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NHTSA — Electrical System Problems

2002 Volvo S60 (Page 1 of 2)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
77,720 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.

2002 Volvo S60 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2002 Volvo S60 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #26

Jun 162016

S60 5-cyl

  • miles


"takata recall" I just got my 2002 Volvo S60 as a gift and was told the head gasket needed to be replaced. I am unable to do anything with the vehicle due to the problems that it consists of because of all the recalls on it please help me I need a reliable vehicle to take care of my kids and to get back and forth to work. I haven't had the name switched over to my name yet my name is [xxx] phone number [xxx] thank you so much information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Cleveland, TX, USA

problem #25

Dec 152015


  • miles
The contact owns a 2002 Volvo S60. While the vehicle was in park, the contact noticed that the gauges, meters, and lights on the instrument cluster failed to function. The vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was unknown.

- Sawyerville, AL, USA

problem #24

Sep 242015


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Volvo S60. While driving various speeds, there was an abnormal fuel odor coming from the vehicle. The contact observed that the fuel pump module was leaking. The contact also observed that the instrument panel did not display the vehicle mileage. The vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 140,000.

- New Milford, CT, USA

problem #23

Dec 272015

S60 4-cyl

  • 200,000 miles


Vehicle gauges tend to all go off and all dials go down as if vehicle isn't on. This is a common problem among Volvo and this hasn't been recalled. I was driving at least 70 mph on the highway and this happened to me.

- Havre De Grace, MD, USA

problem #22

Aug 012011

S60 5-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
The vehicle just stops while driving, all of the panel lights come on check engine lights. Had to replace the ocm sensor and the ECM sensor mckivitt Volvo in san leandro ([xxx]) service mgr. Has never mention any type of recalls to the car. They also replaced the fuel injection at my cost. Had to get a smog in Aug 2013, check engine light has come back on not allowing me to smog with out repairs to oxygen sensors, during this visit my control arms were noticeably broken, they said nothing. I found out when I got the car back after them changing the oxygen sensors to pass smog and I got the smog and a oil change they notified me, I had them replaced by a cheaper mech in April 2014 @ 75,000 miles. Now it's August 2014 and I was driving down very steep hill@ 45mph and the car just shut off causing limp mode and me hitting a curb to stop. Towed back to dealership@ 84,601 miles and being told it's normal, clean or replace the ETM sensor now charging me $2,000. I have never received recall. I'm lost now without a vehicle. Isn't Volvo supposed to fix this issue or do we have to die and then years later you guys at Volvo corporation figure there was a malfunction.. please let me know what to do"?" all this service manager wants is money and doesn't care about anyone's safety. I was laughed at today being told that oh you've only travel 25,000 mi and I've seen you 4 times since then, it's not a Honda and you really have to put some muscle into it when it does this limp mode. I was scared to death along with my family and was laughed at in my face with a smile telling me he'll call and tell me how much$$$. information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #21

Jan 072013

S60 5-cyl

  • 229,000 miles
While driving in the dark, power to the electronics listed below were lost inevitably and many warning lights/messages appeared on the dash (also listed below under symptoms). There were no warning signs that this was about to happen nor is there any explanation for why it happened. I was driving on a dark road and I lost complete vision of the road due to headlight failure (both low and high beams). This scenario is a common safety issue associated with many other similar Volvo years and models. I had to stop the car immediately to avoid crashing and call someone to pick me up. All symptoms from this "blackout" did not and have not disappeared since it happened, making the car undrivable. These symptoms are suspect to be the result of a cem failure, which also controls emissions. As stated previously, this exact scenario has caused thousands of similar Volvo years and models to be recalled/repaired on Volvo's behalf. Unfortunately, my vehicle model has not been placed under recall for this extremely, dangerous safety defect. I would like to see action taken against Volvo and repair costs covered on their behalf. Symptoms: Brake failure stop safely warning message engine system service required warning message SRS airbag service urgent warning message low beam headlights not working high beams headlights not working check engine light on ABS light on traction control light on odometer not working radio not working power seats & heated seats not working 12V sockets (front & rear) not working trip odometer not working clock reset.

- East Greenwich, RI, USA

problem #20

Oct 122012

S60 5-cyl

  • 42,000 miles


The vehicle would not start. There was full battery power and the computer stated it was the immobilizer check manual. Several attempts were made and car sat overnight.the Volvo S60 restarted in the morning. The car ran fine for a day and would not start again. Dealership stated that the antenna ring or key chip might be bad. The antenna ring was changed and the car would not start a week later again. The car was taken to dealer ship and placed on scanner. The car function normally for two weeks and did not start again. Several blogs concerning this matter have been set up without any answers for the consumer. The dealerships scanned the vehicle and changed parts and the problem still persists. In my case the dealership stated that it did show a problem. Yet the problem is not fixed. Consumers are being stranded or in my case stranded several times for hours until the vehicle starts later.

