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Discussion Starter #1
I made a similar post on the 9-5 FB group but I wanted to post here as well.


I bought these hoses from my local Saab dealership (Saab club discount gets you 20% off on parts). I thought that this would be an upgrade worthwhile to remove the coolant bypass valve. Mines leaking again a year later. I’ve read that installing these are more involved than replacing the bypass valve itself. (Can’t be worse than doing a water pump).

What I want to know is: does anyone regret installing these? My AC worked OK over the summer but I think I’m gonna replace the dryer, lines and compressor come spring time. I’m reading conflicting results as to if people think it’s worth it.

Let me know your experiences.
 

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I'm a big fan of doing this. Several 9-5's in other markets come with this from the factory. In the U.S. we're stuck with the stupid valve. No regrets here. It is a pain to get the old hoses off but it's so worth it. My coolant bypass valve failed several years ago, dumping most of my coolant in the garage. I replaced it with the same hose as in your pic, and have had no issues since. I can't feel any difference with the heat or A/C performance either. Just don't forget to leave the electrical solenoid from the old valve plugged in (mine is zip-tied to the firewall), or you'll get a check engine light.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Upon closer inspection it seems that the heater hose that comes off the block and into a Tee is leaking. They have those pinch clamps that are set with a tool like a hydraulic hose. So the bypass valve seems really dry at the moment and I kinda have the part for the hoses. Would you get new heater hoses or just go ahead with the bypass hoses?
 

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I did this on both my 9-5s. One 9-5 I have yet to recharge the A/C and the other is my daily driver.

Yes, I've noticed a decline in how cold the car can get, it cools off but never to the point of "Wow, that's so cold now I need to turn it down" Its always just a tad on the "I wish it was just one notch colder." And I contemplate going back because in all honesty the job is so easy, I can replace one of those valves in about 30 mins or less. But the problem is I see so many people have failures with the valve not but 30k miles later or less and I just don't want to deal with that as it seems the part isn't being made as well as it once was.

My solution, we don't take trips in my wagon anymore, the wagon is just my daily and I do lone trips with it. I live in the Way upstate NY so its never too bad but for 2-3 months. So what did I do? I bought a 2019 Subaru Forester for the wife and we just drive that everywhere with the kids.

I did the A/c Compressor, condenser and drier/receiver, it maybe helped a tiny bit but still never got as cold as it once did (I've had 9-5s Ice the windshield they got so cold). When I built my 2000 wagon, I eliminated a lot of the common issues from that car while doing it. I say if you live below the Mason Dixon line, then keep the valve.
 

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I've installed the bypass hoses on both of my 9-5s. On one I used the factory hoses, which you pictured, and the other one has a set of McKay hoses, which don't seem to be available in the US anymore. I have no complaints about the heater or A/C performance, but then I'm in Seattle, where a 90 degree day is incredibly rare, although we get one or two a year.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I’m in Tennessee where it’s 28F right now but summer months it’s high 90’s. Now I’m really on the fence.
 

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I’m in Tennessee where it’s 28F right now but summer months it’s high 90’s. Now I’m really on the fence.
I'm in MN and we get temperature extremes. Frigid winters and hot, humid summers. I haven't had any times where I felt the a/c wasn't sufficient. Again to each their own, but I did the official WIS test for the A/C temp and mine still cools sufficiently according to the test, without the valve. I hate the idea of that thing being a ticking time bomb, and for me it's peace of mind to get rid of it and never think about it again.
 

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I've only had to replace one HBV in almost 20 years of 9-5 ownership, the one occasion that I had a valve fail it was on a 'new to me' car, it failed about 20 miles from home, I called my independant Saab shop for a parts check and suggestion how to get the car home and was told "loosen the cap on the coolant reservoir and you can drive for a half hour no problem".

I did as suggested, got home, installed replacement...point is a failed BPV won't necessarily leave you stuck on the road.

I use the lo setting on the ACC a few times a summer and it does work as designed to lower the temperature, I am convinced doing this (actually puting the valve to work as it should) reduces the chance of failure.
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Discussion Starter #10
I did this on both my 9-5s. One 9-5 I have yet to recharge the A/C and the other is my daily driver.

Yes, I've noticed a decline in how cold the car can get, it cools off but never to the point of "Wow, that's so cold now I need to turn it down" Its always just a tad on the "I wish it was just one notch colder." And I contemplate going back because in all honesty the job is so easy, I can replace one of those valves in about 30 mins or less. But the problem is I see so many people have failures with the valve not but 30k miles later or less and I just don't want to deal with that as it seems the part isn't being made as well as it once was.

My solution, we don't take trips in my wagon anymore, the wagon is just my daily and I do lone trips with it. I live in the Way upstate NY so its never too bad but for 2-3 months. So what did I do? I bought a 2019 Subaru Forester for the wife and we just drive that everywhere with the kids.

I did the A/c Compressor, condenser and drier/receiver, it maybe helped a tiny bit but still never got as cold as it once did (I've had 9-5s Ice the windshield they got so cold). When I built my 2000 wagon, I eliminated a lot of the common issues from that car while doing it. I say if you live below the Mason Dixon line, then keep the valve.
Mine never cooled as good as my Volvo. However after maybe 8-10min of driving/running it gets cold enough on hot days. Very reminiscent of my Honda Civic that this Saab replaced. AC was marginal unless you were moving.

