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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've been chasing what seems to be a driveline noise on my S40 T5 AWD M66 for several weeks/months and now I suspect it's from the propeller shaft but I'm wondering how to further isolate it and rule out (or rule in) the angle gear as the source of the noise. The noise is loudest on acceleration, under load; it doesn't change when banking left or right; it seems to be coming from the center of the car. I replaced the two rear wheel bearing/hub assemblies as well as the right front axle but the noise is still present. I suspect the prop shaft because both the front and rear CV joints appear to have been leaking grease for sometime. I'll soon attach pics that show a narrow grease spatter line above the rear joint and a broader line above the front joint. I'm guessing that given the condition of the CV joints I'm in it for at least a reconditioned prop shaft. My understanding is that replacement front CV joints are available but not rear ones. Also, I suppose the noise could be from the carrier bearing. Assuming I need to replace the prop shaft or at least the front CV joint I'd like to know what else I'm in for. If I have an angle gear problem as well perhaps I'd consider converting to 2WD unless the problem were limited to the collar sleeve.

My questions boil down to:
1. Can I rule out an angle gear problem if I drop the prop shaft and the noise disappears?
2. How do you drop the prop shaft? (I've seen many references to doing this but I haven't run across a dedicated, stickied step-by-step procedure.)
3. How do I assess the condition of the prop shaft and determine if I can get away with only replacing the front CV joint?
4. How do you diagnose a bad angle gear collar sleeve or a bad angle gear itself?
5. What other sources of the noise am I overlooking?
6. What other information or diagnostic maneuvers would be helpful?

Here are some relevant pics (I hope! It's my first time linking pics):







 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I believe my pics are now viewable. I hope somebody might have some helpful guidance for me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Is it louder in certain gears, than in others?
I didn't notice that it's louder in certain gears but I'll try to listen for that today. It seems louder when under load--e.g., going uphill, accelerating--and at higher speeds. (But not necessarily at higher RPMs within a gear ... I think? I realize now I should listen for that as well.)
 

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How many miles?

The CV joint is same F & R, you can buy aftermarket off eBay for around $40. For that price, they could only last 2 years & you'd still be way ahead of the game. In fact, the quality is decent. Since the OEM wear out by 80-90K, I would bother spending top dollar in this case.

They are labelled alpha/numeric, that's how you determine what you have. "HLJ7" or similar marking is what you are looking for

Unbolt the forward crossmember/brace & the bearing carriers can be unbolted from the support. The rear one can be a bit of a PITA to get out of the "cup".
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How many miles?

The CV joint is same F & R, you can buy aftermarket off eBay for around $40. For that price, they could only last 2 years & you'd still be way ahead of the game. In fact, the quality is decent. Since the OEM wear out by 80-90K, I would bother spending top dollar in this case.

They are labelled alpha/numeric, that's how you determine what you have. "HLJ7" or similar marking is what you are looking for

Unbolt the forward crossmember/brace & the bearing carriers can be unbolted from the support. The rear one can be a bit of a PITA to get out of the "cup".
Thanks for your response. 113K miles on my 2005 S40 T5 AWD M66. My understanding was that only the front CV joint can be replaced and that to replace the rear one you have to replace the entire prop shaft. See attached screenshot from Volvo parts catalog. Are you suggesting that the rear one can indeed be replaced as well but that it's difficult to do so? Of course, I'm also still wondering if replacing the CV joints or entire shaft will address the noise I'm hearing.

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Is it louder in certain gears, than in others?
In driving it today and trying to parse the sounds I have the following observations:
1. First, it's really difficult for my untrained ear to parse the sounds! So, my confidence in my observations is shaky.
2. That said, I don't really detect the sound in gears 1 and 2, but definitely hear it in gears 3-6. That might be a product of overall speed at the higher gears.
3. The sound is definitely louder when the engine-transmission-drivetrain is under load, but it's still present when not under load (at least in gears 3-6).
4. I believe the sound is independent of RPMs-going downhill if I put it in neutral the sound seems unchanged--but I'm still convincing myself that I'm hearing this correctly.
 
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