2002 S60 - what do I need to know?
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    1. #1
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      2002 S60 - what do I need to know?

      Picking up a 2002 S60 2.4T automatic FWD, with 160k miles for my kid's first car next week. Just curious if there are any major, or consistent, gotchas, or other concerns I need to know about - timing belts, sunroof leaks, power seats try to kill you, etc. - so I can be prepared to throw blood, money, or both, at them.

      my sole Volvo so far is a 2015.5 xc60, love the car other than it's a gas hog.

      thanks.

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    3. #2
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      Really need to be your own DIY mechanic to own one of these cars, otherwise, too expensive to have a mechanic refresh it. At that age/mileage, all the big repairs/services should have been done...PCV, timing belt, suspension, fluid flushes, ect. Hopefully the seller has all the service records so you can determine what you're in for. The transmission is the big thing, has the software been updated ? Neutral/stop feature removed - Volvo service bulletin #30646691. I actually just bought a 2002 S60 T5 last week...1 owner, garaged, 87,000 with all service records. Right away I'm doing a transmission drain/fill/flush, PCV system, filters, fluids, rear brakes...and may even do the whole suspension for good measure....good parts add up fast, but worth it, offset the cost of ownership by doing the work yourself. Hope it's a good car, but plan on putting a good chunk of money into it for basic maintenance/refresh.
      Last edited by Archer111; 08-03-2020 at 06:35 PM.
      Current: 1998 V70 T5/S70 T5M & 2002 V70/S60 T5
      Past: 2006 V70R GT

    4. #3
      Senior Member ZZZZZZZ's Avatar
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      Adam is right. Watch a ton of youtube videos. "Orange" "Peppermint" and FCP Euro will have a LOT of good DIY stuff on there. No affiliation here, but FCP Euro sells you a part one time, and it lasts forever. Brake pads? Yep. Plugs? Yes. Wiper blades, alternator, radiator, coils, even OIL. Use it up and send it back for a replacement. Now I doubt many people actually take them up on that for small things, but if you have a receipt and you can send it back to them, you get 100% credit.

      If you don't have them, get some rhino ramps, some good stands, a fair floor jack, and a bunch of metric stuff from 6 or 8 up to 19 and 21mm. Don't need to buy super stuff, but don't buy crap. Timing belt by someone else (too much for me for a daily), oil filler seal, air filter, plugs, coils, fuel filter and IF you can swing it, a VIDA/DICE machine. It will let you see every possible signal the car can give you - fuel pressure, temperatures, individual wheel speed, etc. It will TELL you what is wrong. It's pretty valuable to help diagnose and KNOW what to ask to have done if you're not willing to do the work yourself. It's a needed thing in this world to be able to do some simple stuff. One indy was charging 100 to change my oil and do a check-over. Do what?? I began reading, and came here for advice. I know NOTHING, but can now chang an SAS, a PEM, a fuel filter, coils and plugs, motor mounts. It's satisfying and rewarding.

      Some things you will likely never have to worry about and others you will do three times. Keep the car clean and the sunroof won't likely leak (caused mostly likely by a clogged drain). Getting the suspension refreshed is awesome - car rides like new.

      Some things to check on right away before you buy: glove test; trans will 'flare' and kick in lower gears when warmed up if it's in need of service (or will weaken greatly if it still has the software to go into neutral like Adam says); look at the underside and see where ANYTHING may be leaking and you'll know what you may be faced with; Smell fuel? Maybe a fuel pump going (not cheap); Feel the carpet up in front and look under the front seats, under the rear seats and in the trunk to look for signs of water damage, check battery age - electrical demons will jack these cars up.

      Quote Originally Posted by poohsan View Post
      Picking up a 2002 S60 2.4T automatic FWD, with 160k miles for my kid's first car next week. Just curious if there are any major, or consistent, gotchas, or other concerns I need to know about - timing belts, sunroof leaks, power seats try to kill you, etc. - so I can be prepared to throw blood, money, or both, at them.

      my sole Volvo so far is a 2015.5 xc60, love the car other than it's a gas hog.

      thanks.
      Last edited by ZZZZZZZ; 08-03-2020 at 06:53 PM.
      "The Real IPD" - ZZZZZZZ's thread
      2007 Passion Red/Gobi VRgt; 2005 Silver/Beige Leather S60 2.5T AWD; 2002 Silver/Off black leather V70XC
      Past: 1999 Tropic Blue/Green/Oak leather V70 (NAa); Mom traded 1975 Maroon/Maroon leather 164E

