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Registered
1991 560SEL
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17 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My 91 560SEL has a strange noise that seems to be coming from behind or below the dashboard on the passenger side. It only happens for about five minutes or so when the car and ambient temp are cold. I sounds like a worn out fan but switching the climate control to off has no effect on the sound. Putting the climate control fan in the high speed mode has no effect on the sound either.

Any suggestions as to the cause would be greatly appreciated.
 

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SuperModerator
1986/1990 W126
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13,676 Posts
I'll bet thats your tiny 'sampling' fan. It sits beside the glovebox inside the dash, connected to a long tube of rubber which runs up the A pillar and over to the little grille in the dome light assembly. Its purpose is to create a very light current of air over the temp sensor for the climate control. It comes on whenever the ignition is switched on, regardless of climate control/settings.
Easy to replace, either pop out the glovebox (Depending on if you have an air bag or not) or remove the carpeted knee panel and access it through there where the main interior blower fan is.
 

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1993 300TE, 1995 E320 Wagon
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1,895 Posts
Ooh, score one for Ian!!

I never knew there was a "sampling fan." Live and learn!
 

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1989 300SE (Rear Ended & Junked) 1995 E420, Fully Loaded with Ortho Seats & Rear Sun Shade :)
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503 Posts
Ooh, score one for Ian!!

I never knew there was a "sampling fan." Live and learn!
Neither did I. I thought that fan had something to do with Climate Control. Atleast, that's what my mechanic told me.
 

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`81 W123 280E, `83 W126 280SE, `85 W126 280SE, `91 W126 500SE, `96 W202 C180T, `99 W202 C220CDI
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511 Posts
I had the same issue a while ago with my 500SE. That small fan makes a quite disturbing sound... :)
 

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Registered
1991 S Class (W126) 300 SEL - 15W-40 Valvoline Max Life Diesel Oil, Mann Filt. Zerex G-05 Coolant,
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94 Posts
Bringing back and old one here. Thanks for any help.

My "sampling" fan is making noise now too. I have a non-passenger side air bag car and just tried to access the fan. I went to remove the carpet section as suggested in this thread, but couldn't get it to budge.

I removed the 3 screws facing the passenger. The plastic retainer screw underneath on the left as well as another screw underneath dead center. No joy.

There must be something I'm missing here. Any further guidance is appreciated as I prefer this route to removing the glove box.

Thank you!
 

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SuperModerator
1986/1990 W126
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13,676 Posts
Do you have that coin tray that US cars have? Mine doesnt have that so i'm not sure how that bit comes off..
 

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Outstanding Contributor
350SDL, '17 GLS450, "Grandpa's Roadster" Project Car
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