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Thread: 1997 Volvo 850, new old friend

  1. #41
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    I just find it slightly funny to see a "beater" Volvo. They're considered to be a somewhat premium car in the US, and the notion of taping a key fob to a key chain and using blue-tac to fix rattles would probably make people's heads explode. I realize its not some exotic import for you though. Here if you're driving a European car its assumed you have too much money and/or poor judgement because obviously all Euro cars are expensive and unreliable.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  2. #42
    I post a lot...
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    My late Grandma drove a Volvo for 1 year due to all of the problems and what tore it for her is when the Transmission went kablooy on the road when she was going home from the Beauty Salon with my sister. She went to driveing GM's for the rest of her life.

  3. #43
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73 View Post
    I just find it slightly funny to see a "beater" Volvo. They're considered to be a somewhat premium car in the US, and the notion of taping a key fob to a key chain and using blue-tac to fix rattles would probably make people's heads explode. I realize its not some exotic import for you though. Here if you're driving a European car its assumed you have too much money and/or poor judgement because obviously all Euro cars are expensive and unreliable.
    I found it amusing that for many of you here, these panthers are the beaters, the daily drivers and generally quite cheap cars but built like tanks, like older Volvos (definitely to lesser extent vs Fords). Boxes not so much since they're old, but are they old enough to be considered classic over there?
    Volvo 850/V70 and V40/S40 (you never got those) are probably the least expensive and least appreciated Volvos still available. Probably a quarter of my uni parking lot are Volvos.

    240s and 740/760s are still the cheapest way to sideways during the winter, though they aren't depreciating anymore. Also Mercedes W124s, 190Es and BMW E36/E46, young guys' favourites. An 18 y.o hooning in a '03 BMW, welded diff, bent fenders and steel wheels? Yeah probably not in the States lol.

    I actually don't know if we have anything comparable to what a Volvo is over there. Yuppies drive new-ish BMWs, Audis or Porsches/Teslas. Newer Mercedes' are more to the older, wiser folk
    The most common "american" cars here by American manufacturers are probably Sebrings and Dodge Avenger/Nitro/Caliber. All considered cheap crap.
    Sometimes I see some new style Cadillacs, Chevy Vans and new-ish pickups. (a fully loaded 2020 Silverado 2500 w/ tax is about 100 000- 110 000)
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  4. #44
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    I had three Volvos. All the 240 series. Great cars except for electrical problems ! Those were tough durable cars. I was thankful that I had access to a Volvo only wrecking yard in Sacramento Ca. Those people knew what you needed and had most everything. I still think Volvos are a good car. I would not want to keep a new one over five years though. Just like most vehicles now. Expensive to fix.

  5. #45
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Dash lights and other backlights (heater, gear selector, switches) went out completely.
    This time they won't come back no matter how much I smack the dash or how much I fiddlefuck the dimmer switch.

    Hopefully it's the dimmer switch that went kaputt, those are cheap.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  6. #46
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    Just my luck, I had to drive at dark just the next day the dash lights went.
    It wasn't even remotely dark and I couldn't see my speedo at all.
    No worries! I hit a pothole in the highway and the lights came back on.
    Even the other half of the trip computer came back a few km later.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Mint! Almost...
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  7. #47
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    So, last night I was on a joyride with a couple friends.
    A terrible, slightly sweet burnt smell, I stopped to check things out. Milkshake on the dipstick...
    I drove it a short bit to a friends place.

    Today, I had it towed home. The oil barely reaches the dipstick anymore and the stuff is almost like liquid mud. I'll drop the oil once I have time off, probably next weekend.
    I'll be driving my parents SLK again...
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  8. #48

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    The newer Volvos aren't the older Volvos, that's for sure.

    I've been keeping out of this thread as I'm not a fan of the post-240 Volvos. I'd love a 164; I've got a 1965 122 4-door as an ongoing project.

  9. #49
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    I don't know if I've been tripping or something.
    I did drop the oil today anyways, it's just "regular old black oil" nothing to it. I have genuinely no idea what happened last night.
    It was quite low though, I last checked the level about 3 weeks ago, it was fine?? Oil pan etc is dry on the outside, no evidence of a large oil leak.

    If it blows up catastrophically on the highway tomorrow, I'll be sure to mention it
    "The red brick of bad luck"
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by bgreywolf View Post
    The newer Volvos aren't the older Volvos, that's for sure.
    Ah, you prefer them oooold Volvos lol. Many say the best Volvos are RWD, I'd be inclined to agree. Then there's the era of "yeah that's a good car, them Volvos are safe". Then the 2016- or whatever chinese redesign lineup, that ruined Volvo's for me. They look sharp, but it's as if they tried too hard and in result, got a boring and sterile car, just like the newer germans.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  11. #51
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    You may have a bad head gasket or a cracked head/block is the worst senario I am thinking of so just be ready for the worst.

