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Discussion Starter #21 (Edited)
Here are some old photos of the fluid leak at the rear of the car.
IMG_8347 by Mitchell Wood, on Flickr
IMG_3414 by Mitchell Wood, on Flickr
as you can see, there is fluid coming from one of the lines that enters the height control valve. I cant tell if its the lower or upper line, but it seems to be the upper line as there is fluid on both. I also cannot tell if it is coming from the fitting at the valve itself, or from somewhere along the line ahead of the valve (between the valve and the front of the car.
In the second image you can see the fluid is all over the rear subframe, coming from above where the lines run.

Screen Shot 2020-07-14 at 11.45.52 AM by Mitchell Wood, on Flickr
in WIS, both lines seem to be accessible from the rear of the car for removal.

Is it more common for the fittings to fail at the junction towards the front of the car or at the valve itself? does anyone know if this sort of leak is common at all?
How hard is it to access these lines? do you have to drain the entire hydraulic system to replace them?

I cant imagine its corrosion in the lines themselves, the whole car is practically rust free, which is part of why I bought it.
My SLS is in pretty good shape besides this leak. there's some oil on my shocks but nothing too crazy. Id love to fix this and have a leak free car once I pull the trans and get the pinion seal and rear main done.
 

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Make sure you weld the cat with the cert tag visible. If they can’t see the tag, and they only try so hard, it fails visual.

Sixto
98 E320 wagon 197K miles
 

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Discussion Starter #24
IMG_2793 by Mitch, on Flickr

IMG_4566 by Mitch, on Flickr

IMG_1219 by Mitch, on Flickr

IMG_0238 by Mitch, on Flickr

trans out yesterday. took around 5 hours. always goes slowly the first time.
doesnt seem to be anything special about the 4matic car except you have to unbolt the front prop shaft.
you'll notice there isnt a whole lot of oil around the rear main seal. so it may not even have been leaking... :)
I have service history on everything the 3rd owner did to the car (which was almost nothing), but it hit 100k a few thousand miles before he got it, so it could have had the rear main done by another owner. Im inclined to doubt that though as the 3rd owner told me the 2nd owner paid for even less maintenance than he did. thumbs up buddy.

as long as it isnt the upper oil pan thats leaking back here, we're good. because Im doing pretty much everything else.

here's my current list of replacement parts.

flexplate/flywheel bolts
crankcase bolts (can I reuse these?)
torque converter bolts
rear crankshaft seal
rtv for sealing crankshaft cover plate
transmission input shaft seal
transmission oil pump seal (if its a potential future leak)
transmission rear output shaft seal
t-case front output shaft seal
shift selector o-ring (slight weepage noticed)
transmission breather seal(?)
transmission dipstick tube o-ring

this seems to be everything I cannot get to with the transmission in the car.

I still have not found the exact cause of the transmission oil leak. Ill update when I do. going back to the house this weekend.
I guess its possible that its the transfer case itself where it bolts together.

Mitch
 

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1998 MB E300TD, 1997 MB E36 AMG, 2001 MB E55 AMG
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What about the transmission dipstick grommet, the one where it meets the oil pan? That's a common source of leak.
 
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Discussion Starter #26 (Edited)
What about the transmission dipstick grommet, the one where it meets the oil pan? That's a common source of leak.
nothing around the dipstick tube.

here are some pictures now that I zipped the output flanges off.
IMG_1631 by Mitch, on Flickr
oil all over the bottom of the case
IMG_0819 by Mitch, on Flickr
some oil around this rear cover, but no trail down to the bottom of the case
IMG_5027 by Mitch, on Flickr
IMG_3308 by Mitch, on Flickr

