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  #1  
Old 11-16-2007, 10:46 AM
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Oil Filter Quality - Hengst reply

Dear Mr Beck,

We appreciate your comments on our website and are happy that our customers are interested in more details of our filters.

As you did not referred to a specific filter, I assumed that you were complaining about one of our filters which are indeed filled with cotton material. This could for example be our E170HN D16 (suitable e.g. for the MB W201 series with 2.5 Turbo-Diesel) or the E196HN (MB W123/S123 and others).
These filters are parallel-flow filters and are filled with raw cotton. This filling is described in the Mercedes Benz standard (DBL 8911, dated 2006-10). As it is in German I translate the relevant paragraph: "textile fibers, preferably raw cotton, with seed vessels and other natural pollutants are allowed. Additives like wooden fibers to increase stability are admitted. (...) Synthetic fibers which allow capillaries are not to be used. To avoid channel-forming, the material has to be filled equaly up to both ends."
I hope that the translation is understandable for you.

We supply this filter in this kind of manufacturing directly to the Daimler Company as we are the OEM for this part (OE-Number A 601 180 01 09).
Thus, the filter you were suspecting to be of bad quality is indeed a standard product for one of the worlds leading carmaker!

As I understand, you found some more foreign material in a filter like bugs and metal burrs. This should not be the case and I have to assume that this is a single case. In any case, the outer material will stop these particles from entering the oil system of your engines.

I hope I could answer your doubts about the quality of our products to your satsifaction!

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Best regards

Wolfgang Stauss

- Quality assurance / Customer support -
Hengst GmbH & Co. KG
Nienkamp 55 - 85
48147 Münster-Germany

fon +49-251-20202-482
fax +49-251-20202-160
mailto:w.stauss@hengst.de
http://www.hengst.de
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  #2  
Old 11-16-2007, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGRED View Post
As I understand, you found some more foreign material in a filter like bugs and metal burrs. This should not be the case and I have to assume that this is a single case. In any case, the outer material will stop these particles from entering the oil system of your engines.
I am not buying the "single case" theory. I have found insects (similar to yellow jackets) and rocks in Hengst filters, as well as other brands.

Last edited by tangofox007; 11-16-2007 at 11:03 AM.
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  #3  
Old 11-16-2007, 11:51 AM
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Since they seem at least willing to communicate (which is more response than I would have expected), perhaps a case could be made by obtaining (five, ten, whatever) of the filters, splitting them, investigating them, and sending the company the material that was found inside.

Might lead to better quality control... might lead to a claim that we bugged the filters ourselves. Either way... at least they're talking. Might be interesting.
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Old 11-16-2007, 11:57 AM
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I agree, nice response and it seems honest.

This topic has been discussed at length in the past. I know these filters have been problematic when they break apart and lead to serious engine damage.

I've got new Hengst filters in the basement...will take a look at them later today.

Red, thanks for making the effort to contact them.
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  #5  
Old 11-16-2007, 12:13 PM
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I sent Wolfgang the link to the post in the forum and suggested he join the site to help inform our group and to get direct feedback from our members. I will say that I was pleased that within 6 hours of sending it, it had gone through the chain of commands and I had a reply from him. They took it seriously for sure.

The first filter I bought was a Mann. It came apart at the point where the two filters join. Since that time I have used Hengst. I have considered Donaldson, Hastings and Baldwin, but have not switched. I think I will stick with what I know while I consider the other brands I have mentioned (at least till I use up my current shelf full)
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  #6  
Old 11-16-2007, 01:08 PM
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Contact Mercedes and ask if any engine that they warranty uses a filter with sticks, bugs and dirt in the filter element.
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  #7  
Old 11-16-2007, 01:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwitchKitty View Post
Contact Mercedes and ask if any engine that they warranty uses a filter with sticks, bugs and dirt in the filter element.
They've gone all fleece by now I think anyway in all their warrantied vehicles (all late model).
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  #8  
Old 11-16-2007, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwitchKitty View Post
Contact Mercedes and ask if any engine that they warranty uses a filter with sticks, bugs and dirt in the filter element.
They havn't made cars that use these filters in 20 years.

I have been using OE filters in my 603 as well as Mann, Bosch, and Hengst since I got it. And since no alternative exists I think its safe to assume that all 603's and most 617's have been running on these filters since new.


I don't beleive a problem exists, I think this has been blown out of proportion. With either a 603 or 617 has there been one documented engine failure that can be traced back to a failed oil filter?

