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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
About two years ago I had to have the dealer replace the cam shaft seals when an independent shop noticed oil leaks at the top of the engine. Job was done and time went by. About two years & 20,000 miles later the car starts running a little rough. The next day I started the car and it was still rough and then the "check engine" light came on. Off it went to the independent.

When the independent shop found codes were thrown regarding the exhaust and intake (I have them noted, but not in front of me), he removed the timing belt cover and found that all three of the bolts that hold the exhaust cam pulley in place had worked free and were lying at the bottom of the timing belt area. One of the bolts had even gotten lodged between the pulley and the timing belt and been pushed through the belt. The cover had been scored by the wobbling of the pulley (see photos).

I had the car towed back to the dealership when it became evident that the last people to work on the cam seals didn't tighten the bolts on the pulley. Now after two weeks have passed, the dealer has determined the valves are bent and the top end is going to need to be removed. A new development is push back I'm getting about aftermarket ECU settings (Autotech) perhaps not showing me the check engine light soon enough. The dealership wants to take the position that the check engine light should have come on before it did and that the Autotech tune may have interfered with that.

My questions are: has anyone ever heard of bolts falling out for any other reason and would a check engine light come on soon enough after the last bolt dropped to prevent damage to the valves? That appears to be the angle the dealership is pursuing.

I'm no expert by any means, but to me, this looks like a purely mechanical issue caused by human error when the pulley was reinstalled, the bolts weren't tightened and eventually worked out, albeit two years later. Does anyone see a reason I would be "partially culpable" as the dealer put it? Does anyone see this as an electrical issue vs. a mechanical one?

Just to clear up one possible question, no other engine work had been performed on the car since the cam seals were replaced two years ago.

Thanks for taking a look at this and giving me any constructive info you have from your experience.

Here are the photos: http://s206.photobucket.com/user/amcp_2007/library/Volvo pulley
 

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This is exactly why you paid them to do the job, so this would not happen. It was negligence on their part. A check engine light has no way of illuminating soon enough to warn you to shut you engine down, plus that's not what the CEL is for. That's what oil pressure and coolant warning lights are for. The come on, you need to shut off. CEL, just means got get your car scanned.
 

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WOW. Time to discuss with the dealership general manager or owner. Clearly an assembly fault. But, typical for them to try to cover their losses. Stay firm and be clear with your expectations. Ask the independent shop if they would provide a statement of their findings.
 

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This is their fault plain and simple, but welcome to the world where they will use any excuse, like your tune, to make you pay for their **** up.
I can't agree more with Stealthy more. Dealers are scum bags that will do ANYTHING to get out of liability on things like this.

When I was running the car audio install bay, I saw a lot of dealers blaming anything aftermarket installed in the car when a car has problems, VS actually actually trouble shooting the issue and fixing it, because hard to trouble shoot problems scare the techs that are not very good at it.

One time a customer brough me his Camaro, he was at his wits end with voltage draw issues, and it kept running the battery dead. A GM dealer had the car for 3 days, and told him the car was fine, it was the aftermarket sub and amp was causing the issues.

I spend maybe 15 minutes with my Fluke DMM trouble shooting and figure out that none of the system that is in it is at fault, it's the little light inside the center console is staying on, and the little micro switch for it is not working right. Pull out the light bulb, problem solved.
 

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No chance you could be responsible. CEL wouldn't come on until it's FUBAR'd already. Time to email VCOA.
 

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I hate to be that guy but why did you take the car there with the tune still installed? I dont see VCOA doing much since 2 years past. Whats the timeframe for the work to still be covered by warranty? Besides doesnt the tune pretty much void the warranty at this point?
 

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The bolts were NOT torqued to specification. That is the only explanation as to why they fell out. Whoever did the work, did not torque those bolts to spec. Aftermarket ecm computer software has absolutely nothing to do with the cam HARDWARE bolts not being torqued to spec. End of argument and they should fix what they left loose. If not, an easy court case is yours to be won. I've been working on Volvo's for 24 years and have never once ever seen those bolts fall out on their own because they just don't if properly torqued.
 

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2006 v70r 138k, Sold : 2004 s60r, 1999 s70T5
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Tell them you will open a case with BAR. Bureau automotive repair. That usually gets their attention
 

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It's all bull****. If the timing is off and out of its own control, the ecu will throw a code immediately, doesn't matter what tune you have. The bolts falling out are evidence enough for them to cover the whole repair.
 

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Bolts falling out have nothing to do with the tune.

They are wrong also idiots .
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for all the input. You confirmed what I was thinking, and that's helpful. I'm going to meet with the dealership today.
 

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I hate to be a me too but some dealers are just plain bad to deal with. I moved away from my original dealer that sold me the car, never a problem with them. Then I started going to my closer dealer and all hell breaks loose. First problem oil leak 2013. Had it checked, need a PCV replaced at the same time it reach 60k mi so do the works. Week later getting issues with engine throttle (after pcv and 60k mi tune?). They say my injectors and fuel rail are bad and they didn't cause it. Ok had those replaced. And now I get check engine light, from the fuel pressure sensor (they reset it but it keeps coming back along with loud clanking noises in the passenger front suspension. grrrr (the latter I had done at an independent shop with all new aftermarket suspension setup sways, end links, springs (and seats), shocks. Loving it! Will stay away from "that" dealer except for warranty... will proly go back to my original.
 

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Culpability comes down to the proximate cause of the damage. In this case, the damage is 100% due to those bolts coming out. Even IF the tune meant the check engine light didn't come on quickly enough (which is bull**** but lets humor them for a moment) the proximate cause of the damage is still the bolts coming out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Update: The engine has been dismantled. It appears the valves did impact the pistons, Note: photos attached (starting with Cylinder 1 going up to 5) showing the marks on the pistons. I'm being told the damage is minimal to the pistons. They are going to rebuild the cylinder head.

Any thing I should make sure they do while they're doin' it? My indie's advice on that question was to remind them to use new head bolts and new bolts on the rotating assembly. There's a question whether the bolts that worked themselves out were reused when the cam seals were done. Indie says they're single use, dealer wasn't sure if they are off the top of his head.

Dealership has advised replacing the breather box/oil trap & hose while everything is out of the way.

Full resolution has not been achieved yet, but the work is progressing, though with no real urgency. Having said that, the dealership is providing me with a courtesy car, S60 T5. Pretty nice, but nothing like the R, obviously.

Here's the link to the new photos. Thanks in advance for your insights.

http://s411.photobucket.com/user/totallity1/library
 

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Someone with more experience can weigh in here but the piston damage does not look "minimal" to me. I sure hope they are either replacing the Pistons (I.e. Rebuilding the engine) or replacing the entire engine.
 

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Pistons look very good. They do not need replacement. There are valve reliefs cut into the pistons for the intake valves, which you can see on the lower portion. Appears the exhaust valves are the ones that hit. Looks very minor but once they hit, its all over for the valves.
 

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I stand corrected. Thanks Oceans60R
 
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