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  #1  
Old 02-22-2006, 12:27 PM
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95 E300 Diesel Glow Plug Question

Hey all,

I have a 95 E300 Diesel that has a bad glow plug and needs a new glow plug harness. I just talked to the dealer and they advise me to change all six glow plugs (the others are quite old) and the harness. Because the intake manifold must be removed they are telling me that it is quite labor intensive and will run in the area of $1,700. Does that sound right? I am not a mechanic but that seems really high to change the glow plugs and the harness. Any comments would be much appreciated. Thanks a lot.

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  #2  
Old 02-22-2006, 12:41 PM
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1. Not sure about why the glow plug harness needs replacement...

2. Glow plugs, $25/each, manifold gasket, etc. say $300 in parts.
$1400 @ $100/hour = 14 hours shop labor (almost 2 days) sounds a bit steep!

OM606 (your engine) has a reputation for 'difficult' glow plugs. Some change 'em all, some say "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Changing the GPs yourself is a bit tedious at best, and can escalate to complete "OMG! What was I thinking????" status if just one of them decides to be stubborn and stick in the aluminum head.

Others will add to this.
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  #3  
Old 02-22-2006, 12:45 PM
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how did you learn you have a bad plug?

I have a 95E300D also - and for the last 3-4 years, every once in a while (when my car is warming up) the glow plug light will come on for about 1 minute and shut off (and won't come back on again until another time I start the car). I've had them check it and they can't find anything wrong with it - so I've been living with it. I haven't seen any problems either. I bring it up in case it's the same situation with you.
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  #4  
Old 02-22-2006, 12:46 PM
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Why the Harness Needs Replacement

I was told the harness is in really bad shape - cracking etc. so it needs to be replaced. As for why they suggest replacing all six glow plugs - the majority of the labor is in getting to them so once they have removed the manifold etc., they might as well replace them all since they are all old and another could go out relatively soon. That all makes sense to me and I have no problem replacing all six. It is the overall cost that seems quite high, but maybe it is reasonable? In any case, I can't repair it myself so it is either have the dealer do it, or if they are way too high, take it to an independent mechanic.
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  #5  
Old 02-22-2006, 12:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfisher
how did you learn you have a bad plug?

I have a 95E300D also - and for the last 3-4 years, every once in a while (when my car is warming up) the glow plug light will come on for about 1 minute and shut off (and won't come back on again until another time I start the car). I've had them check it and they can't find anything wrong with it - so I've been living with it. I haven't seen any problems either. I bring it up in case it's the same situation with you.
Yeah, that actually happened to me a couple of times about six or seven months ago and then the problem went away. After that, no probs until now. But this time, I know that one of the glow plugs is out.
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Old 02-22-2006, 03:01 PM
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Just found out that the engine wiring harness runs about $800...and that the wiring harnesses have been, according to some of the posts I have read, problematic on 91-95 Mercedes. So maybe the quoted cost makes sense then. I love the car, but not cheap to keep up! I wish they still produced the old 123 300 turbo diesel...very solid car and not too hard to maintain.
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  #7  
Old 02-22-2006, 03:21 PM
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Removing the intake manifold is not difficult. It probably takes 20-30 minutes. Then you'd have access to the glow plugs. I agree there's a chance that one of the glow plugs could be stuck and break off in the head though it hasn't happened to me (yet). A major PITA if it does. I don't know about the harness. If it's just the insulation cracking, it can be patched up with electrical tape. No need to spend over a thousand replacing it.
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  #8  
Old 02-22-2006, 07:34 PM
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Wireing harness failure is extremly common on late W124's. It doesn't have much to do with the glow plugs. Actually I am kind of surprised the orignal harness lasted so long.

Now with the glow plugs they tend to get stuck in the head and snap off on these cars. If they are original chances are very good a glow plug job will involve head removal.

If I had a 606 I'd pull the glow plugs and ream the holes every year. I don't know about the NA 606 but on the turbo the manifold comes right off.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:05 PM
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Once the intake manifold is out of the way you will see why the harness needs changing. Look closely at the terminations where the sensor is screwed into the head/block. I recently did this job. It took 1 hour EACH on three of the glow plugs and less than 5 minutes on the other three. This car had 180k+ miles on it. Needed quite a bit of other stuff too.
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  #10  
Old 02-23-2006, 01:19 PM
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I have a 98 E300. I believe the setup is the same. Rest assured, it will go beyond that original quote by the time the dealer is finished with you. I'm having my glow plugs changed now. This is the third replacement set for this car. They wer changed out at 37K then about 70K and now again at about 120K. I'm already looking at over $2,000. The head will have to be removed to get to the final two glow plugs. Three already broke and were drilled out. This is also at a good indy. The change at 70K was done by the local dealer who actually blamed the previous installer (another MB dealer) That price was over 2 grand also and they talked about it being upward of 5 grand if the head was damaged. I'm not impressed with the design.

I'm waiting for the Honda diesel allegedly working it's way here. There is absolutely no way they could sell me another new MB diesel. If some older deisel looks interesting I may try it but Daimler Chrysler has seen my last dollar.

BTW, while you've got it apart have them replace the fuel hoses and connections under there.

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