Volvo s40 2005 power failure

Hi all, now I’m having an issue with my volvo.
I drove it fine the last week with no issues (including yesterday) but this morning it wouldn’t start saying system break error and some other erro codes. This happened a few weeks ago and I replaced the altinator with a brand new volvo one (well the garage did) and it was fine until this morning.

I was told it could be the starter motor? All the electrics in the car are on but when I turn the key there’s nothing. No clicking or anything. Just error messages.

Does anyone have any ideas? I know it can’t be the altinator or the battery.


Did it actually state “system break error”, or was it possibly “system brake error”?
What were the other error codes?

If you feel good about this service shop then call them . I guess you are not going to fix this yourself so throwing parts at it or telling the shop to replace something that your were told over the web will just cost you extra money.

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How old is battery?

Battery is 6 months old and the error messages were immobiliser check hand book, system break error, boot lid open, anti skid something (can’t quite remember) and rear seat belts not in use (nothing on back seats)

It’s at a garage now from AA tow so hopefully it’s covered on my parts and labour.

system brake error – there I fixed it for you.

Lol its apparently an electrical fault caused by two wires that had come loose. I know the breaks are good as they are new. It’s a response car so I have to keep on top of stuff but it’s not NHS Fleet so I’m responsible for it

Apparently not!
Earlier, I asked the OP to clarify the matter, and he still tells us that it is a “system break” issue. Perhaps a vacuum break mechanism has failed–assuming that his car has such a mechanism.
I recall that I once had problems with the vacuum break on my Taurus, but that might not relate to a newer vehicle.
Or, perhaps this really is a brake-related issue.
Only the OP can clarify this for us.

I’m going to pick it up after work. Car electrician said there were 2 loose wires but don’t know where from so I’ll update once I’ve spoken to him

Sounds like UK entity. Lease/maintain 16 yr old car? Maybe brits do things differently.

Since this is mainly a US based forum not many will know what a NHS Response vehicle is .
My guess is National Health Service.

And, I am going to assume that his towing was done by some sort of Automobile Association, not by Alcoholics Anonymous.



Haha yes National Health Service and Automotive Association. It’s also right hand drive! :joy:

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My guess is that the system could not tell you were stepping on the brake because of the two loose wires, so it would not let the starter engage.


I thought stepping on the brake was only required to move the transmission out of Park, not to engage the starter. If the car has a manual transmission, there would be a clutch interlock.

Turns out it was an immobiliser fault. Theoose wires were something to do with that. The car threw random error codes to stop the car and then wouldn’t turn over. The starter motor was checked, the altinator and also the battery. Two little wires loose from the immobiliser did all the damage. My mechanic friend found it in 10 mins. The AA (automobile association) approved garage didn’t have a clue.
The boot lid open message was tondo with a loose wire in the boot caused by constant opening and closing of the boot so that’s sorted too.

I’ve been driving my wife’s little Renault clio back and too from work and that’s a great little car but I’m glad to get my volvo back on the road.