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2007 S40 Transmission Service Urgent saga

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2007 S40 Transmission Service Urgent saga

Old 04-13-2018, 08:26 AM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 7
Default 2007 S40 Transmission Service Urgent saga

I purchased this 2007 S40 2.4 Front Wheel Drive Automatic late Nov. 2017 from a much respected independent dealer who specializes in low mileage, super clean Volvos only. My parents purchased several Volvos from him with no issues so I trusted him.
Day after I bought it, took a Sunday drive (less than 100 miles) with the wife to enjoy our "new" car.
Just before arriving home, transmission service urgent light came on and car went into limp mode.
Brought it back to Bob the seller.
He called me back and said the tranny was done, but he had one he could put in for no charge.
I realize now that at that point I should've said "no thanks". I want another car.
Long story, short:
Last spring, when the weather warmed up, the lite came back on. Transmission Service Urgent.
Brought it back.
He said he put the computer on it and couldn't find anything wrong.
Engine light and red "Transmission Service Urgent" light were gone, reset, etc..
A few days later, the lite came back on.
I pulled over and pulled out the key and sat for 10 minutes or so.
Started it back up and the Transmission Service Urgent lite was gone, but the check engine lite was still on.
Car ran fine for a few days and it happened again.
Pulled over, took out the key, waited a few minutes, started up and went on my way.
I should also mention, when the red Transmission Service Urgent lite comes on, the car seems to drop from 5th to 4th; this only happens on highway at or around 60mph. As I slow down to pull into breakdown lane, it downshifts again, hard, into , I'm guessing 3rd gear.

This mostly happens in the same spot (about 35 miles into my commute, on a slight incline as I merge off of I-95 northbound onto Rt. 128 towards Boston. Same place , almost everyday.
I stopped bringing it back to the guy because I was eventually way out of the 60 warranty and it's a pain to get to his shop for him to just tell me he couldn't find a problem. He would have to drive the same route that I do or at least get it out on the Expressway for it to happen and his shop is not too close to the expressway so I gave up on him helping me and the car eventually get's me where I'm going. To Work!
Well, I've put almost 40 thousand miles on the car this way in the past 18 months and I'm beginning to wonder if the fact that it almost never happens in the winter or when the temp. is well below 50 degrees or so. It's the middle of a pretty cold April and it hasn't happened since last year maybe around Christmas...
Right now, the Check Engine is out and the Transmission Service Urgent lite hasn't come on, like I said, in many months, but now it's warming up and I'm expecting to have to start the "pull over on the way to work every morning with the shut it off with the key out" routine again but eventually getting to work. Extremely stressful.
Sometimes it happens several times a day. Sometimes it doesn't happen for a few weeks or a month.

I'm wondering if the temperature is a clue? Should I change the fluid? Is there a trans. cooling line or something related to that that could be the problem.
I'm afraid to drive over 60mph which is kinda scary on I-95 and Rt. 128 where the average speed is 80 or so.

I can't afford a new trans. and apparently, they're not repairable.
I can't trade it in like this and I still owe about 6 grand on it. I paid 9 grand for it with 77k and totally clean. Looked brand new.
The problem is that when the car became a lemon, the money I owed on it stayed the same. I'm paying 9 thousand dollars for a four thousand dollar car that I can't trade in.

I guess I can keep driving it like this for another 2-1/2 years until it's paid off. I can't really claim that the car doesn't "work" since I've put almost 40 thousand miles on it in 18 months, but if I wanted a ****box to commute 100 miles a day in, I would have paid alot less than $9,000.00, right?

Any ideas? Is the fact that it pretty much never happens in the winter (or when the temp. is 40 degrees or less) a clue?

Old 04-14-2018, 06:08 PM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Ridgefield, CT
Posts: 4,310

if the transmission light went on, there should be a code to read. Not all code readers work on the non-emissions codes so you may need to find a Volvo friendly shop to read the codes for you.
Old 04-15-2018, 06:49 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Birmingham AL
Posts: 1,502

I would guess that the problem is the shift position sensor or neutral safety switch. If the car drives and doesn't slip, then the problem is almost always electrical. In other words, it is not a big deal. But, like mentioned above, you have to start with the diagnostic trouble codes.
Old 04-16-2018, 07:34 AM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 7

Thanks. I was thinking something along those lines. I just can't see how a transmission that needs to be replaced; not repaired, but just replaced , can go 40 thousand miles with out slipping or really misbehaving other than a light on the dashboard telling me so.
Like I said. I turn the car off; take out the key and wait as long as it takes to have a smoke; start it back up and off I go for a day, a week, a month.
Sometimes it happens two or three times in one day. It hasn't happened since last winter.
I'll ask the shop to be more specific than telling me that you can't fix it. You have to replace it, so it doesn't matter what the codes are (?).
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