Massive power loss 300D - Mercedes-Benz Forum
 
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#1 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:13 AM
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Massive power loss 300D

Well, my 300D that I took over care of a few months ago has taken ill on me. She won't run hardly at all. Driving to work yesterday, she simply stopped making power at highway speed. I had my foot all the way in it and it just kept slowing.

Once the system started, she would just barely idle. When I got it running to get it off the road, it wind up really slowly at greatly reduced power and shift VERY hard at a higher than usually RPM.

Last night, I cleaned out the banjo bolt on the manifold and all of the lines leading to the piece on the firewall. The pressure path is clear. I don't know how severe the symptoms are if something like the ALDA is misbehaving.

Other things I have done in the past few thousand miles include:
  • Fuel filters
  • Tank screen
  • Cigar hose and other rubber fuel lines under the hood
  • injector returns

It really feels like she is starving for fuel. It has to be that. I am wondering if something got stirred up when I cleaned the screen and maybe I need to change the filters under the hood again. I guess that is an easy enough thing to do and at least removes that as a possibility.

Thoughts?
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#2 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:19 AM
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How often do you drive the car? Perhaps the fuel in the tank has gone off due to either age or algae growth; is the inline fuel filter clear or murky/dark in color?

Will



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#3 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Boot Shrew View Post
How often do you drive the car? Perhaps the fuel in the tank has gone off due to either age or algae growth; is the inline fuel filter clear or murky/dark in color?

Will
I have been commuting with it at least a few times a week for several weeks. The fuel is a fresh tank less than a week old.


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#4 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:37 AM
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95% chance it's the filters. Friend had fuel supply/power issues and it was his spin-on filter. His clear primary filter looked OK, so that's not enough of an indicator. Let us know if that doesn't solve the issue.

That fresh tank of diesel could be from a crummy supply. Been a lot of talk over on peachparts about funky winter diesel this season.

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#5 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:46 AM
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Have you bought some fuel from a place you wouldn't normally recently?

Heavy rain fall (at the pumps)?

1981 300D (non turbo) 123.130 => Project car - stripped to the bone

1992 190E 1.8 <=>2.0 201.018 => This car shouldn't be in bits too
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#6 (permalink) Old 01-15-2013, 11:56 AM
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I always buy fuel at the same place. It is not a truck stop, but it is a high-traffic, suburban fuel station that sells Exon gas. I see a lot of light and mid-sized diesel trucks buying fuel there. It is always a possibility that it is the fuel, but I am more i inclined to think that it is a restriction of some sort.

The only "contributing factor" that I can think of out of the ordinary is that the last time, before I bought fuel, I ran the tank down VERY low - well into the reserve. I am wondering if I sucked some garbage into the lines that otherwise I never would have. Further, just cleaned the screen a few weeks ago, so it kind of makes sense that perhaps some crud that was mostly settled on the bottom could have found its way into the lines since the bottom of the screen is now clear.

I ordered a set of filters for it a few minutes ago. It will be an easy enough thing to swap them out and see what happens.

Last edited by chasarms; 01-15-2013 at 11:58 AM.
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#7 (permalink) Old 01-16-2013, 06:51 PM
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Got the fuel filters tonight. I love ordering from parts geek. Always here the next day.

It was nothing $5 couldn't solve. The inline filter was completely caked with black diesel snot. I am embarrassed that I didn't notice it. But, in my defense. The filter only has about 2,500 miles on it.

It had to have been from when I cleaned the tank screen and/or running the tank down super low. Before I got the car, it had sat for several years. No telling what's in that tank.

I think I'll just order me 3-4 of those filters and keep a close eye on them. There is a reason they are clear.

I guess the good news is she's running great. Better than before the incident in fact. She must have been a little fuel starved before.


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#8 (permalink) Old 01-17-2013, 12:16 AM
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I'm glad to hear that all is good. For future reference - the fuel always comes out of the bottom of the tank so running it low doesn't make a difference.

1981 300D (non turbo) 123.130 => Project car - stripped to the bone

1992 190E 1.8 <=>2.0 201.018 => This car shouldn't be in bits too
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#9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2013, 06:46 AM
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. . . the fuel always comes out of the bottom of the tank so running it low doesn't make a difference.
Well, I guess you are correct in that the output is on the bottom of the tank, but there has to be something to it.

When I removed the screen, the first inch or so of the screen on the fuel line end, which would be at the bottom of the tank, was completely clogged with the black buildup that seems common. It was the same stuff that I cleaned from the fuel gauge sending unit. So, before I cleaned the screen, the tank was drawing from higher up in the tank. In theory, the car would have ran out of fuel even with an inch or so left in the bottom of the tank. Once I cleaned the screen, anything heavy enough to settle below that line would then be able to be drawn to, or through if small enough, the screen.

I drove the car around a while last night and to work today. In just 60 miles or so, you can already start to see the tiny, black specs starting to form in the inline filter. It may be clogged again in another 2,500 miles.

I am going to see if I can find a local source for some Bio Kleen or other microbe-killing fuel treatment. It is supposed to work pretty well. The upside is that it kills the stuff that is growing on the sides of your tank. The downside is that the dead stuff then sluffs off the sides of the tank and all settles to the bottom. I will probably be back under the car removing the screen before too long.

Anyone actually clean out the gas tank itself? If so, how did you go about it?
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#10 (permalink) Old 01-17-2013, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by chasarms View Post
Well, I guess you are correct in that the output is on the bottom of the tank, but there has to be something to it.

When I removed the screen, the first inch or so of the screen on the fuel line end, which would be at the bottom of the tank, was completely clogged with the black buildup that seems common. It was the same stuff that I cleaned from the fuel gauge sending unit. So, before I cleaned the screen, the tank was drawing from higher up in the tank. In theory, the car would have ran out of fuel even with an inch or so left in the bottom of the tank. Once I cleaned the screen, anything heavy enough to settle below that line would then be able to be drawn to, or through if small enough, the screen.

I drove the car around a while last night and to work today. In just 60 miles or so, you can already start to see the tiny, black specs starting to form in the inline filter. It may be clogged again in another 2,500 miles.

I am going to see if I can find a local source for some Bio Kleen or other microbe-killing fuel treatment. It is supposed to work pretty well. The upside is that it kills the stuff that is growing on the sides of your tank. The downside is that the dead stuff then sluffs off the sides of the tank and all settles to the bottom. I will probably be back under the car removing the screen before too long.

Anyone actually clean out the gas tank itself? If so, how did you go about it?
If the inside of the tank is that dirty then it sounds to me like cleaning it out would be a good thing.

I followed the DIY over on peach parts for this (do you need the link)...

...so I took the tank out and pressure washed it and then dried it out in the sun for a while after blasting loads of compressed air through it.

1981 300D (non turbo) 123.130 => Project car - stripped to the bone

1992 190E 1.8 <=>2.0 201.018 => This car shouldn't be in bits too
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