1997 Mercedes Benz E320 overheating problem........please help! - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-14-2013, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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1997 Mercedes Benz E320 overheating problem........please help!

Hello All,
I have a 1997 E320 with 1,70,000 miles on it now. This is my daily driving car.
Recently(may be a month) an overheating problem started on it, and it overheats after I drive about 20-30minutes on normal road from cold, or when I get down from the freeway.
On the freeway temperature is okay. And also, temp gauge always shows above 90-95. ALso, electric fan always comes on even when starting the engine on cold (overnight stopping)

I have checked with couple of mechanics, to know the exact problem and how much it would cost me.

1st mechanic version:
He told we would need to replace radiator (because it is clogged) and also replace fan clutch. Gave an estimate of around $650.

2nd mechanic version:
He had the car for almost a day, running different tests.
He told, he checked the radiator, fan clutch, water pump, fans, temperatures overall, and everything looked normal to him.
And then he said the big problem thing.
He told, he did a test in coolant system, which shows him different colors for different problems, and there he could see something different kind of bubbles or change in color test and he was thinking that there might be a air crack in engine's head part, which is hard to fix. He was telling something like exhaust coming into coolant ( may not be the right wording) when he tested with his tester. And he recommended, to get rid of the car instead of trying to fix it.
Please help me with your thoughts, and help me with any fixes you would like to recommend before going any further.

Last edited by akusbharat; 06-15-2013 at 02:51 AM. Reason: More information added
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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 01:18 AM
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Welcome to Benzworld. Are you loosing/using coolant and having to top up? If not it is not a cracked head or head gasket so go with mechanic #1.

I do not know about your country but here in China we do not change a rad for blockages we simply remove the rad and send it to a shop to be opened and cleaned, much cheaper.

Mechanic #1 makes good sense, when on the express way air is being forced through the rad due to car speed thus cooling the engine and coolant, but off the express not enough air is getting through.

ERIC.

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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 02:48 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks eric242340 for your reply.

As you asked, coolant is not using it up nor leaking from anywhere.
But the 2nd mechanic said, he tested the radiator at 2 ends, and he said the temperature is normal.

My doubt is, if there is problem with the radiator as told by mechanic #1, Why would it get to normal temperatures on a freeway and when I accelrate the car also, it temperature gauge goes little down.

I am not sure about any of the mechanics telling the right thing, but yes I would like to hear some expert opinions here at benzworld and try different things if possible, before going through any major work on my car.
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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 02:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akusbharat View Post
Thanks eric242340 for your reply.

As you asked, coolant is not using it up nor leaking from anywhere.
But the 2nd mechanic said, he tested the radiator at 2 ends, and he said the temperature is normal.

My doubt is, if there is problem with the radiator as told by mechanic #1, Why would it get to normal temperatures on a freeway and when I accelrate the car also, it temperature gauge goes little down.

I am not sure about any of the mechanics telling the right thing, but yes I would like to hear some expert opinions here at benzworld and try different things if possible, before going through any major work on my car.
Well you do have an air flow problem, for sure. I would change the viscous clutch for the fan and clean the radiation from the outside with a high pressure hose and then road test the car again.

ERIC.

___________________________________________
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend, if you have one."
- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill.

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second ... if there is one."
- Winston Churchill, in response.
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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 03:04 AM
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An afterthought here, do the fan clutch test. Roll a newspaper and bring the engine up to normal working temperature then try to stop the fan with the rolled newspaper.

If the fan shreads the paper then the clutch is fine but if the news paper stops the fan easily then the clutch is no use.

With a bad clutch the fan will not spin fast enough to keep the engine cool at low speeds.

ERIC.

___________________________________________
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend, if you have one."
- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill.

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second ... if there is one."
- Winston Churchill, in response.
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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for your suggestions.


I have tried couple of tests.
1) tried to turn on fans using the auto buttons near AC.
Result: left fan( I believe it is electric) turned on fine. 2nd one did not turn on( right one to driver side)

2) tried fan clutch tests with bunch of papers.
Result: used a bunch of papers to put into the big fan near radiator and it came to stop when bunch of papers were inserted and then started slowly to normal speed.

Please suggest what I can do now, as the test resulted of a faulty fan clutch, can I replace it myself, if so do we have DIY video or anything anywhere, hw much it may cost

After driving about 5 miles on regular traffic road, it was getting heated again. When I accelerated the car, temp gauge fall down to around 90-95

Last edited by akusbharat; 06-15-2013 at 08:48 PM.
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post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akusbharat View Post
Thanks again for your suggestions.


I have tried couple of tests.
1) tried to turn on fans using the auto buttons near AC.
Result: left fan( I believe it is electric) turned on fine. 2nd one did not turn on( right one to driver side)

2) tried fan clutch tests with bunch of papers.
Result: used a bunch of papers to put into the big fan near radiator and it came to stop when bunch of papers were inserted and then started slowly to normal speed.


After driving about 5 miles on regular traffic road, it was getting heated again. When I accelerated the car, temp gauge fall down to around 90-95
It is obvious you have a poor air flow problem, change the fan clutch and try to fix the second electric fan.

ERIC.

___________________________________________
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend, if you have one."
- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill.

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second ... if there is one."
- Winston Churchill, in response.
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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your reply again.

Will I be able to do it easily, or do you think I need to see a mechanic?
Do you think it is better to do a radiator flush n have new coolant.

Also, as mechanic #1 told, is there any prob with radiator also. Do I need to replace that too?
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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-16-2013, 12:11 AM
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Originally Posted by akusbharat View Post
Thanks for your reply again.

Will I be able to do it easily, or do you think I need to see a mechanic?
Do you think it is better to do a radiator flush n have new coolant.

Also, as mechanic #1 told, is there any prob with radiator also. Do I need to replace that too?
One stage at a time, this way you will not waste money. The fan clutch is a left hand thread and difficult to remove, a mechanic would have the experience and tools/equipment required. And let him fix the other fan at the same time.

Then lets see how it works.

ERIC.

___________________________________________
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend, if you have one."
- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill.

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second ... if there is one."
- Winston Churchill, in response.
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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old 06-16-2013, 01:37 AM Thread Starter
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Any idea hw much it would cost with labor at a local small mechanic shop, so I have an idea what to accept
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