2 4 0 T U R B O . C O M
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Volvo 240 Mods & Fixes
Just a few cool mods to keep you sane and properly entertained.

     UPDATED: February 13, 2019                       CONTACT       
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240 Black
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                    Gears and Instructions.
Prancing Moose, Volvo R-SPORT Horn
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                    Conversion 240 Hydraulic
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Volvo Meet Photos. Electric Fan Diagrams Volvo
                    tropical fan clutches SoCal Area Salvage Yards Side Markers on 240s and 740s Modified 240s
Unleaded Race Fuel at
                    the PUMP
B26FT Stroker
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N  A  V  I  G  A  T  E     T  H  I  S     P  A  G  E

Fog or Driving Light Wiring
Cadillac 4-Note Horns (LOUD!)
Electric Cooling Fan Info 4-Speed Fan Controller AutoCoolGuy PWM Fan Controller

Painting 240 Taillamps Stepper Idle Valve Project
240 Interior Refresh 240 Door Card Build
240 Exterior Paint Renew
Yoshifab Turbo Oil Drain Tube Yoshifab Catch Can Install Oil Cooler Information
Oil Cooler Thermostat 240 Door Top Black Vinyl Trim Electric Power Assist Steering
240 Steering Rack Identification Classic Car Insurance Classic Auto Air AC Installation
Mechman High Amp Alternator Making Cracked 240 Dashes Better
Rear Wheel Spacers
Wider Rear Wheel Clearance Calculating Wheel Offset Momo Steering Wheel Hub Fix
240 Headlight Switch Plug 240 V Belt Sizes 240 Headlight Switch Plug
Super Bright Dome Light Gentex Mirror Upgrade Guide for CRIMPING TERMINALS
240 Hydraulic Clutch Info 240 Driving Light Brackets Lowering Your 240
240 Cup Holder Project G80 Diff in your 240 Fixing Underhood Grounds
Benefits of Zinc Anti-Corrosive Paste HARDWIRE Your 240 Taillights Quick Taillight Repair (FOIL)
Later Windshield in your 240 Headlight Relay Harness The 240 Headlight Step Relay
Step Relay ELIMINATION Speedo Recalibration Bulb Failure Sensor PART 1
Bulb Failure Sensor PART 2 Bulb Failure Sensor PART 3 Faster Better WIPERS
Mods using RELAYS Komfort Blinker Upgrade M46 OD Harness
Auto Trans OD Harness M46 / M47 Shifter Knob Fix In-Tank Pump Upgrade
Fuel Pump Relay Mod 240 Tach Install Plastic Fuel Line Repair
240 (52 mm) Small Tach Install Bad 240 Door Lock Wires Temp Compensation Board

I like 240s a lot and there's nothing I like better than modifying them for performance, handling, comfort, etc. 
In this page I have outlined some cool mods I have done to my 240s and others that have been provided by other 240 enthusiasts.
Your comments are welcome:

240 Fog Light or Driving Light Installation
I found this driving light diagram below in some OLD Volvo 242 GT driving light installation literature and I decided to share it here. These diagrams below will show you two different methods of wiring driving lights or fog lights using a dash switch (#1) in conjunction with the 240 headlight step relay (#3) and with an added cube relay (#4 and relay diagram to left).

There is a reason for wiring the circuit to the step relay.  For Driving Lights, this allows these lights to be cut off when you switch OFF your high beams.  For Fog Lights, this allows these lights to be cut off when you switch ON your high beams.

The battery power is drawn from the inner fender battery junction box (#2) or it may be taken directly from the battery. A fuse should be used between the battery power source and the relay. The relay shown for both methods is an SPST (Single Pole, Single Throw) type cube or mini relay. An SPST type relay is one that uses a center 87 pin (AKA: 87b) which has power when the outer 87 pin has power.  Using this type relay is not critical if you're not using the center 87 pin.
Driving Lights:
With this method, the driving light switch receives power from terminal 56a on the step relay. When the driving light switch is turned on, it sends power to terminal 85 on the cube relay.  56a on the step relay is the high beam output, so this means these lights will be configured as auxiliary high beam lights that will only come on when the dash switch is turned on AND when the high beams are also on.  So then turning ON your high beams will turn ON these driving lights, as long as the switch is in the ON position.  If the dash switch has a bulb as this one shown does, then it will light up when the auxiliary driving lights come on.

Fog Lights:
<<< I modified this diagram to demonstrate a method for fog lights. With this method, the fog light switch receives power from terminal 56b on the step relay when your headlight switch is turned on. The switch sends power to terminal 85 on the cube relay.  56b on the step relay is the low beam output, so this means the fog lights will only come on when the dash switch is turned on AND when the low beams are also on. So then turning ON your high beams will turn OFF the fog lights.  If the dash switch has a bulb as this one shown does, then it will light up when the fog lights come on.

Additional relay uses can be found in the Relay Guide posted HERE.

Detailed pinouts for a 240 step relay can be found HERE.

Installing Big Cadillac 4-Note Horns in a 240
I did this recently in my 240.

Options and Experiments in the Installation of a
Primary Electric Cooling Fan for your 240
When in good working order, the original belt-driven clutch fan in your 240 can handle most cooling needs.  But if you have been thinking that your 240 needs an electric primary cooling fan, here is a page I put together on my experiences with a number of electric fan conversions over the years, from small 14 inch GM fans to big Ford or Lincoln fans.  Plus a variety of wiring diagrams are included for building your own relay fan control systems if you like.

4-Speed Cooling Fan Controller Project
(for my LINCOLN MARK VIII fan)
In 2016 I got tired of failing high-tech fan controllers that would burn up after a year or two when trying to control my big Lincoln Mark VIII fan. They always failed in the worst places.  So I decided to design and build my own fan controller with FOUR speeds using what I know. RELIABLE RELAYS. Works great!  You can build one too if you like.
Click here: https://www.240turbo.com/fanharness.html

AutoCoolGuy PWM  Fan Controller Installation
(for my LINCOLN MARK VIII fan)

New addition in 2018.
Click here: https://www.240turbo.com/ElectricCoolingFans.html#autocoolguy

Painting 240 Taillamps

I get questions about the taillights on my car occasionally. These lights originally began as ALL CLEAR lights like in the below photo. At the time, finding half-clear lights was not possible. They can be found on eBay now. I didn't want all-clear lights, so I painted the bottom lenses myself using the below Testers transparent red paint, 1605 Gloss Custom Red.  This paint is easy to use and goes on pretty well. It takes several light coats to get to the shade of red I got.  Let it dry between coats and keep adding paint lightly until you have the red you like.  It will slowly darken with each coat.  These lights have been on my car for well over 10 years and still look new.  Part of this reason is the car is always garaged.

If you need to tint in AMBER, I have not tried any transparent amber paints yet, but I have heard of good results from the below Tamiya TS-73 Clear Orange for Plastics.

I have also read that you can get good results from a transparent STAINED GLASS paint.  Kyrylon makes such paint in aerosol in ORANGE and RED. I have not used these yet.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


Stepper Idle Air Control Project

In 2018 I began working on a stand-alone manually adjustable idle control valve for my car using a GM stepper IAC motor.
Click the above images or below link to see it.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


240 Interior Renewal Project

This discussion thread below began in May 2018 and it's a goldmine for inspiration on making your old 240 interior look brand new again.  It's a great resource for information on paints and interior parts too, so I had to share it here for those of you who haven't seen it.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


240 Door Card Build Project

This discussion thread was shared in December 2018. If you're patient and handy, it shows a great tutorial for you to remake 240 door cards to replace the old, warped or rotton ones in your 240.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


240 Exterior Paint Renewal Project
This discussion thread below began in 2015 and outlines a 245 owner who went the distance in restoring his newly acquired 245 exterior paint to look exceptionally nice. His efforts paid off.  It's a great inspiration to 240 lovers.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


Custom Yoshifab Turbo Oil Drain Hose for Volvo Turbo Red Blocks
<<< When Volvo designed the 240 Turbo engine they used a rigid steel drain pipe for the turbo oil return (same design for later 740 Turbo and 940 Turbo). The lower part of the pipe was designed to seal into the hole in the block. Despite having a rubber o-ring on the pipe, these tubes usually leaked at the block.

has brought the red block drain pipe into the 21st century by introducing a new custom hose fitting that fits into the existing hole and allows you to use modern racing hose and fittings for a much better drain system. 


Yoshifab Catch Can (breather box) Installation
<<< I installed a Yoshifab oil catch can in my 242 Turbo.  I don't always follow directions and I often ignore sound advice. This install continues with that philosophy. 

Detailed Project Page HERE:
Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.

Oil Cooler Information
This information may come in handy when working on oil cooler systems on red blocks.  The oil flow direction was important to me when I decided to install an in-line oil cooler thermostat between the engine and oil cooler. My factory 240 oil thermostat seemed to be no longer working and stuck in the wide open position. The new in-line thermostat required specific flow direction for "in" and "out" ports.
If you can help add to this information, please email.

Here is the correct flow direction for the B21FT oil cooler thermostat mounted at the oil filter. 
This diagram was found in the 1981 Volvo "New Car Features" Greenbook.

<<< Here is the correct flow direction for the early B230FT oil cooler thermostat. 
This diagram was found in the 1985 Volvo "New Car Features" Greenbook.

Here are some images of these oil pipes.  Take note that some original Volvo pipes used straight fittings going into the oil filter/thermostat plate and some originally used banjo fittings. So it appears neither was the standard.

Thread Pitch Information
<<< Here's another example of the Volvo oil filter/thermostat plate using banjo fittings. The large threaded pipe in the center of the plate uses 3/4 -16 thread.  It's a common thread size for many factory and aftermarket oil filter adapters that may be found for a large number of different brand cars.

If you're relocating your oil cooler or converting your old oil cooler pipes to racing style AN fittings and high-performance AN hose, you can still use the above oil filter/thermostat plate. The ports on that plate are threaded 16mm x 1.5 Female.  If you will be using -8 AN racing hose, you'll need two 16mm x 1.5 Male to -8 AN Male Adapters (same as photo) with two 16mm crush washers. Metric aluminum crush washers are available at Pegasus Racing: https://www.pegasusautoracing.com/productselection.asp?Product=3278
<<< The male ports on a stock Volvo (Setrab) oil cooler shown here are 1/2 BSP Male
<<< If you'll be using -8 AN racing hose, you'll need two adapters with the following thread: 1/2 BSP Female to -8 AN Male.
Thread Reference: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showpost.php?p=4841878&postcount=7

There are lots of custom parts and kits on line, but it's hard to know what you can trust and what you can know will fit.  Here's such a kit with the thermostat plate, oil cooler and assembled oil hoses that was installed by a Volvo 240 Turbo owner and it seems to work nicely.
Thread: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=344235

<<< The large Mazda RX7 (second generation, FC, 1986-92) oil cooler is a popular retrofit for a Volvo.  It has a built in thermostat that begins opening at 140 F and is fully open at 149 F. That may be a bit low for a Volvo, so using a thermostat elsewhere may be in order. The ports on this large oil cooler are 18mm x 1.5 Female.  The Mazda coolers I've seen originally used banjo fittings, which you can also use if you like. An appropriate banjo fitting will have a center bolt with thread: 18mm x 1.5 Male.  An appropriate straight adapter to go with AN hoses will have the following thread: 18mm x 1.5 Male to -8 AN Male.  Also appropriate 18mm crush washers should be used on the oil cooler ports when using adapters or banjo fittings.