IMG_0242 by Mitch, on Flickr
rear output shaft.. no leakage here
IMG_5933 by Mitch, on Flickr
front output shaft looks old and crust but doesnt really seem to be leaking enough to cause what you see here.. could this be the only leak? the stain at the bottom of the seal is from case fluid leaking out when I pull the output flange off. I was too lazy to drain the case before doing that.
IMG_9922 by Mitch, on Flickr
IMG_2660 by Mitch, on Flickr
EDIT leak diagnosed in future posts

on a brighter note: got the valve covers off and the valve train looks pretty clean.
IMG_1821 by Mitch, on Flickr
IMG_5108 by Mitch, on Flickr

Deplore, do you think the beading pattern of this oil on top of the valve covers is caused by blowby?
IMG_8626 by Mitch, on Flickr
or is it normal for the leaking VC breathers to have oil collect in beads like this. Also, should I clear the clogged pinholes in the upper breathers? there are some extremely fine shafts that lead from the breathers main chamber to the hoses that are clogged. Im probably going to throw the VC's and breathers in the dishwasher after I clean them with gunk anyway.

Im tempted to take the transmission over to a shop here in the bay area and just pay them to deal with it unless someone on here convinces me otherwise. I still have to do the rear main seal, valve covers, cat and some other small stuff and I am already a week past where I wanted to have the car on the road again. if it was a part that was easily accessible I wouldnt take it to a shop but if I go to the trouble of pulling a transmission Id really like it to hold fluids after I put it back in.

Mitch
 

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Your listed of transmission seals to replace seems to me pretty comprehensive, no point in dropping off at a transmission shop to fix unless you have shifting concerns or a whining pump.

Leaking breather hoses -- absolutely. If the holes in the valve cover is clogged, the breather hose will break around the seal and then blowby will blow out instead of remaining inside the intake manifold.

Remove valve cover, clean it, separate the little halves of the valve cover and reseal as per guides.

The transfer case leak is to me, coming from the engine. Not the actual transmission leak....when I pulled my E320 engine out, the whole front timing cover was seeping, and from there it was blown by wind all the way back to the first flex disc. The whole bottom of the transmission was wet and slick with oil, and it looked exactly like yours.

In my case the leak was coming from either upper oil pan, or timing cover. Both big jobs in their own right.


Pay attention to the original E320 engine and transmission photos, you'll see the bottom is slick. The transmission was NOT leaking, but you see the whole pan is dark and wet...that is from the engine.

In my case the E320 engine was leaking from: VC, timing cover/upper oil pan, broken breather and PS pump.
 
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Incidentally, I'd replace the oil cap and the oil filler cap neck thing as well, they can also leak.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Pay attention to the original E320 engine and transmission photos, you'll see the bottom is slick. The transmission was NOT leaking, but you see the whole pan is dark and wet...that is from the engine.
thats interesting. it does seem like what was thought to be a rear main seal might also have been the valve covers. however on my car there is no oil on the transmission anywhere except the t-case.
so maybe because the t-case protrudes sideways of the trans its in the path for oil blown back from the motor.

in my case the VC's are definitely leaking. the rear main is unidentifiable as I havent found the right torx/other bit to get the torque plate off. my t50 torx fits too loose in the bolts maybe its a t55

if my car turns out to have a leaking upper oil pan its big trouble. cant imagine how hard that is to reach on these 4matics. if it is leaking its the rearmost portion of the pan. so it looks like a rear main seal

I pulled the trans because the service history i got with the car mentioned a rear main seal and pinion seal leak multiple times. guess I shouldnt have blindly trusted the mercedes techs. lesson learned for the future is do the valve covers and then see what else leaks.

now that im in here though Ill look into what it would cost to get the transmission professionally serviced. honestly I dont have tools to get these seals out and I dont like prying them out with picks or screwdrivers. if you have a different method by all means share it. I made a cam seal style puller a long time ago thats great for cam and crank seals but it doesnt work on seals that arent riding on a journal.

deplore do you change rear main seals on these engines with the cover that it sits in on the bench? or do you have to press it in while its on the engine. last main seal I did was on a honda that specifically called for it to be done with the cover panel on the bench.
EDIT: many thanks for your continued help. super helpful dude!
 