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    6. #4
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      The fluids are the first thing to check. When that is done, the next item is the timing belt. You will have to remove the plastic cover, which is not hard to do. The belt itself should be inspected for general condition, and look for signs of oil contamination. If there is oil present, then the crankcase ventilation system will need to be inspected and possibly serviced. The serpentine belt should also be inspected, and if there is bearing noise coming from that part of the engine, pay particular attention to the belt tension device which keeps the serpentine belt taut. If the serpentine belt fails, there is a peculiar failure mode, in which the belt begins to disintegrate, and releases a strand of material that is somehow drawn into the timing belt, leading to catastrophic timing belt failure. Sudden timing belt failure usually results in contact between valves and pistons, and at that point, the engine might not be worth repairing. My 2005 S60 2.5T has 125,000 miles, the original engine, and the original transmission. The turbo is also original. Everything is working fine. I change the oil at 3000 mile intervals.

    7. #5
      Junior Member Orange's Avatar
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      Does the XC60 still have the automatic rear headrests release ? Nice feature when those kids get too annoying
      Otherwise, already many good suggestions above. The 02 had problematic and $$ throttle bodies, so I would make sure it was already replaced. The other 02 weakness was the transmission, drive it when warm and feel for smooth changes. I would turn the front wheels to lock and look at the rear small control arm bushing: if it looks torn, it means it was never replaced so the owner(s) were not spending money on it. I would walk away from there. If you still enjoy the visit, may try this https://youtu.be/gS3bawaBMMk The idea is to find one that was taken care of but be aware that many of these look really really nice inside out - like new - but that's not related to the potential issues. Generally speaking, unless you find one that was really taken care off, I would rather look at a 2003 or at a 2006-2009. The 2001-2002 had the problems above, the 2004-2005 had a problem with the CEM. The AWD had problems with the AWD. If you can find a non turbo that's less quick but also easier to maintain.

    8. #6
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      Thanks everyone. Yep, the XC60 has the rear headrest release, so does the s60; Swedish kids must be a bit unruly perhaps?

      I ordered a second key at a dealer and they programmed it, and mentioned something about doing software updates, so maybe they did the update for the transmission (assuming there’s just one big update for the whole car)?

      They also recommended replacing the belts and water pump, for 600euro, so I’ve been watching yt videos and it doesn’t look too bad, so I may try that myself, but I was wondering about two things - 1. are camshaft seals an automatic “must replace” if the PCV valve fails the glove test, when replacing the timing belt? Yes, I plan on replacing the pcv valve (doesn’t look like fun). 2. If no to the cam seals, do I still need the cam locking tool when changing the timing belt?


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    9. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by poohsan View Post
      1. are camshaft seals an automatic “must replace” if the PCV valve fails the glove test, when replacing the timing belt? Yes, I plan on replacing the pcv valve (doesn’t look like fun).

      2. If no to the cam seals, do I still need the cam locking tool when changing the timing belt?

      1. If the PCV system is partially clogged, and it will be unless it's been done - I would solve that and replace seals only if they are leaking. Keep in mind you might have to remove the oil pan to clean the passage from the block to the pan.

      2. You don't need a cam lock tool to just replace the belt and water pump -

    10. #8
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      Congrats on the purchase.
      Checking the health of the PCV system would be my #1 job. I’m not sure I’d rely on the glove test. If the PCV hasn’t been done, just do it. Leaving the PCV neglected means a cam seal is going to pop and you would not believe how quickly that oil starts coming out when this happens.

      The 02 may have the older style throttle body. See if it has a yellow sticker on it. If it does, awesome, it’s been replaced. If it does not, be prepared to service/replace it at some point.

      Be sure the high-beams work. If they don’t and if the dash doesn’t light up brighter at night, you will need a new headlight module (the switch assy that houses the fog light toggle, the dimmer, etc).

      Give the sunroof drains a cleaning before handing over to your son.

      Be sure that the air filter cover has been put on properly.

      Verify no gremlins in the speedo/dim. These are prone to crapping out as they get older. Easy fix by replacing with another 01-02 doner DIM.


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      2010 V70 3.2 125,000miles
      2002 V70XC, 175,000 miles
      2004 S60 2.5T, 160,000 miles

    11. #9
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      It failed the glove test so I ordered the pcv kit, plus the banjo bolt and the thing the banjo bolt holds, plus the crush washer. I held off on the oil pan gasket set, I thought I would see if I can blow air through like in the fcp yet video. I’m guessing I will still want to drain and replace the oil afterwards nonetheless, even though it was recently done, just to be safe

      I’ll look for the yellow sticker on the throttle body too.

      High beams work, though one spot on the dash is dimmer, we’ll look into swapping the bulbs for leds. I probably ought to clean the sunroof drain lines on the xc60 too, while I’m thinking about it.

      Thanks everyone, greatly appreciated.


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