Oil Cooler Thermostat
The factory oil cooler thermostat in my 240 Turbo oil filter plate seemed to have stopped working.  My guess is it was stuck in the wide open position, since it was taking forever for the engine oil to come up to temperature.  So I decided to add an IN-LINE oil cooler thermostat in the lines between the engine and the oil cooler. 
If you can help add to this information, please email.
<<< This is the Hayden 163 thermostat. It's made of aluminum and designed for use with engine oil or transmission fluid. When cold it bypasses the cooler, returning oil to the engine. It begins releasing oil to the cooler at 160F and allows full flow at 180F. Fittings: 3/8 NPT with 3/8 inch and 1/2 inch barbed nipples.

Here are the instructions and an explanation of how it works.
(PDF 100kb)

This thermostat has 3/8 inch NPT Female ports.  I'm currently using 1/2 inch rubber oil hose with barbed fittings for my oil cooler (as pictured).  A better solution (that I will eventually change to) is racing style AN fittings and high-performance hose, however it's a much more expensive solution. The adapters needed to use -8 AN hose would be 3/8 inch NPT male to -8 AN Male. Summit has some of these for as low as $3.00 each: https://www.summitracing.com/parts/sum-220846b.

Removing or Replacing 240 Door Top Black Vinyl Trim
I gets lots of questions about doing this kind of work or where someone can buy these black vinyl trim pieces. 
They have not been available for a lot of years from Volvo or any other source, but if you're persistent, good results are possible.

If you want new black vinyl for your 240, contact me. I can supply the new stripes you'll need. 
CLICK HERE: https://www.240turbo.com/doorvinyl.html

  Here's a pic sent by a customer. The black vinyl trim on his 240 doors has dried up and cracked.  The paint on this car still looks nice. Can this vinyl be safely removed without damaging the paint?  The answer is YES.
<<< First step is to buy a special vinyl eraser wheel that will fit on your drill.  Try a search. They're easy to find these days.  Not so easy when I last did this to my 245 almost 20 years ago.  Here's one for about $15 from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Remover-Stickers-Minutes-Wheel-toolkit/dp/B00VFACQRE/

Here's a YouTube video on this eraser wheel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=IJLIvxmB7e4

You can go through TWO of these eraser wheels on a large job like a typical 245.

Work slowly and try not to allow too much heat to build up on the paint.  This wheel will buff the vinyl off and it'll do a much better job that any other method I know.  In fact it will usually remove the vinyl without leaving any damage to the paint underneath.  And if there is still some residue on the paint, you may then finish with some final cleaning with a mild solvent, such as Goo-Gone or some paint polish, rubbing compound or cleaner wax. 

On the doors, it will be best to remove the window rubber scraper molding strips. Those simply pry off.  There are instructions for this removal in my 240 window scraper page: https://www.240turbo.com/240WindowMoldings.html

Also it is recommended to remove the side mirrors for this job.  On some cars they will simply be in the way.
Reinstalling new vinyl is not difficult.  It's best to remove the mirrors and window scraper trim moldings from the tops of the doors.  Do not remove the window trim below the rear (non-roll-up) windows.  This proceedure is best done in a shady area so that the hot sun doesn't dry things out too quickly while you're working.

Use some pieces of masking tape to mark positions along the door or lay a masking tape line where you want the BOTTOM of the new stripe to be. This will help keep your stripe straight. Most stripes are about 2.5 to 3 inches wide, when measuring from the window scraper metal trim strip to the bottom of the stripe. Most 240 Turbos had 3 inch stripes, but the stripes got a bit more narrow in later years. 

The correct installation is to use the WET method. This involves wetting the paint surface and vinyl adhesive surface with slightly soapy water. The water solution allows you to slide the vinyl into the precise position and to squeegee out any air pockets.  Mix a 16 ounce spray bottle with water and 1/4 teaspoon or less of dish soap (something like Dawn. Not dishwasher soap).

Peel the backing off the vinyl stripe and then spray the adhesive side of the stripe and the car paint with the soapy water solution.  Lay the stripe on the car, adhesive side down, and slide it into place.  Then spray the top of the stripe and carefully squeegee into place while pushing out any trapped air pockets.  If needed, you may still lift sections of the vinyl and re-spray underneath to help in case thing begin drying before you finish.  The soapy water will help minimize scratching the vinyl from the squeegee.  You can also wrap the squeegee in a soft cloth to eliminate scratches. There are also plastic squeegees available with part of it covered in felt.  Once the vinyl is in position and firmly set, if there is any trimming needed on the glass side or under the scraper trim strips, between doors, etc., this can be done then.  A sharp hobby knife works well for that.

If you want new black vinyl for your 240, contact me. I can supply the new stripes you'll need. 
CLICK HERE: https://www.240turbo.com/doorvinyl.html

Electric Power Assist Steering
If you like having power steering, but for some reason the traditional hydraulic setup isn't quite right for your modified Volvo (or if you want to convert an older manual steering Volvo to power assist) here are some possible answers.

A number of years ago, Josh Sadler of Yoshifab converted his Volvo 242 to electric/hydraulic steering.  Josh's system was failrly simple. It used the original Volvo power steering rack.  He mounted an electric/hydraulic steering pump and reservoir from a Toyota MR2 in his trunk and had hydraulic hoses made to route all the way to the stock steering rack.  The result worked pretty well. 
Here's a discussion thread on his installation: http://turbobricks.com/forums/showthread.php?t=135556
See his YouTube video below.

Here's another more detailed thread on a different MR2 pump installation in a Volvo: https://forums.tbforums.com/showthread.php?t=247548

And here's the next generation mod.
It's an electric power assist unit from a Saturn Vue, Chevrolet Equinox or Pontiac Torrent.  It's mounted in the steering column, so the level of tech is much higher.
This was an installation under the dash of a Volvo P1800 (pics below).
See the discussion thread here: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=341174

Here's a supplier of just such kits that you may be interested in seeing: http://www.epowersteering.com/index.html

Identifying a Power Steering Rack in your 240

Volvo 240 Power Steering Rack Identification Info: Volvo TP 31579/1 (1990 publication) shows both CAM and ZF power steering units being used in 240s from 1976 thru 1990. CAM units were used exclusively in 1975. CAM units had four different types, and ZF had two different types.  In most cases, a CAM (or TRW) rack can be identified by the rubber boot outer end that will narrow down to a small opening where it's clamped to the tie rod.  TRW bought Cam Gear Ltd. in the mid-1980s, so you will begin finding TRW racks in later year 240s.

With a ZF rack, the rubber boot outer end normally clamps to a rubber bushing on the tie rod.  This information is reliant on parts being original. Keep in mind that different boots/tie rods may have been installed over the years.

<<< Here's a ZF rack where a "ZF" mark can be seen on the casting after cleaning.

More info here: http://people.physics.anu.edu.au/~amh110/STEERING/steering_camgears_trw.htm
If you can improve this information, please email.

Classic Car Insurance for your Classic Volvo
This is a bit of an unusual subject for a mods page, but I know it will be helpful to some Volvo owners out there. 
Many classic Volvos are certainly appreciating in value. It's not quite the same appreciation of aome more popular classics, but if you take really good care of your Volvo and it's a model that's desirable or may be collectable, then you may also see some appreciation in value.  Many of us old Volvo owners have put a considerable amount of money and effort into restorations or modifications.  Your standard car insurance company will likely not be on your side if something tragic happens to that Volvo. They will typically offer a lowball amount that they think is "comparable" to other random Volvo sales they think are "similar."  I have had to fight for a better settlement on a few occasions for wrecked Volvos and it's not a pleasant task.

What is Agreed Value?
There are classic car insurance companies who will offer "Agreed Value" policies for antique or collectable classics. You don't have to own an Italian exotic or 1960's muscle car to get such a policy. An agreed value policy is one that's issued like any other policy with similar liability coverages, except you set the value of your car and the insurance company simply sets the premium if they agree on your valuation. In the event that your car is then totaled or stolen, the payout is that agreed amount. No arguments. No negotiation. Keep in mind that an insurance company may consider an exagerated value too high if you shoot for the moon, so you need to exercise some reason.  They also make it pretty clear that they will not cover your car if you damage it while racing, so this kind of policy probably won't work for a race car that is still raced.

Agreed Value companies will also have other specific requirements. Most don't limit your miles driven, but they will probably have some expectations, such as:
It's Not a Daily Driver: They will probably make you prove you have a different car for daily driving, since they expect a
classic car to not be your "regular use vehicle."
Stored Indoors:  This may not be a absolute requirement, but in most cases, it will be.  Sometimes they will approve covered parking.

My '84 242 qualified for these standards, so with this information in mind I set out to find such a policy.  Unfortunately, I began with Grundy Insurance.  That was a waste of time. Grundy is well known for there collector car insurance and they advertise heavily on car enthusiast TV shows.
I read on Grundy's web page,"Grundy insures most types of vehicles 25 years old and older.  We also insure modern muscle cars and exotics of all years.  Not only that, we insure modified vehicles with higher performance engines, suspensions, and modified bodies.  We understand custom vehicle valuations very well, and in fact Grundy is the largest insurer of hot rods in the USA!"
Grundy's statement sounded hopeful, so I went on their web page and submitted my info. I received an online quote for my 1984 242 Turbo, which I valued at $13,000.  I submitted my application and mailed my payment as instructed and waited for their approval. Several weeks later I received the above DECLINE letter with my returned check. You can read the DECLINE letter for yourself. 

I was pissed that they wasted so much of my time.  They clearly do not insure classic cars as they claim on their LYING website.
I recommend you don't waste your time on Grundy.
I mentioned the above waste of time to a friend of mine who owns a very nice modified 242.  He told me he had been carrying an agreed value policy with Hagerty Insurance for ten years. His agreed value was considerable more than the $13,000 I wanted placed on my car.  This was good news. It meant that Hagerty has a totally different view of the classic Volvo car market. So I tried an on line application with Hagerty and received an immediate quote for a policy with a $13,000 agreed value.  I then sent my on-line application and payment.
Approximately one day after submitting an application, I recieved an email APPROVAL from Hagerty for my new policy. 
So I can certainly recommend Hagerty Insurance if you're considering such a policy for your classic Volvo.

Hagerty sets their general parameters for Antique or Classic cars they insure as follows: 

"Antique vehicle" means a motor vehicle 25 years or more of age that: 1. Is maintained primarily for use in car club activities, exhibitions, parades, other functions of public interest or for a private collection; and 2. Is used only infrequently for other purposes.

"Classic vehicle" means a motor vehicle of unique or rare design and of limited production that is an object of curiosity and: 1. Is maintained primarily for use in car club activities, exhibitions, parades,

other functions of public interest or for a private collection; and 2. Is used only infrequently for other purposes.

"Regular use vehicle" means a motor vehicle which is used for regular driving to work, school, shopping, errands or for general transportation and is not an "antique vehicle" or "classic vehicle."

Classic Auto Air all new Air Conditioning Installation
I finally grew tired enough of my mediocre Volvo AC in my 242 to explore an extreme option.  This is a complete new AC system installation from Classic Auto Air.  I also spent the time installing Dynamat while the interior was out of the car.  It was a LOT of work, but sometimes hard work really pays off. 
I created a new web page all about the new AC conversion.  CLICK HERE!

Mechman High Amp Custom Alternator
I did this installation a number of years ago in my 242. 
I began a discussion thread in Turbobricks back then, which helped me get through some issues I was having.  That thread is here: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=215613.

<<< I wanted something bigger and badder than what I had. I was using a lot of amps in my 242 and the old 100 amp Volvo Bosch unit I installed a few years earlier was not doing well at idle.  When running the air conditioning (with a big puller fan and dual condenser fans), voltage was suffering badly. The big puller fan I'm currently using is a Lincoln Mark VIII unit and it can pull close to 40 amps at full speed. More on this big fan setup can be found in my Electric Fan Page HERE.

