New car, new question!

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by blurp, Nov 24, 2008.

  1. blurp

    blurp Guest

    I am now the happy owner of a 1996 850 Platinum Edition wagon. I've
    done some research and have discovered that it's essentially the same
    thing as an 850 Turbo with all the options plus a snazzy
    pearl-over-white paint job :)

    As with any well maintained car 12 years old there are a few minor
    issues that caught my attention and I'm hoping that your collective
    experience with 850's (or Volvo's of that vintage generally) might
    shed light on this:

    The LCD trip computer doesn't light up. Any longshot chance this might
    be a fuse or easily reached without taking the whole instrument
    cluster out?

    The bottom row of buttons on the stereo don't light up either but this
    I can just pull out of the dash to inspect.

    Thanks all,
    Blurp
     
    blurp, Nov 24, 2008
    #1
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  2. blurp

    James Sweet Guest


    In both cases it's almost certainly burned out bulbs.
     
    James Sweet, Nov 24, 2008
    #2
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  3. blurp

    Mystical Guest


    After you replace the bulbs, be sure to turn the dash light dimmer
    down always so that bulbs will not burn out nearly as fast.
     
    Mystical, Nov 24, 2008
    #3
  4. blurp

    James Sweet Guest

    Or replace the bulbs with LED retrofits and never have to replace them
    again.
     
    James Sweet, Nov 24, 2008
    #4
  5. blurp

    joelandyman Guest


    I had an early V70 which had the same issues with the stereo.
    I seem to recall that the bulbs are the same as those found in the
    side of the heated seat switches. Tiny things that you twist out with
    a flat screwdriver.
    Just ask for some heated seat switch bulbs at the dealer, cos they
    don't have any spares listings for radio internal parts!!
    Hope to help.
    Joe.
    P.S, Got early new shape V70 now (yr 2000) and it's 10 times more
    trouble. Driver's electric window doesn't work and needs new ECU
    jobby, Can't lock with remote keyfob cos alarm goes off immediately,
    and my driver's heated seat element is gone!! Apart from that, it's a
    superb machine. Did quarter of a million miles in my old V70 though,
    and it never had problems like these!!
    Enjoy the 850.
    All the best.
    Joe.
     
    joelandyman, Nov 27, 2008
    #5
  6. blurp

    James Sweet Guest

    They can still be replaced by LEDs. I just did this the other night with
    the display illumination in my old Blaupunkt CD player. The original
    illumination was a tiny incandescent lamp with a green rubber sleeve
    over it. I didn't have any surface mount LEDs so I took a regular 5mm
    one and filed it down into a tombstone shape and soldered it into place
    with a 2K resistor in series. Put it back together and it looks great.

    I replaced the similar tiny bulbs in the window switches of a Saab 900
    with 3mm green LEDs a few years ago and that worked nicely too.
     
    James Sweet, Nov 27, 2008
    #6
  7. blurp

    blurp Guest

    Are the LEDs available from the dealer and are they dimmable?

    Over the past several years I've benefited from my brother-in-law's
    career progression through the automotive industry: he started in
    custom exhaust (cheap exhaust repairs), moved to a GM dealer (got my
    760 blower motor from a Cavalier), then to Porsche (my last 850 had
    its complete AC rebuilt by Porsche mechanics) and now, finally, he
    works for Volvo.

    He has suggested that the computer backlights could be fixed for the
    price of bulbs and lunch. If the bulbs, however, get brought from
    outside I worry the mechanics will have hang-ups about doing the job.
    I would do the radio work myself since I can easily pull the part and
    do it on the bench at home.

    So if the LEDs are a dealer part, where are they "supposed" to go?
    That way we can track down the part number. Of course, if they require
    the additional soldering of resistors then I can pretty much forget
    about it.
     
    blurp, Dec 1, 2008
    #7
  8. blurp

    James Sweet Guest

    No, they're just ordinary LEDs from an electronics supplier, I don't
    know what specific place those particular LEDs came from, one of my main
    hobbies is electrical engineering so I have closets and boxes full of
    that sort of stuff. I think the one I used most recently came from a
    batch I bought on ebay. They can be dimmed, but are not in this application.

    Sounds like what I did is beyond what you are interested in doing. It
    was a custom modification that I did involving some careful cutting and
    filing, then soldering in the LED and resistor where I could fit them,
    not some drop-in replacement.

    There *is* an LED solution you may want to look into though, several
    companies sell direct LED retrofits that plug into the existing sockets.
    I seem to have lost the link, but it was someone here who pointed me
    to one of them in the first place.
     
    James Sweet, Dec 1, 2008
    #8
  9. blurp

    blurp Guest

    I'll look for that. Thanks James!
     
    blurp, Dec 1, 2008
    #9
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