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Help on 1997 850 T-5?

445 Views 2 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  rodders
Hello everyone! I'm new to this forum and volvos and I was looking very seriously into getting a 97 T5 Auto with 95k miles in Los Angeles.

What should I look for in terms of maintenance/weak spots? Rough tranny shift etc? Turbo noise?

And how many miles before a timing belt change? (How much at the volvo dealer?)

And how long does a typical turbocharger unit last?

Any recommendations on engine/tranny oil?

Thanks in advance!
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Welcome! I drive a '97 T-5 now (it's my second 850). No big issues to worry about. Like any car, this one has it's weaknesses. Most notable are the PNP switch on the tranny (kind of a relay to tell the transmission what gear you chose), and the evaporator in the AC. PNP is a pretty easy fix if you're handy. Evaporator will run you about a grand with a dealer. Interestingly, I personally haven't had a problem with either.

As to the timing belt, I won't let mine go beyond 60k miles between changes. Not worth the risk. I have a good Volvo certified indie mechanic. Charges me around $250 to change it in addition to other scheduled maintenance.

For lubrication, I'm a big fan of synthetic oils, specifically Mobil-1. I'm not hung up on the transmission fluid type, but I flush and fill it every 20k miles.

I may be a little more particular than most, but I drive the car pretty hard at times, and have never had a real problem.

Good luck!

(Subliminal message.... buy the Volvo... buy the Volvo... buy the Volvo.)
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