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  #1  
Old 05-17-2003, 10:23 PM
blackmercedes's Avatar
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Are we really worried about engines wearing out?

One of the most hotly debated topics on this board has to do with oil. Oil changing methods, oil changing intervals, oil types, oil filters, oil viscosities, and so on. Do a search with the keyword "oil" and prepare for a lifetime's worth of reading.

Why?

Are we all that worried about our engines dying an early death? If we change the oil every 3-6000 miles or so, and use a good quality (dino or synth) oil and filter combo, will any of us face premature engine failure? Will it make any difference if you use a topsider or drain method? Will increasing your interval from 4000 to 4500 miles make the difference that leads to a premature engine failure or early wear?

Now, really long intervals do make a difference, and that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about realistic (less than 6,000 miles or so) intervals.

For those of us with late model Mercedes', I think the last thing that will break the bank is going to be any kind of lubricated part repair. I think that the lubricated bits in my engine will be going strong long after many electrical parts and transmissions have given out. I see things like O2 sensors, MAS's and such becoming failure items. Wiring harnesses and engine accessories will crumble/wear long before rings or pistons give out.

What about ACC/AC systems? They have all kind of bits that can wear/break, and probably will long before any engine parts do. Expensive parts they can be, too.

I see lots of 10-15 year old MB's that need suspension work, but the engine is strong and tight. Bushings, shocks, etc. wear out faster than a Mercedes engine.

There was a recent thread where someone got uptight about the fact that using a Topsider might not get the last few cc's of engine oil out. Cripes! Just change the bloody oil and filter using the method you like best, and use a reasonable interval. Stop saving for engines and start saving for pretty much everything else on the car.

A stranger happening onto the board would think that we're all paranoid about early engine wear!

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  #2  
Old 05-17-2003, 10:48 PM
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Well put, John!
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  #3  
Old 05-18-2003, 01:13 AM
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John, I agree with you entirely.

Properly maintained, our engines will last far longer than anything else. Longer than any of us will ever keep our cars.

Many techs have posted that the heads need valve jobs every 250,000 miles. And that the bottom ends of these engines never wear out. Good for a 1,000,000 miles. Will any of us ever drive and keep our cars long enough to accumulate 1,000,000 miles? Hell no.

If we try, we'll get nickel and dimed replacing electrical components, and rebuilding transmissions, and spending $2,200 replacing evaporator cores.
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  #4  
Old 05-20-2003, 04:01 AM
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Good points ..... I think it comes from horror stories about having to rebuild/replace an engine $$$.

Story:

Years ago I was at a BMW dealership as a mechanic started a new 7-series aluminum V8 after its first oil change. There was a horrible clank sound. The whole shop stopped and looked over as what seemed like the Exxon Valdez of an oil spill under the car.

The tech was messing around and overfilled the engine to about double or something like that of what it should have been filled with. The engine hydraulically locked and broke the block. We were all had the look of horror on our faces, especially the careless tech.

The real horror came when the shop had to pay for a new short block: $18K. The car had less than 5,000 miles on it.

Haasman
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  #5  
Old 05-20-2003, 12:49 PM
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Did you hear what happened to the carless tech?
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  #6  
Old 05-20-2003, 01:21 PM
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The tech was told he had to pay for half the engine. He wanted to quit. But .... remarkably the shop had an insurance that paid for it all except a small deductible .... lucky guy, lucky shop!

Lebenz- I was thinking about this over the weekend working on one of the cars. Working in a shop where one's fortune is balanced against the clock, I think it is easier to make mistakes. I realize that I have done some real stupid things as well, but I have the luxury of not being on the clock.

That being said, carelessness has no excuse and certainly putting in double the amount of oil is negligent, but not double-checking the oil level prior to starting the engine is plain criminal.

Haasman
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Last edited by haasman; 05-20-2003 at 01:30 PM.
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  #7  
Old 05-20-2003, 04:46 PM
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Funny how we worry and fret over proper maintenance and service intervals of our MBs...

...but are any of us just as fastiduous when it comes to our personal health?

Change the oil every 3000 miles, but don't see a doctor unless something hurts!

What good would it be to die and leave loved ones while a meticulously-kept MB sits in the garage...awaiting an estate auction?
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  #8  
Old 05-26-2003, 01:17 PM
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I think it may have to do with the fact that these engines can be very expensive to rebuild or replace should they fail. The engine in my '87 TD would cost about $5,000 to replace with a rebuilt engine. I agree there is some serious nit picking, but I guess it's the fear of messing something up and paying big bucks in the end that causes this. There are WAY too many variables to come up with the perfect oil and oil change interval for everyone to follow. It's like comparing car insurance rates. I always tell people who don't know much about cars that the 2 things they need to keep an eye and change regularly is the oil and water. I don't care what you drive, a Yugo or a Rolls Royce. You could never change your sparkplugs or air filter, sure the engine won't run smooth, but forget your oil and the engine wont run at all. I guess since these cars are engineered to such high standards, that tends to make people want to maintain them to the same standards, which lends itself to being over maintained.
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  #9  
Old 05-26-2003, 05:29 PM
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G-Benz you're right

G-Benz writes:
====================================================
Funny how we worry and fret over proper maintenance and service intervals of our MBs...

...but are any of us just as fastiduous when it comes to our personal health?
===================================================

Until a few years ago I used to take better care of my cars than of my own health. Now, I figure that if my car gets regular services and check-ups, so will I.

As far as cars are concerned, we ARE more fastidious and picky about our cars. We have a higher level of expactation, so we tend to go overboard in the feeding and care of our cars.

That's why it is usually better to buy a used Mercedes than a new anything else. A used Mercedes tends to be a better bargain than a new car of any other brand.



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