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Old 04-28-2005, 01:33 AM   #1 (permalink)
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How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

I just bought a used fuel level sending unit off of ebay http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=7969074676&rd=1&sspage name=STRK%3AMEWN%3AIT

Obviously working around the gas tank is *cough* dangerous [:D], but are there any special precautions I need to take in order to replace this, such as disconnecting the battery to avoid an arrant spark?

More specifically, I'd like to replace this thing without blowing my fingers off. What are the steps I need to take to do this safely?

I should note that my car is a 1989 190 2.6, but the sending unit came from a 2.3. Will it work?

Thanks!
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Old 04-28-2005, 11:13 AM   #2 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

Note...I see that your car is a 1989 and the one you bought is from a 1988. The parts list in the Performance Parts catalog shows one part# up to 1988 and a different part# for models from 1989.

Make sure fuel tank is not full of fuel. You don't have to drain it, just make sure it is not topped off.

1. Disconnect battery ground cable.
2. Remove fuel tank panelling only partially.
3. Disconnect plug at sending unit and secure it
to prevent it from slipping.
4. Unscrew sealing flange.
5. Remove sending unit and install new unit, be sure
remove securing pin below adhesive tape on new
unit. Replace seal and torque at 39Nm. Plug in
connector, replace battery ground cable.

Good Luck,

Dave
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Old 04-28-2005, 11:15 AM   #3 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

Just follow the same rules that apply at the gas pumps, no open flames, no smoking and keep any electrical equipment, including cellphones, away.

As for working . . . there were some variations in fuel capacity during the production runs of the W201. If the sender is from the same year, it's the same.
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Old 04-28-2005, 12:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

Okay thanks to both of you for the tips. Since my car is an '89 and the unit came out of an '88, I'm going to take a look at the one that's currently in my car and see if they match.

I might end up having to buy a new one from the dealership, but I figured I couldn't go wrong for $5 off of eBay (as is). Last night I connected it to the wire on my dad's 2.3 and flipped it upsided down and back and forth, and it indeed does work. If this one's a no-go on my car, I'll probably re-sell it on eBay. [:)]
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Old 04-28-2005, 08:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

For giggles I decided to hook up the sending unit I bought on ebay to my car, and sure enough it worked. Since I didn't bother to pull out the one that's currently in the tank, the only difference I could see was that the top of mine is white, whereas the one I bought on eBay is black. This may be related to the fact they apparently switched part numbers between '88 and '89, but to be honest I don't believe that has anything to do with it. I think it's more likely that they just decided to use white plastic on my particular batch. And, in fact I don't think there's any difference between the two models at all.

Interestingly, when flipping it back and forth and looking through the rear window at the gas gauge, I realized that the problem I am experiencing with inaccurate readings has *nothing* to do with the sending unit at all. [:)] I am highly suspicious that the arrow just needs to be calibrated. Not a problem, since I'm doing a complete cluster swap as part of my dashboard R/R project in a month anyway (once I finish getting all the parts).
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Old 07-23-2005, 12:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

where is the sending unit located i need to replace mine. is it reached through the trunk or under the car. i have a 1991 190 2.6 thanx!
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Old 07-23-2005, 01:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

If you remove the mouse fur carpeting panels in the trunk,you expose the fuel tank right under the rear deck. The sender tube is the big nut at the front/center of the tank with the wires going into it.
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Old 07-23-2005, 05:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

thank you found it with no problem. i've been looking all over the trunk floor, never thought to look under the deck thank you.
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Old 07-23-2005, 09:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
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RE: How do I replace the fuel level sending unit?

Because of the relatively short rear end, and the placement of the spare tire well, the spot right behind the rear seat is the safest for the fuel tank in the event of a rear end collision, since the rear crumple zone and the spare absorb the hit. The sole drawback is that there can be no "fold down" rear seat and the only way to get thru to the trunk is thru the first aid pocket and thru the grommetted holes on either side of the rear seat back.
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Old 12-04-2010, 02:07 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Hi Dave
Could you tell me how to do the same on a '95 C280; are the sending units accessed from the top or bottom of the tank etc?
Thanks very uch for your time and info.
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