Glass, Moldings, Water Leaks, Etc.
Maintenance FAQ for 7xx/9xx/90 Cars
Tinting. I had two cars tinted; my current had tinting from PO when
I bought it. If you go for it, do it top-of-the-line, or not at all. None
of these jobs have bubbled (all professional), but the one in my 245 is
much cheaper material than what I would have spec'ed: it's somewhat dark,
and it scratches really easily. Higher-quality films have a higher ratio
of visible/UV light transmission: that is, they reject more of the frequencies
that heat your car and wreck its insides, while letting you see better.
On two cars, I've had titanium film used. It gives the highest UV/vis filtration
ratio, looks grey, and is available in three darknesses. Even Sue's car,
which has the middle darkness, does not strike the viewer as obviously
tinted. When her A/C works, (she has a white 244), the car, even in Florida,
can be used as a meat locker. My tan 245, after sitting outside, on a hot,
humid day, the A/C can barely keep up. But wagon/paint color make a difference.
Also, a good, strong film is a safety feature. I have been emailed that
even Volvo's side/rear windows are not laminated, as is required of windscreens
here in the US, and of all windows in more advanced countries. A good film
will stop bits of glass from flying about.
and Vinyl Trim. My 12+ year old 744 has been living in the sun in PA,
FL and now in AZ all its life. Admittedly it is parked in the shade whenever
possible but still has seen lots of sun. I have used some form of bumper
treatment (armor all or such) and waxed the bumper covers with the same
Nuskin or Meguiars that I have been using on the paint. To date the bumper
covers, while scratched and scarred from use are still black. I think the
answer is cleaning and waxing at least three to four times per year - on
any car - and especially on one that is loved as much as our Volvos.
For tips on preserving rubber trim, see
I too had wet floors and followed the last advice on the topic by checking
the plastic vent covers at the sides of the footwells in the front seating
areas. These were fine, so after careful observation and lots of water
I found the cause of my grief. The wiring harness going from the body to
the doors (electric windows, speakers etc.) has rubber protective sleeve.
This had split open and since the entry point into the car is several inches
lower than that of the door, and once it enters the car it no longer has
the this cover, the split acted like an open funnel, and guiding water
in. Open your doors and check the cover. Duct tape worked like a charm.
Now I just need to dry out the carpets and rubber under-pad.
[More:] I assumed the 740 had a windshield
gasket leaking problem and I had the windshield reset. That did not stop
the water leak and wet carpet in the 740. It turns out that it is leaking,
as others have reported, from the unused left air intake behind the panel
at the driver's foot. To discover it I ran a great volume of water through
the air intake beneath the windshield and sure enough, after 10 minutes
a small, but steady trickle of water was coming in. Unfortunately this
has rusted the floor through to the outside. WARNING, if you have wet carpets,
get it fixed, the floors will rust through in a very short period of time.
The first thing that my mechanic attempted and fixed on mine was the air
intake seal at the left bottom driver's foot well. It supposedly resides
behind a small plastic panel which has an air grille on it. [Contrary note:]
You may find a problem in this area, but the seal on the panel was not
the problem. There's water getting in there, probably from the seal around
the windshield, that's causing the problem. I'll bet if you pull the trim
up, you'll find rust. Ever replace the windshield?
[Another Query:] How do I prevent water
leaks in our 1986 740 GLE wagon, especially after moving to a house with
a sloped driveway. The problem is water leaking into the interior in the
front footwell areas. The problem only occurred when the car was parked
facing uphill. It turned out that runoff from the compartment housing
the fresh air inlet to the heater and the windshield wiper mechanism was
directed into the car by a plastic tab on the plastic plates used
to close off the footwell airvent openings.(Older models like my '69 164
and, I assume, contemporary European 740's without A/C have fresh
air vents in the sides of the front footwells.) After removing the plastic
tab in the blanking off plates, the water leak stopped. [Response:]
Replace the cap for the fresh air intake with p/n 6848804; it comes with
a new seal. It is a common problem. Break the old one out and pop
the new one in. It should click in.
