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Old 01-05-2001, 08:35 PM
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crap.. just picked up my car from a dealer after a regular 3000 mile oil change. the service advisor said that i have an oil leak. the car has only 42K miles. i bought the car when it had 38.5K miles and i had the oil changed by the same dealer then. at that time, the mechanic told me that the car was in a great shape.

so my questions are:
1) is this a common problem with this engine/model/year?
2) is this a serious problem that needs to be dealt with right away?
3) how much should i expect to spend?
4) how do i know if the dealer is telling me the truth? after i drove the car back home, i looked at the driveway but there were no oil marks on the pavement.

however, i have noticed that the low engine oil indicator comes on when i push the car hard when the engine is cold. it would be one for maybe 10-20 seconds then it goes off. once the engine is warm, the light doesn't come on regardless of how hard i push the car. i didn't think much of it. is this a sign of an oil leak?

please help. when i bought this car, i was expecting a fine mercedes experience. i've had the car only for 5 months yet it has given me more problems than my 4 year old honda.

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Old 01-05-2001, 10:10 PM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Suwanee, GA, USA
Posts: 4,712
Did you get the extended warranty? Where did the Tech say the oil leak was located.

Slight oil leaks can be part of owning this engine. I have seen the power steering pump leak more than anything else.
Donnie Drummonds
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Old 01-05-2001, 11:14 PM
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i am not sure if i have an extended warranty as i bought this car second hand. i didn't ask the original owner. is this something that i can find out with the VIN number? the mechanic said it's on the right side but didn't say specifically where.

also, i've been using synthetic oil. can this be the cause of the leak? i don't know if the previous owner (< 38.5K miles) was using synthetic. but i've been using synthetic for the last 4K miles or so.)


[Edited by wyoo on 01-05-2001 at 11:22 PM]
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Old 01-05-2001, 11:36 PM
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oil leak? 94 E420

I own a 93 400e. Yeah, back in the good old days, when the E was where it belonged, gol darn it, BEHIND the number, these newfangled cars....

I have both an oil leak and a power steering pump leak.

My car leaks oil out of the driver's front cam seal. I have had two mechanics and my brother tell me it is no big deal. The last mechanic said if that was the only oil leak I had at 90k I was lucky.

I just live with them, swimming in leaking fluids, driving my beloved Mercedes - and not worrying about it.

Now the oil light - you gotta get that checked out.


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Old 01-06-2001, 10:26 AM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: Location: Norcross, GA
Posts: 119
I think you have the same or similar engine as my '92 400E...
I have 86K miles on the car and I have struggled with a few leaks. Here is what I have noticed:

1 - Driver's side front of engine - Power Steering leak - It was significant and very very common on the 119 engine. I had my power steering pump rebuilt and it leaks no more ! Wasn't cheap...about 600 but I figured if my mechanic was gonna pull the pump for a seal or two, go ahead and replace/repair all the potential leak areas

2 - Small leak toward the front lower engine - doesn't look like a head seal but can't really tell. I just notice a small amount of dark thick oil lingering aroung the front of my oil pan. My mechanic said don't bother.

3 - Rear leak at bell housing...look slike a rear crank seal...again, minor and mechanic said no worries unless it gets extreme. I had a significant tranny leak problem in my '87 300e and when that pulled it to re-seal I had them go ahead and fix the crank seal while the tranny was pulled.

4 - Passenger side valve cover gasket - previous owner had a hack of a mechanic that tried to fix a minor valve cover leak....didn't follow MB procedures and I had oil blowing all over the place...Gotthat fixed without issue by high quality MB mechanic..

If the leaks are not costing you oil volume between oil service and no puddles of oil oooz onto your garage floor, it's not a problem. Just keep an eye on them.
'87 300E
'92 400E
'06 ML350
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Old 01-06-2001, 10:32 AM
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Yep, that's the way I look at it. The car seems happy, the mechanic is happy, I am happy. So this model leaks a little oil and PS fluid. If those are the major issues, I can co-habitate peacefully with that.

When I open it up in the fast lane with the roof open, all is forgiven.

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Old 01-06-2001, 12:11 PM
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SEEEEE!!! This is what happens when you only change your oil every 7,000 miles.

Just kidding. I'm hoping you have a since of humor.

Have a great weekend,
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Old 01-06-2001, 12:26 PM
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you guys are great!

thanks for your replies. i am not as worried as before. phew.. i don't see any puddle of oil in my driveway so i am guessing that the leak is small. i will check the engine oil level from time to time and see how much oil (if any) i am losing.

now about the low engine oil indicator, has anyone experienced something like that?

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Old 01-06-2001, 12:35 PM
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When did the light come on? Before or after you had a mechanic look at for the oil leaks?

When was the last time you checked the Oil level? Check it about a minute or so after you shut the engine down (after the engine has warmed up sufficiently).
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Old 01-06-2001, 01:05 PM
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Did I mention that my odometer runs twice as fast as a normal car?


93 400e
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Old 01-06-2001, 01:20 PM
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low engine light

i live near highway. so when i am in a hurry in the morning, i don't fully warm up the engine. i take the car on the highway and let the V8 do it's thing. when i push the car hard, the light would come up, then in 10-20 seconds later, the light goes off. but it only happens when the engine is cold. and it only happens once during the first 2-3 min of driving. once the engine is warm, the light doesn't come on.

this problem was there even before the mechanic pointed out about the leak. but i didn't think too much about it because i manually checked the oil level and it was fine.

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