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Radiator replacement ?

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Old Apr 2nd, 2007, 19:23   #1
JCM
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Default Radiator replacement ?

My first VOC post !
I have an '87 240 GL Auto, bought new by my father, which has done nearly 97k. As he was an aeronautical engineer (worked on Spitfires) he always changed all fluids annually and oil every 6 months so it runs beautifully. However, I am very conscious that it is now nearly 20 years old and have started a replacement policy with all new hoses (tho not those under dash for heater yet), water pump and thermostat plus some suspension bushes. What do the experts in the Volvo Community advise next ? I am thinking of the radiator as a fairly urgent item as I sometimes do long motorway trips and have heard that the plastic can get brittle and fracture - at worst letting water into the auto box. Although the road holding and ride is still excellent (for a standard 240), would you advise changing the shocks ?


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Old Apr 2nd, 2007, 22:28   #2
Mike_Brace
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With regards the radiator a lot depends on its condition. If the fins are beginning to break away it is time to replace. With regards the condition of the plastic - yes it can go brittle so really it is a case of decide for yourself. I found over the years that rads to seem to reach the age of replacement at the 15-20 year mark usually due to corrosion often made worse by lack of antifreeze and also salt from the road.
At the age it is I would expect the springs to be getting a little tired, if it has carried weight the rear ones will have sagged and be due for replacement - front ones should be ok. Regarding shocks they may well still be ok - check they are not leaking and try the bounce test on them - if the car bounces a few times before settling they are avredue for replacement. A lot depends on how the car has been used - yours may still be ok.

Mike
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Old Apr 3rd, 2007, 16:01   #3
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On my '89 240, the coolant level started to drop slowly as the radiator sprang a tiny leak out of the one of the bottom corners. As Mike says in his post, its about this age they tend to go so its not a bad preventative maintenance plan to include the rad. They are quite cheap (60 for a good quality Nissen rad) and not difficult to fit. Gives the opportunity flush the cooling system as well.

Apart from that, I would recommend looking at the suspension bushes, even ones that appear OK and show no movement can be worn out as I find out. Again depends on how the cars been used.

Engine mounts can suffer, especially the one near the oil filter which is in a perfect location for a coating of oil every time the filter is removed.

Cambelt is often ignored in cars of this age even if they regularly 'serviced' so check that.

I also changed the gearbox and diff oil.

Also make sure the flame trap/breather system is clear - again often overlooked.

Hope that helps

Steve
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Old Apr 3rd, 2007, 18:49   #4
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hi we are on our sixth 240 the only things that has ever caused us serious problems are engine breather and radiator so i would say change it for peace of mind if nothing else .both my autos had already had a new rad fitted one at 80000 the other at 94000 so this may be a common problem hope this helps
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Old Apr 4th, 2007, 16:58   #5
JCM
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Cool Radiator replacement ?

Many thanks for helpful replies - the consensus is that it is time to replace my 20 year old radiator just in case. I now have to choose between a Parts for Volvos rad at 71.68 (claimed to be Swedish made to Volvo OE standard) or my local dealer at 179!

JM
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Old Apr 5th, 2007, 09:53   #6
Clifford Pope
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I bought a cheap one about 5 years ago, from either GSF or Eurocarparts. It's not leaking yet, and the fins are still intact.

When very old the originals sometimes seem to become porous, rather than developing identifiable leaks.
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Old May 14th, 2007, 18:40   #7
dgbalfour
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_Brace View Post
With regards the radiator a lot depends on its condition. If the fins are beginning to break away it is time to replace.

Mike
I wondered what could be the cause of a slightly higher temperature than usual cruising down the A38 (lots of hills taken at speed) on a recent 120 mile run. I originally suspected the thermostat was being a bit slow. Then I took a peek at the radiator...

This was a new GSF radiator six years ago, I'm a very disappointed.

David
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Old Feb 8th, 2019, 16:52   #8
rnorman345
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCM View Post
My first VOC post !
I have an '87 240 GL Auto, bought new by my father, which has done nearly 97k. As he was an aeronautical engineer (worked on Spitfires) he always changed all fluids annually and oil every 6 months so it runs beautifully. However, I am very conscious that it is now nearly 20 years old and have started a replacement policy with all new hoses (tho not those under dash for heater yet), water pump and thermostat plus some suspension bushes. What do the experts in the Volvo Community advise next ? I am thinking of the radiator as a fairly urgent item as I sometimes do long motorway trips and have heard that the plastic can get brittle and fracture - at worst letting water into the auto box. Although the road holding and ride is still excellent (for a standard 240), would you advise changing the shocks ?


JCM

1987 240GL auto
1942 Ford GPW Jeep
Wow! only 20 years? my 1988 P245 B230E 130K - rad has only just sprung a leak. I guess that it, like the rad on my 20 year old Morgan, has been suffering from the salty sea air; that had to be replaced so now F188 is getting a new one too - have not gone up that much in price 70 to 75 or so. I wonder is it worth buying one with a guarantee?
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Old Feb 9th, 2019, 01:23   #9
DW42
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With an automatic, I'd suggest going with something good quality -- Nissens, as Steve said above. You don't want to risk a leak in the transmission cooler part of the radiator, mixing coolant with transmission fluid. The first replacement radiator I put in a 240 was a cheapie, and while it didn't have this particular problem, the transmission line connections were a pig to stop from leaking ATF. The Nissens was a much better fit.
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Old Feb 9th, 2019, 01:52   #10
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11 year old thread!
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