'87 Volvo: heat stays on ALWAYS. Also, fuel gauge doesn't work, and brakes are squeeeeeeeeealing



I’ve got a 1987 Volvo 240 DL wagon automatic, with 295,000+ and need some help, please.

1) the heat stays on all of the time, even with the switches off and fan not blowing. This gets pretty agonizing in the summer.

2) my fuel gauge doesn’t work. It used to, but stopped two years ago. The only time it has worked since then was when I filled the tank after a big storm (duh) and the fuel pump got water in it. The gauge worked, but the pump didn’t. It dried out and started working again, at which point the gauge stopped working again.

3) Darned front brakes squeal like crazy- mechanic can’t find anything wrong… They were just redone 6 months ago, all new everything.

Thanks for your help-- Beatrice


Squealing brakes are standard equipment on Volvos of that era. Good quality pads installed with the anti-squeal goo usually help. I would have them checked out to ensure that you don’t have a stuck caliper or other faulty items.

I can’t remember if the Volvo had a separate fuel level sending unit or if it was a part of the fuel pump. Either way, that shouldn’t be an expensive fix. Worse case: it could be the gauge itself inside the odometer cluster.

I believe you have a door inside the ventilation system that open and closes. I can’t figure out if your continous heat is caused by a stuck vent door or something else like a switch problem, a cooling system issue or a shot heater core???


You could bypass the heater core (connect the two coolant hoses that go to/from your firewall/heating system) pretty easily - and then re-connect them when the weather turned colder.

That would turn off the heat for the summer.

When I had a motorcycle with no fuel guage, I would re-set the trip-meter every time I filled up. It would give me a pretty good idea of when I needed to fill up again.