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Old 08-02-2009, 07:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Date registered: Jul 2009
Vehicle: 1999 ML320; 2005 c230k sports sedan
Location: Oregon
Posts: 64
The dreaded oil leak 99 ml 320

So I have a slow oil leak, or at least I think it is oil. It is not leaking much about the size of a 50 cent piece overnight. The local indie thinks it is the valve cover gasket.

I just looked at the engine and the passenger valve cover is wet, but I cannot see a direct line of it to the ground. I have read the various threads about oil leaks and it sounds like there are some power steering fluid problems and a very problematic small gasket on the front of the engine on the timing chain cover. I fear that if I take it to the shop and say fix it, they may run through all the options at my expense. (I am sure you all know what I mean). So what is the best strategy to go after this thing.

I was thinking getting some brake cleaner and cleaning up the gunk and going from there. Any other thoughts? I almost wonder if I should just leave it alone, but the thought of it really starting to leak this winter and having to deal with it, is inspiring. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
pcy
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Date registered: Feb 2005
Vehicle: '07 C280 4matic, '06 530i, '98 ML320
Location: MA
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drtaylor, couple of places oil leaks on an older ML - timing cover gasket leak, valve cover gasket leak, leak from breathing chambers, etc.

As you said, go ahead and clean the engine bay area with a degreaser and monitor where the leaks are coming from. With a flashlight and a small mirror, you should be able to pinpoint where the leak is originating from.
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Old 08-03-2009, 08:30 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Ok, thank you for the thoughts. Is there an easy place to get "brake cleaner". Is that a Kragen type item?
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Old 08-03-2009, 09:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
pcy
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I use 'Simple Green' for cleaning under the hood. it works for me. For tough spots, you may need to use stronger degreaser. Just avoid over spraying around the fuse box area.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Date registered: Apr 2008
Vehicle: 1999 ML320
Location: McLean, Virginia
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Make sure you check the timing case expansion cover and gasket. Check this thread:

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w163...-oil-leak.html

It's common on the early MLs. I replaced my sister-in-laws in April--leak was so bad it was undriveable. Replaced mine last week as a precaution--it was weeping.

Check the thread for the new part numbers. You can replace it with the belt and hose on with a ratcet and 4" extension and a swivel joint. It will spill oil when you open so have rags and a pan in position. Put new part on with a high temp gasket sealer.
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Old 08-04-2009, 09:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks Konto, I have noticed this thread. I am still not sure if that is where mine is leaking or not. Everything is slightly wet, valve cover mainly, but no obvious leak. Thanks for the direct link, if I do find that is the spot it will be nice to be able to find the info easily.

cheers
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Old 12-23-2010, 02:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Date registered: Apr 2009
Vehicle: 98 ML320 & 2000 ML320
Location: San Bruno, CA
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Just Replaced My Timing Case Expansion Cover

I left the serpantine belt on the car and used a universal joint and #10 Torx socket to remove the old cover/gasket and replaced with a new cover, gasket. This took me 10 minutes to find the tools and 10 minutes to replace.
I'm happy to report that the leak is gone!

Thanks everyone, I'd be lost without your advise!
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Old 01-29-2011, 11:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Date registered: Jan 2008
Vehicle: 99 E320
Location: Hilton Head, SC
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Thumbs up Successful replacement of gasket!


After 2 years of unsuccessful diagnosees by shops and many quarts of oil wasted, a $6 gasket was all the car needed!!

Thank you to all the posts for showing me what and how to check myself; it was so easy and quick.

Cheers!

99' E320

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Connolly View Post
I left the serpantine belt on the car and used a universal joint and #10 Torx socket to remove the old cover/gasket and replaced with a new cover, gasket. This took me 10 minutes to find the tools and 10 minutes to replace.
I'm happy to report that the leak is gone!

Thanks everyone, I'd be lost without your advise!
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