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1979 240 D, 1993 500 SEL
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199 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I priced K&Ns for my 93 500 SEL, they are about $43 apiece, two required.

Wondering if they would improve mileage/performance without letting dirt into the engine?

Any thoughts?

Also, should I switch to synthetic oil, and if so, is Mobil 1 OK?

thanks
 

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93 190E 2.3, 94 E320 (sold), 01 E320, 99 S320, 18 Durango
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4,983 Posts
I heared they would damage your MAF sensors.
I tried one before in my 93 190E 2.3 and gave me a little increase in the idle, so i went back to OEM air filter.
 

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current fleet: 1996 s500; 1997 BMW 328ic; 2000 Nissan Frontier; 1966 AC Cobra
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279 Posts
not all synthetics are the same

I heared they would damage your MAF sensors.
I tried one before in my 93 190E 2.3 and gave me a little increase in the idle, so i went back to OEM air filter.
All synthetics are not the same. Mobil-1 is advertised more, but it is not the best in all areas tested.

Here is a website with good educational info:
Bob Is The Oil Guy

Here is a web site that has test details:

Amsoil Synthetic Oil vs. Pennzoil, Mobil 1, Castrol, Valvoline, and Quaker State


Hope this helps,
 

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'14 E350, '07 CLK350, '01 SLK320
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1,148 Posts
Mobil-1 (or any good synthetic oil) is a good move. Its now standard fill on all M-B products.


K&N? Meh. . . I'd stick with the OEM filter unless you're racing. Poke around the bobistheoilguy site and look at his air filter comparison.
 

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1997 S500V
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272 Posts
I've used K&N filters on all my veichles for the past 20 years with no problems. I have had a pair on my 97 S500 for exactly one year and 15kmi. with absolutely no problems. I noticed no change in mileage or performance. As long as there is no heavy oil or dripping from the filters, you should be OK. I gently use MAF spray cleaner once a year to clean the MAF. Mobil 1 is also good to go.
 

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1993 300SEL (Sold) 2007 X5
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7,218 Posts
They won't kill the MAF unless you over oil them. At the end of the day though more power=more airflow=less filtering. So just consider that.
 

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1997 Mercedes 600 Coupe & 1995 500 Coupe, 2004 Yamaha R1 200hp 360 pounds
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1,146 Posts
I heard the dealer stopped using mobil 1 because of something wrong with their product. Can anyone verify that?
 

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1994 S420
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501 Posts
I'm using 2 K&N's right now, slight improvement in mileage by like .5 MPG but that could just be fluctuation from the way I drive, small performance boost due to chip though, car is definitely faster than before according to people who hadn't ridden in it since I got it chipped/filtered, burns an automatic '04 330ci 0-60 by a couple car lengths.

No problems so far.
 

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93 190E 2.3, 94 E320 (sold), 01 E320, 99 S320, 18 Durango
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1989 190e 2.6 1993 500sel (sold) 1995 S500 coupe (sold) 1994 S500 blk/blk
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1,007 Posts
Here's my 2 cents of opinion:

I researched a site about air filters recently. I don't recall which one. But the conclusion of the scientific test was that a good inexpensive paper filter was just as good as any other filter for performance.

"Synthetic" oil is a really just another name for mineral oil. Oil is oil. The difference is that "synthetic" oil is slightly more refined than mineral oil and it has proprietary additives
which allow for a lower flash point and which also cut down the sulfer by- product of
the oil as it is heated and used. It is also claimed that "synthetic" oil has a better detergent nature than mineral oil.

The good thing about "synthetic" oil is that its molecules are smaller and therefore cling to the moving parts of an engine longer after shutdown. As you know, 80% or more of engine wear occurs at startup; therefore, the more lubricated the engine is, the less wear.

I switched to Mobil 1 synthetic high mileage in my '89 190e 2.6 as an experiment. The result is that I think the engine runs cooler and sounds quieter.

But I don't think I will do it with my 500SEL just yet.

Finally, I think it is risky to try to improve the performance of these marvelously engineered W140's. The mantra "don't fix it unless it is broke" (aside from regular maintenance) is time proven. But then again, everyone has his own opinion.

Let us know how the synthetic oil change in your 500SEL worked out for you.
 

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1997 S600 Coupe (have owned 1968 280SL, 1978 450SEL, 1980 300TD, 1987 300SDL, 1993 500SEL,1994 E320)
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21 Posts
Mobil 1 opinion

I changed over to Mobil 1 (high mileage blend) immediately upon purchasing the 1993 500SEL I bought in 2002. The car had slightly under 100,000 miles on it when I bought it, and I used Mobil 1 the entire time I had it. The car never used any oil and ran well over the years. I have continued to use Mobil 1 in all of my cars since. As far as I am concerned, it is a good choice. As others have said, I suspect most any good synthetic would do. I can't speak on the filters, but I chose not to use them after I did some research on that topic back in 2002.
Hope this helps a little.
 

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1979 240 D, 1993 500 SEL
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199 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
thanks for all the feedback. I have decided to stick with the OEM filters for now, but will go to Mobil 1.As I understand it, with synthetic oil, it is not really "artificial" oil, but all the oil molecules are identical in size (that is the "synthetic" part).

I agree with the comment not to try to rethink the MB people who engineer these cars.I think if MB thought a higher flow filter was better it would be so easy for them to make it OEM. Racing cars use them, but they are going for race wins, not long term engine life.
 

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96' S500, 09' S550, 06' SL65
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208 Posts
Not to knock Mobil 1, but being a Valvoline guy for my entire life, I use their SynPower synthetic 5-40w. It's approved per the MB service letter and says so on the back label of the quart. There are others as well but make sure you grab the correct viscocity because not all of them meet MB's requirements.
 

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Personally...
i would only use Mobil 1, Royal Purple or Amsoil, and as far as oil filters, i have a source that i can get the Mann filters.
As far as the K&N's ...
like everyone said, theres 2 things that you have to watch out for:
1. more flow = less filtration ability
this is not good if you like in a dusty area where filtration is crucial
2. Reusable nature of the filter and oil on the element might contaminate MAF's
the way to get around this is to make sure that the filters arent oversaturated with oil.
if they are nothing that an air blower wont solve ;)
 
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