These old Bosch alternators tend to suffer badly when they get hot (and it sits next to a turbo!). The difference between cold and hot voltage under load at idle was from 14v to 12v; a full 2 volt drop!  I was assured by Mechman that the custom unit I was buying would improve that. Skipping ahead: It did improve charging substantially, although it also suffers from some voltage drop when it gets super hot, but not a bad as the Bosch.  I think the ultimate cure is to move the alternator to the other side of the engine like on the 740.

<<< I chose this 140 amp unit shown in these THREE photos.  It's a GM style alternator (large case type) that Mechman offered with custom machined spacers so it would properly bolt into a Volvo and could be lined up correctly for the V-belts. 
<<< Here's a good comparison photo showing the Mechman next to a Volvo Bosch 100A alternator.  They're almost the same size. The Mechman might be a little smaller.
<<< Here's the new Mechman installed. It's a nice, snug fit. Not a lot of room for adjustment. Probably more than the Bosch offered though.

<<< The belt size I used for the Bosch unit was 10 x 925 mm.  This new alternator needed to be swung slightly further from the engine and the new belt size used was 10 x 965 mm.
<<< Attaching a ground was a bit different.  This Mechman alternator does not have a ground stud on its case, so my best solution was pinching a ring terminal against the case as shown here. It's a decent solution as long as that bolt doesn't tend to loosen over time.

<<< Don't use one of these disconnect things on your battery when using an alternator like this.  I had one of these disconnect devices on my negative battery terminal.  After installing the Mechman I began experiencing some strange intermittent momentary voltage drops when the alternator was under load, such as when the AC was on.  It took a while to figure it out.  It turned out that disconnect knob was creating some resistance in the ground cable circuit and the Mechman was sensitive to it.  I tossed it in the trash and properly connected my battery.

Mechman alternators are not cheap, but they have high quality. Be careful if you begin looking at no-name or Chinese made high-performance alternators.  Mechman made a comparison videos showing how cheap some of those fake "high-amp" alternators can be: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5l4z3b2zHA.
They also have options for adjustable voltage if you need that.  If you're interested in alternators like this, you can find them here:

Dealing with a Cracked 240 Dash
If you own a 240, it probably has a cracked dash.  An uncracked one is rare, especially for a 1981 to 1988 240.  The sun dries out the vinyl over many years and they eventually crack.  There are ways to avoid this.  Keeping the car out of the sun is one.  Covering the dash is another. Treating the vinyl with Armour All or similar protectant on an obsessive basis will do a lot to help.

If it's too late for your dash, there are a couple options.  One is very expensive.  Justdashes.com offers full dash refurbishing, even for a 240 dash of any year.  Cost is quite high, about $1300 for an all black dash from a 1981 and later 240 (and more money to match a color), but they claim the dash will be perfect and as new.

Coverlaymfg.com offers thin ABS plastic covers for the dash top for a bit over $200.
This one is reported to be high quality.
Some people have used similar products over the years and have seen them crack over time if left in the sun. 
This may sound to you like a poor quality alternative, but there are other people who have had great success with some extra effort.  Maybe cracking should be expected if you never garage your 240. If that's you, maybe just buy a cloth dash cover and be done with it. 

AmericanDashCaps.com/Volvo offers less expensive ABS dash covers.  Their quality is not known to me.
Some have reported good results with these products and they advise to first fill the cracks with a strong adhesive, such as a high-quality RTV glue that will keep the crack from growing after the dash top is placed on.

Here are some nice success stories: If you are considering a plastic dash cover, this link below is a restoration thread for a 1981 Volvo 262C. The dash restoration begins at Post #147, which is on Page 3, and goes to Post #161:  http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=256460&page=3.
This dash turned out very nice.

Also a long time 240 owner I know bought a plastic dash cover from iPd way back in 2002.  The car is always garaged and the cover has held up really well for all these years. 

<<< There was a small bit of 'warpage' on the very thin cross section (due to the top center speaker opening) right under the windshield, but other than that, it has stayed pretty flawless. This section can be seen in the photo at left.   This photo was taken during a windshield replacement.  This owner added a could small clips to hold the cover down.

He didn't "glue" the cover down using silicone adhesive, which was the recommended method, so perhaps that might have eliminated the warpage.  Instead he used four black trim screws -- one on either side of the center speaker opening, and one on each end of the dash. Those are hidden when the doors are closed.  He took care to drill the holes in the cover a bit larger than the screw and he didn't tighten them down completely tight, so that the cover could still expand and contract without causing any problems. After 16 years, it still looks nice.  iPd still offers 240 plastic dash caps.

Other threads to read:

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Installing Rear Wheel Spacers
There are some good reasons why you might want wheel spacers or wheel adapters for your 240. 
When my 242 had these Eiker wheels (photos here: www.240turbo.com)  I was annoyed by the large gap between the rear tires and the outer fenders.

<<< I bought some 25 mm spacers for my 240.  These spacers (photo below) had the standard Volvo 5 x 108 mm bolt pattern for both mounting surfaces.

iPd offers a pair of these 25 mm (hub-centric) spacers: www.ipdusa.com/products/11525/125006

Kaplhenke Racing offers a different style of (hub-centric) spacer.  Their spacers come with longer wheel studs.  They also offer other thicknesses besides 25 mm if needed:  www.kaplhenke.com/collections/240/products/240-extended-wheel-studs-wheel-spacers

That strange rear extra fender gap is caused by Volvo designing the rear wheel track 70 mm narrower than the front track. I don't know why. 
240 Factory Wheel Track
Front:  1420 mm (55.9 inches)
Rear:   1350 mm (53.14 inches
<<< Here is the 25 mm spacer mounted on my 240 rear hub.
It's important when choosing any spacer or adapter that you choose HUB-CENTRIC spacers.  This means that the center raised lip that fits into the wheel center is present.  This centers the wheel properly and provides for greatly improved safety.  There are many generic spacers on line that do not have that hub-centric lip.  I don't recommend those.

CALCULATING NET OFFSET:  These wheels originally had a 20 mm POSITIVE offset (ET20).  Adding a 25 mm spacer means that you are converting the wheels to 5 mm NEGATIVE offset.
Before adding these spacers I did not have any tire contact between the outside of the tire and the inner fender lip, because the wheels were inboard quite a bit.
<<< AFTER installing the spacers I took this photo. 
I needed to make some extra room in this area as you can see here.  If you push your wheels closer to your fenders as I did, you too may find you may need to make more room for those tires on the outside.  That tire size is 215/45-17 on a 7.5 inch wide wheel. 

NOTE: I later went to 235/40-17 tires when I changed to a different style 17 x 7.5 inch wide wheel, so you can fit a wide range of tire sizes on a 7.5 inch wheel width.
Many people will tell you that you can easily roll your fender inner sheet metal. Most people have never actually tried doing that on a 240. You can try.  It's not as easy as it sounds. That steel lip in a 240 is double thickness and rolling it is VERY hard with very limited results. Most people who roll a 240 fender will end up finishing it off with a sledge hammer, because rolling alone didn't work well enough. You need to be aware that pounding on your fender hard enough to bend metal will probably result in cracks in your paint.  Heating the paint up with a heat gun during this process can help reduce the cracked paint. 

Here's a good thread with pics that outlines the ROLLING/POUNDING METHOD pretty well:


I've done many 240 rear fenders over the years and I no longer mess with rolling or pounding.  A sawzall is very fast for this kind of trimmimg.  A rotary cutter or grinder works too, but is a bit slower.
If you're looking for Eiker wheels, Kaplhenke Racing offers them in their site: www.kaplhenke.com/collections/240/products/eiker-classic-e1

Wider Rear Wheel/Tire FENDER CLEARANCE
for your 240
When going with wider tires on your 240, you'll need to deal with the likely result of rear tire rubbing on bumps, especially if your car is lower than stock.  The back half rear arch may need to be trimmed by 1/2 inch or more, depending on your ride height and how far the tires need to tuck inside the fender when compressed.  Some people prefer to ROLL the inner sheet metal instead of trimming. On many cars this is a pretty easy thing to do, but not on a 240. The 240 sheet metal at that place is TWO LAYERS, which makes rolling very hard.  Most people who use the rolling method on a 240 end up finishing with a sledge hammer because rolling alone didn't work.
The area marked in RED is the general area that needs rolling to reduce tire rubbing on medium bumps.  This is the FIRST (but not only) rubbing area you will encounter when your tires get pretty CLOSE to the fenders.

Here's a good thread with pics that outlines the ROLLING/HAMMERING METHOD pretty well: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=338190

In my opinion the above rolling/hammering modification does not go far enough if your car is lowered and you want to TUCK the rear tires without hitting metal or if you want to retain full suspension travel all the way to bump stops. Rolling the outer lip reduces rubbing at the back arch only.
<<< If you need your wider tires to go HIGHER in the fenders like this photo, you will need to do much more.

The below illustration will help explain what I did on my 242 when I went with the BMW mesh style wheels and adapters with 235/40-17 tires that are pushed out fairly close to the fenders. My trimming of the outer lip started out slowly, a little at a time in a trial and error method. Then I cut and removed the inner sheet metal curvature that prevents the wheel from tucking all the way up. This resulted in perfect clearance and the car could FULLY BOTTOM OUT the rear suspension in a hard dip with ZERO rubbing.  That means hitting the bump stops with no rubbing.  That's never gonna happen with rolling alone. 
The below illustrations show how this was done.
I have been told this is similar to the modification made to Group A race Volvos to fit their large wheels/tires.

<<< Here's a view of the RIGHT SIDE inner rear fender toward the rear.  That sheet metal was sprayed with undercoating after it was installed, so it's not easy to see.  I created an outside of the sheet metal shape to make it easier.
<<< Here's the same inner fender toward the front.
This pic below was the final result of my 242 fender trimming and there is zero rubbing, even when bottoming out the suspension.

Calculating Correct Wheel Offset for your 240
There are plenty of sites out there that will explain offset for you, so I will try to stick with how I calculated the right offset for my 242 when I changed from 17 inch Eiker wheels to 17 inch multi-spoke wheels (BMW bolt pattern) with billet adapters.

<<< Here's a good image that quickly explains how offsets are measured.  Most wheels for a Volvo will have POSITIVE offset.  The amount of offset for the wheels you choose will be very important. 

Start by measuring the wheels on your car now.  For example: If you have 240 Turbo wheels (Virgos), they have 20 mm POSITIVE offset (you'll find "ET20" embossed into the wheel casting). If you have 700/900 wheels, they probably have 25 mm POSITIVE offset. If you have FRONT-WHEEL-DRIVE wheels, they will have a lot more positive offset than 240 wheels, as much as 40 mm POSITIVE offset.
When I began my calculations, my 242 had a set of Eiker E1 wheels.  These wheels are 7.5 inches wide and have 20 mm POSITIVE offset. At that time I had also already installed 25 mm spacers behind the rear wheels (info on those spacers HERE). So this meant that with the spacers, my wheels actually had 5 mm NEGATIVE offset.

I had a good look at the REAR fender gap between my tires and the outside fender and I decided I generally liked that gap. 

