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NHTSA — Electrical System: Instrument Panel Problems


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
29,167 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2004 Volvo S40 accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2004 Volvo S40 Owner Comments

problem #3

Dec 292006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 25,000 miles


Dashboard went crazy, fading in and out. All panels were unreadable, speedometer, radio, temperature gauge. Car accelerated on its own, without my foot on the pedal. Cd was shot into the backseat landing in my child safety seat. All of this occurred while driving on the highway. In all 3 instances the message indicator stated to not drive the car. I had the car towed to 2 different dealers. The first time they said it was the software and reinstalled. The second time, they replaced the alternator and the car was in the shop for over a week, the third time, the replace the cem module and radio. The the fourth time the car wouldn't read the key and had to be towed and they replaced the steering module. This car has been in the shop 3 times in less than 6 months for 3 electrical related issues the car only has 42,000 mile.

- Hudson, MA, USA

problem #2

Dec 132006

S40 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,500 miles
Car was serviced on 25-Oct at ~49K miles. No computer updates were done to the vehicle. 12-Dec, I had new tires put on the car. 13-Dec the car reported "reduced engine performance" and oil light came on. Pulled over, stopped car, waited a few minutes and restarted with no problem/lights. Drove a few miles, same exact thing happened again. Then drove for ~45 minutes when the car reported something like a "system engine failure" and the check engine light came on. Car was sputtering with no response from the gas pedal. Was towed to my dealership. Sm informed me that the "main" computer had failed, "two other computers" had "stopped communicating" and the "throttle module" failed. He told me they could fix the car for ~$300 with computer upgrades. He didn't know if that would fix the throttle module as well. It was fixed in their opinion after they road tested it for ~7 miles. He said available computer upgrades are always applied at their dealership when the car is under warranty but never when the car is out of warranty unless there's a problem. Was told my extended warranty did not cover the upgrades and was charged ~$300. I asked if the upgrades could have been applied 25-Oct since I was under warranty. He felt that they could have been, assuming the upgrades were available then but couldn't tell me if they were. Spoke with the sm at the dealership where I was on 25-Oct and he said they never apply computer upgrades unless there's a problem with the car, warranty or not. Drove the car home on 13-Dec and noticed "electrical" issues. Drove the car on the morning of 14-Dec and a headlight went out and came back on later in the day. Car failed again that day in traffic. Filed a case with Volvo customer care. Dealership has cleaned the throttle module but problem persists. They ordered a new ETM at ~$800. I was told that they will use the $300 as a 25% payment on the parts/labor for the ETM replacement and there will be no additional cost to me.

- Bridgeport, PA, USA

problem #1

Aug 102006

S40 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles
The vehicle has the following intermittent electrical problems. Dashboard, radio, climate controls turn-off by themselves. Wipers activate by themselves. SRS warnings are displayed. Fuel door button does not activate. Ignition will not active so car will not start.

- Elmwood Park, IL, USA

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