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Old 10-29-2002, 07:17 PM
Posts: n/a
Question power steering fluid

hello there,

i have recently aquired my father's 1992 400E with 214k miles. she still pulls strong so the mileage isn't much of an issue. paired with the fact that i paid nothing for the car, i can't complain.

the question i put before you is: can i use ATF as a substitute for mercedes brand steering fluid? the reason i ask is my W108 takes only ATF as power steering fluid, so i would presume can i rock the ATF in the newer car? (which has more miles than my W108)

also, what is the chassis code for my new aquisition? W124? i'm just curious...
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Old 10-30-2002, 08:46 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: England
Posts: 1,841
Yes, W124

You may be better off asking this in the 'Tech help' part of this forum

good luck!
2.5-16v 1990 90,000m Astral Silver
2.0E 8v 1986 107,000m Black 2nd owner
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Old 10-30-2002, 08:21 PM
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thank you sir... as you can tell i'm new here.
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Old 11-01-2002, 01:30 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Vernon, CT
Posts: 1,848
The owner's manual will tell you what to use. Though I can tell you it will probably say ATF. Most of the new models take ATF as well.
1999 MB SL500 (110,000 mi)
2004 Volvo V70 2.5T (220,000 mi)
2014 Tesla Model S 85 (136,000 mi)
MBCA member
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Old 11-01-2002, 02:23 AM
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my owners manual is mia. i have the leather case with the radio guide the srs guide etc but no owners manual. i need to ask my dad about where it could be, but that guy is clueless. oh well, sucks for me.
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Old 11-01-2002, 12:08 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Saugus, CA USA
Posts: 2,023
I went looking around when it came time to change mine and found it was special MB power steering fluid and you can't use anything else. Never did find out exactly what it was, I just ordered a liter from the fast lane and called it a day
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Old 11-12-2002, 05:57 PM
MapleOne's Avatar
Neighbor to the North
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 109

Just to correct a previous member....

The new models definitely take a special Power Steering fluid.
You can put this fluid in the older models using ATF with no problems. Please do not put ATF into a newer model.

When in doubt use the proper Steering fluid from MB. The cutoff was different from model to model and I cant quite remember the exact dates.

Stay safe, I think your 400e needs P/S fluid.
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Old 12-22-2002, 11:18 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Posts: 1,006
The 11/01 factory approved service products list from MB says MB power steering fluid 000 989 88 03 OR an approved Dexon III ATF can be used for -E-class, CLK-class, SL-class, SLK-class, M-class, and G-class.

The C-class, S-class, and CL-class cars use 001 989 24 03 10 Pentosin CHF11S.

Not sure why his '92 400 car would require the special fluid other than ATF ???

Brian Toscano
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Old 12-27-2002, 09:50 PM
Ken Downing
Posts: n/a
The 92 cars made a big deal about using Mercedes Power Steering fluid.. Nowever if you read the fine print it also said you can use ATF.. I forgot what brand they said...

Mercedes and many other companys have found that making you think you can only use their oils and other fluids makes them more money.. Sad thing is all these companys go out for low bid on these fluids.. That is to say.. there is no Mercedes oil company or honda oil company or kawasaki oil company ECT.. I have run into this on my motorcycles and cars both..

The power steering pump on the cars are the same pump that they have been using from the 60s... and we used ATF in them for 40 years.. and I have ran them as much as 700 thousand miles on one 300 D with ATF and only replaced one seal because it was weeping.. I also run ATF in the front forks of my bikes and have for 40 years.. and never lost a bushing or seal.. But now that bike companys have come out with their own oils..... loosing bushings and seals are common.. And I have started to hear that lots of people are starting to have power steering box problems and pump problems using Mercedes power steering oil.. they are wearing out early.. I have to wonder why...

Can you use ATF in the power steering.. Yes.. Is it better???? I have no clue.. You can also drop by your local farm store and pick up hydrolic fluid and use it.. its clear like the Mercedes fluid whitch is also Hydrolic fluid as that is what the system is...

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