Looking at my front wheels, which did not have a spacer with the Eikers, I decided the 20 mm POSITIVE offset of the Eikers seemed to be a good fit as is.  When checking YOUR FRONT wheel/tire clearances, be sure to also look at the spacing between the INNER tire and your STRUT TUBE (or between your tire and your coilover if you have them).  You don't want to do all this work and later discover your wide front tire is TOO CLOSE to your strut

When I was shopping for wheels to replace the Eikers, I knew I would need to concentrate on something with more offset than the Eikers, since I would need the extra room to add an adapter behind each wheel.  I eventually settled on wheels that were 7.5 inches wide with 35 mm POSITIVE offset. 
REAR: I calculated that by adding a 40 mm thick adapter behind the new 35 mm POSITIVE offset REAR wheels, that would make the combined offset 5 mm NEGATIVE, the exact same net offset as the Eiker wheels with spacers I had on the rear before.
FRONT: By using a 20 mm thick adapter on the front, that 35 mm POSITIVE offset FRONT wheel changed into a 15 mm POSITIVE offset.  This is close enough to the 20 mm offset I originally had with the Eikers. That 5 mm difference pushes the front wheels outward slightly (less than 1/4 inch).

The adapter maker I chose was http://www.motorsport-tech.com
When I contacted them, they said the minimum thickness they could do was 20 mm.  So I went with a 20 mm thick front adapter. 

There it is. That's how it's done.  Draw yourself some diagrams if it helps you visualize all this. 

Here's a good Turbobricks discussion thread with related info: https://forums.tbforums.com/showthread.php?t=339645
Turbobricks Wheel Guide: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=72501&highlight=wheel+guide

If this is a bit too complicated, you can try this Rim and Tire Size Calculator for Custom Offset calculations: https://www.wheel-size.com/calc/

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Momo Steering Wheel Hub for the 240
Installing a Momo (or similar type) steering wheel in your 240 can really improve your driving experience.  It gives you lots of options for choosing a stylish or sporty steering wheel in a variety of sizes. 
You probably already know all this and luckily for you, that's NOT what this article is about. 

This is about correcting or improving a common and annoying problem found in Momo (and similar) hubs that are available for your 240.

<<< LOOK HERE.  These are typical 240 steering wheels.  The turn signal stalk has a small plastic lever that protrudes into and touches the TURN SIGNAL CANCEL HUMP when you activate the blinker.  That cancel hump is what cancels the blinker after your turn. 
<<< HERE we have a Momo steering hub for a 240.  Hubs like these can be found online.  A good place to look is www.kaplhenke.comThey actually offer two different brands; a Momo and an OMP.  Both are similar.

<<< The problem with this Momo hub is the CANCEL HUMP. 
It's made into two rails with a channel in the middle instead of one solid hump like the original steering wheel. This causes the blinker cancellation to act differently and I find it annoying. 

That is a simple piece of thin aluminum sheet that I trimmed and bent to fit in there tight.  Since it fits tight inside that channel, I found no need to glue it in.  Just about any material would work for this.  It could be a piece of plastic or a block of wood.  If it doesn't wedge in there tight, use some glue to keep it in place. 

240 V Belt Sizes

Information on 240 accessory V belt sizes used to be easier to find, but it seems to have mostly dissappeared from many useful sites. 
I put this info together many, many years ago for my own 240 uses. I thought I would share it here. 
If you can add to or help with this info, please email.

Volvo PN
10 x 925 mm
2 needed. 76-83 240. Also PN 977260.
9.5 x 918 mm
2 needed. 84-93 240. Also 10 x 918mm.

AC to PS
13 x 1075 mm
77-84 240. Also 12.5 x 1075 mm.
AC to PS
10 x 850 mm

85-92 240.

AC to PS
11.9 x 835 mm
93 240.

Crank to PS (no AC)
10 x 938 mm
77-89 240.

Crank to AC
13 x 925 mm
76-84 240. Also PN 978678.
Crank to AC 979631
13 x 975 mm
85-92 240.
Crank to AC 979277
13 x 938 mm
93 240.

1981-85 240 Headlight Switch Plug Problems
<<< From 1981 to 1985 the 240 was equipped with this headlight switch.  It's a metal case design with a 5-pole plastic plug (the switch itself only has 3-poles, so only 3 wires). As you can see in this photo, there is some melting deformation on this plug. This is at the RED wire, which is the power supply from the battery.  This is a very common occurence that has happened to almost every pre-1986 240 I have ever seen. Some I've seen are much worse than this photo.

Some might suggest that too much current caused this melting.  That is obvious, but it's not the problem.  The cause is usually a slow build-up of corrosion at that terminal, which caused a less that optimal circuit connection.  This condition causes arcing and resistance and heat build-up.  That heat build-up melted this plug.  Stock headlights generally don't draw too much current as long as the connections are clean and tight.  However, adding high wattage halogen headlights can easily overwhelm that plug terminal. 

Better designed terminals with more contact area (i.e. bigger terminal) between the male and female sides might have kept this from happening, but if the corrosion had not been there, this plug would probably have been fine.  There are ways we can keep this from happening in the future.  One way is by eliminating the high current load of all those headlights through that small terminal. 
This is done by adding a headlight relay that takes the bulk of the direct battery load.  This is in fact what Volvo did for the 240 beginning in 1986.  This is a great idea.  One other great idea it to smear some Anti-Corrosive Zinc Paste on these terminals (click here for more info).
For those of you who want to replace that melted black plug, good luck. It's no longer available from Volvo.  You can dig through old Volvos at salvage yards, but all you'll find will be more melted plugs.  Keep reading and I'll show how you can switch to a later style headlight switch found in 1986 and later 240s.  CAUTION:  I recommend taking steps to eliminate the cause of plug melting first before fitting a later style switch.  Install the headlight relay upgrade (more info below) and get some anti-corrosive zinc paste. 

<<< Here are two 240 headlights switches. The top switch is the 1986 and later style headlight switch.  The bottom one is the pre-1986 switch. If your early style plug is melting, you cannot just use the new style plug on an older switch.  They are not the same.  If you want to use the newer plug, you will have to use the newer style switch.  Below I will show how you can swap the wire terminals from an early plug to a later plug and then you can use a later switch.

<<< These plugs have numbers molded into them on the backsides. The newer white plug will have one extra wire that you won't need to plug in.

Here are the wire circuits for these plugs:
Early Plug: 1.  White:
2.  Yellow:
3.  Red:
4.  empty
5.  empty
Goes through fuse panel, then to parking lamp circuit.
Goes to step-relay pole 56 to turn on low beams.
Goes to battery +.
Later Plug: 1.  White:
2.  Blk/Yellow:
3.  empty
4.  Red/Green:
5.  Yellow:   
6.  empty   
7.  empty
Goes through fuse panel, then to parking lamp circuit.
Goes through fuse panel, then to key switch power (not needed for earlier 240).
Goes to battery +.
Goes to headlight relay to turn on low beams.
So here's the formula needed to swap in a newer headlight switch and plug. 
1.  White wire from old plug goes to position 1 in new plug.
2.  Yellow wire from old plug goes to position 5 in new plug.
3.  Red wire from old plug goes to position 4 in new plug. 
Click here for tips on removing wire terminal inserts from these plugs.
More information on adding a RELAY to upgrade your early 240 headlights can be found here:

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Getting a Super Bright 240 Dome Light
The easiest mod on this page by far.
Simple as this.  I bought an LED bulb from the below source for my 242 dome light. 
Dim light gone.  Bright light now working very well. 

Matthews Volvo Site Bulb Guide: https://www.matthewsvolvosite.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=61483
Other 240 interior and exterior bulb info in this Turbobricks thread:  http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=283706
iPd Bulb Reference: https://www.ipdusa.com/techtips/10096/what-light-bulbs-fit-my-volvo
Volvo has owner's manuals going back many years (bulb info is in "Specifications"): https://www.volvocars.com/us/own/owner-info/owners-manuals

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Gentex Rear View Mirror Upgrade
Adding a more modern mirror for your 240 on the CHEAP.
with Auto Dimming, Compass and Outside Temperature.

I have liked modern features like this in other cars I've driven, so adding it to my 240 gives a big bonus.
If a mirror like this in your 240 seems interesting to you, check out my installation page.

Feel free to email anytime with questions or comments.


Guide for Crimping Terminals
I've put together a page with instructions for crimping and assembling typical open barrel or EFI crimp terminals and connector housings. 

Hydraulic Clutch Info Page for your 240
I have a pretty heavy clutch in my 240. Back in 2011 I got tired of stretching, adjusting, stretching and then snapping clutch cables, so I installed a hydraulic setup for the clutch.  I recently updated the master cylinder from the Volvo unit to an aftermarket one and created a web page to help keep track of the parts and information for others to see. 

Here's the new page below:

Mounting Driving Lights on your 240 without Drilling your Bumper!
If you're one who likes the look or function of killer driving lights on your 240, but you don't want holes in the top of your bumper, I'm here to show you an alternative to drilling holes in your bumper. 

<<< The first two photos to the left show 240s with holes drilled in their bumpers. 
<<< The photo to the left and photos below were found in some old Volvo optional accessory literature.
It turns out that Volvo actually produced brackets that mounted BEHIND the bumper and then came through below the grill.  The last photo above a good view of the bracket design. I'm pretty sure it will be impossible to actually locate an original bracket, but I think making them would not be all that hard to do using these images.  Just try to use fairly thick steel so the lights don't bounce from bracket flex.

<<< I did a similar thing when I mounted driving lights on my old 760 Turbo way back in the 1980s and then removed them before I sold the car with zero visible damage to anything.  I used 1/4" steel plate. I think that was overkill, but they did not flex at all. If you do a project like this or have already done one, please CONTACT MEI would like to hear from you about it.

Making a Custom Cup Holder for your 240
We all know our beloved 240s never came with cup holders. There have been a number of cup holder projects in the internet over the years.  When I saw this one in the Turbobricks forum, I felt it really needed to be shown.  The thoughtful design allows it to be securely anchored over the e-brake handle, using the e-brake handle button to help pin the front against the shifter hump.  It's a nice design feature to keep in mind when you build (or adapt) such a thing for your car. 
See more photos and dimensions here:

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Installing a G80 Locking Differential (from a 700/900) into your 240
Click here for my 240 Limited Slip and Locking Rear End Page.  

Fixing Common Corroded Ground Points (and power connections) In Your 240
I hear about strange intermittent electrical problems from frustrated 240 owners quite often. These problems occur so often because of a few good reasons . . . .
#1: These cars are old and . . . .  
Electrical connections tend to slowly corrode over time, and . . .
Cars that spend most of their lives outdoors always suffer more corrosion in electrical connections and ground points. 

Spending some time cleaning connections and making sure they are tight can go a long way in keeping your 240 running well, especially if your car has lived outdoors in the weather for many years (this is really bad for long electrical life for any car). 

WATCH THIS VIDEO (also read the COMMENTS section):

<<< Click the diagram image at left to access a THREE PAGE pdf file showing most 240 ground locations.

<<< Here's a look at a 240 center dash ground.
<<< And here's a ground point on the steering column that the Volvo diagrams FORGOT to mention.
<<< And this ground is well hidden, but at least it was mentioned in the Volvo Ground Connection pages. It's next to the left side vertical dash brace on the left side of the transmission hump under your carpet.
<<< Here's another mystery hidden ground point that no diagram mentions.  It's found on the left side of the transmission hump below the blower fan enclosure.

<<< And yet another ground point not mentioned in diagrams.  This is on one of the screws securing the left side lower fresh air vent. I think it's for an accessory relay, so it may not be found on all 240s.

On a related note . . . . .
<<< This Fuel Pump Relay was dammaged from an overheated electrical connection.  The owner of this car replaced the relay and it happened again.  He was told by others that it was caused by a POWER SURGE and it was getting too much current.  Sorry. That's B.S!  If your Volvo gets struck by lightning, then it might be a victim of power surge. The reason for that melting was a poor connection on that power terminal.  It was a victim of slow corrosion that developed over many years (like on most Volvos that are stored outside all the time) and the connection might have been a little loose as well.  Once it had corrosion in there the resistance went up drastically, which caused heat.  The extra heat causes the corrosion to build faster, causing more resistance, which causes more heat until everything melts.  It wasn't a current overload.  This kind of thing is common and it happens over a long period of time.

