The beautiful original silver smoke paint on the hood of my wifes ’85 w201 quickly faded away after the deteriorated hood pad was removed by a helpful mechanic. What started as a small quarter sized circle to the left of center over the exhaust manifold area took over most of the left side of the hood within 30 K miles. I decided not to let the same thing happen after purchasing a replacement ’92 w201 for her in June/July 2010.
I set about replacing the pad of the ’92 this weekend. There seems to be a lot of questions on the forum about how to go about doing this, but little on pictures, inventory part numbers and the finer details about what to expect and how to make the job work well. I share what I've learned from many others posts here and elswhere as well as my personal experience. I hope others find it helpful.
Vehicle: 1992 190E 2.6
Job Time: Two hours (will be more if additional surface prep required)
(1) OEM (Mercedes manufactured) hood pad – part #201-680-04-25
(for 2.6). The 2.3 part # may end in 22 but I suspect that both part numbers may refer to the same item since my tag had a ….25/22 on it. I was pleased that my OEM pad from Europartsamerica came with the two front weather strips attached to the front. You get what you pay for.
(6) Small hood pad clips/pushpin rivet – part #1239900592.
(7) Large hood pad clips/pushpin rivet – part#1239900292
TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
(1) 3M Super Trim Adhesive #08090
3M makes a few different kinds of adhesive. Use the right one, which of course is more expensive at @ $20.00 a can. I used one can with satisfactory results. I had trouble finding the adhesive however, in a medium sized town. The franchise car care centers had the regular 3M adhesive and young salespeople were very eager to tell me that the 3M adhesive they carried was the right one. But if you read the label of the regular 3M adhesive it tells you to use the “Super Trim Adhesive” for the hood pad/insulation application. I found the “Super Trim Adhesive” at the local NAPA store in good supply. (picture)
(1) Spray can holder/gun – for cleanly and evenly applying the adhesive spray.
(1) Needle nose pliars
(1) Regular pliars
(1) Paint Roller w/handle – recommended by others in other threads to be used to “burnish” pad and assure an even and positive contact with the hood. This worked well for that purpose.
(1 pair) Tight fitting garden gloves – partially covered with neoprene, these worked extremely well when scraping the old pad off.
(1 pair) Surgical gloves - for when putting the new pad on.
(1) Quality Mask – there will be a lot of fine oiled particulates floating around as soon as you start knocking off the old pad. You won’t want to inhale them.
(1) Safety Goggles (not glasses) – not pictured. Useful when knocking off old pad to avoid particulate flying around. There will be a lot of it.
(1) Paint Tool/Scraper – incorporates a paint scraper and cutting tool. I believe I bought this at Sears or Big Lots some time ago for under $5.00. It was invaluable in this task.
(2) Paint drop cloth or old bed sheets that can cover the entire engine area including the fenders, bumper etc.
Lift up to the second (vertical) position, past the first “station fluid check” position.
WARNING: Never grab the outside of the grill to raise or lower the hood, otherwise you will break off the silver trim pieces on the front of your grill! Always lift from the bottom of the grill.
After you raise the hood up to the first position, keep your left hand gently pushing upwards from the bottom of the grill and reach with your right hand and release the silver wire clip on the hood lift cylinder strut. The clip is located on the back of the pneumatic hood lift cylinder that is attached to the right side of the hood. Pull the silver clip out slightly towards the windshield away from you just enough to release the hood lift. Once the pneumatic hood lift is released, you can continue pushing up the hood into the vertical position.
Use (1) old painting drop cloth or bed sheet. There is a small canal that runs along the bottom of the hood where the windshield washer fluid tubing runs. Tuck a bunch of sheet into this cavity all along the bottom of the hood to reduce old hood pad remnants from dropping into the cavity during the pad removal process. (picture)
Put on Safety Equipment
Put on your safety goggles and tight fitting garden gloves.
