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Please Advise on volvo 740

hateithateit Posts: 1
edited July 2014 in Volvo
I have a 1992 Volvo 740 WAgon with 165,000 miles on it. This car is used for about 300 miles weekly taking several children to various activities. It is used up steep canyon roads several times daily due to the fact that we live in malibu with many canyons. This car seems to require various kind of maintenance and/or repair every 2-6 weeks which takes a day or two to do at a cost of $150 to $400 and we must rent a car when it's being serviced. We just found out we're having a transmission problem that cost up to $1,500 to fix. The car has stopped working in traffic and get's about 16 miles to the gallon. I'm very concerned about saftey with kids the primary riders in the car. The Aamco dealer says everything else is fine and it's a good car. My question is, at this point, would it be a better decision to use the money and purchase another used volvo wagon, a later model after 1995, that has less mileage, will need less maintenance, have better gas mileage, and more dependability so the although we'll need to pay on a monthly loan, it will still work out better than constantly fixing the 740. Since you all are 740 experienced owners, thought you'd have good advice. THANKS SO MUCH!!!!


  • 1. With a few assumptions and some basic math, the car cost you $150 to $800 per month to operate.

    2. The trans will cost $1500, the car is worth maybe $1000.

    3. The car no longer works in traffic. So unless you are the only one on the road, your out of luck.

    4. If the car is in the shop every 2-6 weeks, how can the mechanic say everything else is fine (from his point of view it is secured income)?

    Volvos are great cars, they are expensive to work on. The older ones have their own little quirks (there are a number of web sites that will advise you of these). From what you describe, I would move on. But be aware, the 95, 96, 97, 98, etc. all have issues you may need to address; ABS Module, AC issues, etc. Do your homework.
  • Hi,

    As a very fresh member I just put one post in this 740 electric gremlin discussion, thinking that I was replying to a message from two days ago, but it was a year and two days ago... so this time I will be very short:

    Find a pre 1990 Volvo 740. Avoid old cars with ABS. Or, import a good 740 Automatic from The Netherlands and use the transmission only (I guess engine / complete car can not be used due to different regulations for exhaust emissions, but it would be worth to check, maybe it may go like oldtimer...) Very good Volvos 740 can be found over here for few hundred EUR.

    Regards from Den Haag, The Netherlands
  • I recently had the timing belt on my 740 replaced. I also had them replace all of the other belts. After about three weeks the alternator belt just disappeared, no idea where it went. I went to the auto parts store and bought a new one. It is too loose, how do you adjust this belt. I can't find any place to adjust it at all. Any one have any ideas. How about you Den Haag you seem to be pretty knowledgeable. Can you help me out.
  • Hi all.. just looking for some help. I have a 93 740 that runs great no check lites are on ..reverse is fine.. car has 126.000 miles... trans serviced since slippage. speedo is working ..this came up after i went to store came out backed up put in drive wont shift out of first..kick down cable appears working...........fuses? not really sure where to start.. this trans was perfect till other day Thanks for reading
  • I have a 1990 Volvo 740 GL wagon with over 100K on her - dependable and with the usual quirks (yay no speedo!) Yesterday, I had to take her on a business trip that was roughly 50 miles on 4 lane highway. As I was reaching my destination, I came off the 4-lane onto 2-lane highway and stopped for a red light. At this point, the car started to run rough (with vibrations) and a bit throaty. At first I thought I had blown my exhaust somewhere. I managed to get to my appointment, then limped her home. While doing this, I noticed two things - one, the throatiness was directed inside the car, not out, as I could tell from the reflective sounds off other cars and highway barriers that I wasn't sounding like a tank to everyone. The other was that the sound could be heard even while cranking the starter. So, today, I put her up on a pair of ramps and looked under her front end.

    I did not find any exhaust leakage, which was a relief, as I had that replaced just under a year ago. But I did find one odd thing that I'm not sure about, and could use an answer for...

    Am I supposed to be able to see my torque converter spinning, or is there supposed to be a cap over that 2" x 3" square hole I found there? It looks like there was something there, but I can't tell.


  • scot6scot6 Posts: 1
    I have attempted to remove a loud brake squeal in a 1988 Volvo 740 by replacing pads with a "medium grade" quality pad (Raybestos), turned the rotors, applied new lubricant to the rear of the pads, and insured that the pads fit tight in their seats. Still squeals (more like a screech) when dry or wet, usually only under 15 mph. I have been advised to replace with the the original parts.

    Any suggestions? Thanks in advance

  • That is exactly what I had to do with my 740 wagon, and it did do the trick. Oddly, I found that Volvo pads are reletively inexpencive, but soft, so they wear down a bit quicker than others. But if that keeps my beastie from waking the dead each time I stop, so much the better.