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You could split the transfer case, clean up the sealant, apply new sealant and reseal the transfer case along the seam. Could be seeping from between the sealants.

Flexplate bolt is definitely T55. Use impact to take it off, it's in there very tight.

RMS, I removed the metal cover, cleaned up old residue, applied new sealant, installed metal cover, then installed new RMS to it while it was on the engine.

At this point, it should be really easy to pull the engine out with a cherry picker, you've already disconnected the transmission. Only thing left is to disconnect the engine harness at the ECU, drain coolant, unbolt AC and PS pump and lay on the side, then simply lift the whole engine. The oil pan is separate from the front differential, you'd leave the front differential in place.

Then at that point its just a matter of unbolting both lower and upper pans, clean, reseal, reinstall, and back inside car.
 

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Discussion Starter #31 (Edited)
it looks like both the transfer case and the rear main seal were in fact leaking. Note: if you dont have a cordless impact kit or an air compressor buy the Bauer corded impact from Harbor.
As someone who has spent quite a bit of time pulling torque plates and flywheels and CV nuts etc without an impact this thing is a revelation.
the rear main was admittedly barely leaking.
IMG_4579 by Mitch, on Flickr

How do you guys feel about Victor Reinz rear main seals? I threw one in my last autohaus order just because it was all they had. Should I go with the Mercedes part?
Im leaning toward replacing with genuine MBZ seal.

Your listed of transmission seals to replace seems to me pretty comprehensive, no point in dropping off at a transmission shop to fix unless you have shifting concerns or a whining pump.
The more I thought about it the more Deplore was right, I should be able to reseal this thing myself.

So I went to Oreillys today and got the janky seal puller tool that I had always planned to stay away from and surprisingly got the seals out with no troubles.
This seal puller
I wrote down the PNs from the old seals and ordered them.
For future readers: WIS lists about 4 different PNs for all the radial seals on this transmission. Just pull the PN off whatever seals you yank out of it and order them based on that info.
IMG_2745 by Mitch, on Flickr
that one messed up seal was my process of learning how to use the tool properly lol.

then, feeling empowered by the days successes, I stood the transmission upright and pulled the cover off the transfer case.

IMG_2187 by Mitch, on Flickr
Ill take better pictures of the transfer case innards when I put it back together.
The gears in the t-case are just sitting on races in both case halves. I wouldn't reccomend pulling the cover off with it lying horizontally.

Heres the thing I should have realized: there is no sealant between the cover and the main body of the case. so of course it leaks from that seam.

IMG_8548 by Mitch, on Flickr

you can see how there's no trace of sealant on the mating surface of the cover.

Im wondering if its safe to reassemble it with a thin layer of sealant between both surfaces. You can see from the wear on the case cover that the two surfaces are wearing each other out.
I dont know who I can speak to about this, but Ill call the transmission specialist tomorrow when they reopen. Unless anyone on here can tell me if its a bad idea.
The bearings on the backs of the gears in the transfer case ride on concave races pressed into the cover. If you use sealant, I guess its possible that that incremental separation of the cover would cause the bearings to not ride on those races snugly, and that could be very bad.


EDIT: Clearly states in WIS to reseal cover upon reinstallation. Im just a lazy ass I guess because I didnt fully read through the damn article.
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 11.50.07 AM by Mitch, on Flickr
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 11.53.21 AM by Mitch, on Flickr

Im on the fence about buying the reccomended 2 part adhesive sealant. Im going to make a separate thread about it as this one isnt seeing alot of action and the info could be helpful for others in the future.

Best
Mitch
 

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Discussion Starter #32 (Edited)
Its been awhile. I moved and got strep and then got a new job.

