New MB coolant requirements??? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2008, 09:40 AM Thread Starter
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New MB coolant requirements???


I was at the dealership yesterday to pick up a new radiator plug while replacing the thermostat and hoses on my '95 E300 DIESEL.

Per both parts counter guys, they are now claiming Mercedes as of recently is no longer recommending the use of distilled water in the coolant mix. Instead, they are now recommending plain tap water to be used.

Their reasoning, which I found a bit hard to believe, is that the distilled water pulls minerals out of the engine block. How can distilled water pull minerals out of a piece of cast aluminum???

Can anyone confirm or deny this claim. I thought it was always the other way around. The minerals in the tap water is the one that leaves undersired deposits in the coolant passages.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2008, 11:23 AM
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Next time, just ask your service guys for the TSB from MBUSA. Call their bluff.

That being said, most municipal drinking water is fine for a cooling system, but it can be risky without knowing how "hard" or acidic it actually is. Distilled is so cheap, you have to really wonder what's the worth of taking a risk since coolant changes in the older Mercedes are at two year intervals.

Last edited by MTI; 10-19-2008 at 11:29 AM.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2008, 01:24 PM
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In some areas municipal water dissolve copper pipes (!) and they are forced to use plastic.
One more sample that today's automotive salesman don't even know the difference between SAE and metric bolts.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-19-2008, 02:51 PM
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Here's the story.

Your parts guy is correct, but he isn't saying DON'T use distilled water

Kent Christensen
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-20-2008, 10:06 AM
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My E320 owner's manual says to use "potable" aka drinking quality water, but the dealer tech who last flushed my cooling system recommended using distilled water.

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