When MB spec'd these filters out over 20 years ago, their engineer's agreed that this was an acceptable filter media, and given the many hundreds of thousands of miles these engines last, I believe were correct in this.
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  #9  
Old 11-16-2007, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
I don't beleive a problem exists, I think this has been blown out of proportion. With either a 603 or 617 has there been one documented engine failure that can be traced back to a failed oil filter?
Well, if I have an oil related failure before I reach 600K miles I'll know what to blame. I guess they will owe me a new engine for spec'ing these "inadequate" filters.
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  #10  
Old 11-16-2007, 03:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post


When MB spec'd these filters out over 20 years ago, their engineer's agreed that this was an acceptable filter media, and given the many hundreds of thousands of miles these engines last, I believe were correct in this.
The "specs" might be adequate. Problem is, the specs don't include some of the debris that is actually being put in the finished product.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
I don't beleive a problem exists, I think this has been blown out of proportion. With either a 603 or 617 has there been one documented engine failure that can be traced back to a failed oil filter?
Catastrophic failure is hardly a meaningful measure of oil filtration effectiveness.

Last edited by tangofox007; 11-16-2007 at 03:31 PM.
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  #11  
Old 11-16-2007, 03:44 PM
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Dumbing down the process

Quote:
Originally Posted by tangofox007 View Post
Catastrophic failure is hardly a meaningful measure of oil filtration effectiveness.
Agreed. The dual-chamber filter system (in which some oil is continuously filtered and returned to the oil pan) is superior to a simple pressure-path-only filter. For diesels, it was thought that removing as much soot and other combustion products from the oil was important (and it is!). That's probably one reason why it's possible for these engines to last so long. It's also more expensive and probably why Mercedes chose to drop it in favor of the simpler system. Why give the customers prime rib if they're happy with hamburger?

Jeremy
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  #12  
Old 11-16-2007, 04:24 PM
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Do ANY of you have any evidence that filter content has "degraded" in the years since these cars were new? Did anyone cut up an OM617 filter in 1976, 1985, 1992, and 2005? If so, was there any noticable difference in them? I found some NOS oil filters on eBay for MB diesels from the 60's, I posted a thread but nobody got them. Right then and there, an interested party would've been able to buy a pack of vintage filters, open em up, and compare contents to today's filters. Nobody bid, were they afraid the results would reveal that there is no problem? I don't know. You don't even know how long the media in the filter has been that way. For all you know, you've been using a filter filled with "crap" for over 30 years and hundreds of thousands of miles, and only now is it a problem. Choose whatever you want, but I'm just sayin'...
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  #13  
Old 11-16-2007, 04:36 PM
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I agree, but I HAVE noticed that in the more recent Hengst filters there is crap falling out of the little "slits" in the upper section of the canister that did not used to occur. 4 years ago I used primarily bosch and sometimes hengst, and they never had junk falling off them. Now there's flakes of debris falling off of them when taken out of the package. (only off the hengst ones) Perhaps the quality has gone down to save $$ (wouldn't be suprised)

Frams are heavier (quite a bit heavier metal) and the canister has circular holes rather than "slits" so there's likely better flow, and the material is spotless and debris free. They even come in a sealed plastic bag inside the box! (as do bosch ones) The only thing they lack is the copper drain plug washer for some reason, but those are 10 cents online....so I just bought a bunch. Thats the main reason I use them. I've never had junk fall off a bosch or OEM/dealer MB filter. Those would be my alternative should the Frams not be produced anymore. Hengst/Mann/Purolator seem to have the most issues. And, the bosch filters are only $8, the dealer ones are now $17!!!! Yeah right! Hengst, are $9...and of inferior quality.

Best choices:

1. Fram
2. Bosch
3. OEM/MB filters

The rest have too much junk in them/falling out of them.

Imagine if a pine needle or twig chunk made its way into a piston cooling oil jet/sprayer in the bottom end...that'd completely block the spray, and the piston would be starved of the necessary oil. Or into the turbo bearings....or the valvetrain lube jets.....
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  #14  
Old 11-16-2007, 05:32 PM
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I am sure any filter manufacture would be liable to replace engines if they were the cause of engine failure. Cause is the keyword. A pine needle preventing oil flow would in my humble opinion qualify as a cause.

Maybe there are counterfit filters running around? I have never seen anything come close to coming out of the filter holes.
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1983 300SD 272,000 Miles "Aristotle"
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  #15  
Old 11-16-2007, 05:56 PM
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My last order of 4 Hengst filters that I bought had junk falling out of the upper section slots in multiple places. I cleaned them off and used them anyways, but still, that should not be happening. It was small pieces of some sort of organic debris. Using Fram's and Bosch's now, so it won't be an issue anymore....
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'15 GLK250 Bluetec 78k - mine - (OC-80,500)
'17 Metris(VITO!) - 8k - wifes (OC-10k)
'01 E320 Wagon - 159k - mine (OC-160,000)
'89 420SEL 166k - mine (OC-167,000)
'01 E320 - 171k - dad's (OC-171,500)
'07 E350 Wagon - 131k - dad's (OC-132,500)
'01 SL500 - 49k - dad's (OC-52,000)
'09 E350 4matic Sedan - 129k - Brothers (OC-128,000)
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