Question about 1985 Volvo GL

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1985 Volvo DL station wagon Starter problem

I got a 1985 Volvo DL station wagon from a little old lady. The car had only 52,000 miles when I got it and it had been serviced reguraly and garaged the entire time so it is in mint shape.

The only problem I seem to have is that every once in a while the car has trouble starting. It usually only occurs early in the morning when the sun hasn't been on the car very long or after it rains. Most days the car runs like a top but on these rainy or cold early morning days I get a backfire and I have trouble starting the car.

I've owned the car for over a year and a half and it starts 90% of the time. I just turn the key and it turns over. I don't hit the gas or anything. When its being finicky I've tried experimenting by pumping the gas pedal and such but it seems to only make the situation worst and I end up having to jump the car because I run down the battery trying to start it.

The moisture must be some kind of issue but I can't figure it out and I've taken it to two Volvo dealerships who say they fix the problem but the first cold or rainy day I'm fight back where I started.

I love the car an hate to part with it but I need something that is reliable. Hopefully there is an old time VOLVO expert out there who has seen this problem and knows the answer.

Thank you for your help

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This happened to me on my '87 245.
It was a cracked distributor cap. Just a hairline, but enough.
Also check all the electrical plugs and connections under the hood.
If there is any corrosion or anything amiss clean and or replace as necessary.
Also check for wire insulation deterioration. This is a problem on some '84 to '88 240s.


Posted on Sep 17, 2008

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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