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Old 09-02-2007, 11:55 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Seattle
Posts: 596
M103 Air Flow Sensor Plate

86 300E W124 M103 226k miles
Yesterday my car would not start. I determined OVP Relay. Replaced and the cranking did sound encouraging but still no start. Frustrated and guessing I should take a look for a lose something, I lifted the air filter housing and found the Air Flow Sensor Plate (the thing the air filter feeds into) was stuck up. I pushed gently and freed it and it started right up. This happened to me once before years ago. Both times there was a LOT of cranking and start and die and restart etc. involved. There is a job in the MB book to align this thing. Should I bother?

1986 300E Anthracite + ECodes + MB Mileage Award
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Old 09-03-2007, 01:05 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Seattle
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No one?
1986 300E Anthracite + ECodes + MB Mileage Award
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Old 09-03-2007, 08:59 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: SoCal
Posts: 1,303
If you carefully clean the sensor plate rim and the meter body bore, you may remove deposits that caused the sticking. If it then still does not move freely and without catching, it still seems unlikely realigning the plate would correct the source of the problem, which is likely an internal worn part. If cleaning did not solve the problem, I would remove the airflow meter, disconnecting all the plumbing, and remove the rubber lower plenum for inspection and possibly more complete cleaning - before attempting ANY adjustments. Then, if an adjustment would save replacing the airflow meter, I would cautiously attempt it.

'91 MB 190E 2.3
'08 RAV4 Ltd 3.5
'83 Lazy Daze m'home 5.7
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Old 09-03-2007, 09:00 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Eugene, OR, USA
Posts: 121
Why was the plate sticking? Was it out of position or are there sticky deposits on the throat of the intake where the plate moves? You might try some carburetor cleaner first on that area.
1986 300E
1993 Volvo 940 Wagon
1984 Volvo 240 (daughter's)
1976 Dodge 1/2T pickup, gas hog
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Old 09-04-2007, 06:35 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 393
The problem could actually be in the fuel distributor, its shaft may be sticking. There is not much else to cause hard sticking of the plate.
Saumil S. Patel
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Old 09-04-2007, 07:48 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: AL
Posts: 1,219
I agree with Mr. Patel.
2012 E350
2006 Callaway SC560
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Old 09-05-2007, 05:14 PM
david s poole
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: dallas
Posts: 1,822
unless someone loosened the round plate and did not centre it properly before tightening up the bolt.clean thoroughly first and then grab the bolt head with a pair of pliers and pull shouldn't stick should drop right back down to original place when you let go.

David S Poole
European Performance
Dallas, TX

"Fortune favors the prepared mind"
1987 Mercedes Benz 420SEL
1988 Mercedes Benz 300TE (With new evaporator)
2000 Mercedes Benz C280
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