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1998 E320 wagon,1995 E320 Wagon, 1991 300SE
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I own a 1990 190E with the 2.6 liter motor - not getting any heat and there is a coolant leak underneath the car. Just wondering if anyone can tell me how difficult it is to replace the heater core - is it accessible from the cabin? Thanks in advance!
 

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1992 190E 2.6
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95 Posts
Does not sound good, but if the heater core is leaking typically it is wet inside the car. I don't know for sure, but I remember the mechanic that would have had to do the work said that he hoped it was not the problem because he had done it before and it was awful.

Anyway I had a leak also, it showed up under the car in the middle, but thankfully it was from a valve (or pump can't remember for sure) which is outside the passenger compartment. It is behind the engine in front of the windshield under a plastic grate to keep the leaves out. It is near where the wiper motor is.

There is also an auxillary pump in line in the engine compartment that I had to replace.

However in neither of those cases did I not have heat.

I also think there is stuff on the heater core in the FAQs in this forum.
 

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1992 190E 2.6
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Just looked it is number 14 in FAQ and there are 60 steps the first of which is taking the steering wheel out. Quess the mechanic was not kidding. He was the one that would have had to do the work not get the money, so I trust what he said.

Anyway I have a 1992 190E 2.6 with 213K miles and mine is still ok, so maybe you will get lucky also.

There are also some tips on diagnosis I have seen here as well, did you search for the problem?
 

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1998 E320 wagon,1995 E320 Wagon, 1991 300SE
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310 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the replies - the leak is definitely outside the passenger cabin just behind the firewall all the way on the bottom. Will investigate tomorrow to see if it might be coming from the area of the wiper motor.

I have a 134k on my 1990 - just bought it a couple of months ago. It was a Louisiana vehicle so I am thinking the heat was not used on a regular basis but at the same token, it was owned by a gentleman in Rhode Island for the last couple of years.

Also has an oil leak by the timing chain/cam cover where it bolts to the head at the front of the motor - I was told this is not a big job.

I also own a 1987 560 SEC, a 1993 300E (3.2) and a 1995 E320 station wagon.
 

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1998 E320 wagon,1995 E320 Wagon, 1991 300SE
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310 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks so much for the reply and the photos - it looks like the worst possible job that you can ever attempt!

The heater valve - would that be located on the bottom or in the area of the wiper motor?

Thanks again!!!
 

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1991 190e 2.3
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22 Posts
coolant leak heater core/valve?

I know this thread has been dormant for 6 months but I have a similar question in my 1991 190e 2.3 and any help is appreciated.

For a few months the car has been intermittently leaking coolant exclusively outside the passenger compartment right around the firewall. If I were to top off the tank, maybe two weeks later the low coolant light will go on. The amount on the garage floor is very noticeable though and it looks like it is getting worse.

My mechanic pressurized the system looking for leaks and he believes it is a leaking heater core, although comprehensive tests were not thoroughly done. I know what the extent is for this repair and how much time and effort goes into it, my mechanic refused to even quote me on a job.

Since the symptoms of my problem is leaking exclusively outside of the passenger compartment, there is never moisture inside the car, and I ALWAYS have heat in the car when the tempamatic wheel is turned to the red... could this be a sign of a leaking heater valve instead of the dreaded core? I can take pictures if this can help. Thanks.
 

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1998 E320 wagon,1995 E320 Wagon, 1991 300SE
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
My problem was fixed with the heater valve which cost $21 at CarQuest and took about 10 minutes to replace. It is located at the base of your windshield on the passenger side. You just need to take the plastic leaf covers off. It fixed my problem so it is worth a try since the part is cheap and takes a few minutes to replace.
 

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1991 190e 2.3
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Okay, so I removed the plastic leaf guard and found that the area under the heater valve is soaked in coolant but due to the tight constraints I cannot tell if this is leaking from a hose, valve or the core right next to it. The hoses look dry and so does the valve but the car only ran for a short time today. I just put a ton of money into this car and I'd like to know exactly what the problem is before I spend any more if that's possible. Could this definitively rule out a leak in the core? Again nothing is leaking inside the car. Thanks.

 

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1998 E320 wagon,1995 E320 Wagon, 1991 300SE
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
You should only see the actual leak if you run the car and see it leaking from the heater valve while the car is running - although I did not do this myself - I just replaced the heater valve and it fixed the problem. The heater valves from what I understand are the source of many of these problems.
The previous owner of my 190E had his mechanic replace the entire radiator which cost him $700 in parts and labor. $21 in comparison is a walk in the park.
 
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