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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all, I need some help with this one:

My very reliable E420 is doing something very strange. It ran beautifully today, as always, but this evening I went to move it and when I started it, I heard this clanking sound from the engine. I shut it off, popped the hood but I couldn't see anything obvious, so I restarted her and again, a banging or knocking sound coming from, I believe, the heads, I just can't tell what side. I let it run while taking this video, I accelerated a bit and the knock goes faster, even while warm

180,000 miles, mobil1 0W 40, every 7500 miles, OEM fleece filter. Doesnt burn oil, runs very well, extremely nice inside and out. But maybe she's had it?
I always said I would drive her until she blew up, tell me this isn't the end.

What do I check?

 

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1990 Mercedes-Benz 420 SEL(RIP),1997 Mercedes-Benz E420
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1,936 Posts
That sound makes me cringe.


Did you have a heavy foot before you heard this? Hows the oil level and color?
 

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1990 Mercedes-Benz 420 SEL(RIP),1997 Mercedes-Benz E420
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are you sure its not coming from the fan or belt hitting something? That could explain a more rapid knock when you accelerate.


See this video here, but gain more responses before you attempt this...idk if this is necessarily "healthy" for a mercedes.

 

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Premium Member
'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #4
That sound makes me cringe.


Did you have a heavy foot before you heard this? Hows the oil level and color?

Yea makes me cringe too

No, I don't drive this car hard at all. Ive babied it!! I've owned it for 6 years, put 100k miles on it, and only a radiator and MAF has gone out.

Oil level is good, oil is slightly brown
 

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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #5
Bump
 

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1990 Mercedes-Benz 420 SEL(RIP),1997 Mercedes-Benz E420
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I'm not experienced enough in this area to give you the satisfying information.

Although, since I too own a 420 I would like to know whats going on here.


Guys please post what you know!
 

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2001 E430 4matic
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419 Posts
Any codes? I am looking for some sort of misfire codes... Overall sounds like a valve noise to me. I have a volvo that does it to me when seats for few month in the garage. After the start, this noise very similar to yours starts, I let it run in idle till warms up and it goes away and does not come back till seats in the garage for a month again. By the way, do not pull any spark plug wires from the plugs to check cylinders.... its not wise in your case. Interesting to know about all the codes you may have and post them all here if there are any.
 

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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #8
Any codes? I am looking for some sort of misfire codes... Overall sounds like a valve noise to me. I have a volvo that does it to me when seats for few month in the garage. After the start, this noise very similar to yours starts, I let it run in idle till warms up and it goes away and does not come back till seats in the garage for a month again. I sugest to check the codes and let it run in idle see if it goes away. By the way, do not pull any spark plug wires from the plugs to check cylinders.... its not wise in your case.
No CEL, although I will check for pending codes.
 

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2001 E320 wagon
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733 Posts
the clip is quite short to get a good feel for the noise so this is just a guess :)

sounds like the knock is at about 1/2 speed of the engine so I would guess its somewhere in the heads and it sounds like you have lost pressure to one of the "lifters". I say lifters because they are not really as the car is overhead cam but the ball stud the rocker arm is sitting on is pressurized like a lifter and keeps the tolerances so you don't have to do adjustments.

if possible listen to the right (passenger side US) head with a stethoscope and see if the sound gets louder anywhere, also if you could shoot a little longer and just rev it a little (not above 1500rpm) it would help.
cheers
Barri
 

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2001 E430 4matic
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sounds like you have lost pressure to one of the "lifters"
Agree, my volvo ended up with similar problem because of my own neglect of not changing oil on time (I am not suggesting that original poster did the same thing). As result seating in the garage, oil pressure drops on the lifter and does not raise after the intial start up and cases the noise. Eventully oil pressure raises on the lifter and problem goes away.

If there are such a thing as oil additive to be added to oil to open the holes (engine flush) and of-course oil change, may resolve it.
 

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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #11
the clip is quite short to get a good feel for the noise so this is just a guess :) Barri
Barri

Heres a longer clip. I had my wife accelerate up to 1500 for a few secs. Also when i look inside the oil cap the knock seems to go along with the lobe rotation.

No codes

 

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Outstanding Contributor W221 Moderator
2010 E350 P1/P2, 2008 S550 Designo, 2002 ML320
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I'm sure there are some folks who will hear this knock and be able to help, however in the mean time I would take a look at this thread (and anything else by these guys) to get an idea of what could be causing your issue.

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1339994-s-klasse-119-97-engine-v8.html

It is the same engine as yours. Hibbo and Robert and know this stuff cold, having worked in the factory for a number of years.
 

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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #13
So, I've been running it while listening to various areas with a stethoscope and while doing it, the knocking is slowly going away (??). This doesn't surprise me really because this car has been fixing itself ever since I've owned it. Now, I'm not saying its fixed, because I can hear the noise, albeit faintly, it's still there.

So, I'm going to change the oil, eventhough it's not due yet, and I'm going to look into this 'seafoam' that is often touted here on the site. I'm not one for additives but maybe this may be a case for one.

In looking around, I've noticed my serp belt is worn, so I'll change that and since I'm there, I'll install the backup tensioner I have. Also, I see that my PS is leaking a bit so I'll install the new seal kit I have.

I'll report back with any changes this makes. Still, very weird.


A little quiter:

 

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'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #14
Question:

Is it safe to use sea foam in synthetic oil? I've been running Mobil 1 OW40 for 100,000 miles. I would like to try the sea foam before I change my oil next week.
 

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2000 Black E320 4Matic
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77 Posts
Question:

Is it safe to use sea foam in synthetic oil? I've been running Mobil 1 OW40 for 100,000 miles. I would like to try the sea foam before I change my oil next week.
Yes it is safe. I've used it on my car and drove 75-100 km before doing an oil change and it cleans the hell out of ur crank case.
Make sure you read the instructions, the whole can in the oil is too much I only used 3/4 of the can.
If in ur gas tank, wait till your tank is 1/4 on gas then put it in drive till your empty and then fill up with premium as usual.
I also recommend using a can in your gas tank atleast once a year to keep it running nice and smooth.
I've used seafoam on all my cars/motorcycles and I'd recommend it to anyone.
 

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2001 E320 wagon
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733 Posts
sorry diego 97 sent you a pm before I saw the new postings. certainly seems to be a valve noise and i would bet a "lfter". I would go with the seafoam but not push the engine above 2500rpm. see the pm
good luck
Barri
 

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2001 E320 wagon
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733 Posts
here is a picture of what you are looking at. the oil ways are at the bottom of the ball and are fed from the cam journal and oiler tube as well as a separate galley supply. they can go bad however and just need to be replaced.
 

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Premium Member
'13 Sprinter 3500 - '12 R350 - '97 E420 - '89 Ferrari Mondial - '88 560SL
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Discussion Starter #18
here is a picture of what you are looking at. the oil ways are at the bottom of the ball and are fed from the cam journal and oiler tube as well as a separate galley supply. they can go bad however and just need to be replaced.
Thanks Barri!!

Today i drove my car to work, the tapping noise was there when i started it, when i got to work, no tapping noise.

What gives? I can't imagine it fixed itself, again, so I'm still concerned about it.'
 

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