Volvo Repair

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2001 Volvo V40 – Turning Death Traps Into Driveable Cars!


Sometimes, cars become so overdue on maintenance they become nothing short of a death trap. I wanted to post this job because I wanted to show our readers just how bad the brake system on this 2001 Volvo V40 was.

This customer rolled in the other day after getting a full inspection from another shop. The brake lines were leaking, and the customer was losing braking power while driving. That my friends- was an understatement. Losing power would be if you could brake using the brake pedal…


Keep in mind: All modern brake systems are hydraulic. This means your brake hoses are made to withstand a large amount of pressure, and in turn carry that same pressure over to your calipers. The pictures above show you just how bad the brake hose leak was. Leaking brake lines means no pressure. No pressure means ABSOLUTELY NO BRAKES. Our customer here must have been using the E-Brake…

Anyways. Our magicians (ahem, I mean mechanics) spent a little time with our poor Volvo and replaced all the brake hoses. They were all in the midst of going out anyways! Here’s some pictures of some sweet brake lines:

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The hose on the very bottom was the worst of all. You can see the residue left over from the brake hose leaking fluid!

Anyways. Lesson is: Don’t drive a car without brakes. E-brakes aren’t meant to be used everyday 🙂


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96 Volvo 850 – Engine Swap!


This physical beauty limped into the shop the other day. It was brought in on the back of a trailer, non running. Upon further inspection, Cylinders 3 and 5 had compression ratings of 0, and 90 respectively. To add salt onto the wound, this car had been driven with massive oil leaks, and a staggering misfire. When we checked the oil cap, the engine was dry like it had been running without oil for weeks!

We recommended an engine swap to the customer, and contacted our friends at Portland Imports. Portland imports is one of the city’s most dependable used engine dealers. These guys are pretty thorough, and we’ve had a long relationship with them.We picked up a motor with compression measuring 185 psi across the board!


This new engine is beautiful. With compression measuring at top performance, we’re going to have some happy customers! Lets start with the dis-assembly! Its a long process, so we’ll let the pictures tell the story 🙂


Our lead master mechanic detaching all the vaccum hoses and wiring.


In this particular Volvo, the transmission needs to come out of the car for the engine to come out correctly. Here’s a picture of the axles being taken out of the 850.


Engine crane is now taking the blown motor out.



Finally! Engine is out of the car.


New engine is now in! Gotta love the sight of a new motor in a car. Feels like a heart transplant if I had ever done one before! What did you miss you ask?

Well, if you really wanted to be bored with the details we spent a great deal of time tuning the new motor. A lot of the original parts we swapped from the old motor carried old symptoms. The idling problem originally reported by the customer was not only a blown motor but a bad MAF Sensor, and a plugged up fuel pressure regulator.

The emission systems between the new motor and the old motor we not the same, so we had to swap the turbo’s and bypass the new EGR system that was inside the new motor.

Here’s something to keep in mind for all you DIY’ers- If you are swapping the 850 2.3 motor, make sure you match the emission systems as well as the VIN code for the easiest plug and play job. You can get away with a different EGR system as long as the old motor doesn’t have the EGR system in play!


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Timing Belt Maintenance – 98 Volvo V70


Meet home girl- this beloved station wagon is a friend of the shop’s! Home girl was purchased from Columbia Autoworks back last year and is now coming back to visit. She had thrown a few misfire codes on the dash, and it was time to do her timing belt. This means timing belt, water pump, idlers, tensioners, cam seals, and pulley replacement. You do the job complete- and you won’t have to spend the money on labor getting back into the car!

Upon inspection we also saw some leaks around the transmission output shaft. This means the wheel, and CV axle has to come out too! Here’s a picture of the carnage 🙂



Now with the CV axle taken out, we can finally put the new seal in! Got to love the look of a fresh seal!


NO LEAKS! Its a good thing we found this leak in time. Output shaft seal leaks lead to vibration. And vibration leads to broken transmission!

Here’s a random picture of Tim diagnosing the misfire problem. Doesn’t look like much but those synapses are working!


After playing around with the engine for an hour or so, we found the misfire problem to be due to a vacuum leak in the turbo. That wasn’t much of a problem, so we’ll spare you the details of that.


A quick wrestle with the harmonic balancer, and our water pump is finally out!


New timing components! Look closer and you can even see the timing marks on point. She’s good to go another 90,000 miles!


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87 Volvo 240 DL – Tune Up Maintenance


We love these little hipster 240 DL’s. Any old car is basically a glorified go-kart with nicer seats, so they’re easier to work on. This one limped into the shop the other day with cold starting issues, and was misfiring all over the place! There’s not much with tune-ups if you’re reading our blog so we’ll spare you the redundancy. Here’s our master mechanic Tim, hunched over the hood.


When we finished the job, we replaced the spark plugs, wires, distributor cap, and ignition rotor. Even managed to change out the bad door handle on the driver side of the car!

Cake walk.


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1999 Volvo S80 – Suspension Repair Service

The S80 T6 was one of Volvo’s funnest cars made to this day. This car came with a stock twin turbo, and pushed close to 270 horse power. A lot of muscle for any consumer class sedan in that era.

Needless to say, I’ve always wanted to work on one of these Volvo’s. We finally got the chance to repair one of these the other day. She was in sad shape. Broken driver side window. Cruddy brakes. Loose tie rod ends. Power door locks made a hideous buzzing sound every time you turned the key within the door. All 4 struts/shocks were toast. The strut mounts chattered so badly, you couldn’t hear yourself think. And a driver side bearing that would vibrate going faster than 45.

