VOLVO B230 ENGINE SPECS & DIFFERENCES by Tulsi Ram & Anthony Hyde - August 2006
 The technical information listed on this webpage is a summary of the main differences in Volvo's 4 cylinder B230 family of engine blocks and ancillaries.
The B230 model run was from 1985 to 1998 in Europe and other markets, with North America finishing with the B230FD in 1995.

Acknowlegement for some details goes to Mike Aaro, Peter Linssen, Volvo manuals and other enthusiasts worldwide. If you can add information or corrections to this page please email Anthony

B230 Engine configuration: 2.32 Litre (2,320 cc), Bore 96mm Stroke 80 mm, 4 cylinder, cast iron block, alloy head with 8 valve overhead cam (belt driven), firing order 1-3-4-2.
The three engine types are normally aspirated, light pressure turbo & high pressure turbo.

B230 Engine YEAR
1985 - 1988.5 (B23 in 1984)
The new low friction design
1989 - 1992
1993 Onwards
(B230FB, B230FD)

Connecting Rods (Con-rods)

9 mm cross section. Marked 'H'

9 mm cross section <89,90 'M'
13 mm cross section >90 'H'

13 mm cross section. Marked 'M'

Pistons
Turbo pistons are dished

The B230FT OEM piston is "dishier" at 4.5 mm deep VS the B230ET at 3.6 mm deep therefore higher compression

short skirt

short skirt <90

full skirt >90

full skirt

Crankshaft
Click to enlarge
Shows a comparison between B21 & B230 cranks. Not shown is 85-88 low friction crank where thrust bearing is in centre, rather than end.
(original pics SAM, Sweden) (Extensively reworked in Photoshop)

Small main bearing Ø 55.00 mm

Ø 49.005 mm crank pins

Thrust bearing location at #3 journal

8 counterweights, 80 mm stroke

Large main bearing Ø 63.00 mm

Ø 49.005 mm crank pins

Thrust bearing location at #5 journal

same

same

same

same

same

Block
Expect any manner of surprises if the block is manufactured between 1989-92

Thrust bearing as above

External clues
- lens or disc type freeze plugs
- no humps along the oil gallery on exhaust side

'K' cast into block late 88, 89 only (seen just below inlet manifold)

Thrust bearing as above

External clues
- cup type freeze plugs
- 3 distinctive humps above the oil gallery on exhaust side to accommodate oil squirters (the 4th is not so readily discernable)

Oil feed thread in block for turbos is M14x1.5. Same for oil pressure switch.

 

same

Additional external clue:- rounded tooth timing gear and belt

Block Identification

Casting date on exhaust side of block, behind the alloy engine mount bracket (remove bracket to gain access)

Casting date location same, but also need to check for letters cast into block (D, K, R, ?)

Casting date location same, but also need to check for letters cast into block (D, K, L, R)

L? 94 oil squirters

Oil squirters for piston cooling

NO oil squirters or provision to install them

Telltale humps along the oil gallery on the exhaust side of the casting

<90 may not be drilled

Telltale humps along the oil gallery on the exhaust side of the casting

93> drilled, tapped and blanked, or squirters installed if B230FT

Freeze or Welch plugs

lens or disc type

cup type ?

same

Cylinder heads

530

530 and 531

same

Oil / Mist separator

small

large

large

Timing belt / Pulley

Early engines have square teeth

(93+) have rounded tooth timing gear and belt

Camshaft

Slot at rear of camshaft to fit rear mounted distributor

Intermediate shaft

Gear for driving front mounted distributor may be a blank and not machined (All 240's have gear machined)

Fuel rail

- extra port if cold start injector is fitted

- some have extra port for testing fuel pressure (Schroder valve)

Different years, slightly better versions

Different years, slightly better versions

Exhaust manifold
The dual runners and general design is very good

early ones have oxygen sensor mounting drilled and tapped

Later turbo versions have tubular runners

NOTES:

Weight of turbo 4 cyl engine - approx 170 kg (375 1b)

B230FB - round-tooth timing belt, VX cam, 531 head, 131HP


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