I ended up using loctite 5970 on the transfer case cover. Its the same product as for timing covers and rear main seal covers, breathers etc. We'll see how long it holds.
If it leaks I might try the permatex product for diff covers.
the transfer case takes ATF, not gear oil. WIS specifies 236.10. Im using the same 236.14 Fuchs Titan 4134 as Im using in the transmission itself.
if It blows up or disintegrates I will post that here.
IMG_5639 by Mitch, on Flickr
pretty crappy sealant bead. The 5970 is really hard coming out of the tube, needs to be warmed up in water or with a heat gun.
IMG_1365 by Mitch, on Flickr

proceeded to tackle the torque converter seal (input shaft seal) and the oil pump o-ring

to install the o-ring you must remove the bellhousing from the transmission and then unbolt the oil pump from behind it, inside the K1 brake clutch that bolts to the back of the bellhousing.
IMG_0227 =Mitch, on FlickrIMG_7702 by Mitch, on Flickr
you might as well do the torque converter seal with the pump on your bench as opposed to trying to press it on over the input shaft.
its pretty straight forward, however reinstalling the clutch takes patience. every individual friction the first two clutches (see picture) must seat properly on their respecting carriers for the bellhousing to touch the housing of the transmission. I have a pinky finger gap that I tightened down with the bellhousing bolts and had to take it all back apart after the transmission wouldnt rotate.
found a bent friction.
IMG_2770 by Mitch, on Flickr
I was able to get a used friction from a local mercedes shop and clocked the bellhousing back and forth until it seated flush the second time.

IMG_7571 by Mitch, on Flickr
made this bracket out of angle iron to torque the output flanges

here's an imporant note: you have to heat the output flanges to install them, they are an interference fit. WIS states no more than 140 celsius(~280F). I would assume if you go much higher than that you melt the lip of oil seal that the flange rides on. I put my flanges in the oven at 250F for about 20 mins. I then tightened them with my corded impact.
my mistake: you must ensure that the flange has fully seated before it cools. If you dont get the flange all the way on and it cools it will be completely immobile. The nuts are designed to torque against the flange. I was literally lifting the transmission off the ground trying to torque down the front output flange and it wouldnt budge on the splines. So I had to pull it back off.
then I found this.
IMG_5135 by Mitch, on Flickr
my only guess is that this happened when I tried to heat the flange on the splines using a butane bottle torch. I did this for a couple seconds before I remembered the oil seal and decided it wasnt a good idea. I had to go to oreilly and rent another 5 ton puller to get the flange off after that.

EDIT: the reason I did get the forward output flange seated (and didnt notice) was because I was using a 36mm axle nut socket. These are impact sockets with extremely thick walls. They WONT fit in either output flange. you can get it to grab the end of the nut, but once you apply torque from an impact it will just spin itself off. you MUST find yourself a regular 6point 36mm socket at a specialty tool shop or online. An Axle socket wont fit. Home depot, autozone etc. wont have it.

At that point, having been forced to order another seal I was heated and quit for the day.
I had everything I need to do the rear main seal. I bought a new cover plate because it was $30 on autohaus for genuine MBZ and I bought this tool.
looks to be a chinese knock off of the OEM. It did not come with a case as is stated. I had a ryobi orbital sander case lying around I put it in.
I will let everyone know how this tool works. If it works well, at only $150 I think its a good buy if you own multiple mercedes.

Best
Mitch
 

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Discussion Starter #33
I have to give a HUGE shoutout to MAVA from this forum. He not only sent me hundreds of photos detailing his work rebuilding these 722.6 transmission but spent an hour and a half on the phone with me talking me through how to fix the problem I created when I didnt properly seat the clutches putting the automatic transmission. He was super helpful, kind and made my life a whole lot easier. true legend.
here's a link to his thread on the 722.6. Critical info.

Thanks Martin!

ALSO:
I have been too lazy to save every WIS procedure from this project. I highly reccomend you find yourself a copy of wis thats already installed in a virtualbox like I did. Im sure you can find yours cheaper than I did. say, $10-25.
But: If anyone wants any WIS procedures related to this project or otherwise, respond with your request and I'll go find it and upload it here.