    Now if someone would just answer my question about that torque converter hole...

  • 278278 Posts: 1
    your rear brakes are missing the shims. the shims go between the brake pad&caliber piston check your repair manual
  • Hi there, I have a '90 740 with 167k miles on it. In the year I've had it, I've put 25k onto it. It runs like a dream and has not given me any problems. Does anyone know what the service schedule is like on these cars and when I should have a minor/major service done?

  • inesteininestein Posts: 1
    Hello I had the same thing happen to my 90 740 vibation on the inside of car and vibration when turning the starter over... any help will be apreciated
  • sdibble1sdibble1 Posts: 1
    I've got "90 740 GL, non-turbo. everything runs and works great until the summer heat in Phx, Az. Then, intermitant shut down of A/C, lights, radio, windows and engine begins to run rough, also, all the warning lights on the dash come on. Shut it down and alls well for another couple days. The battery and alternator checked good but everything was working when I had it checked. Is there a diode or resistor somewhere that is wearing out due to the heat?
  • Hi guys:

    Back in June, I purchased an '87 740GLE turbo wagon w/232k miles...on the long drive home, it kept overheating and the water pump blew, so it was replaced. But, overheating and loss of fluid in coolant chamber persisted. Upon further analysis, the mechanic discovered water in the engine; so replaced head gasket, had the head machined as it was warped; flushed the engine twice and put it back together.

    Drove it "gently" but fluid still "disappearing"; no visible leaks externally. A second mechanic then took hoses off which connect the coolant chamber to the radiator and engine; did a pressure test and they held water, so to speak!

    Just yesterday, took the Volvo on a 2hr round trip; had to refill fluid 3-4 times; but it never indicated on the dash display it was overheating. About an hour after being on the freeway, a significant loss of power occurred, the thermostat pegged into the red zone! The car shuddered a bit and then died. Upon checking under the hood, the coolant chamber was bone dry and oil was splattered all over the engine and hood. Tried to re-start without success. Then had it towed.

    Anyone out there had similar experiences? Why/how is water getting into engine?
    I am really getting frustrated!!

    A second question for y'all...the mechanic who's working on it is lusting after the turbo...he's even offerred to trade out any work he does in exchange. So, would removing this device adversely affect the engine? not that i need the power and speed (am also getting crappy mileage!), but are there modifications on the engine to support the turbo which, if removed, could compromise its performance?

    Please at my wit's end!!

    Namaste, graci, muchas gracias,
    Suzan :sick:
  • There is an adjustment screw on the alternator assembly, which is located on the passenger side of the car. General, you loosen the big nut on the slider using a metric socket, and use another smaller socket to snug up the belt by turning the adjuster nut by the fender. Righty-tighty, lefty-loosey is the mnemonic as you turn the ratchet. Metric sockets only will fit. I have a set of them and a set of metric open-end and box wrenches. Good investment. Be sure to re-tighten the big nut after the belt is snug. Don't over-tighten. Belt should have about 1/8" of play when you are finished. Too much play and you could destroy the alternator by ruining the bearings.
  • I am pretty sharp on do-it-yourself repairs, especially electrical trouble-shooting. This one, however, is perplexing.
    My car came back from the shop after some fuel system work, and the central locking only works on the driver side door and the tailgate on my 740 wagon. Aahhah, I said to no one in particular, it must be the relay. The relay diagram for the 740 shows the central locking relay next to the power window relay in the left front of the relay rack. Removed it. No change. Removed the relay NEXT to it, which the diagram shows as an empty space. No central locking at all. Mechanic says the solenoids are shot. Three at once?
    Anyone have this problem, or know the relay number for central locking?
  • having trouble shifting in overdrive , replaced relay , new button , checked solenoid with wire directly from battery , checked current plug which plugged into solenoid with every thing engaged, with 12 volt tester will not lite up ,, where does wire go for current thank you
  • When I start this vehicle it sounds like its flooded, & it always feels like it's flooded while driving.
    The check engine light is on, but I do not know how to retrieve the codes.
    What would be the first step ,or the first things I should look for.

    Thank you
    Steve C.
  • I turned on my rear window wiper this morning, and it went one-half of a cycle and stopped. Thereafter, my brakelights have ceased to function. I've checked every fuse, all intact. Any suggestions? Thanks
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    Sounds like you lost the electrical connection to your tailgate. Look for a crimped/cut wire when you open it... or it may have developed a short within the tailgate.

    kcram - Pickups/Wagons Host
  • Thanks, turned out to be a wiper motor failure that blew out the "bulb integrity relay." Have you heard of this, or did I get ripped off? Thanks again, Davy
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    It's certainly reasonable considering the wiper motor may have sent a spike when it blew.

    kcram - Pickups/Wagons Host
This discussion has been closed.