The cure is a new plug and new terminals or clean the ones you have really well.  Then you should coat the contact areas with a smear of anti-corrosive zinc paste. 

If I have not yet fully convinced you of the importance of clean and tight electrical connections, I will repeat it again and again. If we can just just keep our connections clean and tight, almost all of the electrical issues would be gone forever.  That would be nice, right?

I have owned a number of Volvos over the last 30 years and my current 240 is way over 30 years old. It almost never has electrical problems. Nothing like the endless numbers of other 240s out there that I hear about so often. What's the difference you ask?  The difference is that my 240 has been always garaged all of its life.  Why is that important?  Because leaving any car out in the open elements for years and years slowly introduces corrosion to grounds and power connections until things begin to go wrong. 
So if you own one of those cars that has been outside forever, it's not too late. You can still clean as many grounds and electrical connections as possible.  And while you're at it, I recommend that you smear a little anti-corrosive zinc paste on those connections.  Many people in the Volvo community gravitate toward Ox-Gard, which does a similar job.  

The below information was contributed by Ron Kwas and should come in very handy to old Volvo owners:
Anti-Corrosive Zinc Paste (a generic name for zinc dust contained in a grease) was originally developed for and later required by electrical codes for use on alumunum to copper electrical connections (or other dissimilar metal connections).  No, it's not the same as Dielectric Grease, which is often incorrectly recommended. Dielectric Grease can offer some protection in the form of encapsulation from moisture, but it also carries with it the potential disadvantage of locking in moisture or corrosion which may have already begun.  Anti-Corrosive Zinc Paste (or ACZP) is the next evolution of the encapsulation principle, because zinc (the lowest on the Galvanic nobility chart) neutralizes corrosion on a micro-scale to truly protect connections on a long-term basis during the encapsulation, INCLUDING an added protection from corrosion which may otherwise begin to form in that connection. 

Ron uses and recommends Penetrox A (by Burndy).  Many Volvo fans are familiar with Ox-Gard, which is a similar zinc compound. Ron is a huge advocate of treating ALL electrical connections on our cars (except of course High Voltage Ignition connections) with a suitable version of this material. 
You can learn more about this stuff at Ron's page here: 

Hardwiring your 240 Taillights (Tail Lamps)
I get a pretty fair number of emails about failing tail lamps in 240s, so I decided to compile some info about that here.  Most people with these tail lamps know what it's like to have bulbs stop working due to connection issues between the plastic bulb holder and the circuit board conductor. It can be frustrating. Hardwiring them sounds like a big deal, but it's not hard at all. It means you will be tossing out your old circuit boards and then attaching wires (with crimp connectors or solder) directly to the contacts on your bulb holders.

Having taillights that ALWAYS WORK when they're supposed to is absolutely worth the effort.

<<< This applies to 240 sedans with large 6-panel tail lights only, since all wagons and early sedans with 5-panel tail lights don't have the fragile circuit boards on the backside.
Certainly you can just buy new circuit boards on the internet, but those will just fail again. My advice to anyone having such bulb problems is to do the hardwire project, enjoy your perfect taillights and never look back.  If you're completely inept at mechanical and wiring issues, find someone who can help or show you how.
I won't go into great detail here about the procedures because there are several good sites listed below on how this is done. I just want to cover a couple things from my own experiences. I want to point out there are two options when attaching wires directly to bulb holder contacts.

1. Soldering them.  Not what I prefer.

2. Using crimp female spade terminals.
My personal preference is using crimp terminals, because it makes it less likely that connections will break when changing bulbs or if something rattles.  I did my 242 many years ago this way and I have never had a single rear bulb problem since.

You will need to trim the metal contacts slightly if you use .250 inch (6.3 mm) crimp terminals
, since the contacts will be a bit too wide for these terminals.  Trimming the contacts can be done with sheet metal snips. 

Or you can just use larger female crimp terminals.  It turns out that .312 inch (7.9 mm) female crimp terminals fit perfectly onto the bulb holder tabs. This is the size used on 240 headlight connectors. These terminals are available cheap in my Harness Parts
Page.  .312 inch (7.9 mm) terminals are available as straight terminals or flag (90 degree) terminals. It doesn't matter what you use, except the flag terminals are a bit harder to crimp.

The hardest part about this project is figuring out what wires go to which terminal on which bulb holder. My advice it to get pencil and paper and start drawing diagrams of the wire colors going to the tail lights and use a
test light to trace those colors to each bulb holder and each terminal on those bulb holders. Then figure out which tab on each bulb holder should receive each wire. Keep in mind that some bulbs and holders have two hots and a ground for a total of three circuits. If you're using a diagram from someone elses page, remember that 1981-85 240s with 6-panel lights will have slightly DIFFERENT CIRCUITS than 1986-93 cars.
Helpful free on-line Volvo wiring diagrams are available at volvowiringdiagrams.com.

Quick Fix to get your 240 Taillight Bulbs to Work Again (using aluminum foil).
If you have the above circuit board issues and don't have the time or patience to hard wire your bulbs (above), here's a quick fix. Thank you to Michael Yount for offering this solution.
Simply cut some small pieces of aluminum foil and place them on your circuit boards as shown in the photos.  Use some hobby tacky glue to keep them in place.  They will help bridge the bulb holder circuit if you have worn out circuit boards.

Lowering Your 240
Should you change the ride height of your 240?  That's a question that comes along often enough.  You have to decide if you like your car at the original ride height (cause you drive in floods?) or if it looks better to you a little lower.  Sometimes the road conditions in your area will help you decide, since lowering a car means a more firm ride and less undercar clearance.  If you decide you want to lower it, here are some options to consider. 
Sport Springs:  Most sport springs that are available (iPd Sport Lowering Springs being the most popular brand) will lower your 240 about 1.5 to 2 inches.  Other spring companies offering 240 springs: B & G Suspension, King Springs (Australia), Classicswede.co.uk (UK)
The ride will be a little stiffer, but it will be very important to use good struts and shocks that will be able to control a stiffer spring.  Bilstein HD shocks or Koni adjustable shocks are a pretty good match to this type of spring.  

Adjustable Coil Suspension (Coil-overs):  These are nice if you can find them. They offer a wider range of adjustability allowing the use of a variety of coil stiffness and adjustable ride heights. Occasionally there are people who produce kits in small quantities for 240s.  Usually not though.  If you're handy, you can build your own set. 
Here are some good resources:

240 Coilovers: The Kyote Way
DIY 240 Series Coilover Instructions
Search the Turbobricks forum for more.

Cutting your Stock 240 Springs:
There are people online who will scream at you to never try this!  I think it's because there are more failures from inexperience than great successes.  The key to getting it right is experience and getting it right is definitely possible. 

Go here:

And for more you can read the following threads, particularly the posts from Tuff240 (author of the above page), who has more experience cutting 240 springs than anyone I know. This is the best information possible on this subject: 

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Installing a Later Windshield in an early Volvo 240 or 140
This is a fairly common 240 mod with a fair amount of info already out there. But since I still get regular questions about this, I decided to post this guide. 

The 240 was built from 1974 (1975 model year) to 1993 and the body design changed very little over the 18 year production run.  The windshield structure had no changes whatsoever between 1974 and 1993.  Even in an earlier 140, the windshield structure is identical to the 240.  You may have noticed that all 1991-93 240s came with a different type of windshield trim than those found on earlier models.  It's all black and made of rubber. No metal trim is used like on earlier 240s.
<<< 1975-90 240 (and 140) windshield with metal trim:  This early type of windshield was glued in place using a soft, messy butyl rubber. Plastic trim clips were inserted into the soft rubber to hold the metal trim in place.  This trim tended to stick up from the windshield too far and in many cases it created lots of wind noise.  Thanks go to Ben Buja for supplying this photo.
<<< 1991-93 240 windshield with integral rubber trim:  As you can see, this later type black rubber trim is nearly flush with the body.  It's cleaner looking and can reduce nasty windnoise. This newer 1991+ windshield always comes with this new rubber trim already attached around the edge. The trim is NOT available separately that I know of. The installer will use a newer style urethane rubber when gluing it in, instead of the soft, gooey, messy butyl. 

Fitting a later windshield to an earlier 240 (or even a 140) is not a problem at all.  It goes right in with no difference in the installation. 

Be aware that there are installers out there who aren't aware that the 240 design never changed and they may be skeptical about doing this install on an earlier 240.  Some will even refuse to do such an install because they won't believe you when you insist it fits.  But rest assured, the newer windshield WILL fit.  Many 240 owners have done over the years.
If you want to avoid the argument,
just tell the installer the car is a '91, '92 or '93.

Here's a great story from T.M. of White Marsh, Virginia:  "I took your advice about using a 1991 windshield in my 1987 240 Volvo. Just like you suggested, in your article, I told the installer I needed a 1991 windshield for my car. When I brought my car in, the receptionist goes out and looks at my car's ID tag and sees it's am '87. She freaked out.  She was all like, "it won't fit", "I won't give you a warranty," and if I insisted on putting this windshield in the car I would be responsible when it all went wrong.  I told this receptionist that it would fit, it would be easier for the workers to install, it would look just fine, and that she already told me I wouldn't have a warranty anyway, because she said I had rust in the channel. So what is the difference?  She got all huffy when I told the installers to proceed anyway and to ignore her.  She was in a bigger snit when she saw that it fit and looked just fine too. There was NO rust in the channel, but I didn't really care about her silly warranty anyway."

"You were totally right, the wind noise is much less, and the installation was so much cleaner. I'm glad I took your advice everything is great; not original, but actually better. One freaked out receptionist, two satisfied installers, one happy customer, and one slightly improved Volvo.  A good day was had by most of us anyway.  I don't think the receptionist is ever going to forgive me for "lying" to her about the year and having it all work out just fine. lol."

Here's a discussion of different available windshield brands: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=342415

In 2018 Michael Yount did his own installation of a later windshield in his 1982 242.  He has provided the following tips for those thinking of doing this themselves:

He refers to this thread in his tips: https://forums.tbforums.com/showthread.php?t=341873
1.  Removing the old butyl makes a helluva mess.  I masked completely up each A-pillar, across the top of the car and entire cowl including covering all the cowl vent holes.  Debris can and will get EVERYWHERE.  Butyl comes off of paint easy.  If you get it on fabric or carpet - forget it.  You won't get it out.  So cover everything.  I had towels over the dash, steering wheel, front seats, floors.  And a couple of big blankets over the entire hood as we repeatedly lifted the old/new windshield over the hood of the car.

2.  I bought two double-suction-cup handles from Harbor Freight.  Worked well for the old/new windshield.  One person can remove it.  You'll need a helper for installation.

3.  Do your best to cut the old butyl all the way around before attempting to remove the old windshield.  If it's cracked anyway or you're not trying to salvage it - just getting the A-pillars and top loose will do - then just pull it away from the bottom.  The old windshields are notably heavier/thicker than the new ones.

4.  Your pinchweld should be completely clean - all you should see is paint.

5.  You'll see in the thread what I did to remove the old butyl and clean the pinchweld.

6.  If you use guitar/safety/piano wire as a cutter like I did, it will try to hang up on the old plastic clips attached to the old windshield that hold the trim on.  I strongly suggest removing the stock trim so you can see where the clips are and navigate around them with the wire OR use a screw driver to remove the clips.

