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Old 09-28-2003, 04:10 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 211
Hydraulic strut access through carpet HELP

I have a 1985 300TD wagon (California WITH rear third seat) Anybody know how to access the rear (hydraulic) struts tops through carpet floor? I am at my wits end - I know that drivers side strut leaks - but by the way the fluid is flowing down the coil spring and NOT just down the stur itself, I wonder if the hyd line is leaking at connection? The car (with no hyd pressure sits extremely low, and accord to manual - springs should hold most of the weight in drive ready condition. So I would first like to check if the strut is bad or if it is connection - need to access under carpet. Am planning to change springs as well. I have removed 3 scews at rear of this (carpet covered) steel panel - the ones just forward of the third seat storage "well" area. Also have removed 2 screws in carpet itself - panel wants to lift out at side of 3 screws - but feels like it will bend first. I have looked and looked at area behind middle seats where cover goes downward (90 degree angle) - No screws. Please help. Thanks Steve. P.S. the 3 screws go through a long wood piece that goes over steel plate tabs.

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Old 09-28-2003, 04:44 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 8,150
Should come out -- but check for a couple screws in the third seat/storage compartment area.

It may just be stuck, too -- the one in the TE was.

1972 220D ?? miles
1988 300E 200,012
1987 300D Turbo killed 9/25/07, 275,000 miles
1985 Volvo 740 GLE Turobodiesel 218,000
1972 280 SE 4.5 165, 000 - It runs!
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Old 09-28-2003, 05:36 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Colleyville, Texas
Posts: 2,695
Fold the center and third seat Down. Look carefully at the carpet just behind the second row of seats. You will find 2-3 screws in the carpet. They are 3.5 inches from the back of the center seats, where the seatback folds. And 7-8 inches from the wheel well. Unscrew these and then fold the rear carpet up. The 2 screws hold a metal plate that the carpet is attached to. About the front 7-10 inches are of the carpet is attached to the sheet metal. You may have to pry up the metal section. It should only require a slight pressure to pry it up. Once you remove the metal section you will see 2 round black rubber units. These are the access covers to the top of the hydraulic units. Remove them with a screwdriver and then you should be able to fit 2 wrenches into the hole to tighten or loosen the hydraulic line.


PS Sometimes the 90 degree bend in the sheetmetal can deform. so work the sheet metal to get it to release from the area between the 2nd seat and the body section that the 90 degree is sticking down into. Once you remove it pend or hammer the unit to a 90 degree shape. If it sticks out it will catch on the 2nd seat as you fold it up and down.
1970 220D, owned 1980-1990
1980 240D, owned 1990-1992
1982 300TD, owned 1992-1993
1986 300SDL, owned 1993-2004
1999 E300, owned 1999-2003
1982 300TD, 213,880mi, owned since Nov 18, 1991- Aug 4, 2010 SOLD
1988 560SL, 100,000mi, owned since 1995
1965 Mustang Fastback Mileage Unknown(My sons)
1983 240D, 176,000mi (My daughers) owned since 2004
2007 Honda Accord EX-L I4 auto, the new daily driver
1985 300D 264,000mi Son's new daily driver.(sold)
2008 Hyundai Tiberon. Daughters new car

Last edited by dmorrison; 09-28-2003 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 09-29-2003, 01:17 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 211
Thanks for the replies - Total of 5 screws removed - I can see the square black cover to access hydraulic hose connections. The ends of the steel plate cover come up just enough to get my fingers under it. The rear (third seat side) of plate moves up 1/2" to 1" , seems as though something else is holding it - may glue from insulation or sound proofing, or maybe it was just glued down - is that what happened to either of you? I just want to know that my chances of destroying something will be linited. Thanks again. The 90 degree part will budge 1/4" to 1/2" but I'm really prying it. Any other info is greatly appreciated. Steve.
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Old 09-29-2003, 11:36 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: En te l'eau Rant
Posts: 5,393
It's just some mastic holding it down. You may wind up bending it slightly before it pops loose.

Never a dull moment at Berry Hill Farm.
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