[Tip from Zee] For tips on locating
and fixing windshield leaks, see http://www.7net7.com/glasnet/leaks.htm
Window Defrost Wire Repair. [Query:] An appropriate question
for winter, and old stuff. I've got only two of the defroster wires
working in the rear glass of my Volvo. What should I do to get the
others back "online"? I appreciate your advice. [Response:
Ceferino Lamb] I just fixed mine. Volvo sells an inexpensive kit
to fix it (also available from most auto parts places; one is marketed
under the Loctite name), but the instructions are incomplete. It's
just a little bottle of metalized paint and a brush. Here's what
. that kit
. a DMM (digital multi-meter)
. electrical tape
. razor blade
Look over the wires very closely, with
enough light outside to reveal any defects. You're looking for breaks
in the wires. If you seen any, fix them with a few coats of the metalized
paint. typically, the breaks are often caused by corrosion near the
sides, where we don't clean the glass as often. Use the electrical
tape to mask off the glass on either side of the wire where you apply the
If you fix all the defects you can see,
and that still leaves wires that don't work, break out the DMM and test
the resistance in those individual wires. You're looking for areas
in the bad wires that are "open" but the fault is not visible. [Response
2: Ross Gunn] Turn on the rear window heater, and with one voltmeter
test lead on the heavy strip of conductor at one side of the glass, touch
the other lead to the trace that you think has is a break. The voltage
will either read 0 or 12V. Move the lead along the trace (towards
the other lead if 12V, away from it if 0V) . When the voltage flops
over to the opposite reading, you have found the break.
[Rear Defroster Grid Repair Tips from Charles
Cramer] I just repaired my rear window defroster on my '87 245 about 2
months ago ( I've actually done this on about 4 cars). The job was
relatively easy and the repair is working just fine. Here are a few
1) Often you can identify where the breaks
in the grid are simply by turning on the rear defroster when the window
is cool and/or damp/humid. Typically, you will see a round, clear
patch appear (i.e. defrosted surface) at the breakage point, unless the
gap is too wide or a piece of the grid has been damaged/scraped off the
glass. What I did was to turn on the rear window defroster, and use
a grease pencil (piece of tape, etc.) to mark these gap locations on the
OUTSIDE of the glass. If you look closely, you can see the gap (although
you may have to use a strong light or flashlight) in the grid. It
usually looks lighter than the orangish-brown color of the rest of the
grid. If using a voltmeter (analog or digital work just fine) to test for
"opens" in the grid , be careful not to scratch the grid with the probe
tips! I didn't use the meter method, as all the gaps showed up on
close visual inspection.
[Tip from James Stoney] I found an item
that may be of help in repairing rear window defogger on glass wiring...The
CircuitWriter a 7ml pen type unit that allows you to draw the line back
in to being....part # S-CCW100P cost is $10.95 from Antique Electronic
Also may be available at local electronic supply houses.
2) Make sure that the grid side of the
glass is CLEAN before you use the conductive paint. A good "scrub"
with a good quality glass cleaner and a paper towel with some "bite" (those
"shop"-type blue paper towels on a roll that you can get at the local auto
parts store work well) will ensure that the repair stays put. Don't
be afraid to rub fairly forcefully over the grid lines IN THE SAME DIRECTION
AS THE LINES (i.e. scrub from the left to the right along the length
of the line, and NOT from top to bottom of the rear glass). It's
amazing how much crud came off, and the grid definitely clears the frost
off the glass faster and more evenly now. If you really want to be
sure that the glass and existing trace are grease/oil-free, you can wipe
them down with some alcohol. Be sure the window glass is DRY and
warm when you go onto the next step. Don't try to do this outside in the
cold, because the paint won't dry properly and therefore won't adhere well
to the existing grid.
3) The mask that is supplied in the Loctite
kit has a gap that is really too wide for the existing grid. If you
use it, you end up with a VERY large (wide) repair area, which will be
both visibly noticeable and will heat up faster than the rest of the grid
(makes for uneven defrosting). I used "invisible" type tape (the opaque
type "Scotch" brand or the like, NOT the cello "clear" type tape) to mask
off the lines. It sticks to the glass very nicely and you can get
it right up to the edges of the grid lines. Don't be bashful about
a lot of overhang beyond the gap. It will help you avoid accidentally getting
some of the repair "paint" on the glass where you didn't intend it to go.
