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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, now that I have your attention... ;) I think I just found a relatively good deal on XC90 nivomat replacements. The best I had found was around $365-$380 each side, but my fear was always that with the shock bad and the spring (which is a lighter duty spring) also having 103K on it, should I replace those as well which adds another $120-$150 a side... I read every forum question I could find on nivomat vs switching to standard and finally found a part number referenced in a UK forum thread...

P/N: 8685627 for the XC90 self leveling kit. After a quick search I found it at a few places, but the best deal I found was at Lilse Volvo in IL. $700.91 plus $37 shipping.

What I think makes this a great deal is it includes all the nuts and bolts for both sides, spring insulator, 2 nivomats AND 2 springs... And of course all original. If I wanted to switch to non nivomat, I'd be at at least $500-$550, for $150-200 more, being able to keep the OEM leveling feature is huge for those who want it. My local dealer couldn't find this "kit" in inventory, but I didn't have the part number handy when I asked about it. The parts separate were well over $1,000, closer to $1,300 if I remember right. I just ordered this today and I will update when I get it in, but I am looking forward to retuning to that new car feel!

Here is a link to the Lisle part listing.
http://volvopartslisle.com/assembly/56020428/Suspension-Lowering-Kit
 

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Looking at the diagram, is that $700 per side?

I just replaced my nivomats last week and paid $700 for the pair. But that only included the shocks.
Took about an hour.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Looking at the diagram, is that $700 per side?
Thats the beauty of it, the pic is of one side, but the kit includes the whole set up. Apparently it was for those who bought the five seater (which mostly don't have nivomat) and wanted to convert it to nivomat. So the dealer would have everything they needed in a nice little package.

I just replaced my nivomats last week and paid $700 for the pair. But that only included the shocks.
Took about an hour.
Curious as to how your ride feels post replacement. I am trying to keep my expectations average so I'm not disappointed, but I think it will be a dramatic improvement. I have side hop right now driving straight...
 

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That's is a great deal for all of it.

Before I replaced my rear shocks my back end was hopping all over the place, every time I hit a bump I felt like I was on an inflatable kids bouncy house.

After replacing the rear shocks its a nice ride again. everything is smooth, I barely feel any bounce over any bumps it actually rides better than my wife's car which is newer than mine and has half the miles. Front struts are next and going through all front suspension.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Well I got the parts yesterday and finished the job today. New Springs, New nivomats, $700... Good for another 10 years or with the miles I drive it now, 30... If I get another 100K out of these. I took some photos along the way and will get a tutorial up soon. I found several write ups but few pics, and almost nothing related to getting the springs out.

I will say kudos to the guys that did both sides in an hour, you are 3-4 times better than me, although the springs added a bit of time...

FWIW my old springs looked pretty good, it's hard to say how they would have done leaving them on, but the car sits much taller now in the rear, I hardly even noticed the gradual sag. But even sitting in the drivers seat it feels more even.
 

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I don't believe my 2011 XC90 has this feature ... How can I tell?

What's involved if I want to retrofit. How is the shock absorber pressure and level adjusted? Any electrical work involved?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't believe my 2011 XC90 has this feature ... How can I tell?
If you have 7 seats you have it. Some 5 seaters have it too. Possibly came with those with factory tow hitch? Look for XC90 nivomats on ebay so you can see what they look like. They look different than normal shocks, then just look under your car and see if that's what you have, also, you may be able to see the part number on your shock right now, if you can, google the PN and see what comes up.

What's involved if I want to retrofit. How is the shock absorber pressure and level adjusted? Any electrical work involved?
Retrofit is the same process I went through, no electrical work Nivomats aren't the 4C's, no plugs, but you have to buy new non-nivomat springs and replace as well, otherwise you will sag and blow your shocks out quickly. Where you save the most money is when you have to replace them the 3rd time if you retrofit. Everything bolt wise is the same.
 

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I have the seven seats. When I look under my 2011 XC90, I don't see the shock with an accordion boot as in the IPD picture (I'll take a picture of mine when it tops raining):



What gives? Was the shock redesigned in later years, or was the Nivomat feature done away with ...?
 

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OK, plot thickens ...

VIN analysis from dealer shows I have conventional hydraulic rear shocks, marked 65, even though I have a 7 seater.

If I wanted to switch to Nivomats, there are 2 part numbers available, listed at same price:

Nivomat, PART NUMBER: 30683451
MARKED 26

or

Nivomat, PART NUMBER: 30635776
MARKED 48

The Self Leveling kit is much more affordable then buying the individual parts, so question is:
- which Novomat p/n do I need/want? Both fit my car ...
- which p/n is in the Nivomat kit (Volvo kit 8685627)? The dealer does not have a breakdown of part numbers in the kit.

EDIT: Just found the installation instructions for this kit ... http://accessories.volvocars.com/en-nl/XC90(-14)/InstallationInstruction/Pdf/VCC-140696-1/2003

Tensioner tool 999 5659 must be used to relieve the load from the rear suspension because it is extremely important that the screwed joint to the rubber bushings is tightened in the normal position, i.e. same position as when the car is on the ground with three people in the car and a full tank of fuel. Use the tensioner to relieve the load from the component parts in the suspension during removal/installation.


Don't think I'm going to do this!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
The Self Leveling kit is much more affordable then buying the individual parts, so question is:
- which Novomat p/n do I need/want? Both fit my car ...
- which p/n is in the Nivomat kit (Volvo kit 8685627)? The dealer does not have a breakdown of part numbers in the kit.

