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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey Guys. I have been looking for an R car for a while and couldnt find one in my area that I wanted to pay for. However today I drove 2 hours and brought one back home. I paid $1600 for a running and driving 2004 R Auto with 105K miles. The guy purchased it without knowing it had issues and quickly figured out he didnt want to spend the $$ needed on the car, so he let it sit and was trying to sale it for months asking $6k for. And he unloaded to me for $1600. I figured I couldnt lose on it. So now the issues Im going to need help ironing out to bring this bad boy back to its glory.

1. AWD does not engage. From a stop it spins the front tires for as long as you hold down the pedal for. He said he had a used angle gear put in at the tranny shop that also put in a new valve body on the tranny. Tranny does seem to shift fine but Im assuming its all suspect and needs to be inspected.

2. Red triangle on the Dash is on solid. DSC is lit up but the front tires spin like crazy. When I press the button it doesnt reduce the DSC but when I do the 5 button press, the light goes off and it says that it is reduced. However, it cant be actually working because the front tires will spin for ever.

3. Electrical malfunction is in the message center and battery light is on so Im assuming bad alternator as the battery looks brand new

4. The chassis system seems to be stuck somehow. When your not driving the car I can select all three settings. But, at some point while driving the sport and advanced lights both came on together and I could no longer switch between the three. And should the advance light be red?

5. It has a small coolant leak somewhere. I had him to let the car sit over night so I can get a look at it with a cold start and it didnt smoke at all. A little white smoke came out for a couple seconds but Im sure that was condensation as then water starting dripping out. And he said it had been sitting as the last test drive was a few days ago and hadnt been started since. There was no oil smell or oil visible in the coolant or vice versa and the exhuast has no sweet small eitheir. So not sure what the leak is but I do want to figure it out.

Besides these issues someone could drive the car everyday. I towed it home and its being park until diagnosis are made and I change the timing belt as I dont see sticker indicating its been done. I figured I couldnt lose on this deal. Being its my 4th Volvo; all purchased as projects except the S40 that my wife drives; and my mechanical ability I should be able to get this car back to where it needs to be, know exactly what I have, as appose to buying one thats supposedly been maintained.

I know this is a long post but Im pretty excited about owning my first R and working on it. So i know diagnosis is in order but where would you guys start? Im thinking

1. Alternator see if the low power is causing issues???
2. Coolant leak to see if I need an engine(doubt this, but i need to be sure).
3. Is there a way to rule out any electrical grimlins in the Haldex or AWD system that would stop the AWD from working?
4. Is there a scanner I can get to tell me whats going on with the traction control system and Chassis electrical system?

Thanks guys Im excited about seeing stage 0 on this car.

Here she is:











 

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Welcome!

You bought a dog. But you also bought a dog for really cheap, so that's rather cool.

Everyone on here is going to yell at you to get VIDA (volvo diagnostic tool), clear codes, drive it around for a bit, and see which codes come back. I'll say it first without yelling :p
 

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That could be the cheapest anyone has ever bought a running, driving R. That being said, you've got some work ahead of you.

If you don't want to buy VIDA and wait for it to arrive, I would suggest either taking it to a dealer or another shop that has a VIDA and get the codes read, and then cleared as taloras mentioned to see what comes back on. Beyond that I can't offer much help, but others on this forum are certainly a wealth of knowledge, so you're in good hands.

Anyway, welcome aboard and let us know how you make out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Yeah, when I got there and started diagnosing what was wrong I was going to walk away. But, when he offered me $2k and said the car just has to go. I told him I would only pay $1500 and just couldnt go higher and we settled on $1600. I was worried at first but on the drive home I realized how much I got it for. It had to be God because he was getting calls while I was standing there. So anyone with an offer couldve bought the car.

Is this what Im looking for? I'll order it tonight if so.
 

