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'97 Land Cruiser
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
When I went to drive home (drove about eight miles today), there was an audible noise when the car was in drive and reverse. It was a scratching/grinding noise...similar to what you'd experience with a crappy manual transmission/clutch/flywheel.

Shortly after I accelerated to get on the highway and reached cruising speed(VERY rough shifting), the car began to decelerate...almost as if I'd taken my foot off the gas. The car steadily decelerated (as I applied more pressure on the accelerator). When I got down to about 50 MPH, the engine shut off

The car has 293k miles (original transmission). I'm assuming that the flywheel/transmission is bad, but I'm curious what others might make of this. The starter functions and the engine seems like it's trying to turn over (can feel it shake like it would on a normal start-up).
 

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'97 Land Cruiser
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Discussion Starter #2
30 views and no replies, lol. How about this one...what kind of engine oil should I put in my W124?
 

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'87 300TD/'90 300D/'94 Quattro/'89 Vanagon TDI/'01 EV Weekender VR6
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You need to provide more info...

If this is a transmission issue, then why isn't the engine starting? Have you visually inspected the engine compartment, under the car, etc.?
 

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'95 E300 DIESEL, '91 600SEL, '92 600SEL
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It's a diesel, so fuel system maintenance is vital/critical. Start by inspecting the whole fuel system, beginning by replacing all 3 fuel filters/screeners including the one in the fuel tank. The main filter & pre-filter need to be replaced every 10K, at a minimum.

Then do a diesel purge, at least twice.

If you don't know what a diesel purge is, use the search function. It's been posted ad nauseum.

The OM606 engine is notorious for developing fuel leaks, which works against the principles of the diesel fuel delivery system being fully dependent on proper fuel pressure. Replacing fuel lines and delivery seals are the only cure, fortunately the parts are dirt cheap from the dealer.

After the engine is running as it should, then start diagnosing the transmission.

As for the proper oil in any W124 (gas or diesel), the proper spec grade is diesel rated 15W-40 dinosaur oil. Chevron Delo400 is excellent & meets MB requirements. I buy it in 50+ gallon quantities from Costco at a discount rate.
 

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'97 Land Cruiser
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151 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
You need to provide more info...

If this is a transmission issue, then why isn't the engine starting? Have you visually inspected the engine compartment, under the car, etc.?
If the flywheel was seized or damaged, would the engine start? I didn't think that it would.

I've inspected the engine compartment and under the car. There were no fuel leaks, cracked lines, etc. There was nothing that seemed out of the ordinary. My only indication that there was an issue (leading up to the engine shutting off) was the VERY rough shifting/lag of the transmission (more so than usual).

It's a diesel, so fuel system maintenance is vital/critical. Start by inspecting the whole fuel system, beginning by replacing all 3 fuel filters/screeners including the one in the fuel tank. The main filter & pre-filter need to be replaced every 10K, at a minimum.

Then do a diesel purge, at least twice.

If you don't know what a diesel purge is, use the search function. It's been posted ad nauseum.

The OM606 engine is notorious for developing fuel leaks, which works against the principles of the diesel fuel delivery system being fully dependent on proper fuel pressure. Replacing fuel lines and delivery seals are the only cure, fortunately the parts are dirt cheap from the dealer.


After the engine is running as it should, then start diagnosing the transmission
.

As for the proper oil in any W124 (gas or diesel), the proper spec grade is diesel rated 15W-40 dinosaur oil. Chevron Delo400 is excellent & meets MB requirements. I buy it in 50+ gallon quantities from Costco at a discount rate.
The fuel system has been meticulously maintained. The filters and O-rings have been replaced on a regular basis (they have under 10k on them) as well as the fuel lines. My dad was the previous owner (I took it off his hands about six months ago) and was very meticulous about maintaining it.

Thanks for the replies. :cheers:

Edit: I'm curious if there's any way to mount this engine in a TJ Jeep. That would be a fun project. lol. I've heard that mating a transfer case would be a PITA though.
 

