How to Troubleshoot a Volvo S40 Turbo

Written by matt wooddy
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The Volvo S40 is a model of compact, luxury automobile that was first introduced to consumers for the 1995 model year. With two generations of models, the S40 has many optional body styles and engine types. If your S40 features one of the available turbocharged motors from the factory, there are a few steps you can take to ensure this power-plant stays healthy and active. If you suspect anything erratic is happening with your car's engine or chassis, check the vehicle immediately for any issues. Identifying problems early on can save you time and money.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Air filter
  • Air filter cleaner
  • Motor oil
  • Replacement oil filter
  • Wrench set
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Philips-head screwdriver
  • Clean rag or T-shirt

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  1. 1

    Loosen the fastening hardware that holds the air intake tube to the turbo compressor of your S40. Disconnect the air intake tube and remove from the engine. There should not be any debris in this tube that might prohibit air flow, so if there is, clean it out thoroughly. A clogged intake system and filter can lead to a significant loss in power, as well as produce dirty exhausted gas and air.

  2. 2

    Pull the air filter out of its resting place and inspect this part as well. If your air filter is a wire-mesh designed part and appears to be quite dirty, take some filter cleaner and scrub the walls until clean. If your car still has a paper-like air filter, as it comes from the factory, replace this part with a new one.

  3. 3

    Tag and remove the electrical wiring and hoses that connect to the intake manifold if you suspect a leak around this area. A leaking intake or exhaust manifold can cause severe damage to the engine block and cylinder head of the S40. However, unless the manifolds themselves are actually cracked or warped, you only need to concentrate on replacing the manifold gaskets that separate these parts from the engine. Because the turbocharged S40 relies on forced air induction, temperatures can reach extreme heights, placing stress on these gaskets far more easily than naturally-aspirated engines.

  4. 4

    Pull the oil dipstick out of the engine cover to check the level and quality of the motor oil. Wipe away the motor oil from the dipstick with a clean rag and replace into the dipstick slot. Remove the oil dipstick again and check for darkness of the oil. If the oil is dark, or even black, it is old and unhealthy for your S40. Replace the motor oil and oil filter completely. If the oil level is below the recommended line, add more oil to the engine's compartment.

  5. 5

    Jack the front and rear end of the S40 off of the ground with the provided car jack. Place four jack stands underneath the frame at each wheel, then lower the car onto these stands to secure. Crawl underneath the vehicle and check the exhaust pipe connections and oxygen sensor. A faulty sensor and bad exhaust pipe connections can lead to leaking exhausted gas and air, which diminishes both power and fuel efficiency. Tighten the bolts that hold the exhaust pipes together and replace any of these parts, if necessary.

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