7.  The new later style windshield comes with rubber trim moulding glued around the edge.  The width of that trim is usually about 25 mm.  In my case that trim was not wide enough to cover the re-paint line that existed because my car was repainted with the old windshield in place. I bought new wider trim moulding, PN
T109B universal "T" moulding, 31 mm wide.  It comes in a 65 foot roll and can be found at Gold Glass: https://www.gggcorp.com/Universal_Mouldings.html.

8.  If you change that rubber moulding, take your time removing the new thinner trim from the new windshield. Mine had butyl in the u-channel - I used duct tape (the sticky side) to remove the butyl from the edge of the windshield before I put the new wider trim on.  Then I cleaned with Prepsol.

9.   Use a square to get a 90 degree cut on the end of the trim you start with.  Measure the windshield to find the center at the bottom and start with the trim there.  Work your way all the way round.  It helps to have another person managing the trim as you go.  I used a small wooden roller to firmly press the trim onto the edge of the windshield so the butyl inside the u-channel sticks to the windshield.  When you get back around to the bottom, make a quick cut so you have about 1 inch extra.  Then CAREFULLY measure and cut square to match the other side of the trim.  I cut it about 1/16 inch LONG and then squeezed that little extra back in along the bottom edge.  YOU ONLY GET ONE CHANCE ON THAT SECOND CUT -- IF YOU CUT IT TOO SHORT DO NOT TRY AND TO STRETCH IT.  You'd be better off leaving a small gap and trying to fill that with black silicone or something.  Mine matched up perfect by cutting it just a hair long.

10.  There were foam pads that came stuck to the windshield to protect it during shipping. I used those for my windshield spacer blocks.  One on each side of each A-pillar and two on the bottom (one on each side).  I used 3M extreme duty double sided foam tape to adhere the blocks to the channel.  The butyl seal stays soft -- you must use blocks at the bottom to keep the windshield from slowly sliding down over time.  The blocks on the side will keep it centered.  I liked the blocks I made MUCH better than the stock Volvo blocks or the rubber ones that came with the butyl seal kit.

11. Test fit the new windshield once the new seal is attached but BEFORE you prime the pinchweld or apply the primer to the windshield.  The more times you test fit, the easier it will be to stick the windshield correctly.

12.  I used a butyl primer on the pinchweld and the windshield.

Ebay or Amazon butyl seal kit -- 3M 08612 Window Weld 3/8" wide, 15' long.  As you lay it along the pinch weld, you have to remove the paper tape to turn the corners.  I then put the tape back on and used the roller to GENTLY apply a bit of downward pressure before I placed the windshield on.

14.  Once primed and with butyl in place on the pinch weld - place and stick the windshield.  Check to be sure it's being held in place by the bottom blocks and is centered between the side blocks.  Fold the rubber trim at the corners AWAY from the body before sticking the windshield.  Once in place, then fold the corners down over the body.  Work your way around the trim, applying pressure all the way around the perimeter of the windshield several times to be sure the windshield is pressed cleanly against the butyl and the butyl is pressed cleanly against the pinchweld.

15.  Cross fingers and check for leaks.

<<<  Side note regarding 140 series back glass:  This photo was submitted by Johnny J. of Sparks, Nevada. His 1973 142 needed a new rear windshield, which was obsolete. So he took a chance on a rear glass from a 1990 244. The glass fits perfectly and wire connectors even line up perfectly for the defrost element. And the newer rubber seal from the 1990 glass went right in. So this shows that any 240 back glass will perfectly replace the back glass in a 140 series in case you need to know.

Build a Badass HEADLIGHT HARNESS using Relays
This is a good project for anyone with any older Volvo, especially if you have or want to to upgrade to brighter bulbs or headlights. 
For the best info I know, read Daniel Stern's page on this subject.  He also has several useful diagrams for designing and building your own relay harness. 

Here are some Volvo specific diagrams that have been available on-line for many years. These use the same principles:

UPDATE 2018: Wagonmeister is now offering ready made 240 headlight relay harnesses.

Unlocking the Mysteries of the 240 Headlight Step Relay
And Test Procedure.
This relays is rather special in that it has a LATCHING function.  A latching function is where you can click and release a momentary button or switch (such as a high/low beam stalk) and the relay will LATCH (or lock) in the ON or OFF position until the switch or stalk is clicked again. For this Volvo relay, one click latches it "ON" and another click latches it "OFF."  I have created the diagram PDF at the left for anyone who wants to better understand how these relays work.  I have also added a test procedure on page 2 if you think you might have a broken one.

How to Substitute Available Relays
to ELIMINATE your Volvo 240 Headlight Step Relay
As original Volvo 240 headlight step relays become more expensive or less common, here I offer an alternative that you can assemble yourself to completely eliminate the Volvo 240 Step Relay if you want to. This method uses two readily available relays to accomplish the same functions
Click the below image to go to the Step Relay Page

        Your feedback is requested if you decide to do this for your 240.
        CONTACT ME

240 Electric Speedometer Custom Re-Calibration
(Applies to 1986 and later 240 models. 700/900 models too)
This information has been compiled from discussion threads in Turbobricks, the Brickboard and from customer contibutions.  It's a simple mod, but some clarification was needed to make it simple for the rest of us. Using modern electronics, you may add a variable trimpot (rheostat) to alter or adjust the signal the speedometer receives from the speed sensor in the rear axle.

First thing you'll need to do is disassemble your instrument cluster and remove your speedometer.  If you don't know how, instructions for that can be found in my 240 Odometer Repair Page

<<< Depending on the year of your 240, you'll see a resistor like one of these two photos. That is the calibration resistor. It is static (or non-adjustable).  It was installed by Volvo to alter the speed signal for the specific speedometer they selected for your car.  The original resistor has been measured by others at around 51 to 56 ohms.  By changing the value of that resistor, you can change the signal received by the speedometer.  Some have installed different static resistors to reset their calibration. A few have installed variable resistors so the calibration can be fine tuned when driving.  That's what this article is about. 

1. Using a soldering iron, heat the solder behind the original resistor and remove it.  Simple task.
<<< 2. Next insert a stripped wire into each hole and solder them on the back so they're secure. You may use 18 to 22 gauge wire or smaller.  If the holes need to be opened up a little, use a small drill, then solder.
<<< 3. Here is an example of a 100 ohm variable resistor (adjustable between zero and 100 ohms). A "linear" type is preferred.  These can be found on eBay and are very cheap (usually made in China). Often they're offered in lots of 5 or 10 for under $10.  Feel free to put an ohm meter on it and find the two pins needed for the wire hookups.  Polarity is not important.  While you're at it, set it somewhere in the middle (50-55 ohms).
<<< A customer of mine sent this pic.  He mounted a variable resistor behind the hole formerly occupied by the clock adjuster.  This way he could tune it easily after the dash was assembled and it looks very clean.  There's no need to get this fancy if you don't want to. The resistor can also be put under the dash or anywhere within reach depending on wire length. 

If you can offer any new information or better ideas for this mod, please email.

Understanding and Dealing with a Volvo Bulb Failure Sensor
Part 1 of 3
The Bulb Failure Sensor (or Bulb Failure Relay) is a device found in 1978 and newer 240, 700, 900 models that alerts the driver of a failed low-beam headlamp, parking lamp, tail lamp or brake lamp by sensing the balance of current draw between the left and right side lighting circuits.  When that dash light comes on, it means the sensor recognizes that one side is drawing more current that the other.  This is supposed to alert you that a bulb is out, but sometimes it can be triggered by incorrect or mismatched bulbs, or even when one side has a newer bulb than the other.  Some mystery dash light activations can also be caused by a bulb holder with a small bit of corrosion, so keeping connections clean can help a lot.
Variations of this sensor:
Yellow case, PN 1362278 (1978-85 240 and 740 through 1985)
Black case, PN 1235271 (1978-85 240, other years probable, but details unknown)
Red case (pictured at left), PN 1362370, which fits the 1986-93 240, 1986 and later 740, 780, and 1991-94 940
Yellow case, PN 3545704, for 1988-90 760, 1991-94 940 SE and 960
Blue case, PN 9128814, also fitting 1988-90 760, 1991-94 940 SE and 960.

This information is taken from the best sources I have for USA and Canada models.  It may not correctly apply to all European or Australian models.  I have received information that there are some Australian models with a different red case sensor from above, which I have not yet identified.  If you can help with info and/or photos, please email.

#1 Recomendation: My best advice for those who are simply tired of seeing the bulb failure light come on when a bulb hasn't really failed is as follows.
Step 1:  Reach under the dash and find the offending bulb in the back of the instrument cluster.
Step 2:  Twist and remove.
Step 3:  Take it outside and throw it as far as you can.

Dealing with a Volvo Bulb Failure Sensor
Part 2 of 3
Making a "By-Pass" Sensor out of an old Bulb Failure Sensor

Sometimes the failure sensor can fail internally, rendering some of your lights inoperable.
This is becoming more common as they age.
FAILURE SYMPTOMS: The symptoms of failure can be headlights or tail lights (or sometimes just one whole side) that will not work even after verifying the fuses, switches, headlight relays and wiring are all in good order.

<<< Black Sensor 1235271: Referring to the diagram at left, for those of you who have had enough of the BLACK 1978-85 bulb failure sensor, here is a diagram showing the internal workings and instructions for bypassing or eliminating its function if needed.  Bypassing this sensor will eliminate the bulb failure light in your dash, but more importantly, it will eliminate the fragile circuits inside this sensor which can kill your low-beam headlamps, parking lamps, tail lamps and brake lamps if it fails.  Diagram view is from top of sensor or top face of plug.

<<< Yellow Sensor 1362278: Diagram at left is for the YELLOW 1978-85 bulb failure sensor (1978-85 240, 260 and 740)Diagram view is from top of sensor or top face of plug.


Red Sensor 1362370: Diagram at left is for the RED 1986-93 bulb failure sensor (
1986-93 240, 1986 and later 740, 780, and 1991-94 940).  Diagram view is from top of sensor or top face of plug.

Bypassing a Volvo Bulb Failure Sensor
Part 3 of 3

Making some simple BYPASS LEADS for a Quick and Easy Fix.

If you don't feel like modifying a Bulb Failure Sensor, there is a simpler way to bypass these circuits without using one.  And I don't mean to suggest cutting off the multi-pin plug and splicing wires together (which of course you can do if you like).  A better method, with no barbaric butchery, is to assemble some simple crimp terminals with a few short pieces of wire. Then insert them into the multi-pin connector, respective of the bypass diagrams shown above  As it turns out, the multi-pin connectors for these sensors use fairly common 3.5 mm bullet terminals. So all you need are some male bullets and wire. Coincidentally, these 3.5 mm male terminals and insulators are available cheap in my Harness Parts Page HERE
In the photo at left, you can see how these will look. The configuration is different for some sensors, so pay attention to the diagrams above. 

Better, Faster and Just Better Windshield Wipers
Helping with some common complaints among 240 owners.  Here are some suggestions to make your life better.

<<< Referring the the diagram at left, this will show you a very simple mod I have done to my 240s over the years.  By swapping two wires on your wiper switch (terminals 53 and 53b), you can reverese your wiper switch function. This means when your stalk is pushed to the first position, instead of the slow (crawl) speed, your wipers go to high-speed.  Slow speed becomes the second position instead of the first. I never use slow speed anyway. This modification also makes it so your intermittent wipers run at high-speed.  This particular diagram to the left is for a 1985 240.  I have noticed that on some other year diagrams the wire colors are reversed. Either way, terminals 53 and 53b are the ones to swap no matter what. Try it out.

