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Old 01-13-2009, 12:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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1982 300D replace radiator

First let me admit that I'm a newbie without a shop manual. I'm looking to purchase one.

Actual problem:
How do I replace the radiator on my car? What are the gotchas that I need to avoid? Should I do a citrus flush first before changing the radiator?

Thanks,
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Old 01-13-2009, 01:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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here's the page from The FSM
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Old 01-13-2009, 02:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Here is some discussion on the flush,
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w123...er-dealer.html
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Old 01-13-2009, 03:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lxwlxw View Post
First let me admit that I'm a newbie without a shop manual...What are the gotchas that I need to avoid?
If we tell you, you will be smarter, but if we let you experience the gotchas, you will be both smarter and stronger.
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Old 01-13-2009, 08:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thumbs up

It's a simple basic repair but be gentle ~ it's easy to break the little stuff .

Unless the radiator is physically broken , why are you changing it ? .

The Citric Acid flushing will clean it out and the rest of the water jacket too , *if* you don't shortcut the job ~ any oil in the sytem makes the acid unable to cut the rust...

I just got an all metal brass radiator from 1 - 800-raditators for cheap and so far it's working well , kinda cheesy on the oil cooler mount brackets but it went in in 30 minutes including the need to dress the brackets .

You can buy the FSM from the Mercedes dealer for a paltry $20.00 and use the Adobe Acrobat vesrion 3 that's on the DVD then print out the pages chock full of nifty pictures etc.

Also , Chilton's & Hanes make good shop manuals but remember : we don't call the Haynes Manual " H.B.O.L. " (Haynes Book Of Lies) without good cause .

Oh yeah ~ refilling the cooling system is tricky on W-123's , it's easy to only get it 1/2 full then it'll overheat while you're idling it and waiting for the thermostat to open so you can add the last gallon of pre-mixed coolant .

Mercedes says to unhook the top radiator hose at the radiator and
s l o w l y fill it there until the coolant bubbles up from the bottom of the radiator and dribbles out the top neck , then re-connect the hose and top it off .

Good luck ! .
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Last edited by vwnate1; 01-13-2009 at 08:07 PM.
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Old 01-14-2009, 09:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The reason I'm changing the radiator is the high temp keeps coming back. I changed out the T-stat and it appears the top radiator hose is leaking at the place where hose and radiator meet. Small dribbles are leaking down the side behind the fan cover and gets picked up by the fan and through against the front of the engine (upper hose and front of valve cover - see earlier pics that I posted of my engine).

So, I have replaced the T-stat three times from original to New (ran hot) to original (ran okay but drip started) to New again (ran hot).

The place where I purchased the original T-stat gave me another and it ran hot too. Notice the two times above where new T-stat ran hot. Did I receive the same T-stat twice or do they have rebuilt T-stats or my radiator has a problem.

But, the information above leads me to believe I have to replace the radiator. I purchase a Nissen for $180.

Do you think I should replace it or use original?

thanks,
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Old 01-14-2009, 09:06 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Also, explain your procedure from the perspective of a radiator with expansion tank and not the top cap on the radiator.

Once I get this correct, I'll publish a step-by-step pictorial for other newbies because I don't want anyone to ruin their car.
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Old 01-14-2009, 08:52 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Cooling System Fun

O.K. , defective 'stats are rare , you can easily test it by putting it in a pot of water on your stove then heating it up and see if the valve part opens before the water boils , or , if you have a thermometer , the valve part should be fully open 10° before the water reaches the temperature stamped into the 'stat... (82° or 87° C BTW) .

As far as filling , ALL of these engines are filled the same way : disconnect the upper radiator hose at the radiator end then lift it just high enough to s l o w l y pour in the fresh coolant , when the coolant begins to dribble out the open radiator neck , re-connect the hose and fill the expansion tank to the seam, start the engine and let it warm up fully , turn the heater on high and add coolant as needed .

If you're leaking by the top hose , I bet the neck is cracking , this is EXTREMELY common on the original BEHR radiators with plastic tanks and yes ! get a Nissen right away , last time I checked , Nissen has a lifetime warranty...

My Behr radiator broke off the upper neck one day as I was cruising along in Koreatown L.A. , I smelled hot coolant then the temp. gauge began to rise... I was super lucky in that not only do I carry tools but the neck still had 1/4" (at most) sticking out so I was able to re-connect the hose and re-fill with distilled water and make my way home where I purchased a cheap , all metal radiator from 1 800 - RADIATORS , they gave me a lot of B.S. song & dance over the 'phone but did deliver it to my porch in 24 hours...

Please let us know if the new radiator reduces the cooling to 85° C , I'm wondering if it's simply an airlock problem as that'll make it run too hot too .

Consider drilling a _tiny_ hole in the flange part of the 'stat as this prevent the airlocking troubles but it still needs to be filled *very* slowly as the coolant level will drop after a few minutes sitting .

Lastly , a buddy of mine has had very good luck in repairing the broken off plastic radiator necks ~ he found the correct diameter brass pipe in.... OSG Hwe. I think , might have been Lowe's , he then cleans it *perfectly* and uses JB Weld , I give him all my junk radiators as I like to drive 100 miles down deserted desert roads and I don't want to die out there from a crummy repaired radiator ....


? did I answer your questions O.K. ?
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Old 01-15-2009, 01:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Nate,

Yes, you have answered my question and I'll get to work on replacing the radiator. I purchased a Nissen a few days ago because the leak on the original keeps occuring and the tightness clamp around hose does matter.

I noticed in the one of the other post, a fellow MB owner flush the system and apparently clogged some parts of the radiator and caused a high temp condition.

I want to clean the system before installing new radiator? What should I use, if citrus acid is not available what other product can I use? Also is there a local store (Costco, Sams, etc) they'll probably have it? I would like to purchase and flush system and change radiator within the next day.
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Old 01-15-2009, 06:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Cooling System Cleaning

I have zero trust in any of the available cleaners ~ they don't dissolve all the solder bloom and rust chips , built up , cement like sediment etc. like the Citric Acid does ~ I had to call all over the place for a couple days before I found a baking supply place that had it .

If your cooling system is fairly clean , just disconnect the various hoses and flush with the garden hose on low pressure until clear water runs out , be sure to reverse the water flow to get all the crud out .

Mix your new coolant 50/50 with distilled water , it's only .99 CENTS at CVS and other big box stores if you hunt around .

Tap water is death on aluminum cooling systems .
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