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Flashing Check Engine Light - Engine Intermittently Misfires On Startup

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I have a 95 Volvo 850 A/T non-turbo sedan with appx. 190k (notorious odometer failure). The car began leaking antifreeze from a hose going from the block to the firewall. I had to put coolant in every other day. Then it began to need it twice a day. I know, I should have had it fixed sooner, but it then overheated on the highway, engine knocking, and wouldn't start again. Called my mechanic, and he towed it to his shop, replaced the smaller hose, and ran the car until the temp. gauge was dead center. He said no problem. When I drove it home, the car was fine until I tried to restart after filling up with gas. Then it ran rough, like a cylinder was missing (misfiring) and the check engine light came on, then started blinking. It only blinked for a short time, then went to the solid light (it was blinking orange btw). Now intermittently, only after random start-ups, the engine will run like this for 10-15 seconds, or until I have reached about 25mph. Then it goes away. The check engine light will go away on the next startup, so I'm not sure if I can get a decent code reading. Antifreeze is still leaking somewhere else, I think it may be from my radiator, but the leak is not as bad as the hose leak. I have a thermostat that is the higher temp. rating, so I think I might change that for starters. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated, as this is the first problem my car has ever had. Thanks.
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21 answers to this question

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New spark plugs, and gap them to .028
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Check for trouble codes out of A2 and post them here. Check out the links below.
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QUOTE(AlvinL @ Jul 29 2007, 07:58 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Check for trouble codes out of A2 and post them here. Check out the links below.


There were 6 codes:

P1310 - igniter (coil?) circuit malfunction
PO300 - The pcm has determined that multiple random misfires have occurred.
PO302 - The pcm has determined that a misfire has occurred in cylinder #2.
P0303 - The pcm has determined that a misfire has occurred in cylinder #3.
PO304 - The pcm has determined that a misfire has occurred in cylinder #4.
PO305 - The pcm has determined that a misfire has occurred in cylinder #5.

Sounds like I need a new coil. Now my 850 is stuck in the Autozone parking lot, probably because it can not start on 1 cylinder.
Besides the coil (which I just ordered), can you think of anything else it may be? Thanks again for any help given.
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Posted · Report post

How old are your wires?
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QUOTE(info2x @ Jul 29 2007, 12:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
How old are your wires?


They have at leat 80k on them. I know I need to replace the wires/plugs, cap/rotor, but how would 4 cylinders misfire? It's not possible that all the wires went bad at the same time. Maybe the coil wire to the distributor cap is bad. I will replace the coil and the wires and repost. Any other possibilities out there would be great.
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How old are your spark plugs? 80K too laugh.gif
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Change your temp sensor.
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QUOTE(Midimykeys @ Jul 29 2007, 02:40 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
When I drove it home, the car was fine until I tried to restart after filling up with gas. Then it ran rough, like a cylinder was missing (misfiring) and the check engine light came on, then started blinking. It only blinked for a short time, then went to the solid light (it was blinking orange btw).

Sounds like you have a bad tank of fuel...very common these days with the price of fuel everyone is cuttin it to increase profits IMO ...seen a lot of it . A flashing CEL is indicating a missfire in real time then if it continues it stores the code. Run as much of the gas out as you can then fill up with 93% or better . Or just have the tank drained.
You my friend sound like you have bad fuel! That's all wink.gif
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QUOTE(MrWinkey @ Jul 29 2007, 08:43 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Sounds like you have a bad tank of fuel...very common these days with the price of fuel everyone is cuttin it to increase profits IMO ...seen a lot of it . A flashing CEL is indicating a missfire in real time then if it continues it stores the code. Run as much of the gas out as you can then fill up with 93% or better . Or just have the tank drained.
You my friend sound like you have bad fuel! That's all wink.gif


that has to be the most ive seen anyone stretch a fuel problem... it similar to a bad temp sensor, i'm having similar issues and at times worse and i cant keep getting bad fuel over n over n over again... besides there are other teltale signs that its my temp sensor....

i thought stock gap was .026.... .028 sounds large
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QUOTE(Boost3237 @ Jul 30 2007, 03:11 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
that has to be the most ive seen anyone stretch a fuel problem... it similar to a bad temp sensor, i'm having similar issues and at times worse and i cant keep getting bad fuel over n over n over again... besides there are other teltale signs that its my temp sensor....

i thought stock gap was .026.... .028 sounds large

Well perhaps I'm just blowing somke outta my arse but I have been fixing these things professionaly for ummm about 20yrs. Your case may be a bit diffrent but please re-read his query? wink.gif
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I actually got my car started at autozone, drove it home, and parked it. I then picked up a radiator from modern imports for $100.00. It was from a volvo that had 80k and had been rear ended. It took 3 hours to replace it myself at home, and another 3 days to fully work the coolant back into the system, as volvo has only a reservoir available to add coolant. The car now works perfectly, and there are no problems once again. The check engine light turned itself off and has not come back on. As for the harsh starting, this is also a thing of the past. I do however, plan on replacing plugs, wires, cap, and the rotor. Thanks for all your help. I still can't believe the cause for the cylinder misfire codes was a direct result of the coolant. Maybe I am naive, I guess so. Thanks again people!
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QUOTE(MrWinkey @ Jul 30 2007, 08:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Well perhaps I'm just blowing somke outta my arse but I have been fixing these things professionaly for ummm about 20yrs. Your case may be a bit diffrent but please re-read his query? wink.gif



i never said you were wrong, it just sounded like a stretch tongue.gif
rightly said im no proffesional, just voiced my own experience thought limited it is...
^^ proof to how i could be baffled by all or most of his issues being caused by bad fuel
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Posted · Report post

very simple... run out a new tank of gas.... do a tune up... stock gap for OEM is .028 and check any leaks along the lines
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i agree cap, rotor, wires, plugs.
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CHANGE THE TEMP SENSOR
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