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Is this what Im looking for? I'll order it tonight if so.
There's VIDA/DICE made by Volvo, and there are cheap knockoffs. That's a cheap knockoff.

That said, the quality of the cheap knockoffs varies pretty widely. Search the forums a bit, and you should find links others have posted to particular Ebay/Aliexpress vendors that tend to have better ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How much control does this VIDA give you?


Will it be able to access every system/sensor in the vehicle, tell me whats malfunctioning on traction control system, and chassis system?

And Im finding a lot of them, I think Im going with one from the guy on here.

Any advice on the AWD to start checking that?
 

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You need to look at the engine serial number, which is on a sticker on the front of the engine (timing belt cover) and also I believe on the back cast into a flat spot on the head. Somewhere near where the OTE pipe comes over the top and down to the turbo.
 

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Yeah I'll chime in and agree that VIDA is necessary in your situation. Unless you want to pay the dealer every time you read a code and from the looks of it, you'll be reading a lot of codes.

Assuming the angle gear/collar gear HAS been replaced properly and that's not your issue, you're looking at something within the Haldex system probably for your lack of AWD. Could be the DEM being fried, or the actual AOC pump or the pressure sensor in said pump. Those are listed from most expensive to least expensive.

Almost time for a suspension refresh too. Good to see you're getting the timing belt done as well.

The scary part about these cars is there could be dozens of issues. And one little glitch in the system can cause a whole host of other problems. But it seems like you knew what you were getting into so you can probably handle it.

Get VIDA and then begin restoring her to her former glory!
 

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the best vida/dice unit to get is from digital-life on ebay. he includes the software, dice unit, and is super helpful if you can't figure out how to get it running or need help. however he lives in lithuania and it takes about 2-ish weeks to get here. i had one issue with my SR i've had for 3 months (152k miles) and the unit paid for itself already. i didn't think it was necessary at first but trust me, you'll love yourself for it. his is a little pricier than the cheaper ones but the quality/reliability and help is worth it. his software is also one of the newer ones.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2014D-HQ-Vo...:g:AOEAAOSwPYZU25HY&item=111633882026&vxp=mtr
 

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Welcome to SS and welcome to owneRship. Looks like you're in FL? If so there are a few of us. Check the stickies for a map thread. Many of us have VIDA and are happy to scan a fellow enthusiast's car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks guys. Yes she is a project and Im ordering VIDA today. Im so anxious to drive her but I want to get her up to snuff first and find out what I have. Im getting in the air today to see if the shaft turns with the wheels and Im doing the alternator as well to get rid of the power issues and see what problems that will get rid of. Its going to be a process but I'll chip at it and get her up and going.

If it is something in the drivetrain stripped in regards to the AWD not working I see there is a lot of controversy around welding the collar to the angle gear but it seems like a no brainer as there is a company that makes a more precisely built collar and are claiming that failure is due to poor contact and not strength of the metal the collar gear is made out of. I was up till 3am reading. There is a plethora of knowledge in this place. I made like 15 bookmarks last night.lol

I'll keep you guys posted to what I uncover.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Look like "Dr.Mittens" and "Rory" are near me. I'll PM them, do any of you guys know them? It'll be awhile before my VIDA arrives so it'll be nice to get scan but I'll work on the timing belt, AWD, and electrical stuff until I can get a scan. Local indy wants $89 to check it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Got the alternator out and changed with a new one from auto zone with a lifetime warranty. It was easy to do but I spent most of the time wrestling the old one out and the new one in. I took notes for next time though. Any who I got control of the chassis back......for about 2 minutes.....lol. The El service message is off as well as the battery light. But, now the buttons all light up and then after about 5 minutes of driving they just turn off all together. I'm thinking about getting it scanned as I don't want to wait two weeks for the DICE. I'll decide by Monday.
 

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have you checked for a leaking heater core? coolant may have leaked into the sum module shorting it out. CaR looks great for $1,600..at that price how could you go wrong!
 
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