pg. 79 Three-way catalytic converter

Three-way catalytic converter cautions

  • Keep your engine properly tuned. Certain engine malfunctions, particularly involving the electrical, fuel or distributor ignition systems, may cause unusually high three-way catalytic converter temperatures. Do not continue to operate your vehicle if you detect engine misfire, noticeable loss of power or other unusual operating conditions, such as engine overheating or backfiring. A properly tuned engine will help avoid malfunctions that could damage the three-way catalytic converter.
  • Do not park your car over combustible materials, such as grass or leaves, which can come into contact with the hot exhaust system and cause such materials to ignite under certain wind and weather conditions.
  • Excessive starter cranking (in excess of one minute), with an intermittently firing or flooded engine, can cause three-way catalytic converter or exhaust system overheating.
  • Remember that tampering or unauthorized modification to the engine or the vehicle may be illegal and can cause three-way catalytic converter or exhaust system overheating. This includes:
    - Altering fuel injection setting or components.
    - Altering emission system components or location or removing components.
    - Repeated use of leaded fuel.

    NOTE: Unleaded fuel is required for cars with three-way catalytic converters.

    pg. 80 Brake system

    Anti-lock Brake System (ABS)

    If the warning lamp lights up there is a malfunction of the ABS system (the standard braking system will however function) and the vehicle should be driven cautiously to a Volvo retailer for inspection. The Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) helps to improve vehicle control (stopping and steering) during severe braking conditions by limiting brake lock-up. When the system "senses" impending lock-up, braking pressure is automatically modulated in order to help prevent lockup, which could lead to a skid.
    The system performs a self-diagnostic test when the vehicle first reaches a speed of approximately 12 mph (20 km/h). The brake pedal will pulsate several times and a sound may be audible from the ABS control module. This is normal.
    To obtain optimal effect from the ABS system, constant pressure should be kept on the brake pedal while the system is modulating the brakes. Do not pump the brake pedal.
    The switching of the ABS modulator will be audible and the brake pedal will pulsate at this time. Please be aware that ABS does not increase the absolute braking potential of the vehicle. While control will be enhanced, ABS will not shorten stopping distances on slippery surfaces.

    Brake circuit malfunction

    If one of the brake circuits should malfunction, the red warning light will come on, the pedal stroke increases slightly, the pedal feels softer and extra pressure is required for normal braking. If the light comes on while driving or braking, stop immediately and check the brake fluid level in the reservoir.

    WARNING! If the fluid level is below the MIN mark in either section of the reservoir: DO NOT DRIVE. Tow the car to a Volvo retailer and have the brake system checked and any leakage repaired.

    Moisture on brake discs and brake pads affects braking

    Driving in rain and slush or passing through an automatic car wash can cause water to collect on the brake discs and pads. This will cause a delay in braking effect when the pedal is depressed. To avoid such a delay when the brakes are needed, depress the pedal occasionally when driving through rain, slush etc. This will remove the water from the brakes. Check that brake application feels normal. This should also be done after washing or starting in very damp or cold weather.

    Severe strain on the brake system

    The brakes will be subject to severe strain when driving in mountains or hilly areas or towing. The speed is usually low which means that the cooling of the brakes is less efficient than when driving on level roads. To reduce the strain on the brakes, it is advisable not to use the brakes excessively. Instead, shift into a lower gear, position 3 or in some cases, L (automatic transmission) and let the engine help with the braking. Do not forget that, if you are towing a trailer, the brakes will be subjected to greater load than is normal.

    If the brake power-assist does not function

    The power assist to the brakes functions only when the engine is running. When the car is moving without the engine running the brake pedal pressure required to stop the car is increased by 3-4 times and the brake pedal feels stiff.

    pg. 81 Trailer towing

    When preparing for trailer towing, observe the following:

  • Volvo recommends the use of Volvo trailer hitches which are specially designed for the car. For trailer weights exceeding 2000 lbs (908 kg), use only a trailer hitch offered as a Genuine Volvo accessory.

    NOTE: Models with automatic transmission are equipped with a transmission oil cooler as standard equipment. This cooler helps prevent overheating of the transmission during times of increased load, as when towing a trailer.

    Maximum trailer weight recommended by Volvo is:

  • Trailers without brakes : 1100 lbs (500kg)
  • Trailers with brakes: 2" (50 mm) ball - 3300 lbs (1500 kg), 1 7/8" (47 mm) ball - 2000 lbs (908 kg).
    Observe the legal requirements of the state/province in which the vehicles are registered. All Volvo models are equipped with energy-absorbing shock-mounted bumpers. Trailer hitch installation should not interfere with the proper operation of this bumper system.