Also remember your 240 is a pretty old car. Wire connections on older 240s can get corroded over time and have been known to loosen up sometimes.  As a point of maintenance, you should inspect electrical connections (and grounds) on occasion to make sure they look clean and tight. The harness plug going to your wiper motor under your hood has probably never been checked. Now is a good time to clean it.  Unplug it and have a look.  And keep this in mind . . . if you have ever find a melted plastic connector anywhere in your car, it's because of excess heat generated by high resistance from a poor connection. So good clean connections are important.

Lastly, use a volt meter to check the battery voltage while your engine is running.  Low voltage makes for slow wipers too.  Most 240s are lucky to put out 13.8 volts. Many will be lower and some well under 13 volts.  That makes your wipers very sad.  Dirty, corroded or loose power or ground connections between the battery, starter or alternator and things like wiper motors can have a big effect here.  If you want to see higher battery voltage, clean the related connections, including grounds. So many people assume old ground connections are ok. Check for yourself!  CLICK HERE FOR MORE GOOD INFO ON THIS.

You should be aware that some 240 wiper motors use a separate ground point to complete its ground circuit.  If your wiper motor is not properly grounded, it can behave poorly.  Click here to see a useful discussion thread about this: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=309689

You might also consider an adjustable voltage regulator if you have less than good charging voltage..  I prefer 14.2V to 14.5V charging voltage if at all possible. 
Adjustable voltage regulators are AVAILABLE HERE.

Here's a page created by a 245 owner who shows how to fix a sad wiper motor that has its internal magnets coming loose  Pretty common malfunction when these motors age.  It's a much easier repair than you might think since a little glue is all that's needed.

Here's a better way to re-seal the weatherproof seal between the wiper motor and the 240 body: https://forums.tbforums.com/showthread.php?t=293022

And here's an extensive page covering just about EVERYTHING you would ever want to know about how these wiper work and how to make repairs.

How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):

Modifying your Volvo using Relays
 I'm putting this here because having an understanding of simple relay functions can help any DIY Volvo mechanic in so many places for your car projects.  Many of the suggestions in this 240 modification page rely on relays.  Not too many years ago my relay knowledge was limited to installing a pair of fogs lights.  The internet has helped a lot in this area and most of you can now be really successful with relays. 

This Relay Guide is not Volvo specific, but it's a great resource for expanding your general auto relay knowlege and offers some interesting diagrams.
                     https://www.davebarton.com/pdf/RelayGuide.pdf  (3.3mb PDF)

Here are some other pages with more relay explanations and configurations:

http://www.danielsternlighting.com/tech/relays/relays.html  <<< And this is the best site I know for improving your auto lighting with added relays.

If you know of any other useful resources that would be a good fit here, please email me. 

Turn Signal (Blinker) 3-FLASH UPGRADE for your Volvo
using a VW/Audi Komfort Blinker Relay
Back in 2010 I drove a late model BMW M5 (E60) across the state and I fell in love with the Comfort Blinker (or "Komfort Blinker") feature that BMW was putting in their new cars.  This feature allows you to momentarily tap the turn signal lever left or right and you get three successive flashes from your blinkers. This makes lane changes a bit nicer (assuming you care enough to use blinkers).

Ok, for those of you who aren't as lazy as I am, I guess you can just pull and hold the lever for three flashes when you change lanes or pass. In my opinion, it's a nice feature. This feature is now standard in many new cars makes, including my wife's new Subaru, so evidently it's pretty popular too. 
I liked this feature enough that in 2010 I decided to figure out how to make this work for my 240. 

As it turned out, Volkswagen and Audi also began adding this feature to some of their cars beginning in about 2006.  They use a small simple looking blinker relay, VW or Audi PN 000 953 227A.  After obtaining one of these relays on-line (cost was about $60 shipped from Germany), I set out to discover how it functioned and if it could be wired into my 240 blinker circuit.  This took some studying and experimentation, but I was successful.  Installing this relay into a 240 makes the blinkers work exactly the same way as the BMW, VW, Audi or any new cars with this feature.  Also, it does not affect the normal operation of the blinkers cancelling automatically after a turn or the emergency 4-way flashers. A pleasant surprise I also discovered was that in addition to getting 3 flashes when you momentarily tap the lever, if you hold it for about 1/2 second you get 4 flashes.  I don't know if that's an intended feature in this relay, but it works this way in a Volvo.

I created a diagram for those of you who want to do this in your own Volvo
(link below or click the image at left). The VW/Audi relay has five poles, just like any standard 5-pole power mini relay. Connecting it to the blinker system is as simple as splicing FOUR wires at the flasher switch and connecting one wire to ground.  This operation might also be successful in any Volvo 700 or 900 series, or in any car (probably any European car) that uses an emergency flasher switch and a blinker flasher relay similar to the Hella 3-pole flasher relay used in these Volvos.  You'll see below I also did this mod in a 5-series Bimmer.
Completed in 2010. Check the diagram below.

I also did this mod in a 1988 BMW M5 (E28) and it was successful.  Diagram below.

240 M46 Overdrive Wire Harness Design, Construction, Mods
A few years ago after the auto transmission went south in my 242 Turbo 120 miles from home (Thank you AAA for your extended towing coverage), I swore off autos and decided to retrofit an M46 (4-speed plus OD).  I'm not going into the retrofitting of an M46, but I am going to reveal the secrets of the M46 wire harness that you'll need if you ever do this in your 240 and need some wiring info.  When I began working on the swap, I found an old M46 harness in a junk yard 240.  It was in really bad condition, so I used it to construct a new one.  The PDF diagrams here are the result of my research.  Using these diagrams, you can make your own harness from scratch like I did, using a few salvage yard 240 parts, some common connectors and some wire. Some of the wire lengths mentioned in this diagram are actually a bit longer than original.  I added some when I made my new harness. 

If your car originally had an auto trans, you'll need to add one terminal to the round multipin connector on the back of your instrument cluster to power the "OD" indicator light.  There will be no terminal in that spot in an auto transmission car.  And the 4th gear ground switch in the transmission uses a common female bullet found in many places under the hood of a Volvo.  This is the female bullet with the silicone sleeve.  If that can't be found, a 3.5 mm female bullet terminal works fine.

These diagrams will also show you the differences between the 1981-84 BLUE relay and the 1985 and later RED relay system, so you may choose either harness design, since both harnesses and relays ultimately do exactly the same thing and will work on any M46 overdrive.  Or you may use these diagrams to convert from a BLUE relay to a RED relay or vice versa. 
I now offer NEW M46 Wire Harnesses for all year 240s if you need one: 
CLICK HERE to find them in my Harness Page.

240 Auto Transmission Overdrive Wire Harness Design and Construction
Since I did the above M46 diagrams I thought it would be good to illustrate how the 240 auto trans ORANGE and WHITE overdrive relays work.  There is almost no difference in the relay circuits between these two relays. They are essentially interchangeable, EXCEPT that the OD light on the dash seems to come on opposite of when it's supposed to when the other relay is installed.

Shifter Knob Fix (M46 or M47) Manual Transmission
If you drive a Volvo with the M-46 or M-47 manual transmission, then you will likely already know (or you will) what it's like to have the shifter knob come off in your hand during a rapid 1-2 shift.  It's very annoying, especially when it yanks the wires off of your OD switch and you have to put things back together on the side of the road.  Here's a very simple cure.

First, pull off your shifter knob and if you have OD wires, tuck them off to the side and out of the way.  Get out your drill and start by drilling a hole in the knob just like you see in the photos.  Then continue the hole into the metal shifter tube.  The hole should be just slightly smaller than the screw you decide to use.
I used a countersink type screw, so I also drilled a shallow countersink hole in the knob. 
I screwed the screw into the tube to test how tight it would be and decided the tip of the screw was a bit too long, so I snipped it off.  I didn't want it to interfere with the wires in the tube.  The last photo shows the finished result.  That should fix it for good.

Upgrade the In-Tank Fuel Pump in your 240 with a Larger 740 Turbo Pump
The Bosch in-tank fuel pump found in your 240 Turbo will be the same pump used in all 240/260 models from 1976 to 1984.  It's very small and while it will provide adequate fuel for a non-turbo Volvo, it has been considered by many to be too small for a turbo motor with any increased engine performance.  The Volvo part number for the original in-tank pump up to 1984 is 1276330.  In 1985, that part number changed to 3507436, which was used through 1993.  The 740 Turbo pump I used for this conversion, which was used from 1986 and later in 700 and 900 Turbo models, as well as 960 models, is PN 3517845.  This pump retails for between $150 and $200 new.  It is also widely available in salvage yards for a lot less, although you should be cautious, because some pumps found in salvage yards may be dead already.  For my 240 Turbo, I chose to install a used pump from a salvaged Volvo.  If you need to test a pump with a battery, do it very briefly... only a second.  These pumps are not designed to run dry and it can damage them quickly.

<<< The photos shown here are from a 240 sedan trunk.  The 240 wagon will be a little extra work getting to the top of the fuel tank, but otherwise it's the same. 
<<<  Begin by removing the access cover plate above the tank.
The two hoses shown here are the main feed line going to the main pump and the return line from the engine. 

I have also included a photo BELOW showing these two fuel lines under the car.

MAIN PUMP Feed Line: The original main fuel hose from the tank to the main pump was a cloth braided type and it's normally secured with hose clamps on the tank exit assembly at the top of the tank and also at the main fuel pump under the car. When this type of hose gets old and rotten, it will usually slowly begin to weep fuel. When weeping, it may begin so slowly that it only gets the outer cloth braid wet.  If you are noticing a fuel smell shortly after parking the car or if you see any fuel dripping under this hose, check this hose to see if fuel is weeping through.  Replace it if it's questionable, since it will only get worse with age. 

The original main pump hose size is 12 mm ID.  About 4 feet is needed if you need to order.  12 mm hose is common in Europe, but not so common in the USA.  7/16 inch ID fuel hose is a close substitute if necessary (be sure to choose high-pressure fuel injection hose), however even 7/16 inch ID can be hard to find in auto parts stores in the USA.  Some people have used 3/8 inch hose, but I think it's too small and will be difficult to stretch onto the fittings.   Both 12mm and 7/16 inch fuel line are pretty easy to find on-line.

Return Line:  This line transitions from a metal line under the car to a flexible rigid plastic line (covered with a rubber sheath) that goes up to the top of the tank.  This line will rarely ever need to be replaced unless you damage it in this proceedure, but as you will discover if you do this type of work, it's very hard to manipulate this line when removing the sender and pump assembly from the tank access hole. It does not disconnect from the pump assembly (unless you cut it off).  The removal proceedure is hown further below, but it involves disconnecting the in-line union seen in this photo, then wrestling the hose as you remove the pump and sender assembly from the tank.

After doing this job a few times and finding how much it sucked, I now choose to cut it off.  When the plastic line is cut off of the end fittings on both ends, you'll see that the end fittings are just ordinary barbed nipple fittings and normal fuel line can then be secured on them with hose clamps.  The size hose for this line should be 8 mm ID (or 5/16 inch ID will work).  

<<< Main Feed Line Cutting (optional): In this instance I was replacing the main fuel pump hose because it was old and beginning to weep.  Cutting it off at the fitting was the easiest way to remove it in my opinion, since it was stiff and hard to slip off.  
<<< I like having the right tool for a job.  iPd sells this tool for turning the top retaining ring on the pump assembly to release it from the top of the tank.  If you don't have one, you can try using two large screwdrivers crossed over each other, or setting a large set of Channels Lock pliers in there and turning, or the hammer and chisel method to tap the ring. 
<<< To remove the retaining ring, it will need to turn about 1/8 turn to the left, counter-clockwise.
<<< Before you can try lifting the pump assembly up and out of the tank, you must first disconnect the return line union.  This is done under the car.  It's a simple flair fitting. 
Use two open end wrenches (one 14 mm and one 15 mm).

