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  #1  
Old 01-05-2019, 05:36 PM
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Help! W123 fuel tank leaking

My 1981 240D developed a huge fuel tank vacuum due to a chronically clogged vent, and when i removed the cover in the trunk i found it all caved in, and leaking.


I'm looking for a parts unit in the West Palm Beach area, and/or a good used tank.



Also, could not find R & R instructions on the forum, tho i am sure they are there somewhere.



Any advice or leads on a replacement tank will be greatly appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 01-05-2019, 05:45 PM
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Call the auto salvage places. They should hopefully have one in your general vicinity. Or we have quite a few people on our parts for sale section of the site if not. There may be someone close. Just remember to inspect the inside by pulling the gauge.


You have also tested your lift pump as well and it passes. Not a really hard tank to change compared to some either.
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  #3  
Old 01-05-2019, 05:53 PM
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i think everything else is OK

Car runs great, but tank is leaking. It's not extreme, maybe a quart a day. All the pick and pulls around here are fresh out of W123's
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  #4  
Old 01-05-2019, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sun tortise View Post
Car runs great, but tank is leaking. It's not extreme, maybe a quart a day. All the pick and pulls around here are fresh out of W123's


Unfortunate. Scrap 300ds have become pretty much non existent in my Canadian maritimes area. I guess it is even Impacting southern areas like yours now as well.

I thought their existence would still be common enough near you.
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  #5  
Old 01-05-2019, 08:32 PM
vwnate1's Avatar
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Post 240D Tank Upgrade

It'll take you a little bit of time but the 1977 ~ 1985 W123 tanks fit, if you ask for one to suit a 300D you'll get two gallons larger capacity and it's a true bolt in ~ no need to change / modify anything .

Try posting a 'WANTED' notice over in the parts forums.....

For those unfamiliar with Florida, they have serious rust issues in spite of no snow / salt .
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-Nate
1982 240D creampuff 370,000 miles
1978 300CD back from the dead&1980 300CD ~ SOLD
1984 300CD KEEPER ! 430,XXX miles
1984 Euro 300TD Fully optioned SWMBO's
1974 350SLC 4 speed stickshift SOLD & missed
Krazy Kommie Ural Motos (3)
BMW Moto R60/6 Barn Find, 8,000miles
1959 VW #113 Deuxe Beetle, 36hp engine, stock
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  #6  
Old 01-06-2019, 12:37 AM
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Hopefully one of these sites will work for instructions:

W123 Service Manual
https://www.startekinfo.com/StarTek/outside/12265/?requestedDocId=12265

CD1
http://mb.bolinko.org/15/w123-mainmenu-50/w123-dokumentacja-cz-1-mainmenu-59.html
CD 2
http://mb.bolinko.org/15/w123-mainmenu-50/w123-dokumentacja-cz-2-mainmenu-83.html
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  #7  
Old 01-06-2019, 01:04 AM
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If you cannot stand the leak (I’d hate it stinking up my garage and my HOA would put me in the stocks) you can get a cheap 5 gallon gas can and some fuel lines at your local Walmart and plumb an auxiliary tank temporarily into your trunk like the WVO people do.

I used to like the $25 outboard boat tanks. Some plastic hose from Home Depot for pickup and return and you’ll b able to go for weeks till you find that elusive W123 at the yard. Shockingly, even in LA there are only a small handful of 300d cars on the lkq website. Luckily the tank is usually not a hot item.

Good luck.

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82 240D stick shift 335k miles (SOLD)
82 300SD 200k miles
85 300D Turbodiesel 160k miles
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  #8  
Old 01-06-2019, 01:42 AM
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It seems like all the wrecking yards punch holes in the fuel tanks, anyway, so I'd use caution.
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  #9  
Old 01-06-2019, 05:17 AM
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Can the tank not be "de-sucked in" (exploded?) and repaired?
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1978 300D, 373,000km 617.912, 711.113 5 speed, 160cc superpump, HX30W turbo...not yet legal
1984 240TD>300TD 121,000 miles, *sold*
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  #10  
Old 01-06-2019, 10:09 AM
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I have a tank out of a 280CE that I can sell you. Does not leak but I would have it boiled out to make sure its clean for diesel. Just send me an email at von@vonsmog.com for info.
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  #11  
Old 01-06-2019, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squiggle Dog View Post
It seems like all the wrecking yards punch holes in the fuel tanks, anyway, so I'd use caution.
Oh yeah...I forgot about this.
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82 240D stick shift 335k miles (SOLD)
82 300SD 200k miles
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  #12  
Old 01-06-2019, 03:30 PM
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Post Fuel Tank Service & Repair

Quote:
Originally Posted by NZScott View Post
Can the tank not be "de-sucked in" (exploded?) and repaired?
Yes, and easily done by competent radiator shops along with leak repairs and de rusting .

