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Old 03-10-2001, 08:31 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 63
Hiya friends,

I recently purchased an '83 300SD. I did not see any wet spots on the engine when I went to look at it or for a couple of months after I bought it. I did my first oil change at 3k and used Shell Rotella instead of the Castrol 20w50 that was used by the PO. I installed a Deutsch oil filter. I typically drive the car to and from work with a top speed of about 50-55 mph and had noticed oil consumption of about 1 quart per 1000 miles. This was with the Castrol. When i changed the oil, I noticed that there was a wet spot behind the exhaust manifold. Nothing horrible but it was still wet. I got on the interstate for the first time since the test drive/purchase and noticed alot of smoke in the rearview. This went away after about 100 miles so I thought that it was possibly related to injectors. Anyway at 120 miles I stopped and checked the oil. It was about a quart low and there was a slight dripping of oil from the bottom of the engine. Also noticed that the exhaust smelled like oil burning rather than yourusual bus smell. Topped it of and came back home.
Opened the hood and removed the air cleaner cover and found a good bit of oil in there. It was in parts of the filter and there was a small puddle in the bottom of the air cleaner housing. Removed the housing and the turbo boost line and there was oil at either end but no obstructions.
Wiped everything out and replaced the air filter. Seems to run better but Makes a little noise when going past 2000 RPM up or down. It had lacked power sometimes and seemed strong other times prior to this. The performance would change from one drive to another. I could go to work in the morning and it would be doggy and then at lunch it would be almost peppy. This does not seem to be related to the ambient temperature. It starts easily at 25 degrees F.

Sorry to ramble but I wanted to get all of the symptoms in there for the gurus.

Thanks in advance,

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Old 03-10-2001, 10:12 PM
Wm. Lewallen
Posts: n/a
Sounds like the seals(rings) on your turbo have gone bad. That is one reason you see oil at the end of the exhaust. Another reason could be excessive blow-by which would be caused by worn rings, which would cause low compression and make the car hard to start. You say it starts easily at 25F,so the comp. must be fairly good. You can do a comp. check(24-30bar).
If you do need to rebuild your turbo, don't despair. There's not to much to it. I rebuilt the one on my 1982 300D turbo last summer. Cost of parts:$22.63. And that included shipping. If you do rebuild your turbo, just be sure and mark the parts before you take it apart. If you want the address of the place I got the parts for the turbo, let me know and I'll send you their toll-free phone number.
Bill Lewallen Lexington,Ky. Where diesels purr and turbos whirr.
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Old 03-10-2001, 10:21 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Posts: 758
Welcome Matt

Greetings Matt,

I think I posted a response to a thread you left on my original post. At any rate welcome to the forum. Not being much on here much longer than you, and owning a diesel MB probably the same amount of time I can only give observations from what I read. I have an '80 300TD which originally was delivered to me with 20W-50 and seemed to blow a lot less smoke than after the change to Rotella 15W-40. I now put Pennzoil multigrade 15W-40 to see if there's a difference. I get start-up oil burning then it subsides, but also have what I think is an oil leak through the vacuum pump hose to the intake manifold as well. You might want to check yours. Mine leaks at idle speed and can't tell how much during cruising speed. Most of that can be fixed with a new diaphragm kit from the part store. The other leaking you see on the back side of the engine is probably caused by a dry or brittle cracked valve cover seal which can also be bought from the parts shop. The blue smoke you see could be from a number of things as my thread points out, but start with the easiest first and elaborate from there if need be. Valve seals, to valve liners to piston rings and liners. Start with perhaps a different type of oil and go from there. Keep us posted on your venture.

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Old 03-10-2001, 11:08 PM
longston's Avatar
Another View. . .
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Mark West, CA
Posts: 787
Subjective, But Relative...

I have never liked Shell or Pennzoil products much. There's too much wax/paraffin in it. And according to our resident diesel oil Guru, Larry Bible, Chevron Delo 400 is best. This was recently backed up by a research chemist at an independent testing laboratory I was speaking with. His inside advice was that from what he had seen, it was the best all round motor oil.

Personally, my car came to me from the second owner with an 80K mile history of synthetic oil (Mobil 1) in the crankcase. You can use any motor oil with a CH API rating or better so don't think that you need to use "diesel engine oil". And, you can almost always expect diesels to use and leak a little oil, it's just part of the territory.

You might want to add Redline Diesel Fuel Catalyst/85+ to your car. First use a whole bottle, then add about 1/3 per fill up. It really does make a difference. My car has been using it for the same 80K miles, hardly smokes at all and has plenty of power. The additive raises the cetane numbers several points, which is important in Mercedes diesels.

You can buy redline products here online at PartsShop. But for detailed information on them, go to

BTW, there also is a specific Diesel Discussion forum here as well.
"We drive into the future using only our rearview mirror."
- Marshall McLuhan -

Scott Longston
Northern California Wine Country...
"Turbos whistle, grapes wine..."
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Old 03-14-2001, 02:03 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 63
Damned Oil

Hi folks,

Ordered some valve stem seals,(KY Bill and Super Turtle), oil filler cap (had some oil there too), valve cover gasket and fuel filters. Picked up some DFC and added a bottle to my tank for the first treatment. Will replace the seals, etc in the next couple of days. Should be a hoot! I'm also going to look into that banjo rascal and see what I have there as there are just some plain old performance issues. Will take care of the fundamentals first. Thanks to all for advice, part numbers,Valve stem replacement procedures, locations of Redline dealers(Longston, what gear is this Suzuki in?) and encouragement. Finally got the DFC at Pep Boys. Hate the location. Just waiting to get creamed pulling out of there.
Larry, as usual you are our lighthouse for all things diesel. Will you marry me? I'm sure you get that alot. I searched on "LarryBible" "marry" and got 62 hits. Pretty good. "Mcamara" "dumbass" got 65.

About the turbo. Searched on "boost" and found a post about 0-60 times and the turbo really kicking in at 2500 rpm. Mine shifts at 2500. Suggestions?


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Old 03-14-2001, 02:25 AM
ymsin's Avatar
Driver, Mercedes-Benz
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Malaysia
Posts: 1,645
We have a company that runs a fleet of buses running on diesel and Chevron (Caltex) had a test run on our buses using Delo400 as a standard.

The performance of the diesel engine displayed a marked improvement, together with efficient combustion and reduction in smoke.

We were also present at the launch where the results of the standards were displayed and since then, I would recommend the use of Delo400 being the premium diesel oil.

Give it a try. We did, and it worked.

... Kerry

126 tailed by a 203, 129 leading the pack.
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Old 03-14-2001, 07:32 AM
engatwork's Avatar
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Soperton, Ga. USA
Posts: 11,968
project 300D update

I have changed the oil in the 1985 300D twice now and have gone with Delo 400 both times. Yesterday I took a day off from work and adjusted the valves and replaced one of the motor mounts and one shock - will do the other one after I get another shock. The valve adj. eliminated approximately 85% of the vibration that I was experiencing during idle and quietened down the car alot. I am going to replace the timing chain and tensioner within the next few weeks. I am no longer getting oil in the bottom of my air filter housing and after using Gunk and pressure washing the engine it looks great. I have a leaky fuel injector that I will be addressing later this week.
'85 300D
'95 E320
'97 CRV (wifes)
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