Just make sure that the tape is firmly applied to the glass right up to
the grid line, so that any paint can't sneak under the tape. Paint
away, as directed in the instructions that come with the kit. As
indicated in the instructions, you'll need to peel the tape off the window
BEFORE the paint fully dries (actually, once it has just "set").
This is where having extra tape at either side of the repair comes in handy.
Start nearest to the grid line at one end of the tape and SLOWLY peel it
back and AWAY from the grid line. Repeat for the other side. If the
tape breaks, CAREFULLY use a pin or single edged razor blade to lift
enough off the glass so that you can peel the rest away. Your repair
efforts should yield a nice sharp grid line, that looks (and performs)
pretty much like the original. Don't be tempted to turn on the defroster
too early - wait the recommended time for the paint to fully cure.
Window Defroster Failed. [Query:] Last year my rear defroster
worked. This year it doesn't. Switch light comes on and fuse appears
good. With radio on AM, turning the switch on causes static.
Is there away of checking the heat strips on the window?
[Response:] The static on AM is a good
clue -- it says you have arcing somewhere. There's a relay that includes
a timing function. Find the relay, pop the plastic cover and resolder the
connections. Also check the contacts of the relay itself -- they may be
burned. If it is the relay, at worst you'll have to buy a replacement.
The resistive strips are all but bulletproof. Check the resistance
at the window connections; it should be less than one ohm but not zero
and not 10 ohms. Runs on about 10 amps (12/X=10, X<1ohm). Sounds like
you may also have a broken connection somewhere. Check for voltage at one
side of the window connections and a ground at the other; the voltage
drop across the strip when it's switched on should be 12 volts. Fix
appropriately [see above]
Mirror. [Query:] I stopped in a self serve wash today and
in my haste to save another $1.00 I crammed the back of the wand into my
passenger side-view mirror and broke the glass. Dealership price = $51.83.
Talk about your deals!!! This has proven to be some return on investment,
huh? Save a buck to lose $52. Anyhow...I need a replacement mirror.
[Response: Rob Bareiss] Most windshield shops should be able to replace
this glass for you, for 1/2 to 2/3 of the price of the dealer. Of course,
if the car's got mirror defrosters, you might be stuck with OEM Volvo.
Typically you'll wait 1 day for them to order the glass.
Glass and Housing Removal. [Query:] How do I remove the
mirror glass on my exterior mirrors?
Earlier Mirrors. [Response:
Abe Crombie] The mirror comes off by using a vary narrow blade screwdriver
and going up through the oblong hole on bottom of mirror and moving the
retainer gear to the right. [Editor:] Reinstall by engaging
the mounting lugs on the back of the mirror and moving the ring gear to
Later Mirrors. [Editor:]
Later Mirrors for 940/960/90: I followed instructions in the manual
for the later version of the mirror glass without the little gear mechanism
in the bottom slot: "pull straight out." After not very much pulling, the
mounting gimbal to the mirror motor cracked apart, leaving me now with
BOTH a broken mirror heater and a broken mirror motor unit ($$$).
SO: If you have a later 940/960 or 90,
here's how to remove the glass correctly. Activate the motor so
that one corner of the mirror is way out.
Using a flashlight, look inside at the mirror glass mount. You will see
a little conical locator pin with two locking tabs on either side. Each
corner of the mount has a similar arrangement. Unlock the two tabs with
a narrow screwdriver and pull that corner of the mirror just far enough
to keep the tabs slightly disengaged. Move the mirror to the next corner
and do the same thing, keeping the tabs just barely disengaged. Do all
four corners and gently remove the mirror, removing the heater connectors
after you can pull it far enough away. This procedure keeps the fragile
circular positioning ring, tied to the motors, intact. To re-install, just
re-connect the electricals, line up the locator pins and push the glass
back in place until all the tabs lock. A little dab of grease on each tab
Mirror Housing Removal. [Query]
The paint on my side view mirrors is starting to chip away so I'm going
to paint them the same color as the car I just need to figure out how to
take them off first. [Response: Dick] Take door panel off (door
panel does not need to be removed if mirror is manual adjust.) Remove
triangular portion covering mirror mount if electric and if manual, remove
it including flex handle. Unplug cable from mirror if electric.
Unscrew 3 8mm (I think) bolts holding mirror. Mirror should be in
your hands now.
