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  #1  
Old 04-19-2006, 03:43 PM
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Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 90
1992 500E radiator replacement

Back in January 2006 I had the coolant in my 92 500E flushed. Last week, my radiator blew--the neck at the top of the radiator had snapped right at the point where the clamp is located. The car has 71,700 miles on it.

First question: I realize this is a common failure, but is it possible my tech made it worse when he tightened this clamp after the flush? Probably no way to prove definitively, but I am wondering.

Second question: Since I was so close to my office and had to get the car out of traffic anyway, I drove it ~0.15 miles to my parking lot, and the car ran for less than ten minutes after I dumped the coolant. I don't think the temp gauge maxed out, but the car did start to make a ticking sound at the end, like either premature ignition or something.

The shop just called and the car is ready to the tune of $1400. I had them replace all the hoses and the expansion tank--and the radiator, obviously.

I have been using this shop since August for my Miata; since taking the Benz in to them, I've spent about $2600 in repairs on it (O2 sensor, belt tensioner, and now this), all of which I know I needed, but it's still hard not to feel like I've got the word "sucker" pasted on my forehead everytime I walk in there. It is one of a handful of Bosch-authorized shops in the area, and came highly recommended, so I don't think they are clueless amateurs. But at these prices, I might as well go to the dealer--except the local dealer is worse, service-wise.

To be fair, I've owned the car since 11/2000 and these are the first major repairs I've had to do. It still sucks, because I just paid it off in March. It's as if the car knows!

Kirk
1992 500E
Pearl black/gray
Bone stock
71,700 miles

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  #2  
Old 04-19-2006, 03:56 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southeastern PA
Posts: 3,052
What's the breakdown for parts and labor? Since the transmission fluid cooling lines connect to the radiator were the rubber supply and return hoses replaced too? While replacing the radiator is straightforward, it's time-consuming. Hopefully the shop used MB coolant.
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  #3  
Old 04-19-2006, 04:02 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 3,726
You're paying too much for repairs. I would try to find a good MB only independant shop, or start doing some repairs yourself. You would have been well under $500 for that job yourself. BTW, your car is black pearl, not pearl black.
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  #4  
Old 04-19-2006, 04:35 PM
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Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 90
Answers

Ferdman: Don't have the breakdown on P&L, but will have that on Fri when pick up the car. I do know they quoted $700 something for the radiator, and it's on FastLane for $400ish. And I have stressed to them the importance of the type of coolant, and while it is not OEM, it is OEM approved (Zerex or whatever). I'll find out for sure.

deanyel: Yes, I know I'm paying too much, but I don't have a lot of options where I live (Ann Arbor, MI). Unfortunately, I don't have the tools or time to do these repairs. I definitely need to find another shop. And thanks for pointing out my synatx error on paint color--just typed it backwards in my rush-induced dyslexia.

Kirk
1992 500E
Black pearl/gray
Bone stock
71,700 miles
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  #5  
Old 04-19-2006, 07:20 PM
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Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Albuquerque, NM USA
Posts: 1,946
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fangio
since taking the Benz in to them, I've spent about $2600 in repairs on it (O2 sensor, belt tensioner, and now this), all of which I know I needed, but it's still hard not to feel like I've got the word "sucker" pasted on my forehead everytime I walk in there.
Your car is very much like a Ferrari or big Porsche and expensive to run should be expected IMHO. It's also 14 years old. Owning an '06 E55AMG would not be less expensive.
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Albuquerque
'07 GL320CDI, '06 SLK350
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  #6  
Old 04-19-2006, 08:51 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 975
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkchris
Your car is very much like a Ferrari or big Porsche and expensive to run should be expected IMHO.
I don't think thats entirely true. Although I don't own a 500e, many of the 500e500 parts are the same as the 400e420 and 300e320 (w124) cousins. The 500e probably costs more to maintain than any of the other w124s but I don't think its in the league with Porsche or Ferrari $$$ maintenance.

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