as a belly pan speed fit heavy duty.
They are vacu-formed and have a reinforcing
rib in them... Both the 700 series and 200 series lists from $74.68 to
$78.04 Carl sells them for $50.00 and shipping costs... Shipping UPS would
probably be around $5 for most places in the continental U.S.
Mounted in Support Stand. [Qeury:] Ok, so its a basic question
but I would like hear from those who have placed their B21/23/230 in an
engine stand. Whats the best way to go about this? Can the threaded engine/bellhousing
holes support the weight of the engine? What about the aluminum reinforcing
bracket at the bottom? [Response 1: Dick Riess] I use an engine stand with
4 arms, two attatching at the top two holes where the bellhousing mounts
to the block and the bottom two at the lower end of the block. One goes
to a starter bolt hole and the other opposite side. Have to use nut-bolt
combos on the bottom two. This works nicely for me rebuilding all but the
clutch. You can do a complete engine with no problem re weight and balance.
[Response: John Laughlin] I usually put one starter bolt through the upper
starter bolt hole and attach a nut to that, then attach two bolts to the
top bolt holes on the block, and one to one of the right (passenger) side
bolt holes on the block. I've supported two B23's that way and they both
stayed in position.
FAQ for 7xx/9xx/90 Cars
Top of Page