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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My new-to-me 2005 XC90 just hit 120,000 miles today. PO didn't do much maintenance but I don't think they were hard on it. I'm pretty easy on it too.

I read about the 4T65 tranny failures. Besides a flush and fill with Redline, etc. what can I do preventive-maintenance wise? What risks are there in flush & fills?

Got a good deal on the car ($3000), may run it until springtime and replace some clunky suspension parts before I move it on.

Thanks for advice...
 

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There's no preventative maintenance.. Just a savings account or an interest free credit transfer backup plan. There are people who rebuild them better than stock so they won't fail again, but that's after the fact. Make sure you have aaa and 5k laying around lol

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I honestly wouldn't dump a dime into that tranny unless it was into the rebuild fund if you plan on keeping the car.

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My new-to-me 2005 XC90 just hit 120,000 miles today. PO's didn't do much maintenance but I don't think they were hard on it. I'm pretty easy on it too.

I read about the 4T65 tranny failures. Besides a flush and fill with Redline, etc. what can I do preventive-maintenance wise? What risks are there in flush & fills?

Got a good deal on the car ($3000), may run it until springtime and replace some clunky suspension parts before I move it on.

Thanks for advice...
1555,000 miles on my 2004 T6. Transmission shifts as good as day we purchased XC90 new. At 90,000 miles removed pan replaced transmission filter, flushed transmission using cooling line. Installed Redline fluid. Every 20,000 miles or so, I use vacuum pump suck out about 6 quarts out dip stick.
Major reason T6 transmission fails, coolant getting into transmission from cooling system. You can install after market transmission cooler to prevent this problem.
 

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I see so many t6s with bad trannies on Craigslist it's crazy. Anywhere from 90 to 130k. But people still want 4 or 5k for them! Really? Lol

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well I'm not just going to sit around and wait for it to break. I've ordered a "Shift Kit Combo Kit" from Triple Edge Performance (extra $$ well worth the stellar service and info he's provided already via email, thumbs up) and will be installing that when the weather permits. Also will install a remote tranny cooler in the spring (recommendations welcome).

Oddly, while the PO didn't do any maintenance, he drove it from 90,000 to 119,000 miles while he owned it and told me he'd never had the tranny serviced at all. The fluid is full and clear - looks new. Wonder if the tranny was replaced before he got it?

No it's not (currently) broke. Yes I'm going to fix it. Stay tuned and laugh if I mess it up.
 

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i have an 05 T6 with ~185k miles on it and my transmission just died (I am the 3rd owner, second owner was the daughter of the first owner) and am going through the rebuild phase. in total, I will have spent less ~1.8k on parts. while I don't know of any "preventative" maintenance you can do on these things, the shift kit is highly recommended across forums for other vehicles that use this gearbox as is using an aux cooler. I will be bypassing the integrated cooler for my aux one to avoid any possible future contamination once i get up and running again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Well I got the shift kit installed today with no drama. Pretty much a remove - clean - replace operation.

By far, the best writeup I found is here.

If you do this, get a 10mm 1/4" drive wobble socket. Just one bolt needs it but it's well worth it. JFDI.

121,000 miles, still trying to retrieve maintenance records but for sure it hasn't been touched for at least 25,000 when the PO got it. Original owner had dealer-serviced it religiously so the service manager said.

Any way to tell if the tranny is original?

2 magnets, is that normal?

Here's what I found...I'm thinking a pretty normal condition for this mileage. No chunks.




Shifts are noticeably better but I believe the crispness I seek is clouded by the transmission software update which apparently reduces torque during shifts (I believe there's a little programmed throttle-lift going on).

The blue line is my foot on the pedal, the yellow line I think is the ECM commanding the ETM, and the gray line is the actual ETM position. The dips in the gray and yellow lines are shift points. As you can see, I didn't command those. Would love to compare to a XC90 T6 without the TCM update.



David at Triple Edge Performance cautioned me that Volvo was over-conservative in programming for smoothness, which apparently caused a good deal of the known issues with the 4T65E in Volvos. My conclusion: the 4T65E is a reasonably good transmission, it's the application that was the culprit.

I'd do the shift kit again for this tranny in a heartbeat.
 
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