Mirrors. [Editor:] Testing Mirrors. To test the
mirror electricals, activate the motor to expose the connectors on the
inboard side of the back of the mirror. Use needle-nose pliers to slightly
expose the metal connector on each. The blue one is powered when the rear
defrost switch is activated: use a voltmeter to test at this point for
12volts and for no resistance on the ground tab (black wire lead.) If it
is getting power and the ground is OK, then the glass heater is faulty;
if not, then the relay or door wiring is bad.
Adding a Heated Mirror Kit. Not
certain about the 240s, but there was a kit offered for the 740 series.
It included the heated mirrors (direct replacement) and a replacement switch
for the toggle area, so that pushing the rear defrost button also cleared
the mirrors. Put one in myself, and it seems to work very well on the driver's
side (never did get around to figuring out why it doesn't work all that
well on the passenger side). This was a Volvo option replacing the manual
mirrors. Ran a coupla hundred bucks, if I remember correctly. [Editor:]
All electric mirrors are heated and the electrical connectors are inside
the door panels.
Window Glass Shifts. [Symptom:]The electric window on the drivers side
of my 1990 740 wagon shifts left and right a bit, and when you roll the
window up, sometimes it does not fully seat on the back side, and I get
a lot of wind noise. To fix it, I roll it down, and roll it back up while
pushing the glass towards the back of the car. [Diagnosis:] I think the
problem is the plastic roller in a plastic rail (the one which is more
or less under the door lock knob).
Won't Close: Worn Tracks. [Query:] The driver's side window just
started not closing flush. If I open and close it several times it will
finally close tight and in alignment and I will not hear wind noise. The
motor seems to work great and there is no catching, just the window seems
to be mis-aligned a little. What caused this and how can I fix it. The
noise comes in right at the upper corner above my ear. [Response:
Rob Bareiss] Your forward window track has worn to the point that it's
not guiding the window straight anymore. You can try putting the window
down, taking apart the door, and bending the metal track a bit backwards.
It's welded into the door. The other course of attack would be to replace
the felt/rubber window guide, which is probably all worn right at the top
front inside the door, just below the mirror. Also involves opening up
the door panel. There is a little bit of adjustment in the regulators,
but not much, and in my experience not enough to always fix this problem.
It's almost like the door's too long for the glass.
Motor Slow. [Symptom:] My 95 960 was recently parked outside
the cold and the next day the right rear window would only go down a few
inches and very slowly. After a couple of days it would go down to where
it's supposed to go but very slowly and it seems like the motor is struggling.
I called the service manager at volvo and he said just to spray some lubricants
in the window channels. Well problem is I can't see any channels. I took
the door panel off but the inside surface of the door had a cover
glued on to it. Is there anyway to lubricate the channels without tearing
the cover off. Also does anything else in there need to be lubricated?
[Response 1: JT Charger and Gary Heston ] The window channels are at both
ends of the glass, one towards the front of the car, the other towards
the rear of the car. With the window down, spray white lithium grease,
a light penetrating oil or silicone spray, down inside the rubber seals,
then make the window go up & down several times. [Response 2:
H H Hansen] With the window at its lowest point. push the up
button and watch the window to see if it tipping when it first starts up.
If it is you have a loose fastener on the window regulator. I have had
this on two different volvos. The paper or plastic that you referred
to is stuck on with a tack strip, just start at a corner and peel up slowly.
Then check for any loose bolts or nuts. [Response 3: Steve Ringlee]
Remove the door panel, peel off part of the water shield and lube the window
channel and mechanism with spray white lithium grease or Superlube.
Replace the water shield, which as noted is glued on with tacky adhesive
at the edges.
Window Motor Mounting Plate Broken. [Query:] The plastic plate
that the power window motor mounts to was broken in two places...Where
can I get a new plastic plate and how much will it be? Also what
is the trick to getting it off of the regulator? [Response 1: Bob
Haire] You’re referring to a large heavy (not heavy duty enough) plastic
plate that is the main part of the regulator in some 700s. Everything bolts
to this thing. Strangely, on later cars some of these are metal and some
are plastic as evidenced by the ones I took off an 87 740. Why it would
be plastic, ever, I can't figure. [Response 2: Sven] To get
the whole thing out...Once you get the door trim off… First, you have to
remove the window. It is held on to the scissor-like appendage by two clips,
facing the outside of the car. Having the window about 1/4 open helps,
as does angling the window slightly, once you get the clips off.
