XC90 Heater core replacement 2006 XC90

Hi, is the replacement a DIY job I had a look on you tube for the left hand drive looked easy enough but the right hand drive is another story....Anyone here can help with this.....


  • edited December 2019

    Arggh - just re-read the title - you asked for heater core not blower fan! Anyway, might be useful to someone.

    Hi, yes can confirm the right hand drive job is certainly in another league to the LHD job that you will see on YouTube. I did part of this job on my 2006 XC90 D5 but failed ultimately to fix the issue - here is why.

    Firstly and where I came unstuck - the new part that I ordered from FCP were not labelled as LHD and RHD specific. I ordered the TYC blower fan ass'y - and you guessed it they are sided in that the screw pattern that fits into the HVAC unit in the dash for the LHD fan is the reverse image for the RHD fan. I should have thought about this but live and learn. They may have a RHD version listed now but no mention of it back then so you will have to source a new one from the UK or local so big $$

    Secondly, it is a major PINA to get to and involves having to break one of the torx screw tabs off to remove the fan ass's as it is not possible to unscrew it on the RHD - see attached photo. The sound deadening also has to be cut out of the way to allow for room to drop the motor out of the tight housing it fits into so involves lots of under dash contortion fun.

    In the end I took the original one out and greased the bushes on the motor. My theory is the carbon off the brushes gets into the bush and dry's it out hence the reason every one I have ever driven squeaks when you have the fan on low speed (and worse when you turn left hand corners - or was it right can't recall). But, the dreaded squeal came back after a month or so wasn't a great success all round.

    You can see in the photos below where you have to break off the tab that holds the torx screw up against the firewall. If I did this job again it would be cleaner but 2 hours in and it is easy to impatient.

    Funny side story to this - when FCP sent the original single fan it was broken in transit so contacted them to replace it. This was before I worked out it wouldn't fit. When FCP sent the replacement one, it sent a box of 4 so I have 4 new LHD blower fan assembly's in the shed!

    Underside view - you can see the shard of the torx screw just sticking out of the HVAC ass'y next to the firewall.

    Old motor on the left, new LHD version on the right. See screw tabs are offset on the LHD one.

  • thanks but need heater core

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    Hi Panos/ anyone else interested in this topic, I just wanted to add my experience so far with a 2009 XC90 D5 RHD. Three garages, including a Volvo specialist in Sydney and a Volvo dealer, have told me that it's a very uncommon job but the Volvo service manual says the dashboard needs to be removed. That would mean more than two days labour - very expensive.

    However, after seeing two sites on the internet, including a Youtube, it's pretty obvious that removal and replacement can actually be done WITHOUT removing the dash, in LHD models at least.


    So I removed the two relevant interior trim panels to have a look at whether the set up is different in my RHD. It looks exactly the same, except the pedals aren't in the way obviously - so removal should be easier.

    Second issue is that I have seen on another XC90 forum that some people claim to have found it necessary to cut into the plastic fan plenum in order to remove the heater core. I don't understand that. As far as I can see, the heater core should slide out cleanly as per the Youtube video if two hose clips and two holding screws are removed.

    Interested to hear any other views before I go ahead with this.

  • @xc90 is your heater core leaking or is the heater just not working properly? I've had a few d5's that came good with a flush but have yet to see one leak

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    Thanks Tim. It's not working properly. Blows cold. The garage gave it a flush last week and it did blow very slightly warmer for a while but then went dead cold again. The garage has replaced the thermostat at that time as well.

    One other curious point. The dash panel with the heater controls was getting noticeably hot, which led me to wonder if there was an electrical fault. But that has stopped happening also - at the same time that warm air has completely disappeared.

  • I would go to your local NatRad and get them to flush it.

    We back flush them with a decent amount of pressure and they usually come good the diesels seem to build up sediment in the heater core.

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    Good idea. I'll try that. Cheers.

  • No probs

    Any electrical issues would have stored codes if it hasn't been scanned with vida it might be worth getting that done too

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    Roger. Thanks.

  • My heater core xc90 2006 D5 was leaking on passenger side, took it to http://www.voldat.com.au/ and had it replaced...Never took dash out undid the clips and slid it out and put new one in.

    They stated was rare heater core went..

    Mine was leaking as I had a gander and the green fluid was slowly weeping from the fins. placed a plastic bag large and taped it up so not to get the carpet wet till i got it replaced.

    Good people to deal with, was the cheapest after a ring around with Berry Motors (MUCH MUCH MUCH CHEAPER) I tell you.

    I watched the you tube video on doing this but I am not that flexible anymore to be doing upside down stuff and contortions in the passenger well. LOL

    Anyway all is good now, hope this helps

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    Very helpful. Many thanks.

  • xc90DB @xc90 Canberra/ Sydney northern beaches

    tim@timbo , back-flushing with garden hose worked! i think the last flush the mechanic flushed the whole cooling system rather than isolating the heater core. many thanks for the tip.

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