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1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello Everybody,

I just bought a 1991 190E 2.3l with 212695KM on her. It came from the original owner and has been well maintained(at least till he sold it). I am a newbie to this forum and have researched most of the archives but I still need some confirmation about some issues:


Overheating: My car exhibits all the signs form the previous forums, Sitting in traffic and the temp gauge rises until I start moving and it falls-BUT my fan works fine(turns on at 100-105) . No problem either when I'm driving, even at 120-140kmh. So, this looks like the old thermostat problem, right? BUT, I have noticed that there is a small oil leak(?) on the front of the engine in the half moon dip above the water pump just like the photo from the (Yet another) Overheating problem question 12-13-2007. SO, does this mean that I have a faulty head gasket too?

My second question is: If I have a faulty head gasket, would that explain why at a STOP my oil guage falls to 2 and in traffic when the temp rises the oil gauge lowers to 1.5 and then when driving at a constant speed the gauge is at 3? OR is this normal for the 190E 2.3l?

My third question is: My fuel gauge doesn't go down to empty. The reserve light comes on and the needle stays stuck at 1/4 tank. Is this the sign that I have to change the 'Fuel level sender'?

Thanks,


Neff
 

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1991 Mercedes 190E 2.6
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140 Posts
The engine temperature rising when stopped on a warm day is not unusual unless it goes much past 100. A little variation like that is normal even with a new thermostat.

The oil pressure dropping down to about 1 bar at idle when the engine is warm is normal too. Small oil leaks are unrelated to that and are not a problem. I wouldn't replace a head gasket because of a small external link. If you are not getting coolant in your oil or oil in your coolant I wouldn't worry about it. You won't find many motors that are not a bit damp around the oil seals and gaskets.

Your fuel gauge should go all the way down to empty when the tank is empty. I'm not sure if the reserve light uses a separate switch offhand or if it just works off the main float in the tank. Someone else can answer that or you can look it up in the service manual. If it uses the same float then it may be the gauge itself although the sending units are more likely to fail.

Good luck,

Colin
 

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'85 2.3-16 '99 C280 '11 GLK350
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4,804 Posts
You have to ask yourself, "How long am I keeping this car" to make the cost/benefit calculation before heading off on some repairs.

The fuel gauge issue sounds more like a gauge issue rather than the sender, since the low fuel warning lamp is functioning. It's possible that the guage is binding in that last quarter display.

As for the oil leak and coolant issue, it does seem like your thermostat may not be functioning for a start. As for whether you have a gasket failure, the oil seepage is only a sign, but might not be related. Keep a close eye on the condition of your coolant and oil, both the level and content.
 

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1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
The engine temperature rising when stopped on a warm day is not unusual unless it goes much past 100. A little variation like that is normal even with a new thermostat.

The oil pressure dropping down to about 1 bar at idle when the engine is warm is normal too. Small oil leaks are unrelated to that and are not a problem. I wouldn't replace a head gasket because of a small external link. If you are not getting coolant in your oil or oil in your coolant I wouldn't worry about it. You won't find many motors that are not a bit damp around the oil seals and gaskets.

Your fuel gauge should go all the way down to empty when the tank is empty. I'm not sure if the reserve light uses a separate switch offhand or if it just works off the main float in the tank. Someone else can answer that or you can look it up in the service manual. If it uses the same float then it may be the gauge itself although the sending units are more likely to fail.

Good luck,

Colin


Thanks for the advise! I have changed the thermostat and found the antifreeze to be a very dark green from corrosion/etc.. Definitely no oil in my antifreeze. I think the system just needs a good flushing and some fresh antifreeze. The thermostat has helped.
 

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Registered
1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
You have to ask yourself, "How long am I keeping this car" to make the cost/benefit calculation before heading off on some repairs.

The fuel gauge issue sounds more like a gauge issue rather than the sender, since the low fuel warning lamp is functioning. It's possible that the guage is binding in that last quarter display.

As for the oil leak and coolant issue, it does seem like your thermostat may not be functioning for a start. As for whether you have a gasket failure, the oil seepage is only a sign, but might not be related. Keep a close eye on the condition of your coolant and oil, both the level and content.
MTI: Is it possible to fix that binding fuel gauge problem in the last quarter? Should I check for some ground issue or other disturbance that could cause this? Thanks for your help!
 

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'85 2.3-16 '99 C280 '11 GLK350
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4,804 Posts
It really depends on what is causing the problem with the gauge. You might want to consider finding a used instrument cluster that has near the same distance on the odometer and swap the whole kit. If you do go that route, I suggest that you find a used one from no later than 1989 or 90 to match your existing one, as there were changes to some warning lights and the LCD temp display.
 

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87 190E 2.3 192k Miles
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21 Posts
the oil leak on the "half moon" part is not the head gasket. that's the valve cover gasket. the head gasket is lower on the engine... It' worth replacing, even if it's not a bad leak, I got mine for $30 some odd dollars, and replaced itr myself. 4-5 screws hold the valve cover on, very easy job to do...
 

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i have bought lots of 190-e cars and noticed that temperture does rise when stopped with traffic,what i do to my cars ,i take thermostat off!and install relay switch to control fan on when i start engine evertime.but you got to understand that where i live tempature is 100 to 112 summertime and before.the only problem with no thermostat is when it does get cold ,it takes longer for hot air to heat up inside your car,but with no thermostat it keeps motor cooler circulating faster
 

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1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
It really depends on what is causing the problem with the gauge. You might want to consider finding a used instrument cluster that has near the same distance on the odometer and swap the whole kit. If you do go that route, I suggest that you find a used one from no later than 1989 or 90 to match your existing one, as there were changes to some warning lights and the LCD temp display.
Thanks MTI! BUT, before I get the new cluster, could you or anyone have any good troubleshooting ideas? Should I check for a grounding problem? Loose wire etc?
 

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Registered
1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
Joined
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
the oil leak on the "half moon" part is not the head gasket. that's the valve cover gasket. the head gasket is lower on the engine... It' worth replacing, even if it's not a bad leak, I got mine for $30 some odd dollars, and replaced itr myself. 4-5 screws hold the valve cover on, very easy job to do...
Thanks! I'm gonna get that valve cover gasket sorted ASAP!
 

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1991 190E 2.3l 8V 201.985 and 2006 C180 Kompressor Estate 271.946
Joined
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
i have bought lots of 190-e cars and noticed that temperture does rise when stopped with traffic,what i do to my cars ,i take thermostat off!and install relay switch to control fan on when i start engine evertime.but you got to understand that where i live tempature is 100 to 112 summertime and before.the only problem with no thermostat is when it does get cold ,it takes longer for hot air to heat up inside your car,but with no thermostat it keeps motor cooler circulating faster
Thanks Gonzair. Here in Finland, the summer never gets that hot(only about 20-30C) and traffic overheating is a tedious probelm. The overheating is tedious but I would rather have fast heating in the wintertime. Since Winter is long and hard here!

I will keep your advise in mind and opt in for it if needed. BUT, do you have instructions for the DIY relay switch to control the fan anyways?
 
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