Volvo V70 T5 engine mess

Messages
40,829
Location
Great Lakes
V70 T5 sludge problem So, everyone (including me) thinks the use of mineral oil at 7.5K mile intervals caused problems in this turbo-charged Volvo engine. This is probably true, but just for the sake of argument, what other factors could have been responsible or contributed to this? I think we've seen a few UOAs of mineral oil in turbo applications and while they didn't look great, they didn't look terrible either. Of course, we haven't seen a history of 50K+ miles on such oil... Any thoughts? You can see mine in the link above. [Wink] I'm just glad it's not my car...
 
Messages
47,823
Location
Everson WA - Pacific NW USA
Wow. Not necessarily a sludge prone engine, but I recommend syn even in the non-turbo white block Volvo's. I'm almost, about sure that, and sort of have doubts, that with some knowledge of this engine and lubrication.....well that even the best dino oils, in the NON-turbo version, with highway miles, that you could do 7500 mile intervals with dino. These folks violated about all these doubts. Sludge. They MAY have legal ground.....but....they better have something in writing.
 

ALS

Messages
1,862
Location
Pittsburgh
This exact post was over at Turbobricks. I called the service manager at my dealer and read the post to him. He couldn't believe what was happening. He recommended that she call Volvo customer relations. He felt she would have no problem getting the problem taken care of. He did say one thing about the V70 T5 motors. They have never seen a Turbo or sludge problem except when the oil wasn't changed at 7,500 or less miles. He noted one Cross Country that was in that was sludged up but the oil hadn't been changed for over 12,000 miles.
 
Messages
526
Location
Manitoba Canada
Hmm. I'm still amazed a person will purchase a very expensive car then run a cheap "starburst" certified oil in it. The SAE J300 specs and API certification specs are remarkably lame: in the test the oil is allowed to thicken +275%, boil off +25%, and sludge of 15% IS allowed to form. The big problem here is that the oil companies can dictate standards, especially the API, which are "lowest common denominator" or very poor. Common sense works here: how can a .99 / qt oil be certified to the SAME specs as a $4.99 / qt oil?? In Europe, the ACEA sets much higher oil standards. No surprise as the car makers themselves set the test standards, not the oil companies. Thus you have strict standards such as ACEA A3 and A5, and the B4-02 spec. VW in particular has their seemingly endless VW 500.x, 502.x, 503.x, 505.x, and 506.x specs. Let's not forget BMW's LL-01 and the Mercedes Benz 229.x series. There is no Magnassun Moss Warranty Act in the EU, so car makers can dictate terms regarding an exact oil spec. This really limits your choice, but you can also expect an oil meeting those specs to reliably perform. OCI's in Europe are far longer than here, and their cars seem to hold up better due to the better oil specs. Especially for a European car, I'd run a motor oil meeting or exceeding the ACEA A3 and A5 specs. That limits your choice to high-end synthetics, but that's cheaper than a new motor.
 
Messages
8,756
Location
RI
Sound to me like a problem with the owner! A little common sense, and not trying to save a buck on maintenance, when paying that much for a new car, would go a long way in preventing future repair costs. The owner got what she deserved. Is a $1000 a bit cheap for new turbo and installation?? Did I read something wrong? Brand of oil and service location? weight? Did the owner run the car for 7.5k miles without ever checking the level and topping off? Oil capacity of T5? Is there different maintenance intervals in the owners manual for driving styles?
 
Messages
951
Location
Loveland, Colorado
Oh those Swedes! Like the Saab UOAs we have here, I thought the Volvos were also known oil abusers? I know I've posted this before, but here's a look at the inside of a Saab turbo engine that's been severely sludged after just 40k miles on dino oil. Of course, part of the problem could be that they never checked the oil between changes, or they were topping up with 79¢ API SA "rated" oil from WalMart, or towing the entire family & a boat thru the mountains every summer. It sounds like they put a lot of "easy" highway miles on it, but vehicle history & use are unknowns. We recently bought an '85 Saab 900 for my son, & the owner's manual says oil changes are every 7500 mi unless you have a turbo, in which case they're every 3750. No mention of synthetics back then, & the turbos were only oil cooled & now they're water cooled (as I'm sure this Volvo is). On our '99 9³, the manual says 10k mi under "normal" use & 5k under "severe," & they've got a minimum application of semi syn & a preferred application of ACEA A3 rated full syn. All Saabs are turbocharged by this point, so there's no differentiation between engine types. The sumps are still the same 4 qts they were in '85, but with the '03 models they bumped 'em up to 6L sumps & raised the duration to a max of 2 yr/18k mi using certain full syn oils. It's disappointing to find out their dealer isn't any more knowledgeable than our Saab dealer is. It's too bad they weren't given the proper information about oil & didn't know about Auto-Rx, eh? They might've saved themselves several thousand dollars in both preventative & repair costs. [ January 19, 2004, 11:31 AM: Message edited by: Eiron ]
 
Messages
220
Location
NH
The woman followed directions if she kept the oil topped up properly. If she has receipts to show oil changes Volvo will probably cover most to entire cost of repair. There is even doc that there were issues earlier than warranty with turbo. The woman did her best, not all people go nuts thinking about oil changes they expect the dealer (if used in this case) or mechanic to be knowledgable. I do shudder at Jiffy Lube but they do insist on 3k oil changes a good thing even if oil is mediocre. The key anyway to a European car in my opinion is finding the right mechanic to service whether independant (preferrable) or good dealer.
 