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'95 E300 DIESEL, '91 600SEL, '92 600SEL
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You're more likely to seize the injection pump before the flywheel, at least 10X over. Add to that the fact that the Ultra low sulfur junk diesel fuel slowly eats away at the older injection pumps. If any work was done to the IP and improperly torqued, it will seize at some point.

Sulfur is to the injection pump what oil is to an engine. Run an additive such as Lubro Moly super diesel or Red Line diesel fuel catalyst with each fill up.

Also, you did not mention when the fuel tank screener filter was replaced.
 

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For all I know, you could have a vacuum pump failure, which might explain the weird shifting and such, but I still don't have enough info to work with. Have you confirmed whether the engine actually turns over?
 

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'97 Land Cruiser
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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
You're more likely to seize the injection pump before the flywheel, at least 10X over. Add to that the fact that the Ultra low sulfur junk diesel fuel slowly eats away at the older injection pumps. If any work was done to the IP and improperly torqued, it will seize at some point.

Sulfur is to the injection pump what oil is to an engine. Run an additive such as Lubro Moly super diesel or Red Line diesel fuel catalyst with each fill up.

Also, you did not mention when the fuel tank screener filter was replaced.
It was replaced just over a year ago.

For all I know, you could have a vacuum pump failure, which might explain the weird shifting and such, but I still don't have enough info to work with. Have you confirmed whether the engine actually turns over?
As far as I know, the engine turns over. When I turn the key, it shakes/sounds just like it does any other time I start it up (short of it actually firing up, in this case). I apologize that I can't explain this issue in greater detail (my dad had the same question).

Edit: One more thing. When the car started to decelerate, every light in the dash (under the speedometer) came on.
 

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Is the serpentine belt still attached and tight? Post up some pics of your engine compartment
 

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'95 E300 DIESEL, '91 600SEL, '92 600SEL
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Edit: One more thing. When the car started to decelerate, every light in the dash (under the speedometer) came on.
Now we're starting to get somewhere. This symptom is starting to look like a electrical issue, and fits the pattern of worn out voltage regulator/brushes and/or bad alternator.

As stated by Zeitgeist, check the belt & tensioner for obvious reasons, but without proper electricity even a diesel will eventually stall out.
 

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'97 Land Cruiser
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Discussion Starter #11
Is the serpentine belt still attached and tight? Post up some pics of your engine compartment
Yup. It's still tight and there are no cracks (it's fairly new). I'll try to post up some pictures in the morning.

Now we're starting to get somewhere. This symptom is starting to look like a electrical issue, and fits the pattern of worn out voltage regulator/brushes and/or bad alternator.

As stated by Zeitgeist, check the belt & tensioner for obvious reasons, but without proper electricity even a diesel will eventually stall out.
I had electrical gremlins this summer (ex. radio and a/c wouldn't work, lights went out, etc.) and I replaced the alternator and battery. It seemed to be doing fine since.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Here are a few pictures. The alternator is in good shape (again...only about three months old) and the cables are properly connected. There are no fuel leaks (the lines in the engine bay were replaced six months ago).
 

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'95 E300 DIESEL, '91 600SEL, '92 600SEL
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I hate to sound obvious, but your emergency stop valve located on top of the main fuel filter is busted.

Without this, your engine isn't going to run (no fuel = no ignition).

I would also check the terminal connections on the back of the alternator as well.

Also, your upper radiator hose is collapsed which is a sign of imminent failure.

When you stated that you had electrical gremlins, has the engine wiring harness been replaced with the updated type that is not self-destructive along with a new OVP relay???
 

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'87 300TD/'90 300D/'94 Quattro/'89 Vanagon TDI/'01 EV Weekender VR6
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I hate to sound obvious, but your emergency stop valve located on top of the main fuel filter is busted.

Without this, your engine isn't going to run (no fuel = no ignition).

I would also check the terminal connections on the back of the alternator as well.

