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Old 06-05-2018, 05:00 PM   #1
KS242T
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Default 1998 V70R AWD with a blown HG SWAP

I just recently acquired one of these and found out later that it has a small headgasket leak. (Coolant bubbles out the top of the overflow cap if driven hard). Besides the motor from that year, can I swap a 99-04 2.3-2.5 turbo into it or other years? I searched the forums and could not find anything. TIA
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:09 PM   #2
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Just do a HG and get the head decked. Its pretty common on white blocks in the 160-200k range
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:13 PM   #3
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This one has 155k. Has anyone had any experience with chipping these cars? I am trying to get the car to 300-350 range but I do not know what would be recommended as I have only dealt with redblocks before.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:22 PM   #4
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search and you will find your answers ... its been done 1000s of times
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:33 PM   #5
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Do you have other symptoms of a blown HG? Replace the cap in case it's not holding pressure, IIRC those ones run between 15 and 20 PSI
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:37 PM   #6
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Jack I have searched a few times and have not found anything specific to the 98 which I was under the impression was different from the 99-00? I also replaced the cap and reservoir with genuine volvo parts and had the same problem.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:39 PM   #7
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You can swap in a 99-04 whiteblock. Its been done numerous times.

I would just swap the headgasket and redo the head. Its the fastest path towards keeping it kosher.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:39 PM   #8
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I also replaced the cap and reservoir with genuine volvo parts and had the same problem.
Damn that sucks.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:45 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by KS242T View Post
This one has 155k. Has anyone had any experience with chipping these cars? I am trying to get the car to 300-350 range but I do not know what would be recommended as I have only dealt with redblocks before.
Stage zero, K24, green injectors, VAST tuning, should get you to ~ 300 whp.
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:10 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by blkaplan View Post
Just do a HG and get the head decked. Its pretty common on white blocks in the 160-200k range
I was always under the impression that it wasn't very common for whiteblocks to blow a hg outside of being overheated.
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Old 06-10-2018, 09:06 PM   #11
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Plan as of now is to replace the HG on the stock motor. Stage 0, green injectors, do88 Intercooler, IPD reverse intercooler piping kit, IPD motronic 4.4 ecu reflash, IPD or equivalent exhaust.

What do you all think this would put me near? IPD says with just the ecu tune and the exhaust you will be near 285ish. Also, any recommendations for exhaust?
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Old 06-11-2018, 12:24 AM   #12
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Plan as of now is to replace the HG on the stock motor. Stage 0, green injectors, do88 Intercooler, IPD reverse intercooler piping kit, IPD motronic 4.4 ecu reflash, IPD or equivalent exhaust.

What do you all think this would put me near? IPD says with just the ecu tune and the exhaust you will be near 285ish. Also, any recommendations for exhaust?
285 at the crank but less at the wheels. You will want more...
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:44 PM   #13
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HINT: Make certain you use only the Volvo OEM head gasket, failures have occurred even with good quality Elring versions or equivalent, unfortunately, one does not want to do it twice! Also insure your injectors are flowing nicely and the fuel system is up to snuff, another fairly common issue is exhaust valve failure due to either excess heat from carbon deposits or sometimes a lean condition in one cylinder over time.So when you have the head done get the Volvo OEM valve seals, trust me, no other version lasts nearly as long or controls oil seepage. It is worth spending that extra amount or deal with problems down the road. Check out Swedespeed or Matthews where there is more information on the FWD Volvos.


Insure that the PCV system is also in tip top condition, remove the oil separator box in front and insure there is no blockage in the passage going into the crankcase area, another known trouble area. If the rear main seal has not been done you might want to entertain the idea of replacing it with higher mileage or age. OEM spark plugs are also recommended or equivalent and it might be that there are some aftermarket performance wires available but those white blocks seem to run best with the original Volvo Bougicord. Never skimp on the coolant or ignition systems ( or PCV ) and use only OEM. Those engines use a HOAT formula antifreeze, so either the Volvo blue, Zerex G48, or I understand that BMW uses a similar coolant formula, your engine will thank you. And needless to say, synthetic oil with Volvo or Mann filters. These engines are great but finiky and need to be looked after more so than a red block. They are nice though when everything works!

Also, check your heater core if you already have not, access panel in front of the center console is easy to remove and the core itself quite simple to do, if you see the plastic end tank is a dark brown color I would definitely change it. Swedish Auto Parts sells a very good quality one for 30.00 that is very popular.


Also, a good anaerobic sealant is required when putting the upper cover back on. Plenty of little details to always be aware of - I assume for peace of mind you might consider new tensioner, pulleys and water pump when you change the timing belt, peace of mind when dealing with an interference engine that one is investing time and money into.


Nice part about 1998 model year is it still used a standard throttle cable and single coil - 99+ used an ETM, coil packs, VVT was introduced etc. And of course if an automatic flush it and put some synthetic in there. You could also ditch the air pump under the battery , there is a simple ecu mod to make it think the pump is still in the system, one less thing to concern oneself with. The joke is that the FWD cars were built around the CEL ( Check Engine Light ), so if it is not throwing any codes at you that is always a plus, often they can be simple things that can be ignored.


Edit: If you love the car and want to have fun with it great, but due to that antiquated Volvo designed AWD system I would suggest getting either a 1996 or 1997 850R or a 1998/99 T5, very similar output to the V70R, FWD only so less complicated and costly, the only real downside is finding one, especially a wagon. Had a '98 T5, very nice car and kind of regret selling it as there are so few to be found in nice condition. Just a suggestion before you drop your money into the V70R, but then if you need encouragement head over to Swedespeed, they love the R and T5s over there and will welcome you with open arms. Some interesting projects involving others bringing theirs back from neglect etc.

Last edited by Turbo'd 24erty4er; 06-12-2018 at 11:08 PM..
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Old 06-14-2018, 10:18 AM   #14
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You can also tune it yourself (TunerPro, see Tuner's Rejoice thread on Volvospeed) for much less :D '98 is a good year for that.

IPD tune is good but conservative & most off the shelf tunes don't change much of anything.

Chances are the AWD doesn't actually work. There is a specific procedure jacking one wheel at a time & using a torque wrench to read the value it takes to turn the axle.

Common failure is the bevel gear/differential. fore/aft prop shaft CV joints seize and/or wear out from the heat of the cat. The cat is probably clogged pretty good if the car is dropping any oil out the exhaust (usually valve seal related).

It's a great car if well cared for, and the stock AWD components can hold over 450AWHP if maintained (mine was S60R manual swapped, though - the auto won't hold anywhere near).
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