  12. #52
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    Drove about 110km today. Seems fine. Runs smooth, temps are fine, got heat and no extra sounds.
    I can only guess what actually happened that night, maybe some condensation pocket in the oil, the oil I removed was super dark, almost black, slightly cloudy. Not sludgy though. And boy was it low.

    For a fact I know that this engine's PCV is totally fuckered. That causes oily leak on top of the engine and visible vapours coming from the dipstick tube and oil cap when opened. Also the crusty stuff on the dipstick is most likely caused by that.
    Also the engine sips some coolant, very slight, I've added a couple desiliters at most. I'm pretty sure it only consumes it during cold starts, the car smokes quite a bit when cold, it's a slightly sweet smell when well below freezing.

    I'll get the oil + filter changed properly soon. I didn't change the filter and put in some cheap gas station brand oil.
    The old oil was super black, some years on it definitely.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  13. #53
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    lack of pcv and cold weather can make for condensation inside an engine. Temp swings, condensation forms, and with no airflow it just collects in a high area like the top of the dipstick or under the fill cap.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  14. #54
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Finally tackled the horrendously squealing blower motor today, I learned that the bearings are actually open so I just lubricated them. Definitely not a long-term fix but I avoided buying the 60 part this time.
    I used oil on one of the 2 bearings, wd-40 on the other. The salad spinner is a slight interference fit on the blower motor shaft, and I'm definitely not going to try and punch off the 23- year old plastic fan from the rusty shaft, so I just sprayed a bit of wd on the fan end bearing.

    Interestingly, this car does not have a front passenger airbag, except for the SIPS airbag. From what I read, it's standard equipment in most markets, maybe it's a scandinavian thing? This car was bought new in Finland.

    Anyways, the blower doesn't squeal anymore, we'll see about tomorrow (102% confidence)
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  15. #55
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    hydraulic oil is a better motor lube. it will stay put nicely and its the right weight. Jack oil, power steering fluid, or trans fluid will also do in a pinch. Motor oil can work but you want the thinnest stuff you have available.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  16. #56
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    We'll see how it holds up.
    The motor has squealed for almost as long as I've had this thing, recently it just has gotten pretty much constant. I don't know how long the bearings are going to last, the blower motor was absolutely positively original. Listening closely, the bearings do make a bit of noise after lubricating.

    Somebody recommended lithium grease, but I used what I had, this isn't that important to me. WD-40 probably won't last as long as the oil, whatever.
    If it starts making annoying noises again, I'll just replace it.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  17. #57
    Goal was 'giving back', done by 2020.
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    If you used a small amount of WD-40 and it got some old lube to act like lube again, you might be okay. If you flushed out all the old lube, you might want to try some proper lube before giving up. Also, if your motor has an opening that allows you to clean the commutator that the brushes ride on, you could try cleaning that. It's one of those "can't hurt" things that might provide a benefit.

    2000 Grand Marquis LS HPP, a hand-me-down in 2008 with 128,000 km; 175,000 km as of July 2014
    mods: air filter box 'tuba', headlight relay harness, J-mod (around 186,350 km), 70mm throttle body, KYB Gas-A-Just shocks, aluminum driveshaft, ARA3 PCM

  18. #58
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IPreferDIY View Post
    If you used a small amount of WD-40 and it got some old lube to act like lube again, you might be okay. If you flushed out all the old lube, you might want to try some proper lube before giving up. Also, if your motor has an opening that allows you to clean the commutator that the brushes ride on, you could try cleaning that. It's one of those "can't hurt" things that might provide a benefit.
    The blower motor looks like this:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I do not know much about electric motors.
    I'm not really worried about it's longevity, but the squealing is what I don't want to hear. Removing it is a fiddly job to do, but not that hard. For the money that a new one costs, I can't really be arsed to take the motor in and out that many times.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

  19. #59
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    Motors like that have sleeve bearings, which is just a fancy way of saying a hunk of bronze with a hole in it. Its usually an oil impregnated material, so its porous and often there is a felt packing around it that serves as a reservoir. Eventually it runs dry, the bearing gets hot, then whatever lube is still inside cooks out. Sometimes you can just re-oil it, sometimes the pores just end up varnished over so it doesn't hold the new lube. If it starts howling again soon, the bushings are clogged or the felt has disintegrated.

    They are not intended to use grease though, just light oil.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  20. #60
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Blower motor has worked fine so far.

    Today I oiled the throttle cable, since it started getting stiff again. Lasted way longer than I expected.
    Having the hood open on a windy street made it pretty much a sail, either tried to squish me or yanked the car slightly back so the oil dropped everywhere but the right place lol.

    Also repinned the trailer connector on the car, was quite crusty and trailer lights started working a bit intermittently. Parents have been overhauling their yard, so I've hauled a dozen or so loads of trees, branches, stumps, two loads of paving stones and sand. The car definitely didn't appreciate the approx. 700 kg of stones + a bunch of other junk in the trunk. Completely floored going up a hill and barely keeping speed.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS
    1997 Volvo 850 GLE Estate

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