Repeated repairs on my 1999 volvo


#1

I have a 1999 Volvo S70 which I have owned since it was new. It now has 300000 miles on it. I have diligently kept up the maintenance on it and my current mechanic, who I have been going to for about 10 years, says that the engine has about 80% life left in it. My car looks new. The problems started this summer. In June I took it in for its summer maintenance service and spent $1600.00. A few weeks later it wouldn’t accelerate. I took it in and the mechanic found a knock sensor issue and the fuel pump was not acting up to snuff. My mechanic replaced the fuel pump which was another $1500 or so, and hoped the knock sensor would behavior. Well I drove it for a couple of days and it stopped accelerating again. The mechanic replaced the knock sensor and then told me he saw a fault code on the throttle. He replaced the throttle compartment which cost 2000.00. During my previous visit I noticed that my headlight was out so he said he replaced that. When I drove it at night after the throttle fix my headlight was still out. I also noticed after my throttle fix that the emergency brake was stiff, my clutch felt soft, and the drivers seat rattled when you tried to move it. The mechanic had also seen the seat rattle when I was preparing to leave and we talked about it. He thought that it was because the seat was not adjusted very often, since I have always been the primary driver. Well, I thought that the way the car felt when it ran would resolve itself. My mechanic has had my car for most of the summer. Any way, I got it back a couple of days ago and last night when I was driving home, I pushed in the clutch and it just stayed there. I could not shift. I had a tow truck take me back to my mechanic shop. Needless to say I am worried that either the mechanic screwed up my clutch, emergency brake or seat while it was in the shop all summer. I don’t know what to do. I have tried so hard to keep my car in great shape and now I don’t know if I can trust my car or my mechanic. I would dearly love some opinions


#2

At 15+ years and 300K miles any car is going to be more trouble prone.
Add to that European cars tend to lag in reliability.
Add to that newer (beyond the '80s) Volvos tend to be troublesome.
Total = money pit.
Unfortunately it sounds like you’ve quickly spent more money than the car is worth.
Perhaps it’s time to let it go. Lesson learned.


#3

Agree! Time to say goodbye.


#4

Thank you. I understand.


#5

Sorry, but it’s time to move on. Often it’s not a failed engine that kills a car, it’s the dozens of other systems failing. And forget your mechanic’s statement that there’s 80% of the engine life left. 300,000 miles is great for any engine!


#6

More than likely it the clutch master cylinder. I would replace the clutch master and slave cylinders. You will spend money keeping the car in shape. It’s now up to you on what your threshold for spending money on it.


#7

Yes, the car might be a goner, but if you find a better Volvo mechanic, the car might be worth saving.

You have a car problem, but you also have a mechanic problem. Finding a good Volvo mechanic is kind of like finding a good attorney, because when you find a good one, you probably would be better off putting him on retainer. Ask some of the Volvo owners you know if they are on a first name basis with their mechanics. When someone answers “yes,” get the name and number of the mechanic, and consider giving that mechanic a shot at diagnosing your problem. The mechanic you’ve been using is throwing parts at the problem, and you need a good automotive diagnostician to take a crack at it before you give up on it.


#8

Thanks.