Tensioner tool 999 5659 must be used to relieve the load from the rear suspension because it is extremely important that the screwed joint to the rubber bushings is tightened in the normal position, i.e. same position as when the car is on the ground with three people in the car and a full tank of fuel. Use the tensioner to relieve the load from the component parts in the suspension during removal/installation.[/I]

Don't think I'm going to do this!
What year is your car? That's the first I've heard of a 7 seater without Nivomats. Maybe they were retrofitted by the previous owner?

BTW, you don't have to use that tensioner. For shop purposes, they are suggesting the car needs to be weighed down by 3 people and a tank of gas before you tighten the top strut bolt. Start with a full tank, that's an easy one. It doesn't specify how much those three people weigh but assuming its a driver and 2 in the 3rd row, those two are kids, call it 100lbs a kid and 200 for the driver. the drivers weight has very little effect on the rear stut, just leverage wise. Assuming 50% (which I think is high) of the drivers weight is supported by the rear, then its 300lbs total. How much do you weight plus a couple dumbells or bags of sand since you'll be sitting in the car over the wheel? You'll be at or over 300 lbs pretty quick.

I think the same would apply for 2 adults in the front and one in the middle, I would assume not more than 300lbs would transfer to being supported by the rear. The idea is to push that strut nice and tight in the mount hole working against the power of the spring, but when you combine the weight of the car off jacks plus a full tank, plus you sitting directly above it you should be fine.

And, I found a work around to the 9995500 tool in step 26. Get an 18mm Spark plug socket. Why spark plug vs regular? because the top of a SP socket has a bolt pattern on it. In my case a 13/16. You may need to drill out the center a bit but you can put the SP socket over the strut bolt, put a T40 screwdriver down the middle of it and then put your 13/16 wrench to work and get it nice and tight. I didn't have much luck with vise grip pliers and the SP socket is tall enough it sticks out of the hole for easy access and tightening.

**EDIT to add photos.
Here is what I mean about not needing the tensioner tool

Auto part
Auto part
Auto part Tongue-and-groove pliers
 

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As I said before, my XC90 is a 2011. It's a 7 seater.

I may try to do it without tool 999 5659 ...

Question remains: which Nivomat shocks came with the kit? PART NUMBER 30683451-MARKED 26, or PART NUMBER 30635776-MARKED 48?
 

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FYI, regarding the 26 vs 48 designation:

I have just bought the above kit from Tasca in the US and they arrived on Monday. I have an 2007 V8 and the back half of the car is jumping all over the road (left hand rear especially) so at least one of my Nivomats is gone, possibly both. So I searched this forum and found a thread showing that you can buy a "Levelling Kit". It has just arrived from the US and I can confirm it includes 2 x Nivomat struts ("26" code), 2 x springs to suit, all replacement bolts etc and an instruction booklet on how to do the job. So the car is booked in to have them replaced, which from the instruction booklet actually looks very straightforward. The cost of the levelling kit from Tasca was $722US. Postage for me to Melb Australia was another $122US so with the conversion to AUD$ was about $960-00 all up. Because the cost is under $1000AUD no import tax. The cheapest I could get them here in Australia was $1250-00 PER STRUT!!!! - Absolutely ridiculous. And that was for the strut only - no springs and no bolts. So I have saved myself well over $1500 especially if you include the cost of the springs as well. I have attached the link to the part from Tasca with the part number along with another to a Volvo dealer direct (similar price). When ordering, in regards to the "26" or the "48" designation for the different Nivomats, the "26" strut was standard on all Executive type models and the "48" was standard on the R-Design Sport. The "48" strut is stiffer for a more sporty ride and I believed complimented a more sporty sway bar set up the Sport models. They both however will fit in all vehicles. The Nivomat suited springs however are the same in all models so doesn't matter (all this is also on a thread somewhere on this forum -sorry I can't provide the links). Apparently these "Levelling Kits" were actually supplied by Volvo to the dealerships for customers who wanted to change from non-Nivomat struts and springs to self levelling Nivomats and Nivomat springs. Hope I haven't written something that was already covered as I didn't read the entire thread.

My car is now 11 years old and to spend under 1500 bucks to have the Nivomats replaced in my opinion is worth it. I tow an Expanda caravan quite regularly and the Nivomats are brilliant, raising back to level ride within a very short distance, so well worth replacing them FWIW.

Regards Barney



https://www.tascaparts.com/oem-parts/volvo-levelling-kit-8685627

http://volvopartslisle.com/part/OEM-Volvo-Part-8685627/Levelling-Kit
 

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Looks like my 2013 3.2 AWD 7-seater does not have Nivomats. I have a product id code of: 3347Z3665982 (rear passenger side door b-pillar) as per:
http://forums.swedespeed.com/showth...ension-parts&p=2444255&viewfull=1#post2444255

Following that decoding guide, I have a "marked 36" spring and "marked 65" shock.




13 = Model Year
14 = Factory Code (represents the factory where the car was built)
15 = Chassis Number
16 = Market Code (USA, Canada, etc.)
17 = Interior Code
18 = Exterior Paint Code
19 = Special Vehicle Number (Taxi, Police, etc.)
20 = Front Suspension Spring Code
21 = Front Suspension Strut Code
22 = Front Anti-Sway Bar Code
23 = Rear Suspension Spring Code
24 = Rear Suspension Shock Code
25 = Rear Anti-Sway Bar Code
26 = Front Suspension Bump Stop Code
27 = Rear Suspension Bump Stop Code
 

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somewhere around 2010 nivomat were no longer standard in the xc90
also the pretensioners disappeared from rear and middle seat.

discussed in this forum before
 
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