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Well, sister bought a new car and I finally got my E300 back from her....whew. The car is seriously clapped out, and it needs major service (injectors) and complete suspension overhaul.

I have about a page and half of things to replace...Kajtek1, when you last replaced the radiator, did you also replace the water pump too? I'm thinking of doing the water pump while I have the radiator out to do the lower support bracket.

So far, I have...

  • Rack and pinion -- it has 30 degree of slop before any steering occurs
  • Lower support bracket -- old one is bent in. Will need to cut and weld replacement
  • Expansion tank and cap -- leaking coolant
  • All PCV hoses, leaking oil
  • Valve cover gasket
  • Injector rebuild with new nozzles and sent in for pop testing/calibration
  • 4 shocks all around
  • Flex discs
  • Driveshaft bearings and carrier bushing
  • Front wheel bearings
  • Sway bar bushings and links
  • Lower ball joints
  • Lower control arm bushings -- its creaking under load
  • Thermostat + coolant
  • Transmission oil change
  • Belt tensioner -- funnily enough the shock and springs are fine. Its just that the actual tensioner pivot broke off, so its just rattling
  • Tensioner shock and spring -- only $30 for OEM, why not?
  • Fuel line O rings
  • Fuel thermostat -- possibly source of air bubbles?
  • Get #2 GP out, its broken and do #6 GP
  • Change oil filter housing gasket, it's weeping
  • Investigate if I need to replace the fuel lines from tank to engine
  • Headlight polishing
  • Investigate subframe bushings?
  • Rear suspension overhaul
  • Turn the rotors, car shakes under braking
This means I need to buy the special tools for the LCA bushings and the MB spring compressor.

Swapped the ECU with the stock ECU, currently driving it so the readiness monitors complete and then I can smog it, then the car goes in for service.

Pictures will be up.... This is going to be painful.

Current mileage as of this writing: 304,749.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Incidentally, does anyone know of any company that rebuilds the rack and pinion? I'm not opposed to replacing it with a used unit from a newer W210, but I dislike waste. Would rather repair than replace.
 

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Water pump was replaced when DW drove the car on limp and original plastic impeller did not survive high rpm. Don't remember the mileage, but looks like by now it might be 100k miles old.
I also remember replacing 1 of flex disks short time before selling the car (was it 4 years ago?)
You should know you can't turn MB rotors?
Have fun with the project, we'll drive to Alaska in that time :D
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You should know you can't turn MB rotors?
Shhhhh, you can't, but I can. :p Actually the rotor is just fine, I just dislike the vibration under braking, and the brake pads still have some meat left. I would say maybe 60%....which is unusual, because that's the same brake pads when I bought the car from you....4 years and 60k miles ago. So I'm going to turn it a few thousands of inches, enough to make it smooth and that's it. It still has enough meat left for that at least.

You also said that you replaced the radiator 4 years before purchase, so at this time it would be 8 years old. I'm just trying to track down the age of the parts, and seeing if it warrants replacement or not.

It still starts perfectly, no check engine light, it is weeping coolant when it gets too hot, and coolant temperature climbs when under heavy load...I'm trying to limit all that, so perhaps if water pump impellers are gone or the bearings are squealing, maybe time to change it anyway. The engine is so loud that I can't hear any bearing squeal, and I'm of the opinion that my car should be ready for a 3000 mile road trip on drop of a hat with zero preparation.

Are you going to take the truck with camper to Alaska? Have fun there! Take couple chains with you just in case.... :D
 

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I remember putting at least 60k on those pads, so after 120k they still have 60% left?
Aren't Akebono wonderful?
I think rotors might be original.
When the engine overheating start? I had it with no engine fan at 114 and temp never went above 95C, so wonder what might happen?
Even LA traffic is no good explanation.
Yeah, truck to Alaska. Should get us there in a month, or 2.
Good to be retired ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I remember putting at least 60k on those pads, so after 120k they still have 60% left?
Aren't Akebono wonderful?
I think rotors might be original.
When the engine overheating start? I had it with no engine fan at 114 and temp never went above 95C, so wonder what might happen?
Even LA traffic is no good explanation.
Yeah, truck to Alaska. Should get us there in a month, or 2.
Good to be retired ;)
I will check on the rotors, I will have to take them off anyway to do the wheel bearings, so might as well turn it, do bearings and do the rack and pinion plus suspension overhaul while I'm there. A classic case of "while I'm there...."

Really, the engine isn't exactly overheating per se, it never goes above 100c...but that concerns me. Diesels shouldn't get that hot that quickly, even under full throttle uphill for what, 30 seconds?

There is this freeway bridge over a river/channel near my house that is pretty steep...it's no grapevine pass grade, but it's close. I use that place as an opportunity to floor the car uphill. A poor man italian tuneup, if you will. The whole stretch is maybe 0.5 miles, and it takes me about 20-25 seconds to reach from bottom to the top of the bridge at full throttle.

In that time the temperate goes from solidly under 67C to around 90C.

20 second of full throttle and the car heats up by 20C+?!

This is the part I'm concerned with. None of my other cars do this, not even the frankensteined AMG and I keep that one under full throttle pretty much all the time.

