Oh the joys of owning a Project Car!, Some days are brilliant, others are bad and well in the case of me & the C70, it was the worst!, essentially after spending well over a month doing the Engine clean on her, she decided to break in pretty sudden spectacular fashion, here’s how it went.
Last week I got woken up rather early to my neighbours telling us that the cars alarm had been going off for quite a while, after going out in a hurry and trying to sort it out, I’d realised that the cars battery had hardly any power in it as the alarm was still going off but I couldn’t open the doors nor start the car, after attempting to jump start the car I noticed a battery light on the dash glowing like a sunrise through a window, this was only the start of the problems!
After talking to a few people around the village it seemed that a huge crack of thunder & lightning had happened during the night right over our house which in turn set off the car alarm which subsequently drained the battery – most of you reading this will be saying by now “well just put the battery on charge, it’s probably drained the battery and needs a good charge” oh how wrong that statement is when it comes to ProjectC70 as she always has to be a pain one way or another when something goes wrong!
My first sign of protocol was to remove the battery and put it on charge overnight and check again the following morning, the reason I started with the battery is because it’s not a heavy duty battery and anything simple can get it to go flat as it’s a low output and the battery has on occasions failed on me before. After charging the battery overnight I checked the car again to see if the light had gone out but as it always goes with project cars, that unfortunately didn’t fix the issue whatsoever!
The following day I tried to fit the battery from ProjectLegacy into ProjectC70 to see for one if my battery was holding it’s charge and if so would a higher output healthier battery fix the issue and finally put the light out, unfortunately after standing out in the freezing cold changing batteries, the problem was still there – I was starting to lose my tether with my car and every time I went to work on it, I would get more and more annoyed with it and it’s antics it was playing.
Skip to the Weekend and I invested in a cheap but relatively decent Multimeter from Halfords to check the Voltage the car was producing to see if it was the alternator which was causing the issue instead of the battery – Bingo!, after all this time of checking batteries, charging them and even swapping them I’d finally found the problem with the car!
After some thorough investigation the Alternator was definitely the culprit!, when running it was only producing 12.05 V instead of 14.6V and the pulley was slipping quite badly, there was only thing for it, she had to go into the local garage to get it removed, due to lack of funds I decided to get the alternator refurbished instead of replaced as it was the cheapest fix overall (£300 for a brand new Aftermarket Alternator for those who would like to know), a quick look online and I found an absolute gem of a place which went by the name of Shandon Electrical in Bellshill!
After getting the alternator from the garage I took it to Shandon Electrical so they could work their magic, now as I’d never got anything refurbished before in my life, I was skeptical a little, but honestly there was no need to be, they done a sublime job on it in the space of a weekend which included stripping it down and essentially rebuilding it all from the ground up, now when I was in college I was always told & taught that a modern mechanic never touches or strips down an alternator as the margins alongside all the little intricate pieces makes it a rather difficult job so for them to do it over the weekend was no easy feat.
When I got it back it looked like I’d just bought a brand new one from Volvo themselves instead of a refurbisher, it looked that good!, The staff was although not many, they were all helpful and understanding and generally happy to see customers – best bit of all however was the price! £80 all in for what is essentially a brand new Alternator, when comparing that to £300 for a brand new aftermarket unit and about a £400 – £500 estimate from Volvo themselves I was definitely over the moon with both the quality, timing and price of the job, I would definitely recommend them to anybody!
Once home I put the alternator straight into the garage as soon as possible so it could get refitted so she could finally come home and this mess could be fixed once and for all, after about two weeks of pulling my hair out and getting frustrated, she was finally fixed and back home where she belongs.
Hope You Enjoy!
By Alex Jebson