Also, your upper radiator hose is collapsed which is a sign of imminent failure.

When you stated that you had electrical gremlins, has the engine wiring harness been replaced with the updated type that is not self-destructive along with a new OVP relay???
I think your observations are right on the mark.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I hate to sound obvious, but your emergency stop valve located on top of the main fuel filter is busted.

Without this, your engine isn't going to run (no fuel = no ignition).

I would also check the terminal connections on the back of the alternator as well.

Also, your upper radiator hose is collapsed which is a sign of imminent failure.

When you stated that you had electrical gremlins, has the engine wiring harness been replaced with the updated type that is not self-destructive along with a new OVP relay???
The valve itself isn't broken. Whatever was mounted on the threaded shaft (a plastic knob or whatever) was broken/lost/misplaced years ago.

The the terminals on the back of the alternator are fine.

I didn't catch the hose. I'll look into that. Out of curiosity...what would cause that?

The engine harness itself has not been replaced. I just replaced the fuse in the relay and that took care of it. I'll look at replacing the relay.

Thanks for the help so far guys.
 

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You got to start somewhere. Without fuel, your engine will never run.

If you are really convinced that your stop valve and the rest of your fuel system is good, then I don't think there is anybody on this board who will be able to guide you in the right direction. After all, it is your car and you have to choice to fix it or not.

There are other things that are not right with your car (among others):

1) You are using the wrong size battery for that engine.

2) You are using the wrong type of coolant

If you tell me that it's always been dealer maintained, I will simply respond that was probably one of the worst (although most expensive) places to get your car worked on.

The dealer techs these days don't know how to deal with these cars since they are lost without a OBD-II port to plug their StarTek laptop into.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
You got to start somewhere. Without fuel, your engine will never run.

If you are really convinced that your stop valve and the rest of your fuel system is good, then I don't think there is anybody on this board who will be able to guide you in the right direction. After all, it is your car and you have to choice to fix it or not.

There are other things that are not right with your car (among others):

1) You are using the wrong size battery for that engine.

2) You are using the wrong type of coolant

If you tell me that it's always been dealer maintained, I will simply respond that was probably one of the worst (although most expensive) places to get your car worked on.

The dealer techs these days don't know how to deal with these cars since they are lost without a OBD-II port to plug their StarTek laptop into.
It's a Mercedes-Benz battery for the E300D, purchased directly from my local dealer.

Wrong coolant? Ok.
 

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It's a Mercedes-Benz battery for the E300D, purchased directly from my local dealer.

Wrong coolant? Ok.
The dealer sold you a group 48 battery, while your diesel should be using a group 49 size battery. It needs the larger battery to crank that engine while supplying full power to the glow plugs to light the fuel.

You got generic Prestone type green coolant in your car. MB spec requires a unique coolant which is completely neutral and has a ph level of 7. Only use genuine MB coolant or Zerex G-5 (available at NAPA and is the same as MB coolant).

Any other coolant will cause harm to your cooling system as evidenced by your hose. Start thinking about a complete coolant flush and replace all hoses.
 

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1999 ML320
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Maybe you just have a big vacuum leak somewhere?

I have to say that grinding noises are never good. Even a low vacuum shift would be hard but not grinding...

I'm going to have to go with vacuum pump, even if it was replaced recently.

Was the grinding noise coming from the gear select area or further forward in the engine compartment (dash)?

As for coolant my Zerex G5 is green don't ask my why but it is, so color alone is not an indicator. Not that it has anything to do with this guys problem.

All fluid levels are still normal after the incident? Oil? transmission?
 

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For all we know it could be a snapped timing chain, although the vacuum pump usually becomes noisy before it gives up on life.

Diagnose fuel system first as it is the cheapest & easiest to do and then proceed further as needed.

Zerex G5 has a pale yellow, almost urine looking dye and comes in gold jugs.

Plain old Zerex (NON-G5) is indeed green.
 
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