Clutch fan question - Mercedes-Benz Forum
 
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#1 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 04:00 PM
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Clutch fan question

I have an erratic temp reading on my 1994 S420. The unit hasn't gotten hot yet (above 80 c) except when's the outside temp gets above 90. Then the car appears to get hot, not to the red but slightly above the first line after 80 degrees on the gauge. Car has over 200k on it and I've spent much time and money replacing questionable and tired items. My research of the forum threads indicates that the fan should not stop on starting but should be free wheeling when the motor is off. Also when the car is hot and shut off it should be very difficult to move. In my case when not running and cold the fan spins freely. When I try to stop it with a rolled newspaper it doesn't stop. However when hot and shut off the fan continues to free wheel and has no resistance. Should I change the clutch? I'd rather be safe than sorry. Radiator is new, cap is new, no leaks, but no wobble when I grab and try to move the fan left to right. Any thoughts from the collective wisdom? Thanks everyone.
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#2 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 04:16 PM
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If it is original, I say swap it out ASAP. A few months ago I had my clutch fan explode and puncture the radiator. I was just crusing and I head a pop in the front end, I thought I went over something. The clutch fan exploded, sending pieces into the radiator, causing it to leak and made a mess of sprayed coolant in the front end.
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#3 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 08:29 PM
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based upon your symptom it is classic failure of fan clutch. Not expensive get Behr. Not difficult to change. at 200k miles you got about twice the longevity than average
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#4 (permalink) Old 10-22-2012, 08:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shimshon View Post
based upon your symptom it is classic failure of fan clutch. Not expensive get Behr. Not difficult to change. at 200k miles you got about twice the longevity than average
Go figure, mine went at 110,000 miles...so, it was due. Wished it had failed a bit more gracefully.
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#5 (permalink) Old 10-23-2012, 03:23 PM
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Thanks guys I'm ordering one tonight.
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#6 (permalink) Old 11-06-2012, 05:04 PM
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Just want to follow up on what my indie found when he installed the clutch fan. As he unscrewed the fan from the clutch the clutch fell apart. The bracket holding the bimetallic heat strip apparently locked up during the operation of the car and bent almost 3/4 inch. It destroyed the plastic cage that covered the clutch. The cage prevented the strip from being propelled into the radiator. I had no indication on inspection and the fan functioned fine except for it remaining loose after it was warm, and there was no wobble when shaken. Lesson to be learned is to check your clutch thoroughly and be alert to any sign of increased coolant temperature as that was what was occurring in my case. This forum has been invaluable to the maintenance of these cars and I am grateful to all who share both their problems and their solutions.
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#7 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 04:18 PM
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Can anyone tell me the correct name for the plastic fan clutch cage? Mine is now junk and I want to replace it as it saved my radiator but can't seem to locate it even tried google. Any help is much appreciated. Thanks
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#8 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 04:22 PM
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you will be fine without it for the time being just replace it whenever you can.

on my car i removed the clutch fan alltogether and i run a 2 stage fan controller on the stock fans.
my car never sees more than 90C ever
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