Question about 1996 Volvo 850

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Volvo windshield wipers don't work

Left wiper doesn't move, right works fine

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From the wiper motor, the wiper linkage attaches to both wiper arms. If one side is working, then that indicates that your motor is working, and the linkage to at least 1 wiper arm is working.

What's left? The linkage to the other arm, and the connection of the arm to the pivot shaft assembly. Let's find out:

1. Remove the inoperative wiper arm. You will expose the shaft that the wiper arm attaches to. It will have a head on it that looks like a small peanut butter cup, with shallow ridges or splines all the way around it. This can be formed on the end of the shaft, or it can be a separate piece that is removable. If you don't see it, it may have come off with the wiper arm, so look for it to be still embedded in the wiper arm hole. Once you find it, how do those splines look? Are they stripped? If so, they may be rotating within the arm instead of rotating the arm itself.

2. Run the wipers again. Is the shaft rotating? If it is, then the arm and/or splines were the problem, and you need to replace withever component had the stripped splines, whether the arm or that p-nut butter cup splined part. (Or both, if you want to be extra safe and not have to mess with it again for a while.) If you're lucky, it'll be a separate piece that you can replace easily. If not, it'll be formed as part of the wiper linkage, and you'll have to replace the whole linkage. If it's just the arm that's stripped, replace the arm. Easy.

3. If the shaft does NOT rotate with the arm removed, then the linkage is broken, usually at the connection where the wiper shaft connects to the long arm that hooks both wiper shafts together. The bushings are often plastic, and they wear out. If it's plastic, you can get a replacement at the dealer, which will be nice, new plastic to last however long this one did. But if the linkage is metal all the way along, you'll have to do more work than with the easily replaceable plastic connection.

3b. To gain access to the linkage on most vehicles, remove both wiper arms. Next, remove the (usually) black plastic vented piece under & around the wiper shafts. This should allow access to the wiper linkage.

For those who who have neither wiper working and were hoping this would cover it, you're in luck. If neither wiper is working, here's how to test the system:

1. Turn the key to ON.
2. Turn on the wipers.
3. Listen for the sound of the wiper motor. LIsten in the cab, but also in the engine compartment as well. If you hear it but have no wiper movement, your motor is fine and the linkage is the issue.
3b. If you do not hear any motor sounds in the cab or the engine comartment, it's either the motor or the switch (I assume you've checked the fuse already).
4. Check the wiper motor: Does it have a connector for the wires, or just one wire. If it has one wire, remove that wire and check it for voltage with a multi-meter or test-light. If you have a connector, you'll need to know what wire is which. Maybe. Most of the time, the motor is grounded thru the body, so if you remove the bolts and move the motor away from the body, you can check for voltage between the motor and body.
5. If you have no voltage, then it's the switch or wiring, or possibly the resistor, if equipped. If you DO have voltage at the motor, but no motor movement, the motor is bad and must be replaced.

Posted on Apr 19, 2013

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SOURCE: 1996 volvo 960 windshield wipers stalling out

Took the car to a local garage and the tech found a loose connecting rod on the gear box of the windshield wipers.
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SOURCE: Volvo V70 (53 reg) rear

no you would have to pull the motor to make sure its working but it sounds like what you may be hearing is like a humming sound where its trying to work but not.

Posted on Aug 09, 2008

  • 4 Answers

SOURCE: Volvo 850 windshield wipers

The 13mm nuts that attach the wiper arms to the pivot assembly loosen with time. Pop up the plastic caps and tighten the nuts. Make sure the wipers are in the park position i.e. set the wiper switch in the off position before shutting the ignition off - otherwise you might tighten the wiper arms in the wrong position and they would try to go places they shouldn't :)

Posted on Oct 12, 2008

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: My Volvo's windshield wipers just

You could try just tightening the nuts that hold your wipers. I'm no expert but I know the wipers on volvos are made to loosen them selves up if they get stuck on anything (like ice) so they wont break something more expensive.

Posted on Jan 08, 2010

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: Defroster

1985 gl reverse no working

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