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Old 08-26-2004, 09:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
Bradford B Fassett
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Default 1990 Volvo DL Overdrive problem

Brief Specs: Volvo 240DL 215,000+ miles

Problem Summary: Vehicle won't shift into 4th gear. Overdrive uparrow
on dash board appears as soon as ignition starts. Arrow on dash stays
on regardless of any changing conditions besides turning car off.
Overdrive button on side of shifter is unresponsive.

History:

I was driving across country from Massachusetts to California, and
around the last exit on rte. 90 in upstate New York, my automatic
transmission dropped out of 4th gear and into 3rd gear, while the yellow
overdrive arrow appeared on my dashboard. I immeadiately stopped,
turned off the engine, pressed the overdrive button on the side of the
shifter, and restarted the engine. As soon as the ignition started, the
overdrive arrow appeared on the dash, and wouldn't dissappear if the
overdrive button was depressed on the side of the shifter. The
transmission shifts fine for the first three gears, but won't go into
fourth gear. I had to drive 2000+ miles in 3rd gear, trying to keep the
speed around 60MPH, as to try and limit the wear on the engine and
third gear. I have been told that losing fourth gear is a sign that the
transmission is going, but I have also read on google groups that it
might be my overdrive relay. I hope that this is a rather benign
overdrive problem as opposed to a substaintal transmisson problem, which
would likely be too expensive to fix. Does anybody have any suggestion?

Brad in CA

--
_________________________________________
Bradford Benjamin Fassett
keever@student.umass.edu

"Don't Make me take off my Sunglasses!!"
-----------------------------------------

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Old 08-26-2004, 09:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
Jeffrey M Copeland
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Default Re: 1990 Volvo DL Overdrive problem

The most likely culprit is the overdrive relay. It is located above the
fuse panel, behind the ashtray. It replacing this doesn't cure the problem,
you may have a bad overdrive solenoid (located on the side of the
transmission housing) or the wiring to the solenoid may be broken or
otherwise have a bad connection.
These electric overdrives are a notorious pain in the *&%$#@ but at least
it's not the transmission itself.

"Bradford B Fassett" <keever@.oit.umass.edu> wrote in message
news:40a9917d$1@news-1.oit.umass.edu...
> Brief Specs: Volvo 240DL 215,000+ miles
>
> Problem Summary: Vehicle won't shift into 4th gear. Overdrive uparrow
> on dash board appears as soon as ignition starts. Arrow on dash stays
> on regardless of any changing conditions besides turning car off.
> Overdrive button on side of shifter is unresponsive.
>
> History:
>
> I was driving across country from Massachusetts to California, and
> around the last exit on rte. 90 in upstate New York, my automatic
> transmission dropped out of 4th gear and into 3rd gear, while the yellow
> overdrive arrow appeared on my dashboard. I immeadiately stopped,
> turned off the engine, pressed the overdrive button on the side of the
> shifter, and restarted the engine. As soon as the ignition started, the
> overdrive arrow appeared on the dash, and wouldn't dissappear if the
> overdrive button was depressed on the side of the shifter. The
> transmission shifts fine for the first three gears, but won't go into
> fourth gear. I had to drive 2000+ miles in 3rd gear, trying to keep the
> speed around 60MPH, as to try and limit the wear on the engine and
> third gear. I have been told that losing fourth gear is a sign that the
> transmission is going, but I have also read on google groups that it
> might be my overdrive relay. I hope that this is a rather benign
> overdrive problem as opposed to a substaintal transmisson problem, which
> would likely be too expensive to fix. Does anybody have any suggestion?
>
> Brad in CA
>
> --
> _________________________________________
> Bradford Benjamin Fassett
> keever@student.umass.edu
>
> "Don't Make me take off my Sunglasses!!"
> -----------------------------------------



 
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Old 08-26-2004, 09:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
Mike F
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Default Re: 1990 Volvo DL Overdrive problem

Jeffrey M Copeland wrote:
>
> The most likely culprit is the overdrive relay. It is located above the
> fuse panel, behind the ashtray. It replacing this doesn't cure the problem,
> you may have a bad overdrive solenoid (located on the side of the
> transmission housing) or the wiring to the solenoid may be broken or
> otherwise have a bad connection.
> These electric overdrives are a notorious pain in the *&%$#@ but at least
> it's not the transmission itself.
>


While I agree it's the overdrive relay, the location described is for a
740. On the 240 it is located just to the left of the glovebox. The
easiest way to get at it is to remove the glovebox complete (7 screws).
The overdrive relay is white about 2"x1"x1".

--
Mike F.
Thornhill (near Toronto), Ont.

NOTE: new address!!
Replace tt with t (twice!) and remove parentheses to email me directly.
(But I check the newsgroup more often than this email address.)
 
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Old 08-26-2004, 09:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
Jeffrey M Copeland
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: 1990 Volvo DL Overdrive problem

Oops! I didn't read the original post carefully enough.
Yep, OD relay on a 240 is to the left of the glovebox. As you may have
guessed, I have a 740 and have recently replaced the OD relay. Now, I seem
to be having problems with the overdrive solenoid, too.
I'm really getting fed up with this electric overdrive system!!! I doubt I
will ever buy another car that uses it. Fortunatly, the newer Volvos have
abandoned this Rube Goldberg approach to engaging fourth gear (too many
things to potentially go wrong) and have employed a conventional PRND321
shift pattern.
Personally, I prefer a proper manual gearbox but, sadly, I have to settle
for an automatic to appease the wife. Not to mention that here in the
States, manual Volvos are as rare as hen's teeth.

"Mike F" <"mikef2316()"@allsttream.nett> wrote in message
news:40AA00AE.1F7E6BE0@allsttream.nett...
> Jeffrey M Copeland wrote:
> >
> > The most likely culprit is the overdrive relay. It is located above the
> > fuse panel, behind the ashtray. It replacing this doesn't cure the

problem,
> > you may have a bad overdrive solenoid (located on the side of the
> > transmission housing) or the wiring to the solenoid may be broken or
> > otherwise have a bad connection.
> > These electric overdrives are a notorious pain in the *&%$#@ but at

least
> > it's not the transmission itself.
> >

>
> While I agree it's the overdrive relay, the location described is for a
> 740. On the 240 it is located just to the left of the glovebox. The
> easiest way to get at it is to remove the glovebox complete (7 screws).
> The overdrive relay is white about 2"x1"x1".
>
> --
> Mike F.
> Thornhill (near Toronto), Ont.
>
> NOTE: new address!!
> Replace tt with t (twice!) and remove parentheses to email me directly.
> (But I check the newsgroup more often than this email address.)



 
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