I called the dealer back and told him my dilemma about heater hoses leaking vs the BPV. He said he’s never had anyone order them in 20 years (bypass hoses). And new heater hoses are $54 (not including 20 percent discount) and are in stock but he said “you already have the hoses now, they were special ordered and can’t be returned so why not just run them until the summer and see how you feel?”

That’s where I’m at currently.
 

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Discussion Starter #11

Well, someone’s been in here before....

URO branded hoses on the “tree”. Upon much closer inspection of the pinch clamps two are loose. I suspect I could somehow remove them and put on generic clamps. It’s exactly where my leak looks like It’s coming from. But, I’m already this far in. Just gonna throw on the new stuff and see where it takes me. At least I know it wasn’t as big an issue as expected but always pays to have the parts you “might” need on hand.

 

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Note that WIS doesn't say that the bypass is activated only if the system is set to LO, it's activated whenever a lot of cooling is desired.

Using Tech II, I have seen it activated when the system runs to cool off a car that's been sitting in the sun. The temp setting is 22º C, but given the heat in the interior, the A/C system is working at max.

I have also seen the bypass activated when ECON is on and it's fairly warm outside. That prevents the air being pulled in for ventilation to be heated any further.

I suspect that using a good quality valve means maybe one replacement in the car's lifetime. I didn't use the top quality, since the car started leaking outside of Detroit, and got fixed outside of Dayton. The $30 Advance Auto valve was what was easy and quick to get. It's hung in there for a few years, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Note that WIS doesn't say that the bypass is activated only if the system is set to LO, it's activated whenever a lot of cooling is desired.

Using Tech II, I have seen it activated when the system runs to cool off a car that's been sitting in the sun. The temp setting is 22º C, but given the heat in the interior, the A/C system is working at max.

I have also seen the bypass activated when ECON is on and it's fairly warm outside. That prevents the air being pulled in for ventilation to be heated any further.

I suspect that using a good quality valve means maybe one replacement in the car's lifetime. I didn't use the top quality, since the car started leaking outside of Detroit, and got fixed outside of Dayton. The $30 Advance Auto valve was what was easy and quick to get. It's hung in there for a few years, though.
Thanks for that EdT. I might put the system back together if the AC doesn’t keep things up to snuff. After reading and thinking about it, it’s not a bad idea that there was a valve. My 84 Ford truck has a one way operated valve for similar reasons. I question why Saab didn’t have just a vac operated cut off. Too many engineers working on I suppose.
 

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Honda used a valve back in the '80s, too, connected directly to the heater lever with a cable. It was dirt simple, and worked perfectly. The Europeans in general seemed to over-engineer a lot of parts.
 

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I had a coolant leak on my 2001 Aero.
Removed and replaced the valve along with a DO88 hose kit. Used AWAB clamps to replace OEM hose clamps.
Car would not start. Cleaned multi-pin connector above valve on fire wall.
Starts.
Air conditioning works great here on Cape Cod with the humid weather.
Works as engineered by Saab.
 

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Where did you get AWAB clamps? Those were the OEM brand on my 1997 900. They didn't use the spring-type back then.
 

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I’m in Tennessee where it’s 28F right now but summer months it’s high 90’s. Now I’m really on the fence.
Where in TN are you? Nashville area here. Have contemplated it a few times, but the difference I feel when I put the AC on LO is noticeable enough that I just keep the spare bypass valve in the back!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Where in TN are you? Nashville area here. Have contemplated it a few times, but the difference I feel when I put the AC on LO is noticeable enough that I just keep the spare bypass valve in the back!
Memphis suburbs. After removing everything and finding the source of the leak, I might put everything back together with new clamps and a SAAB OE BPV. But for now the car builds heat just fine. I'm surprised since Saab used a voltage to control a vacuum which controlled a positive position of a valve, why not use a servo to begin with? Vacuum is cheap and plentiful I suppose. When it gets hot enough I'll post about the AC working or not. I need a Tech II honestly. My Saab shop might be the next best thing.
 

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Honda used a valve back in the '80s, too, connected directly to the heater lever with a cable. It was dirt simple, and worked perfectly. The Europeans in general seemed to over-engineer a lot of parts.
Tangentially related. I read a really interesting Quora post one time about a guy who had worked with car manufacturers his entire career. He said the primary difference between German engineers and Japanese engineers was: The Japanese would ask, how would the driver use this part in ways that we didn't intend it to be used? And then they'd test it that way.

Conversely, the German engineers would say (in a nutshell), the driver didn't use it like we designed it, so it's their fault if it breaks. I know I can't lump all of the European brands under the German mentality, but I wonder if that's why Japanese cars seem to be so much more tolerant of neglect than European ones. The Japanese seem to have pioneered the user-centric approaching to engineering vehicles.
 

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Very interesting! One of the big car magazines a while back had an article about how the Japanese and Germans adopt technology. They said that the Germans put it in their high-end cars the second it's available without any regard to the reliability, while the Japanese make sure it's engineered and built well enough to be reliable before putting it on the market. You always see comments online about people wondering what a nightmare the latest German luxury car will be to repair when it's 10-20 years old. Sometimes I feel the same way about Saabs, but more so with the 9-5 than the 900 and 9-3. The 900 and 9-3 were fairly simple, and even the few high-tech things they did have, like the ACC system, are pretty reliable. The 9-5's climate control system is so full of flimsy plastic parts that seeing one that still works using its original parts is nearly a miracle.
 
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