Year ago I went to Zion national park, which is in Utah. Whole place was flat, and I had no problems with temperatures. However as the freeway sometimes had loooooong uphill slope, and as the car is under more load going up the slope, the temperature climbs very quickly. On the return trip there was a massive accident and all four lanes were slowed down, so we were in gridlock for about 2 hours or thereabout...and the car did touch 100C idling, but no further.

I don't know. I might put back the fan.

Are you going straight to Alaska, or are you going to make a lot of little stops on the way there?

I looked up the distance to Anchorage, AK, and didn't really appreciate how far it was until google maps showed the whole earth. :D That's a quite trip.

What injector nozzles are you going with deplore?
Going with Monarks, since original Bosch injector nozzles are pretty much all gone. I am planning on keeping my original injector nozzles, see what I can do with them.
 

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Do they sell LCA complete with bushings like for 124? Might be cheaper than LCA bushings + tools + trying to remove 300K mile bushing shells.

Sixto
98 E320s sedan and wagon
02 C320 wagon
 

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20 second of full throttle and the car heats up by 20C+?!.
I remember that once you reported very high fuel consumption with your tune?
If engine sucks lot of fuel, the energy has to go somewhere?
So you still drive the car with no engine fan?
Should send a note to Plutoe about it :)
Anyway, driving to Las Vegas from Bay Area I had 3 very long grades, where 15 miles at Baker triple-digits temperatures beats Grapevine hands down. (N Grapevine is steeper, but only 7 miles)
When I drove with no fan, I had temp display on climatronic. The engine never went above 95C, even dashboard gauge was still showing 85C.
How is the paint holding? I think this topic deserve couple of pictures?
 

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LCA for e300 with bushings are approximately $150 each side (aftermarket). not to bad. Genuine bushing alone is $150 each, still need tool. I know what I would choose.
 

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I'd throw a pressure gauge on the cooling system to make sure its holding pressure at operating temp. Maybe check timing chain stretch although that prob wouldnt have much to do with overheating, just the noisy idle part.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, I will have to check that after.

Today the car got dramatically quieter when driving toward smog shop....Found out why.

IMG_20190422_100158.jpg

Hmmmmm...... Good thing I was about to take it out of service anyway. Might explain the heating issue? It's probably not absorbing the shocks all that well....well, not at all anyway.

Regarding paint: well, paint is okay now. Doors and trunk are good, its the front bumper and hood that have a lot of rock chips and otherwise pitted. Also, sister dearest played bumper cars quite often with the E300, so its scraped and has paint damage nearly everywhere. I don't even know where the dent in the fender came from.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
bleh, attachment didnt work previous post....
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I abhor body work. I refuse to do it. Maybe down the line I'll have the other guys in my shop do it for a couple lunches and beers. :p

That size dent in the fender, I was actually thinking about how to fix that...was thinking of removing the fender liner in front wheel and then use a pry bar or something and pop the dent out.
 

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body work not my thing either. I attempted a few motorcycle gas tanks and decided anything bigger I would have to lighten the wallet. Despite the damage it still looks like its a keeper. Hard to beat the om606. I'm doing the ip seals, supply and return lines, balancing injector pop pressures when I get my tester welded up and 32 point socket comes in tuesday. Keep the updates coming, helps to know I'm not alone;)
 

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I did push some dents in my life but with so-so results.
The deal is to make wide pad and push it without wrinkles or making additional dents with pry bar.
So in this case a block of padded wood placed bellow painted line and pushed from inside would be my first try, but again, I never made it without additional marks.
It is a skill.
 

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Ther easiest thing is to replace with with a fender with the same color and taken from a pre facelift W210 from a JY. You can also get an aftermarket fender for around $70, not the same quality but it should be fine. Painting will take more time than removal and installation.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
It's been a while coming, but now I finally started to work on the car!

IMG_20190817_142345.jpg

View attachment 2535046

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IMG_20190817_142647.jpg

Sent the injectors to Greazzer over in pelican parts, and he did a great job. He also found out that #3 was weeping pretty much all the time, that might explain the high gas consumption. I had to replace two injectors, because two of them were so tight that when greazzer tried to open them, they just bent. So I went to the local PnP and found a NA OM606 (97 E300) and pulled all injectors, and sent it to him. He picked two good ones, uprated it from 115 bar to 135 bar, and plopped it in my set. You may be able to spot the NA injector among the set above if you look closely. :p

View attachment 2535052

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View attachment 2535058

Removed valve cover to get to the broken piece of PCV hose inside the VC, and saw this. Timing chain is still very tight, everything is spotless and bears no damage, etc. Lovely 305k valvetrain, still looks pretty. The eagle eyed among you may notice that the #4 is full of diesel....and that's because I left the return line loose. I need to tighten it up later.

IMG_20190817_170726.jpg

Kajtek, this one is for you. This is the same akebono pads that you installed... as you can see, it still has some significant meat left.

IMG_20190817_170732.jpg

Removed rotor to replace the bearings in the front. That little screw retaining the rotor was a pain in the ass, so I used an impact turner. Worked very well.
 
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