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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday, I followed through on a plan I have been considering for quite a while. My 1999 ML430 which I bought new, way back in late 1998, got her first 5,000 mile oil/filter change. Up till now she has gotten the oil/filter change every 10,000 miles.Thats a lot of oil, a lot of filters and a fair amount of time, but I enjoy every minute of tinkering on cars/boats. To me it is therapy !
So, why did I change the interval ? Mainly due to the mileage accrued on the old girl....currently 416,188.....! She has already received the 500,000km/310,000miles award badge and the next one is in sight...the 750,000km/466,000miles award !!

My plan includes a pretty big changeover...swapping from Mobil 1 0W40 to Liqui Moly 5W40. Hardly any difference in the weights. Living in the Atlanta area, it rarely gets below 20 degrees and often gets up in the 80's and 90's, so either would be fine but you have to lean towards the 5W40. It's really a toss-up !

Will be sticking with the same filter, the Mann HU718/5X. GREAT filter and very inexpensive..FCP EURO currently has them for 6.60 each.....pretty amazing for a highly regarded fleece filter ! I buy them by the case for both my ML's.

So...only time will tell, but I think the old girl can go the distance. Will keep you posted......
 

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2000 E 320 Wagon + 2002 ML 500 SUV
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Bravo Springer - its a great rewarding effort to keep our classic MLs roadworthy.

So at 416,000 I believe you have the highest miles ML I've heard of.

Does she leak or use any oil ?

It's a good idea to change that interval downwards.

Also do long freeway trips on occasion helps "de-crust" the internals.

I have neglected that last bit & a. amazed once I do a long trip how much it helps engine performance.

Cheers - David
 

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08 ML 320 CDI, 99 ML320 V6, 00 CLK430 Cab
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My daughter's 99 ML 320 has about 218k now and it still is a solid running vehicle. She got it from the original owner who had it serviced at an Indy shop regularly. She wants to see how long it will go because she really likes the car.
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the kind words David.

She does use a little oil, maybe 1/4 quart every 5,000 miles. I check the oil every time I fill-up with mid grade, and usually its well within the range on the stick. I carry a quart in the car for top-offs.

We regularly take road trips and that brings oil up to operating temperature. Also, occasionally I'LL FLOOR IT just to blow out any carbon and stretch her legs. No smoke out of exhaust and its good to have the acceleration if you need it. Also every five or six fill-ups, I'll add a bottle of Techron fuel additive to the tank. Thats pretty much it, along with a new air filter every so often. Check tires pressures at least once a week.

Not saying she has been trouble free over the years. Rebuilt transmission, conductor plates, exhaust gas rec. valve, new shocks/springs, new MAF, new torsion bar bearings, new alternators, batteries and other bits and pieces over the years.
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #7
My daughter's 99 ML 320 has about 218k now and it still is a solid running vehicle. She got it from the original owner who had it serviced at an Indy shop regularly. She wants to see how long it will go because she really likes the car.
Yep, my son had the ML for a couple of years up at Duke and it served him well. They have their nuances, but all in all, well-built and very safe for kids just starting out. Im the same way, just want to see how long she will go !!
 

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2004 ML500 Inspiration Edition
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Have you used mid grade for the entirety of those 416k miles?
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #9
Not when I first got her. 1st year I probably ran nothing but high test.

I slowly evolved into using the mid-grade and noticed no signs of pre-ignition, pinging or run on.
Also, when I was younger and before injuring my knee, I used to do all the plug changes myself and never
had an issue there. I had read a lot of good reports on Stabil and Techron additives and I still use them occasionally.
Stabil is pretty much required on my 90HP Yamaha outboard because you don't fill up regularly like a car.

Really, what is more important, is WHERE you get your gas at. I get mine at the same station and even the same pump
whenever I fill up and never fill up when you see one of the big tankers on the property. Kroger is my usual supplier and with a Kroger card you can save quite a bit over the long haul.
 

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2000 E 320 Wagon + 2002 ML 500 SUV
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Ah, so you think the gasoline tanker unloading stirs up junk in storage tank ?
Don't the filters that each pump has help that from being an issue ?
Or not ?

David
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #12
David, yes the individual pump filters I'm sure help quite a bit, but if those big underground tanks are close to empty and then filled up with fresh gas, I would imagine there is a lot of debris that gets stirred up and pumped to the nozzles. It would be interesting to see what they find in those individual filters at the nozzles and how often they are changed......

To be perfectly honest, this is an old wives' tale and I have no proof it is true. BUT.....it makes sense to me and why take the chance. Also, Kroger sells so much gasoline, I don't think its been sitting around for a long while.

Got to LOVE these prices where they are at now !!!:):)
 

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2003 ml500, 2004 ml350
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Ah, so you think the gasoline tanker unloading stirs up junk in storage tank ?
Don't the filters that each pump has help that from being an issue ?
Or not ?

David
My dad worked for Exxon at a refinery
Retired as chief electrician. Started when it was still Standard Oil of New Jersey. FYI grandpa started with Standard also almost as soon as he got off the boat from Poland. He earned the nickname of the Crazy Eagle (aka a reference to the Polish Eagle) Because before OHSA instead of climbing off a tank or Structure he would just walk the over head pipe line to get to the next place. He kept his job through the Great Depression.

Any way my Dad’s theory all those years was never fill up when the tanker was unloading because of debris, just go to the next station.

But a lot has changed since then both good for the environment and auto owners.

Dad felt most debris were due to steel tank rust out, Pin holes on the tank bottom when close to empty would allow ground water in. Tank would then start a rust cycle in side. When filled depending on water table the pressure would force water then gas out making holes bigger.

For years this cycle went on. Station owners did not care about loosing some product.

I work summers at the Exxon refinery, I have been inside above ground refinery storage tanks with steel bottoms they rusted and leaked. Holes were cut in the bottom, Wells dug, we send down measured stick to see how far down the oil level was like a gaint dip stick. The plant engineer (ok my uncle) made a simple electrical probe it go through the oil the volt meter would move when the contracts on the probe hit water. We calculated the thickness of the oil level.

Now due to EPA tanks are triple or double walled fiber glass. A lot cleaner, and the gas is filtered.

We started with regular in the ML’s now lately beacause of low price been buying high test. We mostly use Costco gas they claim to triple filter it. A side note paid 2.22 a gallon in Spokane Wa area llast weekend.

I also worked at a service station pumping gas back in the 70’s independent Exxon, if the pumps had filters we never changed or cleaned them.

I think now a days tanks are pretty clean. The closest station to our house, I will not even buy gas for the weed trimmers from them, and all family members agree they have an issue.

Sorry for the long family history lesson, still miss Dad and Grandpa.
 
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