Messages
2,480
It's hard to know who's really to blame because I've been down the same path. The problems are multi-fold. UK/Euro owner's wouldn't know what's going on in N.A. and that's why their posts are too direct. The problems are widespread and include: 1. Cars sold and owner's manuals written without the complete knowledge and testing of N.A. available oils and oil quality. Example...who tested Castrol N.A.-made BMW 5-30 synth.? Do you think they use this oil in Europe? Doubt it. And this is what's recommended by BMW N.A....so is 5-30 M-1 and Valvoline 5-30 because they're synth's. Still doesn't cover the whole picture because they're only A1-rated synthetics. 2. Retarded dealerships, service departments, unknowledgeable service managers and mechanics. They think it's OK to charge $100/hr and then slap in 89 cent bulk 5-30 Castrol GTX in every car. This is what they put in my Volvo 1984 240T because that's what's used here. Who cares what they use in Sweden or the rest of Europe. And using synth is a waste of money....we've all read this. 3. Gullable owners - although sometimes they have good intentions and are simply going by the owner's manual. That is, we all know about 3k intervals (ala Quicklube), but that MUST be for U.S. cars....this is a Volvo, M-B, Audi, etc...they're better built, etc.. Is it up to the owner call Volvo Gottenberg and find out what the Volvo engineers recommend and what the oil is that they use there? Don't think so. It's Volvo N.A.'s job...but, they don't care either. 4. API not properly classifying different oils. Not all 30 weights are created the same as they would have you to believe....and the same with "Consumer Reports" for that matter. The problem is motor oils are complex because anything will lubricate. Heck you could use salad oil...however how long will the engine last. Manufacturers and dealerships would like it to only last up to the warranty period because they have more new cars to sell after this. Personally, I don't agree with the 3k OCI as being proper. It is a waste of money. However, I don't think A1 oils (dino or synth) can go the distance. So consumer be ware. In this case, if Shelby can procure evidence that she has in fact changed the oil according to the owner's manual and at a Volvo-certified repair center/dealership, she has a legal beef with both the dealership and Volvo N.A.. Otherwise, lack of maintanance rests solely on the owner.
 
Messages
36,516
Location
ME
By my read it was only the turbo that really got cooked. They went after the seals because the driveway was getting dirty and only then discovered sludge. A new engine???? What about auto-rx? [Smile] I Wonder if they let the car idle down for a minute after driving it hard, to cool the turbo. I bet doing THAT is ALSO in the owner's manual. The owner is a whiny nimrod pushing his version of revisionist history. 7500 mile oil changes selling him on the car. Puhlease! GM has the same "optimum conditions" OCI and I'm sure most other makes equal that or come close. Name the Volvo ad you saw where they mentioned the oil change interval and not the all wheel drive, the safety, the performance.
 
Messages
764
Location
Fairfield County, CT
quote:
Originally posted by Dr. T: And this is what's recommended by BMW N.A....so is 5-30 M-1 and Valvoline 5-30 because they're synth's. Still doesn't cover the whole picture because they're only A1-rated synthetics.
M1 5W-30 is actually rated A5, which is the same as A3, except that it has a lower HT/HS viscosity. (IIRC, 3.1)
 
Messages
6,388
Location
Washington St.
Sounds like the dealership neither taught her to use the correct synthetic oil for a turbo with long ODI nor taught her about turbo cool-down periods after a hard run. And, no telling if she read her owner's manual and understood what she read. The dealership should have promoted synthetic oil, and only offered dino oil with the proviso of short ODI in turbo cars. It is in the dealership's interest to have knowledgeable customers that take good care of their cars, get good service from the cars, and buy another. Ken [ January 19, 2004, 04:05 PM: Message edited by: Ken2 ]
 
Messages
463
Location
Palatine, IL
I am on my 2nd turbo Volvo, and have had zero problems of any kind. They are excellent cars! I have been told the following by several Volvo dealers: 1) Dino OCI of 7,500. 2) No syn until 10K. 3) No need to worry about break-in - just drive normal from day one. 4) No need to worry about the turbo - just drive normal. I use synthetic (currently Amsoil 0W30) and change at 7,500. I also follow 3&4 above. The car exists to serve me - if I have to sit and idle for several minutes before shutting down, then I want a different car. Keep in mind that almost any time a person parks their car, they have already driven slowly for at least a block or two, so this is not a big deal. I don't trust the 2nd shop in this story. Special tools to clean the sludge? Entire motor ruined? Does not jibe for me. Also, if this lady had stayed with the dealer, she would have had more options as she could hold the dealer accountable since they did all of the oil changes. [ January 19, 2004, 05:16 PM: Message edited by: DockHoliday ]
 
