Question about 1995 Volvo 850

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My volvo 850 turbo boils the water in the reservoir to the point that water fiend a way out but blown any hoses. then a get low collant level and engine beggins to over heat...it look like a head gasket leak but even after i kill the engine stays boiling for several minutes i dont thing the engine can hold that much preasure or a blown house would haved hapened by this time i been like this for about 6 months mt engine only haves 130k miles on it.. please help me..

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  • cvcalitos Apr 13, 2009

    even after six months of the same thing

    the car runs great i ran the car from houston to dallas and the ride was fine all the there and back with no promblems at all then the next day it need some warter again i dont think is the head gasket i would have blown a hose by this time i think, but maybe im wrong... hope not not not not ....thanks everyone for helping me ..

  • cvcalitos Apr 13, 2009

    realy how long have driven yours like this? my car is been doing this for about 6 maybe 9 months i remenber that the reason i notised this problem at the end of las summer whene the temp whent a lillte hoter than normal and then it started to leak water. well i think you for the help and i gues im going to go inside to see what i can fiend..

  • cvcalitos Apr 14, 2009

    well i think im going to try that for now and the probably reaplce the hole engine im having issues with the emision sys as well..thank you

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Unfortunately, it sounds like you need a head gasket. The system will hold pressure that long because they normally run at 20 psi. Given the mileage on the car and the model, this is a common failure. I happen to own one myself and have been through the same thing.

Posted on Apr 13, 2009

  • StrollerMama Apr 13, 2009

    I hope that you do not have a blown head gasket, but I am driving one right now that does have a blown gasket, and it has yet to blow a hose. I have to get the time to tear it down and repair it.

  • StrollerMama Apr 14, 2009

    I bought the car like that about 4 months ago, the guy I bought it from had been driving it like that for a while. He tried the water pump and thermostat to no avail. He took it in to the Volvo dealer and they told him it was definitely the head. He decided he didn't want to put the money into the car so he just drilled a small hole in the coolant fill cap and ran it that way adding fluid every other day or so. Once I purchased the car, I replaced the coolant fill cap and put Blue Devil (a great head sealer) in it. I have been driving it since (avg about 1000K miles a week) and have not had a problem. no fluid leaks, no over-heating, nothing. I know it is a temporary fix but I am hoping it will hold out until the weather warms up around here.
    Good Luck with your car. Volvos are great vehicles. I currently own 3 of them.


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it could be a blown head gasket or could be a stuck thermostat causing the coolant to bowel and the only place to go is out the resevoir bottle pull your oil dipstick check to see if you can see little water bubbles in the oil on the stick this kinda gives you an idea if the head gasket is blown because most of the time the coolant will mix with the oil if the thermostat is stuck close it will lead to a blown head gasket if you dont get it taken care of also you may have a slow leak in the water pump and once the level gets low its going to bowel whats left and the stem will come out the over flow tube on the bottle

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If leaking on the driver's side, check the heater hoses - two connections at the firewall, and two on the block. You'll have to remove the air intake box and hoses to see these.

If leaking on the passenger side, check the coolant reservoir for cracks or splits, and the small hose coming from the reservoir. Only other thing that could be leaking on this side of the car is the water pump -- It should appear that coolant is coming from behind the timing belt cover if this is the case.

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1 Answer

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Is there any oil in the water or mayonnaise under the oil filler cap? If so, I'm afraid you probably have a blown head gasket. The hole being blown in a hose is symptomatic of that I'm afraid. As I've posted elsewhere, if it's a T5 then it's much, much easier to get a secondhand engine & change it over rather than change the gasket (in any case, it can turn out to be a damaged head rather than/as well as the gasket).

If not then check the water pump itself.

To check the radiator, disconnect the top & bottom hoses; connect a garden hose to the bottom hose (gaffer tape is your friend :) and turn on the tap. Pretty obviously, if water doesn't gush from the top outlet, you have a blockage - try more water pressure (not a pressure washer!), you may clear it :)

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