- Antioch, CA, USA

problem #19

Sep 012012

S60 5-cyl

  • 133,000 miles
There were four occupants in the vehicle. As we were driving home from the mall, we noticed a brief interruption in the lights and radio. A few miles down the road, there was an electrical failure and the car shut off in the middle of the road, but we were able to get it cranked back up in less than a minute. We drove approximately two more miles and pulled into our driveway and shut the car off. We heard a sound like an alarm, but it was so faint; before we had time to think about it further, the cab began to fill with blackish grey smoke into the backseat area. We all got out quickly and walked to the back of the car. I noticed flames behind the driver side tail light (where the battery is located) and told my husband. He opened the trunk (burning his fingertips), and flames shot up into the air. I immediately called 911 because the flames were high and fast-moving. The 911 dispatcher instructed us to stay away from the car and not try to put the fire out due to the obvious dangers of a fast-moving car fire. The fire department arrived within five minutes and began putting the fire out; however, the car was a total loss up to the engine, which was not burned. After inspection, the fire department deemed it a loss due to an electrical fire. I have contacted Volvo, but they have not responded to me as of yet. There have been several recalls on this particular vehicle, and we are worried that Volvo may have missed one. For the safety of others, I am reporting this safety hazard. The car remains in our driveway awaiting insurance adjustment; however, I am hopeful that either Volvo or someone who does safety inspections would claim the car to investigate the cause of the fire further.

- Grand Island, FL, USA

problem #18

Feb 172012

S60 5-cyl

  • 147,021 miles
Purchased used S60 in November 2011 with 137,000 miles. A few weeks later various problems manifested: Scrambled letters in dashboard message, driver door locks intermittently worked, radio self tuned to different station, speedometer giving false readings or stuck at current speed or reading zero, fuel gauge malfunction, all instruments on panel flickered, all instruments went "dark" while driving. At first restarting car would clear problem. Then frequency between failures increased. Just before complete failure - car needed to be "cold" for instruments to work - with instruments failing once engine warmed. Finally in February 2012 at about 147,021 miles the panel completely failed while driving - giving driver no readings (speed, fuel, temp, mileage, or warning indicators) and would not reset. Internet forums of Volvo owners suggested it was a driver information module failure. Owners forums pinpointed 3 probable causes of a dim failure - 1. loose connection of the motorola microchip, 2. loose capacitor/resistor 3. lack of protection from heat/heat transfer to individual prongs in microchip or between capacitor/resistor and the circuit board. Some electrically savvy owners fixed by reflowing/resoldering/heat protecting said components. Our local Volvo dealer confirmed dim failure and quoted aprox. $1500 for a new instrument cluster and 3 hrs. Labor. We chose to send dim/instrument cluster out for a refurbishment to baa remanufacturing Inc. On reinstallation warning message read "sra/airbag-service urgent". asked dealer to clear dim code first, then from SRS module per baa-reman instructions. Dealer job description/receipt stated they cleared codes dim 0001, 0003, 0005, 0006, E003, SRS 00D4, E003. No problems with locks/radio/instrument cluster since remanufacture in the last 10,000 miles/5 months. Volvo's original dim circuit board poorly designed/assembled.

- Berwick, ME, USA

problem #17

Jul 012011


  • 80,000 miles
Electrical panel fails (gas gauge says empty), passenger and rear door locks, fuel door, and trunk opening also fails. Incredibly dangerous as cannot open the doors unless pulling the door lock up manually from inside the car so therefore can't get to children in the backseat without crawling through the front seat and manually unlocking their door. Have no idea how much gas is in the car because gas gauge fails and cannot get fuel door to open consitently making it difficult to refuel. Car alarm went off in the middle of the night and could not open the car doors to turn it off because of electrical failure and therefore battery drained. It is really dangerous to not be able to lock and unlock the car doors. A child could get trapped in the vehicle or someone could get into the car for fear of locking doors and not being able to get them unlocked. This problem is all over the internet -rear electrical module failure and Volvo needs to address as is a safety hazard.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #16

Nov 032011

S60 4-cyl

  • 145,821 miles


Instrument cluster (known as driver information module) completely died while driving. Checked Volvo forums online and see that this is a common problem. Replacement is the only option. $1500. Many people are driving without knowing their speed or fuel level. Me included. Can't afford $1500 repair bill. This should be a recall item.