(Gives you a chance to get that window nice and clean.)
Then, there are 3 or 4 bolts, plus one
more clip, holding the entire motor-scissor-regulator (?) assembly to the
door. With a little cursing and wrestling, the whole thing comes out through
the big lower opening.
The motor is held to the scissor assembly
by three more bolts. As far as I know, the rest (white plastic plate plus
knuckle grinding scissors) is of a piece.
I asked at a local dealer, and was told
that this was a common problem, (like rattling heat shields) and that Volvo
switched to a metal assembly, due to the premature decrepitude of the plastic
ones. From what I can tell, the reason these things break has to do with
the bolts working loose over time. I was also told that the new ones were
expensive. In the meantime, you can hold the window up (like I do) with
a pen stuck into the pen-size hole in the top middle of the door and duct
taped in place. (Scissor assembly in place, no motor.)
Maintenance on Power Windows. See also the information in Electrical:
Circuits, Wiring, Relays, Switches Remove door panel (see Trim
section). Using a light grease such as Superlube, grease the sliders on
the window jack, and also grease the gears; hit the pivot points in it
with good spray lube. There are some bolts which hold the window jack to
the door - tighten them. They have been loose, to varying degrees, on every
door I have opened thus far. You will be so amazed at how easily the window
goes up, you may even be motivated enough to do the passenger side! See
the Switch section for preventive maintenance on the window switches.
Windshield. [Notes from Bernard Paulson:] It happened to me a
few days ago. Saw that iron rod flying through the air, lifted by the rear
tire of the car in front of me, right toward my head. It hit the hood and
then went right into and half-way through my windshield. Even the glass
shops believed that someone has shot at me. After all, this is L.A.
Didn't bother to check with Volvo. Used my brains and connections instead
in my attempt to find the most reasonable QUALITY windshield. Interestingly,
I found out that the windshields for 88 and up 765s are of a different
size than the "regular" 700 windshields (no kidding).
Finally found what I was looking
for. A brand new, safety windshield, tinted, with shade, and European E11
seal etched it, certifying it as one that meets toughest European standards
(yes, the DO check stuff like that). The parts number is FW575.
I paid $145.00 installed plus $8.25 tax, and having paid a total of $153.25,
I once again cannot confirm that it is expensive to keep a "Luxury Volvo"
on the road.
Windshield Glass. [Tip from Zee on replacing windshield glass
in 240 series cars; 740 are similar. Note the cautions) As for "special
tools" to remove the old glass, I use a length of thin piano wire. Simply
remove the chrome trim & rubber gasket combination. The glass "floats"
on the buytl-rubber sealant. Slice through the plastic clips along the
edge of the window. (Some clips you can pry out using a small screwdriver.
Most you can't. Just don't twist the tool, or you'll crack or chip the
glass) Insert a strong wire or thin screw driver at the top and bottom
of the window, near the centerline. Poke through the sealant, making a
pathway for inserting the piano wire. Pass the piano wire in, then across
the inside of the glass, then out the opposite hole. Now you have the wire
inside the glass, through the sealant, with two ends sticking out, top
and bottom, center.
Use vise grips (and gloved hands) on each
of the wire ends. pull the wire toward you -- from the center of the glass
toward the side -- while working the wire back and forth, like you're doing
an upper body workout on a ski machine. Repeat on the other half. This
method is cheap, reliable and effectively separates the glass from the
Now, to take out the window, push evenly
with gloved hands from inside the car. Begin near the top of the window,
and it will naturally stand up for you. Have an assistant waiting to hold
it steady until you come out to help lift it clear of the vehicle.
As for installing the new glass, I have
read where others used acetone to remove the old, now offending, sealant.
I found with "pinching" off as much as I could using paper towels, followed
with gently "smooshing" using a putty knife, I was able to rub off the
rest with a rag or paper towel, and paint thinner.
I also removed the thin plastic interior
trim piece at the top of the window opening. This piece covers the front
of the headliner. It is help in place with 5-6 spring slips which are facing
forward. You will get the headliner soiled from your sealant removal, so
mask it off.