    Trailer towing does not normally present any particular problems, but take into consideration:

  • Increase tire pressure to recommended full. See section "Wheels and tires".
  • Recommended hitch tongue load is 110 (50 kg) for trailer weights below 2,650 lbs (1,200 kg) and 165 lbs (75 kg) for trailer weights above 2,650 lbs (1,200 kg). For trailer weights between 2,650 - 3,300 lbs (1,200 - 1,500 kg) a top speed of 50 mph (80 km/h) should never be exceeded.
  • Engine and transmission are subject to increased loads. Therefore, engine coolant temperature should be closely watched when driving in hot climates or hilly terrain. Use lower gear and turn off air conditioner if the temperature gauge pointer enters the red range.
  • Avoid overload and other abusive operation.
  • Hauling a trailer affects handling, durability, and economy.
  • It is necessary to balance trailer brakes with the towing vehicle brakes to provide a safe stop (check and observe State/Local regulations).
  • Do not connect the trailer's brake system directly to the vehicle's brake system.
  • More frequent vehicle maintenance is required.
  • Remove the ball and drawbar assembly when the hitch is not being used,
  • Volvo recommends the use of synthetic engine oil when towing a trailer over long distances or in mountainous areas.

    NOTE: Refer to section "Automatic transmission" for additional trailer hauling tips.


  • Bumper-attached trailer hitches must not be used on Volvos, nor should safety chains be attached to the bumper.
  • Trailer hitches attaching to the vehicle rear axle must not be used.
  • Never connect a trailer's hydraulic brake system directly to the vehicle brake system, nor a trailer's lighting system directly to the vehicle lighting system. Consult your nearest authorized Volvo retailer for correct installation.

  • pg. 82 Winter driving

    Cold weather precautions

    If you wish to check your car before the approach of cold weather, the following advice is worth noting:

  • Make sure that the engine coolant contains at least 50 percent antifreeze: that is, 3.7 qts. (3.5 liters) Volvo Genuine Coolant/Antifreeze. This gives protection against freezing down to -31°F (-35°C). See section "Coolant". The use of "recycled" antifreeze is not approved by Volvo. Different types of antifreeze may not be mixed.
  • Try to keep the fuel tank well filled - this prevents the formation of condensation in the tank. In addition, in extremely cold weather conditions it is worthwhile to add fuel line de-icer before refueling.
  • The viscosity of the engine oil is important. Oil with low viscosity (thinner oil) improves cold-weather starting as well as decreasing fuel consumption while the engine is warming up. For winter use, 5W-30 oil, particularly the synthetic type, is recommended. Be sure to use good quality oil but do not use this cold-weather oil for hard driving or in warm weather. See section "Engine oil" for more information.
  • The load placed on the battery is greater during the winter since the windshield wipers, lighting, etc. are used more often. Moreover, the capacity of the battery decreases as the temperature drops. In very cold weather, a poorly charged battery can freeze and be damaged. It is therefore advisable to check the state of charge more frequently and spray an anti-rust oil on the battery posts.
  • Volvo recommends the use of snow tires on all four wheels for winter driving - see section "Wheels and tires".
  • To prevent the washer fluid reservoir from freezing, add washer solvents containing antifreeze (see page 131 for the location of the washer fluid reservoir). This is important since the dirt is often splashed on the windshield during winter driving, requiring the frequent use of the washers and wipers. The Volvo Washer Solvent should be diluted as follows:
    Down to 14°F (-10°C): 1 part anti-freeze and 4 parts water
    Down to 5°F (-15°C): 1 part anti-freeze and 3 parts water
    Down to 0°F (-18°C): 1 part anti-freeze and 2 parts water
    Down to -18°F (-28°): 1 part anti-freeze and 1 part water
  • When driving in temperatures below 15° F (-10° C), we recommend the use of Volvo's radiator guard to help the engine reach normal operating temperature as quickly as possible. This guard should not be used when towing a trailer.
  • Use Volvo Teflon Lock Spray in the locks.

    NOTE: Avoid the use of de-icing sprays as they can cause damage to the locks.

    W Winter/Wet mode

    Enhanced Vehicle Traction
    This mode may be selected for starting/moving off on slippery roads.
    In this mode:

  • In position D*, the gearbox starts in 3rd gear and changes up to 4th gear.
  • In position 3*, 2nd gear is locked and there is no change up to 3rd gear.
  • In position L, 1st gear is locked.

    * These positions always offer the kick-down function.

    pg. 83 Long distance trips

    Before a long distance trip

    It is always worthwhile to have your car checked at a Volvo retailer before driving long distances. Your retailer will also be able to supply you with bulbs, fuses, spark plugs and wiper blades for your use in the event that problems occur.
    If you prefer to check the car yourself, please note the following:

  • Check that the engine runs smoothly and that fuel consumption is normal.
  • Check engine oil, coolant levels, and for possible fuel leakage.
  • Check transmission oil level.
  • Check condition of drive belts.
  • Check state of charge of battery.
  • Examine tires carefully (the spare tire as well), and replace those that are worn. Check tire pressures.
  • The brakes, front wheel alignment, and steering gear should be checked by your Volvo retailer only.
  • Check all lights, including high beams.
  • Reflective warning triangles are legal requirement in some countries.
  • Have a word with your Volvo retailer concerning engine adjustments if you intend to drive in countries where it may be difficult to obtain correct fuel.
  • Consider your destination. If you will be driving through an area where snow or ice are likely to occur, consider snow tires.

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