- Buckeystown, MD, USA

problem #15

Aug 152011

S60 5-cyl

  • 57,500 miles
Volvos-60 24T took car to dealer bill gray Volvo for electrical problem and transmission problem. Car was returned to me with air bag passive restraint system inoperable and dealer refuses to correct problem or to even accept responsibility for same.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #14

Feb 232011

S60 5-cyl

  • 130,400 miles
VIN: [xxx]. while starting the car the last week the "engine check and service engine " warning lights lit up. I had it checked and found out the ETM (electronic throttle module) is faulty. Called Volvo usa and informed them of the problem but they told me my car, which is a turbo, is not part of their recall. If this type of problem is common to 360,000 Volvo and warranty extended to 200,00 miles or 10 years why then are they (Volvo) refusing to fix my ETM problem. Since my car is experiencing the same ETM malfunction, prior to their extended warranty expires, I would like to have my car be part of the Volvo recall before serious consequence happens. So far nothing has been done with the problem. The warning light "engine checks and service engine" continue to lit up uninterrupted whenever the engine is running.

- Harbor City, CA, USA

problem #13

Jan 152011

S60 5-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
On a 2002 Volvo S60, the driver's information module intermittently blanks out rendering the vehicle with no speedometer and fuel gauge. The speedometer (and whole module) might not work for days.

- Lakewood, CO, USA

problem #12

Mar 152010


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Volvo S60. While the vehicle was stopped and the contact attempted to accelerate, the vehicle shifted into limp home mode. The vehicle would only move 5 mph. The contact turned the vehicle off and restarted it; it performed correctly after the restart. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer three times where the software as update and the throttle modular and mass air flows were replaced. The contact referenced recall 06V441000 (vehicle speed control) was informed that the vehicle was not included. The failure mileage was approximately 90,000 and the current mileage was approximately 98,000.

- Hamilton, OH, USA

problem #11

Oct 102009

S60 5-cyl

  • 152,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Volvo S60. The contact was driving approximately 45 mph with the air conditioner activated when it suddenly failed without warning and would only blow outside air into the vehicle cabin. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was advised that the compressor and receiver dryer would need replacing. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 152,000 and the current mileage was 170,000. Updated 11/16/10. Updated 5/24/11

- Macon, GA, USA

problem #10

Apr 192008

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,445 miles
On a car that is driven 7,500 miles per year, I just spent $1,068 to replace an alternator and $157.18 for a new battery because Volvo refused to have a recall or cover their known failing alternators. This cause my car to fail on the 101 freeway and left me stranded in traffic on milbrae avenue.

- Moorpark, CA, USA

problem #9

Sep 292006

S60 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,644 miles
Sep 29,2006 my wife was driving home and the car shut off as she was making a turn. She also noted the signal lights and dash lights were acting erratically. Come Monday we are scheduling a visit to the dealership. This appears to be a safety issue the reason being suppose she had been in highway traffic.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #8

Jan 212006

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,604 miles
We purchased a 2002 Volvo S60 1/21/06 at 1:30pm with 58542 miles on it and 62 miles later at 6:54pm we were having problems with the accelerator pedal not responding, the engine accelerating wildly and then no control over the engine as it has gone into a limp mode. We shut the car off for 10 minutes and started the car up and it drove normally so we could get home. Upon getting home and shutting the car off, the problems occurred again and the computer dispalyed no codes when plugged into diagnostic equipment. The problem happened again 1/22/06 and we called the used car dealer to have them pick the car up and they took the vehicle to their garage and I was informed 1/23/06 that there is nothing in the computer and the car is running fine right now. I informed them of the ETM warranty which should be a recall and they are going to contact langhorne Volvo to see if the parts can be replaced free of charge. This is a safety issue that needs a permanent resolution and not an extended warranty.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #7

Oct 192005

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,477 miles
My 2002 Volvo S60 stalled about 3 times in the period of a few months during the spring of 2005. It occurred only while I was driving in stop and go traffic. I was able to restart the car. I took it into the Volvo dealership. They ran all kinds of tests, but could find nothing wrong. They replaced the mass airflow sensor anyway on May 10, 2005 and the problem seemed to go away - until Oct 6. it stalled again while I was at a stop light. On October 19, six driving days later (I travel out of town a lot for my job), it stalled again in stop and go traffic on the freeway. I know that you have had similar complaints about this, but not for a 2002 model. I thought that it was important to tell you about my problem as well.

- Minneapolis, MN, USA

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