In fact, to avoid getting the sealant
goo and particles from falling into the car, I found it useful to mask
off the entire window opening from inside using newsprint or craft paper
taped to the interior.
Inspect and correct any rust using a rust
stopping paint, like POR-15. Many glass shope nowadays recommend
using urethane glue to fasten the new window. It comes in tubes, like caulk,
and costs about $12 per tube. The 3M brand buytl-rubber "rope"
sealant is also available at most car parts stores for about $10.
I am at the point of installation with
salvaged glass for my '84 GL project. From what I see, the pinchweld area
on the 240 series is nearly 3/4" wide all around the window opening. It's
also about 1/2" deep along the outer radius. Now, I am debating whether
to use the 3M buytl-rubber, because it looks easier to lay down. But the
urethane might fill in the width and height of that pinchweld recess. Even
using a caulking gun, this looks precarious,
to me. I may stick with the 3M tape.
There are considerations of "height" of
the sealant which looks easier to accomplish with a pre-made "rope", than
an unsteady hand with a caulking gun! By my guess, I'd say you would need
two tubes of the glue, one of the "ropes".
One suggestion I received privately from
a glass shop pro who saw my installation question here on the RWD forum
(check the archives, too!), was that you would be better off to install
the clips and install the chrome trim to the glass and install everything
as a unit. He said to dry-fit the assembly first, marking the outline of
the trim onto the body to aid in centering things for real. It will take
a couple of shims along the bottom during the dry-fit. You can use masking
tape around the chrome trim such that by carefully slicing it along the
outer edge, the excess will remain on the body of the car, giving a perfect
outline for centering the assembly.
Another idea someone had was to get a
couple of those rubber suction cups and an assistant to help position the
glass. Evidently you only get one chance to do it right.
The only question I still have is exactly
where in the width of the pinchweld do I lay the sealant (either kind)
so that it keeps water out of there. On one hand, it seems good to place
it along the inside radius of the weld to assure no water penetration behind
the glass to the interior. This looks like it would leave a considerable
gap between this caulk and the outer radius. (I don't know how much the
window flattens out the sealant when it is pressed onto it.)
On the other hand, it also seems good
to place it along the outer radius, where the weld curves up 90 degrees
to meet the body surface. (Looking at this, you'll see what I mean). This
troubles me because I am less confident the sealant will adequately fill
toward the inside and seal the glass against water penetration.
It was not much help to look at the old
window for help. Someone had put two more sealants around the edge, while
leaving the original Buytl-rubber in place.
Before I actually do mine, I plan on stopping
off at my local glass shop and asking some questions.
Leaks: Installation Safety Tip. [Tip from http://www.SouthwestAuto.com]
If you have replaced your windshield and have noticed water or air (wind
noise) leaks, a serious safety deficiency may exist on your Volvo. In the
past some windshield installers have incorrectly used aftermarket butyl
tape to reseal or install replacement windshields. This material can fail
leaving the windshield no longer securely bonded to the body of the car.
In an accident or even an emergency stop any contact with the windshield
can cause it to separate from the body of your Volvo. Newer technology
urethanes correctly installed using primer on both the glass and body flange,
produce a bond as good or better than the original factory installation.
Outside the Car: Trim Strip. [Query] I have a 1990 740Gl
standard transmission, 174,000kms. Perfect car, EXCEPT for the high speed
rattling noise that seems to come from the area around the dash, but outside.
It sounds like a new year's eve noisemaker, except the sound is metallic.
It occurs only at speeds above 60kms. per hour, and is intermittent- could
happen several days in a row, then not for weeks/ It could last a few seconds,
or an entire highway trip. Sound can be almost imperceptable, or quite
deafening. [Response: Dave Stevens] This is a known problem
area for circa-1990 740's addressed in a Volvo TSB. The "official" explanation
is that misaligned plastic clips holding the window trim allow the trim
to get caught by the wind and vibrate at high speed. You can isolate which
piece of trim is the culprit by temporarily covering with a strip of tape
to see if the vibration goes away. The passenger side trim seems to be
a common area. The "offical" solution is to rotate the rectangular plastic
clips a little with a trim tool to improve tension. It might also be a
good idea to shoot a little RTV under the clips to hold them in position
in case any of the clips have broken fingers.
Maintenance FAQ for 7xx/9xx/90 Cars
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