Remove Push Pin Rivets
Six small and seven large push pin rivets hold the front of the hood pad to the front of the hood underside. Depending upon if you purchased replacement rivets (highly recommended), this part of the job can be the most stressful and time consuming. Order replacement rivets to save time and achieve best results. The old rivets are heat/oil fatigued and ready to break, if they aren’t already missing! Any remaining will easily break during removal. Several rivets broke during removal and was relieved I had ordered the replacements. The nominal expense (64 cents each) bought a lot of peace of mind!
Both the small and large push pin rivets are actually a push pin within a push pin. (pictures)
Whether you will reuse the push pin rivets or not, it is necessary to pry off /remove the inner pin first before prying off the larger outer pin on the bottom. DO NOT try to remove both the inner and outer pins at one time, especially if you don’t have replacement pins available.
Using the paint scraper, carefully try to pry up the inner push pin by inserting the sharp leading edge of the paint scraper (or suitable replacement) under the cap of the inner pin and gently prying upwards by rotating your wrist right, left, right etc (not up and down).
Work your way around the inner pin, inserting the scraper from both sides as well as the front. Pry up just enough so that you can carefully pull it gently out with your fingers. If needed, after prying inner pin up somewhat, carefully insert needle nose pliers under inner pin cap and grab the rivet post itself to pull it off the rest of the way while using a side to side motion to “rotate” the rivet shaft while prying gently upwards.
Too much forcing upwards will likely pop off the inner pin cap rendering it useless. If this happens you accidentally pop off the top of a large pin, it is possible to simple push the inner pin through the base pin using a small nail or drill bit with a light tap of a small hammer.
Once the inner pin is removed, you need to repeat the process for the second larger base pin. Of course if you have purchased new replacement rivets you can be much less concerned about breakage during removal and it goes much quicker and easier!
Be careful not to scratch paint under hood. It is probably best to get the underside really clean, and this is what 3M tells you to do. My hood underside was as clean as the pictures indicate, which I was a little concerned about. Undoubtedly using the 3M surface cleaner also commercially available provides a better bonding surface. However, I didn’t have the cleaner and moved forward without getting the underside as clean. I believe I’ve been successful in my application. Of course most of the pad and old glue came right off or had fallen off already! If your pad is not as bad as mine was, then some additional surface preparation might be necessary. (see picture)
Pull back the sheet/drop cloth from the bottom of the hood enough to get your shop vac in (or fish out) and remove any pieces of old insulation that dropped into the windshield wiper fluid tubing cavity at bottom edge of hood.
Lower the Hood
Lower down to first “fuel station fluid check” position. To do this you have to depress the hood lock mechanism on the bottom right hood support. The factory put a small red sticker on the metal tab you push while pulling the hood gently down.
WARNING: Be sure you never grab the outside of the grill to raise or lower the hood. If you do, you risk breaking off the silver grill trim pieces that criss cross the front of your grill!
As the hood lowers, you will hear a “click” as the wire clip on the pneumatic hood lift cylinder attached to the right side of the hood reaches the lower first position.
Dry Fit New Pad
Don’t use any rivets at this point. Simply press the pad up against the hood near the top and get a feel for the weight of the pad and how to maneuver the pad into position with the hood in the “fluid check” position. Note the holes found at both front corners of the pad These are intended to line up to allow the hood bumpers make contact with the hood underside. (see picture)
After you feel comfortable with how it will fit correctly, place the pad on the ground away from the car in well ventilated area backside up. You want the side that will marry to the underside of the hood facing up so you can apply adhesive to it. This was the smooth side for the OEM pad I purchased. (see picture)
Prepare for Adhesive
Cover the windshield, side mirrors, front quarter panels/fenders etc. with the second drop cloth or bed sheet to protect your car from any possibility of accidental overspray when adhesive is later applied to hood underside.
Raise hood back up to the vertical second position.
