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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in a bit of a situation. Here's the story: My car has been sitting for 4 months with the battery unplugged. I'm back in LA to send the car back to Boston; the car carrier comes in two days. <p>When I start the car, the engine shakes with uneven RPMs then shuts down with the following messages: Up Arrow, Oil, Service, Check Engine, and the W button LED on the S/E/W tranny settings is illuminated. <p>There are no signs of a bad battery (its 1 year old Volvo OEM). The car 92k miles and was working perfectly when I left. Its been inside at about 70-80F since. Any ideas?
 

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do you still have oil in it ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: (Chilled Man)

Thanks for the fast reply- I haven't checked the stick yet, but it was replaced before I left and there are no drips or stains under the car. I'll go check the dipstick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: (Cabot)

The oil dipstick shows the level perfectly between the two lines- the engine has been cold for 4 months. The autotrans fluid is good and the coolant level/color is normal. The lights are bright and do not dim when doors are locked/unlocked. <p>I opened the engine oil cap, but I have no experience with that, so I cannot tell if its normal or not. Should I have seen a small reservoir of oil? All I could see were shiny metal parts with the smell of motor oil.
 

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Assuming that you didn't see shiny metal parts floating in the oil!! then that sounds fine (change the seal in the oil filler cap when you get a chance, it's usually forgotten about and only costs a $1).<p>It sounds like an electrical gremlin if the car hasn't moved in 4 months. Try unscrewing the negative terminal of the battery, leaving it for 15 minutes or so and then re-connect and start the car. While the battery is unplugged you might want to check that the coil plug wire is properly connected and the same for the spark plug wires...who knows, maybe one of them came loose.<br>Beyond that, I would guess a MAF sensor going south. If after trying the other things and no improvement, try unplugging the MAF to see if that smoothes things out.<br>Hope that helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: (Big Will)

Thanks, Big Will. I'll give that a try. It looks like its time to break out the maglite! The MAF was replaced about 40k miles ago, I hope its not that again. Normally I wouldn't be so frantic about this, expect for the fact that the auto transporters are already booked along with my return flight. <p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Re: (Cabot)

Update: I checked all the connectors and to my limited knowledge, everything was normal. AAA came and a very nice gentleman told me to start it and then apply the gas to hold the RPMs at 3k for a few minutes. Applying the gas did stop it from shutting down and after 5 minutes it was fine holding its own idle. <p>Then the up arrow came on when I put it in Drive. I drove around the garage slowly, put it in reverse, then Drive, and voila- no more arrow. I drove around outside for a while and so far so good. AAA told me that since the power was disconnected for four months, the computers needed to reboot. All seems well now; no more warning lights, but when she gets back to Boston I'll have Boston Volvo check her out just to be sure. <p>Thank you all for your replies.
 

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Re: (Cabot)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>Cabot</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">Update: <B>I drove around the garage </B> slowly, put it in reverse, then Drive, <B>and voila- no more arrow. </B> </TD></TR></TABLE><p> <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/eek.gif" BORDER="0"> Lucky guy. If I did that in my garage, there'd be no more garage. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/tongue.gif" BORDER="0">
 

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Re: (pelicanflyt)

Good to hear she is running well again. <p><br>I was going to say, maybe a small frick'n mammal may have made a home in some of your wiring harnesses. Do not ask me how I know this can happen...<br>
 

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Re: (Cabot)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>Cabot</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">Update: I checked all the connectors and to my limited knowledge, everything was normal. AAA came and a very nice gentleman told me to start it and then apply the gas to hold the RPMs at 3k for a few minutes. Applying the gas did stop it from shutting down and after 5 minutes it was fine holding its own idle. <p>Then the up arrow came on when I put it in Drive. I drove around the garage slowly, put it in reverse, then Drive, and voila- no more arrow. I drove around outside for a while and so far so good. AAA told me that since the power was disconnected for four months, the computers needed to reboot. All seems well now; no more warning lights, but when she gets back to Boston I'll have Boston Volvo check her out just to be sure. <p>Thank you all for your replies. </TD></TR></TABLE><br>The car should be fine, it's just what happens when a car sits for 4 months with out being started. Condensation builds up in the engine and you just need to get it started and burn off everything and get the engine lubed up again. You should be fine, and it sounds totally typical to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
pelicanflyt: I should have clarified. I drove around the parking garage of my building. Although I wish I had a personal garage worthy of driving about in.<p>850arrrsaylikepirate: Thanks! I'm happy she's alright as well. I love that car, so to have her engine behave so erratically really scared me. <br>I have a classic Mercedes that sits all winter and a few years ago, someone thought it would be okay to put birdseed, open, right next to her. Come the spring and an engine inspection, mice had build supermarkets everywhere. <p>gdogg16: I'm glad it sounds typical- I was worried that I would cause irreparable damage by jamming the gas for so long, but today the car has been acting like she's been driven every day. Gotta love those Volvo inline 5s! My XC90 does not have that lovely exhaust note- I missed hearing it. <p>Well, tomorrow AutoLog (found recommended on Swedespeed) will pick her up and send her back to Boston. An NY drop off gets a covered ride, but not Boston; so I applied a few coats of a caranuba wax to bounce some of the UVs.
 

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Re: (Cabot)

amazingly off topic but i had a friend who had a brand spanky new car and over night he woke up to a car that wouldnt do a damn thing let alone start/run. everything rubber on the car was gone, tires eaten up, hoses, ect. you name it anything rubber was nibbled on, or eatin basically gone... prorcupine ate his sh*t. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/tongue.gif" BORDER="0"> im assuming that was the funniest insurance claim some people would ever have to file
 

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Re: (Cabot)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>Cabot</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote"><br>850arrrsaylikepirate: Thanks! I'm happy she's alright as well. I love that car, so to have her engine behave so erratically really scared me. <br>I have a classic Mercedes that sits all winter and a few years ago, someone thought it would be okay to put birdseed, open, right next to her. Come the spring and an engine inspection, mice had build supermarkets everywhere. <p></TD></TR></TABLE><p>YIKES!! Vermin, I hate those little bastards!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I would imagine it could be amusing to talk to insurance agents to hear some of their claims stories. <p>Last winter I put plugged in some ultrasonic mouse machines in the garage, and they seemed to work. I also put Bounce fabric softener around the car, which I had been told are repulsive to mice. I have yet to find supermarkets this spring.
 
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