Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240 - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 10th, 13, 09:17 AM Thread Starter
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Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

This is for a 1991 Volvo 240..

This car has a lot of issues that I'm trying to iron out. When the engine is cold, it is VERY hard to start. Once it warms up, starting it again is no problem. The temp gauge will go all the way into the red until the thermostat opens, then it comes back down to where it's supposed to be. I thought I had this problem licked by flushing out the coolant system and purging out the air, but the problem soon returned.

I looked into the feedback resevior and could not help but notice that the coolant is very dirty. There is also thick white smoke that periodically comes from the tailpipe.

Can this be a sign of a blown head gasket?

I checked the oil cap and there was no milky residue anywhere, but I know that this test isn't always accurate.

This all started after a fan belt broke and I was forced to limp the car home. The car ran hot, destroyed the thermostat and blew the bottom radiator hose off. I replaced all that was broken, and since then it has had nothing but coolant issues

Need advice!!

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 10th, 13, 01:32 PM
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Re: Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

More than likely, the alum head has a new shape from the overheat.
Check the condition of the dist cap, wires and rotor - rotors are notorious for being burnt as they have a resistor in them.
Check intake system for a broken hose, vacuum line, etc.
If thermostat is not opening up soon enough, get another one.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 11th, 13, 02:46 PM
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Re: Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

EFI or Carb? If you determine the head gasket is blown, it's more then likely cheaper to find a use BF21 in great shape for cheap and I mean real cheap like $50. The 240 Engines and Trannys never sold at wrecking yards because they generally do 400,000+ miles only requiring general maintenance.

My 84 244GL with the EFI ME21/4 Spd-OD has over 400,000 klicks and has never used a cup of oil between changes once or twice a year since new.

They are very easy to work on and parts are cheap because there where so many on the road at one time - Sadly their days are over.

The BF21 mill isn't any like the old B18 & 20 when it comes to rebuilding or buying parts for it as the BF21 Piston size and Type varied where ever the VW Designed Engine was built making it extremely expensive to order parts for Pistons and Rings.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 11th, 13, 04:09 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

Quote:
Originally Posted by Z15CAM View Post
EFI or Carb? If you determine the head gasket is blown, it's more then likely cheaper to find a use BF21 in great shape for cheap and I mean real cheap like $50. The 240 Engines and Trannys never sold at wrecking yards because they generally do 400,000+ miles only requiring general maintenance.

My 84 244GL with the EFI ME21/4 Spd-OD has over 400,000 klicks and has never used a cup of oil between changes once or twice a year since new.

They are very easy to work on and parts are cheap because there where so many on the road at one time - Sadly their days are over.

The BF21 mill isn't any like the old B18 & 20 when it comes to rebuilding or buying parts for it as the BF21 Piston size and Type varied where ever the VW Designed Engine was built making it extremely expensive to order parts for Pistons and Rings.
Mines is EFI. I went to the yard quite a few times and the only 240 I saw out there had no engine in it

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 11th, 13, 04:22 PM
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Re: Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

Changing the head gasket is very easy on a 4 cyl Volvo. The head will be warped for sure, have a machine shop resurface it for you. As long as you don't have any aluminum particles from the pistons melting stuck in the cylinder walls, you will be fine for another couple hundred thousand miles. Now would be a good time to change the timing belt, tensioner and water pump too.
Try FCP Groton.com for your parts, never had any issues with them.

Good luck.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old Feb 12th, 13, 05:15 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Dirty Coolant in 1991 Volvo 240

Thanks

When you buy an American car, you provide work for a man and his family for three months. -Jay Leno
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