Position Push Pin Rivets
Make sure the six small push pin rivets are in a container that will be within arms reach of the front of the engine compartment (the cap from the 3M Adhesive can worked well for me sitting on the ground to the side of the engine compartment that I would not be walking around when carrying the pad to the hood).
TIP: when inserting the push pins rivets, initially you may want to NOT push the center "locking" pin in, just in case something happens and you want to be able to easily pull out the clip for some reason.
Get the spray can holder/sprayer and attach to the can of 3M Super Trim Adhesive. The spray can holder/sprayer allows you to “shoot” from a spray can evenly and cleanly by pulling a trigger instead of pressing the spray button.
IMPORTANT: Double check that you have the new hood pad laying with the backside of the pad facing up! The last thing you want to do at this point is spray the wrong side of the pad with adhesive!
Look at the time. The adhesive will need 4-30 minutes to set up which is perfect for the other tasks during the rest of the procedure.
Shake the can of adhesive well per the directions on the label. The adhesive comes out like silly string, not liquid. It does not really run or drip unless you are spraying too much in one area.
Apply adhesive per instructions on the can. I sprayed the hood underside in small circular motions, staying away from the front area where the locking mechanism is and the push pin rivets will be used to secure the new pad.
Apply adhesive to the backside of the new hood pad. I used the same small circular motions used spraying the hood underside. Stay away from the leading edge where the push pin rivets will secure the front of the pad to the hood. While the adhesive sets, perform the next steps.
Reposition Overspray Cover
Remove the second overspray sheet/drop cloth you placed on the windshield/fenders and reposition it over the top of the first drop cloth/sheet that is covering the engine and has the old insulation laying on it. (see picture)
Lower the Hood
Lower the hood from the vertical position to the lower “check fluid” position.
Look at your watch and remember the 30 minute application window stated by 3M at this point. I let the adhesive set up 10 minutes on the hood and pad while I repositioned the overspray protection, positioned the push pin rivets, lowered the hood, and reviewed mentally my “approach” with the pad in hand to the hood before moving on.
Affix New Hood Pad
This is what you’ve been waiting for! Carefully pick up the new hood pad along the edge that will be at the “front” of the hood with the side you applied adhesive on facing away from you. Hold the pad “up” with both hands and carry to front of car (make sure you have lowered the hood back down to the “check fluid” position and the clips/pins are in arms reach).
Hold the pad with one hand in the center, grab two of the small push pin rivets with the free hand. Hold the pad so it is hanging straight down in front of the car and attach one small pushpin/clip to each front hood seal. The goal is to support the pad evenly at first. Insert the other four small pins (three to each side).
Now carefully lift the bottom of the pad up and back towards the engine compartment, curving it up to clear the drop cloth/sheet covering the engine, laying it so that the adhesive side is not touching the sheets.
Align the holes for rivets and the hood bumpers at the front/top corners of the pad!
Gently begin pressing with your hand the engine pad, starting at the “top/front” near the locking mechanism, making contact between the pad and hood. Stop 1/3 way down the middle.
Raise the hood up to the vertical position. The pad will now fall into position naturally.
On both sides of the hood near the bottom, is a flange. Position the pad underneath these flanges and carefully position the bottom of the pad into the channel between the windshield washer fluid tubing and the hood.
Using the paint roller, roll down the center of the pad beginning at the top and ending down to the bottom. Then roll firmly from the center line out to the sides. Alternate the roller with your hands, pressing firmly in all areas to get maximum contact between the back of the pad and the underside of the hood. Press with your hands as well.
You may find you are raising and lowering the hood during this part of the process as you press/roll for the remainder of the 30 minutes adhesive set time, continuing until you are satisfied that a good bond has been obtained.
Complete Push Pin Rivet Install
Finish installation of the seven large clips at the front/top of the pad. If necessary, install all inner “locking” push pins.
Remove Engine Protection
Carefully remove the engine covering so old insulation does not fall. Dispose of according to local laws.
Enjoy the new look of your car!