<<< Then you can slowly work the return hose out toward the pump assembly.  I found that this hose needs to come up and out first, then you can gently lift out the pump assembly. 

When you do this, you will know why I chose to cut off toss out the original plastic return hose and why I used a normal fuel injection hose with clamps for this hose instead.

<<< Here is the pump assembly out of the tank.  Also, it will be a good idea to get a new pump filter sock for your new filter. 

<<< You can see the size difference between the two pumps. 
<<< If you need to remove the pump assembly from the trunk area to work on it elsewhere, pull up that plastic cover to the left and you'll find the power and ground connections there that you can disconnect.
<<< Remove the ring terminal from the old pump.  That nut should be 6 mm (or maybe 5 mm).
Also release the orange plastic band holding the pump.  Remove the hose clamps and the fuel hose and pump from the metal tube.

<<< Since the 740 Turbo pump is LONGER than the original pump, the metal feed tube needs to be cut down.  You'll need to trim about 1.5 inches.  Carefully measure it yourself to be sure.  Keep in mind that the bottom of the new pump needs to be in the same position near the tank bottom as the old pump.  If you cut off a little too much of the metal tube, you can always just put a longer rubber hose on.  It's not rocket science.
<<< CAUTION: If you find a rubber "accordian" hose that looks like this one, DO NOT reuse it. 
That is a weak hose that deteriorates with age. It will then rupture and cause problems.

<<< Here's the final assembly (almost). 
When you re-insert the pump assembly back into the tank, be very careful to avoid snagging or damaging the wires. 

If you know of any helpful hints not mentioned here, please write me.  CONTACT 
Thanks,  Dave

Add a Secondary Relay to take the High Load off your 240 Fuel Pump Relay
The fuel pump relay in your 240 takes a lot of abuse and it's expected to run your fuel pumps for years and years without fail.  Well fail they do, usually because of unwanted heat after years of use.  
They often run hot because; 1. They handle a heavy load. 2. The heat causes their plug connections to develop higher resistance, which then causes more heat, which makes a failure occur like shown in this photo. 

Below I have outlined how I added a standard 4-pin relay (or 5-pin will work too) to handle the pump loads, giving the original pump relay a much welcomed rest.  The new added relay can be any standard 4 or 5 pin type relay with a load rating of 15 amps or higher, such as the ones I offer in my relay page here:  https://www.240turbo.com/volvorelays.html#1324749-006brown
What this does is take the heavy load off of the expensive Volvo relay and puts it on the inexpensive standard relay.  Then the Volvo relay is only used as a low current switch to activate the standard relay.  
The new standard relay is triggered by pin 87 on the original fuel pump relay and receives its main battery power from pin 30 of the original relay circuit.  As an option, you may instead run a dedicated battery wire to pin 30 on the new relay. I suggest 12 gauge wire. This should provide a bit more voltage to your pumps.  If you do this, then the wire should always contain a fuse between the battery and relay.

Below diagram is for K-Jetronic Volvo 240.

Below diagram is for LH-Jetronic Volvo 240.

Adding a Tachometer to your Volvo 240 in place of the Large Clock

Adding a tach to my '83 240 DL way back in 1990 was the first 240 mod I ever did to a 240.  It's a very basic install, but can be a bit puzzling for a beginner. These instructions will also show you how the small clock is installed. 

Plastic Fuel Line Repairs
Volvo used semi-rigid plastic fuel lines on all 200, 700 and 900 series.  Probably a lot more models, but I'll deal mainly with cars made in the 1980s and 1990s for this article.
Special thanks goes to Roger Brown of Pueblo, Colorado for the photos and details from his own fuel line repair. The photos below are of 740 fuel lines, but the principle is the same for 240s.

You'll find that the plastic hoses used in these cars are fitted to fairly standard brass or steel barbed nipples.  Volvo fitted them when the hose or nipple or both are heated to a point the plastic becomes more flexible.  Removing these hoses from existing nipples can be difficult and you may find that cutting or slitting them at the barb is the best treatment.

Some will suggest using a hair dryer or boiling water to heat of the hose or fittings.  In Roger's project, he found that neither seemed to create enough heat to soften the black plastic hose to his satisfaction. After cutting the hose from the barb, he began by trimming it to clean new end.  The heating was done using a small butane torch he bought from Harbor Freight, although a heat gun would be a good choice. 

CAUTION needs to be inserted here when putting any flame anywhere near fuel. Please use common sense and make your repairs on clean, fuel-free hoses. 
<<< Pic 1: This first photo is where he encountered a leaking fitting bolted to the filter. Fuel was leaking past the barbed nipple on this banjo fitting, so the plastic fuel hose had become loose.  He removed the banjo bolt and metal banjo fitting from the filter.

<<< Pic 2 shows a method for releasing one of the fuel line clamps holding the fuel line to the body.

<<< Pic 3 is the leaky plastic line being removed from the banjo fitting.  The plastic fuel line is the thin black thing you can see on the barbed nipple. The fatter line is just protective insulation.

<<< Pic 4 shows a 1/4 inch brass repair fitting Roger bought to lengthen the line that was shortened by cutting (the extension was made using normal fuel injection hose).  In the photo you can see the plastic line is clamped to a jack stand for handling stability. The torch is lit and the brass repair fitting is held by needle nose pliers and ready for heating. 

<<< Pic 5:  Bingo!  After heating the brass fitting and inserting it in the plastic hose end, twisting left/right while inserting, the heated fitting slipped in past the last rib...success! 
<<< Pic 6: Fuel injection hose clamp installed on the outer hose. There would have never been one there from the factory, but iIt's there to provide some extra confidence that nothing is going to leak when finished.

<<< Here's a suggestion for a tool you can make to securely hold the fuel line in place. I found this in a different European car forum.  Using a block of wood (hardwood would be best) drill a hole through the block that is slightly smaller than the outside diameter of your plastic fuel line.  Then drill a slighly larger hole only a short depth.  This depth can be the length of the barbed nipple on one end.  You can also drill a couple small pilot holes for screws that can hold the two block halves together. Then cut the block in half, cutting through the center of the first hole.

The hose can then be clamped in this block using screws or you can clamp it in a vise.  It will help hold the line while you insert a barbed fitting. 

<<< Pic 7:  Roger elected to use a 2 inch length of regular high-pressure 1/4 inch fuel injection hose that has been clamped to the banjo fitting.
The old plastic fuel line with the 1/4 inch repair fitting is ready to be inserted into the fuel injection hose. 

<<< Pic 8:  Lines are joined. Clamps tightened.
<<< Pic 10:   Engine running. Found a slight drip from one of the banjo washers, so after making a cautious 1/16" turn to snug the bolt, NO MORE LEAKS! 

Roger then reinstalled an old section of slit hose insulation as a shield for the repaired section to keep it protected from rubbing body metal.


If you can add to or help with this info, please email.

Adding a Small 52 mm VDO/Volvo Tachometer to your 240

While less popular than adding a large tachometer to your gauge cluster, Volvo made a small 52 mm tachometer available for 240 owners. 
They are fairly rare these days, but they can still be found used.  Here are diagrams for wiring it up.  


Fixing Bad 240 Driver Door Lock Switch Wires
I have seen a fair number of emails like this one:
"I own a 1993 Volvo 240 Sedan. It has about 100,000 on it and runs beautifully. The only problem is that the central locking system seems to be malfunctioning. It makes a fast clicking sound when driving and sometimes goes up and down when one tries to unlock the other doors from the drivers side. In the past two days the battery died due to something being left on.  I pulled the #8 fuse (courtesy lights, clock, trunk light, glove box light, central lock system, power antenna, radio) and today the battery was fine."

This is an extremely common problem that literally affects ALL YEAR 240s equipped with CENTRAL DOOR LOCKING.
How do I know this problem is common in all year 240s? Because when I discovered this years ago i spent time at junkyards pulling off door panels on a lot of 240s up to the 1993 model year.  They are all the same.  All had BAD WIRES!

The problem is old, flaking wire insulation inside the driver door. Specifically, the wires going to the key lock switch ("F" in the diagram shown at left) and also the door lock plunger switch ("A" in the diagram shown at left).  It should be pretty obvious once you pull off your door panel and look closely at these wires. The insulation on these wires will crumble and fall off, allowing the wires to short. This causes the rapid lock-unlock to occur randomly. And when the car is parked, the shorted wires may allow the locks be stuck in UP or DOWN mode, which can drain your battery in a few hours.  The solution is to cover the bad wires with heat-shrink tubing, liquid electrical tape, etc., or cut them out and
crimp or solder in new wires.  You will probably only have to do this to about 8 inches of wires, but  keep an eye out for more than that. 

Here are a couple good threads with more photos: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=323301http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=322700
How to Restore Linked Photobucket Images (Firefox):


Dealing with the Temperature Compensation Board in your 1986-93 240
I won't go into great detail here, since there is already an excellent article on this subject linked below.  In a nutshell, Volvo got tired of people complaining about fluctuating needles on coolant temperature gauges.  Fluxuating coolant temperatures is normal, however when the gauge fluxuates, many customers get freaked out by it. The coolant thermostat is supposed to even things out.  But Volvos in the 1980s were designed for cooler northern European climates and there are many U.S. regions that will easily max out an old 240 cooling system.

To make customers happy, for the 1986 year model Volvo began installing a special circuit board in the instrument cluster that changed the function of the coolant temperature gauge so that it would remain stable in the middle or "normal" range at all times unless the engine was very cold or very hot.  The gauge then had only a few set readings instead of a true variable reading.  Customers were happier.

These temperature compensation boards generally worked fine until they got old and began failing. A failing board would cause mysterious high or low fluctuations for no reason. If you're trying to determine what your high or low temperature fluctuations REALLY mean, you can buy an infrared (IR) temperature reader and check your top radiator hose temps for abnormal changes. If you find that temperatures are actually pretty stable, then your temperature compensation board may be failing.

To fix the problem, iPd began offering a simple bypass wire you could buy for cheap: http://www.ipdusa.com/products/5670/108262-temperature-board-bypass-kit.  They also offered replacement compensation boards for more money. 

You can also read the following instructions for your own DIY repair . . .ARTICLE HERE:  http://cleanflametrap.com/tempFaker.html

And if your interested in more DIY repair, Peter A. submitted the following: 
"The circuit is kind of clever. It can be repaired rather than just eliminating it.  It does require a soldering iron and a solder sucker to desolder the old parts. 
Pretty much the only things that will fail is the integrated circuit U1 or output transistor Q1, both of which can be purchased on-line from Digikey or similar places for about a dollar. U1 was bad on my board.  After 25 plus years it would also be wise to replace the electrolytic capacitor C1."
Click here for a PDF diagram and photo of these circuits:  https://www.davebarton.com/pdf/TempBoardCircuits.pdf (270kb)

And Dirk W. submitted the following for those interested:
"Lots of people will claim you need a new temperature compensation board (PCB), but that's not what's really wrong most of the time.  I have found that the metal pins that are mounted to the main cluster PCB are generally not properly soldered to the PCB.  They APPEAR to be soldered, but if you touch a soldering iron to the solder blobs that cover the heads of the pins, you will find that the solder is not wetted to the pin heads and these connections are almost always bad somewhere.  A little work with some sandpaper on the heads of the pins and resoldering the heads of the pins to the PCB will fix most temperature gauge issues."

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