Best
Mitch
 

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That's pretty damn impressive. You got a lot done, far more than I would've done myself.

RMS, I just used a block of wood and hammered it around.

Everything else.....well, I'm impressed.
 
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Mitch,

Nice work... Last year I was in a similar boat, but I took the engine out. It is a one-year anniversary for me:


Great work. Not too many on 4-Matics... CafeRacer has some on the transfer-case. Here you go:


I'm saving your thread in my favorites...

Martin
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Everything else.....well, I'm impressed.
I'm saving your thread in my favorites...

Martin
thanks guys! hopefully this info helps someone down the road. mine and caferacer's thread make a good combo.
I also finished the breathers, but no pics.

more soon
Mitch
 

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Discussion Starter #37 (Edited)
New update on the wagon. Got a job at a german car specialist as a tech recently so Ive been busy working on bmws... feeling good about my mbz alignment.

Finally got the front ops seal replaced and got the output flange properly heated and installed.
IMG_0108 by Mitch, on Flickr

moved on to the rear main seal after that.
I spent a good 45 minutes picking the old RTV out of the threads in the cover bolts with a set of picks. no pictures of that. Its a must though.
gave them a good cleaning afterward.

I replaced the RMS cover with genuine mbz. it was like $40. well worth it, you'll see why as you try to remove the old seal from the old cover.

tried heating up the loctite for the rear main with hot water. didnt work. just got everything wet. will try with a heat gun in future.
IMG_1802 by Mitch, on Flickr

this bead is ugly, and too thick but I think it will be alright. WIS states 2mm +/- .5mm. So 3mm is probably still safe.
IMG_7514 by Mitch, on Flickr

IMG_7523 by Mitch, on Flickr


I bought this tool from a company called Kommen Tools in LA, it seems to be a Chinesium copy of the factory MBZ crank seal tool. My kit from Kommen came with a front crank seal tool as well.
It was around $150. It was supposed to come with a case, but did not.

IMG_1565 by Mitch, on Flickr
IMG_2797 by Mitch, on Flickr
seated the seal with the plastic ring that comes with it
IMG_3798 by Mitch, on Flickr
IMG_0956 by Mitch, on Flickr

The tool seems to work well, however I wasnt able to get the seal to the WIS specified "approx 1mm" depth beneath the edge of the RMS cover.
you can see in this photo it protrudes maybe 0.25 - 0.5mm above the surface.
The seal became significantly harder to tighten down, and the tool began to bed into the outside of the seal and stick, so that I had to lightly pop it off.
I quit tightening it down at that point because I didnt want to risk damaging the outside of the seal with the tool.

IMG_3273 by Mitch, on Flickr


Im curious if anyone thinks this is an issue. IMO it just ensures I have a virgin seal surface on the back of the crank. I do not see why it should matter.
But I'd love some opinions as to if its an issue.

EDIT: held crank with breaker at front balancer bolt to torque flexplate bolts.



best
Mitch

IMG_6820 by Mitch, on Flickr
 

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Use a hammer and lightly tap the RMS all around, so it's flush with the cover.

Is what I did, it works.
 

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Discussion Starter #39 (Edited)
Use a hammer and lightly tap the RMS all around, so it's flush with the cover.

Is what I did, it works.
id rather this $150 tool just did its job lol.
how did you hold your flywheel to torque the flywheel bolts
EDIT saw your message. I forgot this is an auto, they're different. The torque is only 45nm + 90*. I was thinking for a manual flywheel. lots more torque.
Pressure plate is the word I have been searching for to refer to this this.

forgot to ask
Screen Shot 2020-08-15 at 4.58.50 PM by Mitch, on Flickr
what do you make of this requirement for initialization? Will I be able to drive the car without plugging it into a computer?
 

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It says new. You're not installing a new one.
 
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