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  #1  
Old 12-22-2006, 07:07 PM
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'86 300E steering leak

I have a heavy leak at the steering gear box (drains the reservoir in less than 5 minutes). It seems to be coming from the steering coupling, the fluid pours out from the gap at the lower bolt. Is this possible? I've searched this absolutely awesome forum for hours and found no mention of a steering coupling leak. Does the P/S fluid fill the coupling or am I looking at a gear box replacement. Also, I found something called a "Steering Cover Seal" (part #M1045-97940) at a parts site. Is this related to my problem?

Thanks in advance for your help. I've found this forum both interesting and informative, as well as encouraging. The advice and knowledge offered here is priceless. You guys are really providing a service to the MB community and it is appreciated.

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  #2  
Old 12-22-2006, 08:29 PM
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These don't fail or leak that often...you could buy a seal kit...it is not a hard job as long as you can remove the drop arm.
I would encourage you to pick up a used one and swap them out.




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  #3  
Old 12-22-2006, 10:23 PM
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Thanks for responding. But I was wondering if the steering coupler could leak. I'm hoping not to have to change the steering gear box.
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Old 12-22-2006, 10:37 PM
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Steering box is less the coupler....There's a 'hex head' bolt that clamps the lower coupler spline clamp to the input shaft of the box....this must be completely removed as it sits across the input splined shaft, in a groove.
....the only difficulty is removing the Pitman arm from the lower splined shaft...often need heat while using a puller.



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  #5  
Old 12-22-2006, 10:44 PM
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Steering gearbox is ~$400. Coupler is $80. Big difference. But my question is: is it possible for the steering coupler to leak?
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  #6  
Old 12-22-2006, 10:56 PM
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Coupler is a dry peice of flex rubber.....how do you think it can leak?
Now, if the steering box upper seal is shot, this might squirt oil at the coupler.

Used steering box...$150.00 or less.



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Old 12-22-2006, 11:10 PM
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I though the coupler was a solid piece of rubber between metal plates but wasn't sure. Thanks for clearing that up for me. I'll begin my search for a gearbox. I was thinking that I should get a rebuilt gearbox since there's no telling how long a "junkyard" box will last. Thanks for your help.
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  #8  
Old 12-22-2006, 11:22 PM
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All those boxes on the 300e are the same....get one from a 1992.
I have never had to rebuilt one...only the 123 and 126 chassis.


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  #9  
Old 12-22-2006, 11:35 PM
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Great idea! Thanks for the tip.
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  #10  
Old 12-26-2006, 11:52 AM
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My '87 had that seal where the shaft enters the box fail earlier this year with a massive leak.

The seal KIT is cheap and available here.

The job is not so easy, since the box has got to be pulled to replace the seal.

Good luck!
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  #11  
Old 12-26-2006, 12:38 PM
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Thanks for replying. When you said "The seal KIT is cheap and available here" did you mean here on the forum? I'm ready to pull the steering box but I was wondering how difficult is it to replace the seal itself. Any special tools or techniques required?
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  #12  
Old 12-26-2006, 02:22 PM
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Clean bench top.
Absorbant cloths.
Heavy duty puller for Pitman arm.
Watch where factory centering mark is reletive the arm.
16oz engineers hammer.
Drift or blunt chizel.
Large pipe wrench.

Seal puller.
Seal installer..socket/light hammer.... etc.
ATF.
Take pictures as you dismantle it.

Takes about 1/2 hour, once on the bench.

Mercedes does not show s/box rebuild in any literature ...only adjustments and torque values....liability thing I think.


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  #13  
Old 12-27-2006, 12:01 AM
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I have a massive PS leak at my steering box also, but I have a 85' W126. I have a thread about it here somewhere. Not sure if your problems is the same as mine though.

I am actually supposed to be taking mine to the shop tomorrow. The seals were $22. and he is going to charge $30. to replace them.

I just hope that when he gets in there that it does not turn out to be more severe.

Last edited by 86560SEL; 12-27-2006 at 12:09 AM.
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  #14  
Old 12-27-2006, 10:46 AM
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I found & read your previous thread, 86560SEL, and you're having the exact same problem. I checked with my local mechanic and he wants big $$ to replace the steering box (won't even discuss replacing the seal). So I'm going to try to do it myself. You mentioned a "Seal Puller" in your list of tools, dkveuro. I don't know what that is. Are the seals so tightly pressed in that I'd need a special tool to remove & replace them? Maybe this job is too big for a beginner DIYer like myself?
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  #15  
Old 12-28-2006, 09:35 PM
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Hmm.. I wonder why he won't replace the seals? My mechanic said it should be a easy task when he looked at it. I will post the results when I get the car back.

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