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Andy, Volvo Expert Technician
Category: Volvo
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1996 Volvo 850: disconnected..module..any relays in fuse box

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1996 Volvo 850 2.4. Has no spark, disconnected coil wire from distributor cap and no spark.. Changed coil and module and still no spark. Couldn't find any relays in fuse box or under hood that might have anything to do with this. Where else could the problem be? Is there a fuseable link that goes to the module somewhere?


Is the check engine light on?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.


the check engine light has been on since we have owned for about 2 years but has always ran fine.

Are you familiar with how to check codes yourself?




To start, the Ignition key must be in position II, engine not running. Locate the two diagnostic sockets just behind the passenger side headlight. The "A" connector (shown above) has a jumper that is stored in the lid of the "A" diagnostic connector. The jumper is used for both diagnostic connectors. Put the jumper into A2 and push the black button for one second. Count the red LED light as it blinks back information, blink, blink, pause, blink, blink, blink, pause, blink, blink, is an example of the response you would receive. 2-3-2 would be the code retrieved, now push the button again for one second, again count the blinks, keep checking for codes until one of them repeats, this means you have read all the codes. Now to clear the codes, push and hold the button for 6-7 seconds, release and as soon as the LED comes on push and hold the button for another 6-7 seconds. Now push the button for one second and read the codes again, you should get 1-1-1 (no faults). All codes must be read before clearing.


Let me know what code(s) you find and we can go from there.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.


We cannot see anything that looks like the picture you sent to us. Would it be located anywhere else on this particular model?

No, its only located by the washer reservoir fill neck.


Are you sure you have a 96?

Also, which module are you referring to when you say you replaced the module?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

On the car it says 1995. Sorry. Does this make a difference then? Replaced the whole coil with the module ont.

Well a 1995 should have the A/B box as well, in the same location. 1997 is when they did away with it which is why I asked.


Without codes, I can only guess. The camshaft position sensor goes bad on those cars all the time. If the ECM does not see a signal from the camshaft position sensor, it cuts spark. The sensor is located on the back of the exhaust camshaft. Its held on by two torx bolts (Torx-45 or 50 if I remember correctly). This is what I would guess. I actually have a good one in my toolbox as a test unit. If I get an 850 or S70 that won't start, I bring it out to the car and swap it real quick because its easier than pushing it in.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.


Do you know how much one of those sensors usually are? Where on the motor would this be located as I am used to working on GM? thank you

I wanna say it's about $200 from the dealership but I don't remember the exact price. has them for as low as $132.


Locate the distributor. That is mounted onto the back of the intake camshaft. The exhaust cam is closer to the firewall. The sensor is mounted to the back, right under the upper engine mount.

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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Just wanted to let you know we changed this sensor and it started right up and it was a piece of cake to change/ Thanks for your help
Great, glad to hear it!

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