Did I mention no AC, Defrost, or Heating? Yep. The AC blower was out, making this car into a small condensation box of danger.

But, here at Junkyard Revival we like doing things right. So we fixed EVERYTHING. $2300 dollars worth of Volvo repairs. All for a price lower than any Volvo mechanic in town. Wanna Find out how low? BRING US YOUR CAR.


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Disassembly & Tim putting the front struts into the strut clamps.


Old Vs. New Strut Mounts. See the different in the hole size? Its the difference between a rough and loud ride, and a smooth and quiet one!

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Prepping the new front brake pads. See the difference in width?

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Back shock assembly. Love seeing new parts go in!


Front struts in!


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Volvo S80 Coolant Leak Repair

What a mighty sad Volvo. I received this picture from my friend a few days back. It looked like the car had wet itself from the sheer fear of facing the road.


This, leak had persisted from the day he had bought the car. It leaked out 4 – 5 quarts of coolant every few days. But this isn’t something our shop couldn’t handle. We had the customer dump in a small container of UV dye into the cooling system and waited to see the results.

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Gotcha. See the florescent link that is leaking out of the coolant hose? That’s the coolant the S80 was leaking so politely while parked! I love using the UV system. It makes us feel like space age detectives from the FUTURE! Anyways. Onto fixing it.

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98 Volvo V70XC – Maintenance & Repair EXTRAVAGANZA!

You see these cars all over Portland! One of my favorite models Volvo makes- the 98 Volvo V70XC (Cross Country). Plush interiors, heated seats, and a turbo that still feels strong 15 years later. Did I mention all wheel drive?

This car was purchased used from a private party. All the major components look great, but the car was way behind on maintenance. In fact it was so behind on maintenance, we had to dedicate 2 days worth of time to get it back to factory running condition. We love challenges 😉 Here’s the repair/laundry list: transmission fluid service, bevel gear service, breather box service, oil change, left front CV axle, 2 oil cooling lines, back brakes, emergency brake tuning, air filter, 6 vacuum hoses exchanged, coolant change, and 2 tailgate struts.

I’m surprised I remember all that!

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New Project: 1997 Volvo 850 T5

Its been a slow month since the Christmas epidemic started spreading. Sales have definitely taken a 100% hit this month, which I don’t know if it should be taken as a sign for the beginning of the end or a blessing in disguise. I’m going to take it as a blessing since it was our shop’s first month opening. My normal volumes would have caused a total sh*t show!

Anyways. In the haze of endless hours of TV watching and feeling like I am doing absolutely nothing with my life, I found our next project car. Shes a little rougher than I usually buy them, but boredom was getting to the best of me and I decided not to pass it up. The body is pretty straight but there are a few things I feel like our customers would definitely appreciate when fixed.


The interior is pretty trashed. The seats are torn up, and the steering wheel leather is starting to peel. I also found out later (after driving it home to the shop) the odometer was broken as well.


When I found the car, the engine was making a dramatic show of scary noises. All of which, came from the AC compressor since the bearings had broken causing the metal to scrape incessantly. A quick 10 minute test drive with the defrost on yielded an air compressor so over heated it glowed red! Did I mention it also has two flat tires? The post examination wasn’t exactly good news either – the turbo was leaking oil and it looks like we need 4 new struts. Its a good thing we just so happened to have a donor car on site!


Having a donor car will cut our material expenses down to nothing 🙂 We lucked out to find that this junker Volvo was the same year and model – without the high compression turbo in our project car. It looks like we have about 9 hours of work cut out for us, but I’m excited to see this car finished. It will be virtually unrecognizable once we’re finished. Who knows – maybe after we’re done, we’ll throw a new coat of paint on her and get rid of these little rock punctures…


Stayed tuned! More pictures to come 🙂


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Our mechanics did it! 1998 Volvo V70 XC

Hello world! This is our first post as Junkyard Revival rolls out its first finished product: 1998 Volvo V70 XC Turbo! We are excited to write about this car – not only because it’s our first accomplishment as a new team, but this car has been a personal favorite for quite sometime. Here is the story behind it.

I found this car at a dealership through a private seller. Approaching this car was like walking up to my first high school crush! I’ve been reconditioning and fixing up cars for a while now, but never thought I would ever have the cash to get my hands on one of these. Retail price for one of these cars run around $3500, and buying one in bad condition alone will run you around $2700. I had the chance to purchase this car at a steal of a price, but I had to swallow a good bit of risk to do so. The car had a broken fuel pump, and a missing center drive shaft. Needless to say, the car wouldn’t start. Purchasing a used car is pretty low risk if you know what you are doing but if you cant test drive it, you have no way of telling if you’re buying yourself a money pit. The good thing is the owners kept extensive maintenance records, and majority of the care was provided by the dealership. Despite the non-working condition, the maintenance history had me sold and I bought the car.

After an extensive look through, our mechanics deemed it a great find. The turbo under the hood wasn’t leaking, the head, block and valve cover looked intact. Even the suspension looked tight! It was time to shop for parts – one of my favorite perks to my job. Why would you ask? Because me shopping for parts means saving money. The dealership had quoted the previous owners a lofty $1200 to fix the fuel pump, and another $700 for the center drive shaft totaling $1900!! After a few days of searching I found the replacement parts for less than $350.

Its a good thing our mechanics have the same obsession I do in fixing old cars. Once we got a hold of the parts, we had the Volvo up and running in half a days time. The center console of the car was dismantled as well, so I put a little time in and put it back together. After that, we took it to the wash and had the inside detailed.

Behold. Our first finished product! Tell us what you think.



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