Iím new to Volvos and to the forum, though Iíve sought advice from many like it regarding other mechanical frustrations. I also have a lot of questions. Brace yourselves.
I purchased a 2002 V70XC about a week ago. I know that the 01/02 models are the black sheep of the P2 cars, but I took my chances. I got what appeared to be a screaming deal on this one from a mechanic in Seattle.
It was a one-owner (dentist) car that munched some valves when the timing belt broke at 121K miles. Other than the timing belt, all maintenance appears to be good. The transmission doesnít do any ďclunkingĒ shifting through the gears at a standstill, and the only way to get any observable flare is by driving up a pretty darn steep hill under pretty heavy acceleration. Body, interior, and amenities all look and function beautifully.
So the mechanic found a used engine with only 80K miles on it and dropped it in. With the swap, he installed brand new engine mounts, water pump, PCV breather box, serpentine and timing belts, thermostat, temp sensor, plugs, and two of the ignition coils. He also drained and filled the tranny and changed all other fluids. And he sold it to me for $7000.
Problem: That was a week ago. Since then, Iíve been into the dealer service department three times.
First visit occurred when the #3 ignition coil cracked. I was at the mercy of the dealership since I was 200 miles from home with only 80% of an engine, so that cost me $400.
I also had the annoying ďgas cap looseĒ message followed by the more-annoying check-engine light, which got fixed over the course of visits to the dealership. Smoke test revealed a tiny pinhole in one of the hard-lines near the fuel tank. Diagnosis and fix cost me $200.
Neither item seems to indicate any negligence on the part of my mechanic. The dealership (Sandberg NW in Seattle) said that the engine installation looked like it had been done well.
Tonight I started getting another misfire. Itís only occasional, and it cropped up only after about 30 miles on a 55mph highway. The engine misses sporadically at idle and under throttle just before a downshift, around 1900-2000 RPM. On the drive back home along the same highway about 2 hours later, I didnít feel a single misfireÖ. (?!?!?!)
Iím thinking another coil. The fact that it was inconsistent and only occurred with a nice hot engine suggests some insulation breakdown to me. No Check-Engine light came on, so I canít pull any codes.
So my questions areÖ. (sorry for the long-winded opener):
Does this sound like a reasonable diagnosis? I think I may just replace the two remaining old coils with parts from FCPGROTON to cover my bases.
Is there some more-sinister underlying problem that could be killing ignition coils? I can think of a bad ground, but itís not to hard to ground stuff when the unibody is bolted to literally EVERYTHING.
Should I heckle my mechanic? I still canít think of a reason that I should blame these issues on him. It seems to be my own bad luck, but I canít afford much more bad luck.
Will a generic OBDII code reader work for main systems? Say, for identifying bad ignition coils?
AND, is there a repair manual available? I found the Haynes guide for the V70 family, but Iím not sure whether the exclusion of the AWD components makes it uselessÖ
Iíd love to delve into this machine myself to save some money, but I need to get acquainted first. I usually just work on old motorcycles, boats, and cars that donít thwart common code-readers.
Thanks a ton!