Messages
463
Location
Palatine, IL
quote:
Originally posted by unDummy: Sound to me like a problem with the owner! A little common sense, and not trying to save a buck on maintenance, when paying that much for a new car, would go a long way in preventing future repair costs. The owner got what she deserved.
That is the most crass, arrogant, and ignorant statement I have ever read on this forum. [No no] She followed the dealer’s advice, and even had the dealer change the oil! There is no indication that this lady was frugal or irresponsible.
 
Messages
28
Location
NJ
quote:
Originally posted by unDummy: Sound to me like a problem with the owner! A little common sense, and not trying to save a buck on maintenance, when paying that much for a new car, would go a long way in preventing future repair costs. The owner got what she deserved.
I wouldnt go that far, I thihnk he put her trust in an automotive professional and got mislead. She checked her manual and proofed what the dealer told her. Most people have no idea what goes into the science of oils until its to late. Id say she was a bit of a victim in this situation, not everyone is as obsessive about oils as us.
 
Messages
22,187
Location
Colorado Springs
quote:
Originally posted by eljefino: The owner is a whiny nimrod pushing his version of revisionist history. 7500 mile oil changes selling him on the car. Puhlease! GM has the same "optimum conditions" OCI and I'm sure most other makes equal that or come close. Name the Volvo ad you saw where they mentioned the oil change interval and not the all wheel drive, the safety, the performance.
I've had more than one GM dealer push the "long life" dexcool BS on me, along with the 7500 mile OCI. She sad it was a salesperson that told her about the OCI. First rule of thumb when buying a car; never listen to the salesperson, EVAR!!!!!! I had one guy tell me while lokking at the engine, that the AC condensor was an extre radiator for extreme high temps so the car would never overheat. I laughed at him and told him he was a schmuck right to his face, and to learn about the product he's selling and not play it like every customer is a fool. He argued with me a bit, and I told the sales manager I would never buy a car there.
 
Messages
22,187
Location
Colorado Springs
Another thing she probably failed to read in the manual was the use of high octane fuel. If she was constantly running 87 octane, ignition timing was probably severly retarted. That, along with the 87 octane itself, probably created extreme combusiton temps and resulting oil/engine temps. Same scenario as the Toyota Sludgeomatic models.
 
Messages
289
Location
Dublin, OH
I had a 98 S70T5 and pampered him with Syn (Mobil 1) every 5000km. The climate (in Singapore) is summer all year with humidity 95% and above all the time. No engine/turbo problems for 98k/km. I had more electronic troubles than mechanical even though I take my brick to drag nights and track days. The archilles heel of this gen of Volvos is the 4sp auto tranny.
 
Messages
526
Location
Manitoba Canada
I agree, for some reason the dealers in North America are clueless. I'm looking at a 2004 VW Jetta wagon with the new PD turbodiesel engine and had one h*** of a time finding a straight answer wrt servicing and oil to use. I had to go to VW's UK site, where it's all there (Castrol SLX LongLife II 0W-30, variable servicing, etc). Part of the problem is that the SAE and API have cultured us to foolishly believe the .79 / qt oil at Wally World is "just as good" as the $5 / qt oil. Heck, they both got the "Starburst" don't they?? [Razz] Yeah, that gal "may" have gotten what she deserved. Problem is, most folks don't know anything about oil and have no choice but to trust somebody. Hopefully they're not steered down a wrong path, but most of them are. I think this gal meant well but believed the horse manure that the API and North American dealers have shoved down her throat. The "real" education out there costs WAY more than my college degrees ever did!
 

vvk

Messages
481
Location
Philadelphia
I think their biggest mistake by far was that they failed to contact Volvo directly (in writing, preferably) and instead swallowed the story fed by the Volvo dealer. Given the circumstances, I am sure Volvo corporate would at least help with some of the costs. You cannot trust a car dealer [No no] BTW, I see this kind of thing all the time. I have a friend with a brand new Volvo S60 and he does not listen to me when I tell him that 7500 miles is too long on non-synthetic his local service station puts in [Bang Head] I hope he reconsiders when he reads this [Dummy!]
 
Messages
2,768
Location
Tn
I wish we had better standards for consumers. We may be oil junkies, but most people aren't. Everyone can't be an expert in every field. It just isn't possible. The Moss-Magnuson Act was well intentioned, but... SL specc. is pretty lame, but it's better than nothing. Heck, even the owner's manual on my Buick suggests a 0W-30 syn if the weather is very cold. Why on earth would Volvo spec. dino at extended drains with a turbo??
 
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