What should I do with my Volvo 850 Turbo Wagon?

I own a 96 Volvo TUrbo 850 wagon and it now has 300 thousand miles. It now consumes 3-5 quarts of oil every 2 weeks and I’ve noticed that exhaust fumes come out of the oil dip stick. Also the air conditioner cools the car for about 10 minutes and then shuts off for the rest of a trip.(It gets hot down here)

What should I do; get rid of the car or can it be fixed and be a reliable car.


How many miles do you drive every two weeks? Oil consumption is measured in miles per quart, not quarts per week.

At 300K miles, I suggest you start looking for a replacement. You can fix the AC, maybe for a few hundred dollars, maybe for a few thousand. Hard to say. The oil problem may cost much more, but, again, hard to say.

Any vehicle that makes it to 300,000 miles is to be respected and revered. Then you put it to rest, unless we’re talking TRUE LOVE, in which case go ahead and spend whatever it takes.

If this were my car, I’d consider it worn out, and find something else, but there are Volvo owners out there who get 500,000 or more miles from their cars. How dedicated to this car are you?

It’s probably due for an engine overhaul based on oil consumption and the fumes out of the dipstick tube. The latter is a sign of blow-by due to worn piston rings. (Can be verified with a leak-down test)
Since a proper overhaul will be very expensive, this should not be considered on a 13 year old, 300k miles car IMHO.

If you really want to keep the car and continue onwards then I would suggest a good used engine/transmission assembly; from a salvage yard or possibly one from an individual who has a wrecked car. (EBay, Craigslist, etc. are possbilities)
I mention the transmission because at 300k miles it may be due also; especially if it’s an automatic.

The A/C problem could be nothing more than a low refrigerant charge which is causing the evaporator to ice up. Or not.
Considering the oil useage problem the A/C glitch is the least of the worries because eventually burning that much oil is going to clog the catalytic converter up.

crush it and they can make 20 dodge neons out of it. save your cash.

You’ve had very good use out of this car. The engine repairs properly done will likely be more than the car is worth. It’s time to say goodbye, and get something newer. If this was an American car with a V8, a used engine swap would make economic sense. A used Volve Turbo engine is a very risky purchase, however.

At least 40 neons (or whatever they call them this week).

JUNK everyweek. like MASH

Determine how much it would cost to replace it with a similar car in good condition and compare it to the cost of repair (probably a replacement engine) and decide what is more cost effective. Also, decide if you like this car or you would like an excuse to buy another car.


Thanks for your imput. I am finding for every court of oil the car is driven for 327 miles if that makes any difference let me know. THanks!

David Hutchings

I think they call them Calibers now, or maybe PT Cruisers

I’ve crunched the numbers and already see it time to stop the amount of money the car is eating up. It’s good to have qualitative imput. Thanks


Thanks for your imput !!!

David Hutchings