Far less $ & effort will be spent getting the 21.5 gallon tank .

FWIW, once in a while the self service junkyards fail to punch holes in the fuel tanks so it's always worth checking .

The removal isn't difficult, just remove the trunk mat and firewall held in by some #2 Phillips screws then undo the 10MM ATF bolts, fuel sender plug, go under neath and disconnect both fuel hoses , push the filler neck's rubber grommet in by your fingers and gently with draw the tank pulling the left side to wards you and *gently* guiding the filler neck out of the body ~ most yard apes will yank the tank straight back and so bend the filler neck so DO NOT allow them to do this job for you .

The in tank screen requires a 46MM ATF socket, much easier to use a 17MM ring spanner on the outlet hose connection, so far I've never had one fail to unscrew the strainer .

Once you have the strainer off and in your hand it's very easy to clean it using soap, water and an old tooth brush, BE CERTAIN IT's 100 % DRY before re installing it .

The inside of the tank can also be cleaned using soapy water when working with Diesel tanks, use the BLOW side of any tank vacuum to dry it rapidly so no rust occurs .

Easy - Peasy, if you're far from the offered 280CE tank, it can be cheaply shipped by greyhound bus, best to find a sturdy box like a $15 foot locker at any Army Surplus store, etc. as they'll tend to bend the neck if given any chance .

DO NOT use the in tank strainer from a Gasoline tank ! it has much smaller and more restrictive mesh in it .

Take the effort to buy the original M-B filler neck grommet ! the uro and other off brand ones turn into mush within a couple months of getting touched by Diesel fuel .
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-Nate
1982 240D creampuff 370,000 miles
1978 300CD back from the dead&1980 300CD ~ SOLD
1984 300CD KEEPER ! 430,XXX miles
1984 Euro 300TD Fully optioned SWMBO's
1974 350SLC 4 speed stickshift SOLD & missed
Krazy Kommie Ural Motos (3)
BMW Moto R60/6 Barn Find, 8,000miles
1959 VW #113 Deuxe Beetle, 36hp engine, stock
Junk, Rust, Arthritis, Crushed Spine,Broken Neck&Back
Memories &Peace Of Mind
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  #13  
Old 01-08-2019, 05:13 PM
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Local P'n'P has one, may be punctured

Thanks for all the advice, as usual, the Peach forum rocks! I located a 300D nearby, and i will go look @ the tank. Depending on if, or how badly it is punctured, thinking for $20, might be worth exchanging for my sucked in tank that is leaking at the seams about a quart a day.



Wondering what the best repair for a tank puncture would be. It would have to withstand my normal mix of 95% WVO and 5% R.U.G. , and the occasional diesel. I'm thinking some kind of anchor bolt combined with a washer and some sort of fuel proof rubber or neoprene gasket.



When i get up North in the Spring, i have a friend with parts units that could give me a non punctured tank if the puncture repair does not hold.
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  #14  
Old 01-08-2019, 05:43 PM
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I have good clean W123 240D & 300D fuel tanks I removed from parts cars and stored in my shed
I'm happy to wrap & ship from Texas
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  #15  
Old 01-09-2019, 12:09 PM
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Post Tank Service & Repair

Depending on co$t, the one in TEXAS might be your best way to go .

Since you've not said where you're at the repair replies might not be most accurate .

In any case, only welded repairs should ever be made to fuel tanks .

If the $20 used tank isn't too bad (I had to use a punched tank in a 1976 GMC truck, the holes were huge yet easily repaired for $35 by a Welder), buy it and take it to a competent Welder, you'll know the competent one because he'll look at it and say 'no problem, cost $X' and do it the same day if not while you wait .

This is where you live comes in ~ in NYC you'll have to hunt a bit, in any outlying area in any state in America, you head to the Weld shop that does mufflers or fences, or Farm repairs, places like that that will have the proper experience and won't think a moment about how to properly and SAFELY weld a fuel tank .

As to how to repair it, take the junk tank too and ask him to use a bit of it's metal to gusset over the punched holes, simple, easy and cheap repair that takes less than 1/2 hour .

Don't forget to spray some glossy black Rustoleum paint over the repair when you get it home .
__________________
-Nate
1982 240D creampuff 370,000 miles
1978 300CD back from the dead&1980 300CD ~ SOLD
1984 300CD KEEPER ! 430,XXX miles
1984 Euro 300TD Fully optioned SWMBO's
1974 350SLC 4 speed stickshift SOLD & missed
Krazy Kommie Ural Motos (3)
BMW Moto R60/6 Barn Find, 8,000miles
1959 VW #113 Deuxe Beetle, 36hp engine, stock
Junk, Rust, Arthritis, Crushed Spine,Broken Neck&Back
Memories &Peace Of Mind
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