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  #1  
Old 05-26-2010, 10:14 AM
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Strange sound, huge cloud of oil, air filter filled with oil, please advise!

Yesterday i was driving and all of a sudden I heard this clatter, almost like the sound of "starting fluid ping", then a huge cloud of white smoke came out the tailpipe. She kept running and oil pressure did not plummet, so I drove her 2 miles slowly, and when I parked she left a huge puddle of oil. Opening up the air filter, I see it is saturated and the filter housing is soaked. The long breather tube seems to be dripping oil also, the one that goes in the top of the air filter housing. (from the vacuum pump?)

What do you folks think happened?

I should mention that she has been super hard to shut off lately, like when the shutoff solenoid went last time.

Vacuum pump failure?

I need to drive her some, is there a way to plug a line or something so she doesn't suffer radical oil loss, or pour it all into the air filter, till I get her where she needs to go?

Yikes!

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  #2  
Old 05-26-2010, 10:18 AM
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Failed vacuum pump, or at least a failed diaphragm in the vacuum pump. When the diaphragm fails, the vacuum pump sents oil out the vent line and into the air filter housing. If it's just the diaphragm you can replace it by pulling off the cover of the pump. You'll need to pull the radiator shroud to access it. Fix is less than 2 hrs work.
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2010, 10:27 AM
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Yeah, bummer.
What do you think about plugging that breather hose so I can drive her a few miles without sucking all the oil out?

Does the vacuum pump more push the oil through the line when the diaphragm fails, or is the oil sucked through that line?
Meaning, can I just disconnect it?
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:27 AM
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don't plug it, it'll just blow the line, and dump the oil on the ground. if you have a junkyard with benzes in them, that'd be the quickest, otherwise it's time to pull the pump and order a rebuild kit.
I have a spare I can send if you need it. pulling down the parts cars is fun! pm me.
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2010, 10:55 AM
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Any sense of how quickly it uses the oil?
I have about 5 miles to go...

Maybe I could pull that line and put it in a container to catch the oil??
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Old 05-26-2010, 11:09 AM
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The catch can might work.

If you only have 5 miles to go, I would give it a shot and drive it home slowly. (Use your best judgement though) I would also buy about a gallon of oil (just in case). Check the oil level on the dipstick and fill it before you start, then after about a mile or two stop and check it to gauge how much oil it pumped out. In other words, use caution, and CONSTANTLY monitor oil pressure and oil level during the drive.
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Old 05-26-2010, 11:10 AM
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Good chance the clatter you heard were some small parts from the vacuum pump throwing themselves up into the engine. I wouldn't drive it at all until you replace the pump and pull the oil pan, checking for metal.
I'm not sure about the OM617, but lots of good 603's have been ruined by a blown vacuum pump.
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Old 05-26-2010, 01:30 PM
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I'm not sure but I think you can pull the VP off and remove the guts so it can be put back on the motor and block the oil leak.
I'd not drive it until I had the pump off and investigated the noises and verified the pump is not catastrophic.
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  #9  
Old 05-26-2010, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy Joe View Post
Yesterday i was driving and all of a sudden I heard this clatter, almost like the sound of "starting fluid ping", then a huge cloud of white smoke came out the tailpipe.
hHuge cloud of white smoke = Vacuum pump? Huh?

This sounds like a blown head gasket to me. Maybe leaking into the crank case too where it boiled and cause a massive "blowby" incident, forcing a ton of oil mist into the air filter.

Of course, I'm in the minority, so what do I know.

If it was my car and I wanted to repair and keep driving it, I'd tow the thing home the 5 miles so I could check everything before trying to fire it up again. Check all fluid levels and composition, drop the oil pan and check for metal bits, turn the engine over by hand to check for binding, etc.
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Old 05-26-2010, 07:05 PM
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The early vacuum pumps vent into the air cleaner. When the diaphragm fails it pumps oil from the crankcase directly into the air cleaner, hence the cloud of white smoke. This combined with the vacuum problems point to this as the source of the problem.
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  #11  
Old 05-26-2010, 07:22 PM
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****WTB**** 81-85 300-TD

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81-85 300-TD.
Fair to Good condition.
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Location: Houston, Texas

Please inquire through peachparts.
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  #12  
Old 05-26-2010, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UriahT View Post
Good chance the clatter you heard were some small parts from the vacuum pump throwing themselves up into the engine. I wouldn't drive it at all until you replace the pump and pull the oil pan, checking for metal.
I'm not sure about the OM617, but lots of good 603's have been ruined by a blown vacuum pump.
More of the above.
Right now it appears you have exscaped serious damage. If there is a loose piece of something hanging waitint to fall into the Timing Gears/Chains it might do so if you contiune to drive it.

If you do not have one it is time to become a member of an Auto Club that would tow you Car the distance for free. If you do it online I believe you are instantly a member.

I am curious to know if it is the Head Gasket or the Vacuum Pump.
If it was an Engine with no Vacuum Pump I would go with the Head Gasket.
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  #13  
Old 05-26-2010, 08:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kerry View Post
The early vacuum pumps vent into the air cleaner. When the diaphragm fails it pumps oil from the crankcase directly into the air cleaner, hence the cloud of white smoke. This combined with the vacuum problems point to this as the source of the problem.
And that yeilds white smoke? I'd have expected blue from all the extra oil going through the cylinders.

I've always understood white was coolant or, in rare cases, freon (although that particular white cloud didn't come out the tailpipe as I understand).

Guess I learned something new today
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  #14  
Old 05-26-2010, 08:36 PM
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it was not the white smoke that led us to point out the vacuum pump failed it was the oil soaking everything coming from the tube exiting the vacuum pump. I agree, the white smoke is an ominous sign... but OIL dumping into the motor is akin to fuel being dumped into the motor, and it would be entering early in the intake stroke, not at compression, so it would burn light gray, or white. same thing can happen if you have the timing waaay off on the injection pump, or if you have bad injectors dumping fuel into the system at the wrong time.
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  #15  
Old 05-26-2010, 08:40 PM
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Vast quantities of oil pumped into the intake produces white smoke. I once had an Austin Healey Sprite with a failed PCV valve which allowed aoil into the intake. It produced vast clouds of white smoke which misled me to think it was a headgasket. Not so.

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1985 409d 65k--sold 06
1984 300SD 315k--daughter's car
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1982 Bluebird Wanderlodge CAT 3208--Sold 2/13
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