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  #1  
Old 08-25-2008, 09:08 PM
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Antifreeze has brownish hue and engine has oil leak

I have a 1989 300TE that was bought a few weeks ago, my wife drove it to work a few times and said it was overheating (i won't give the whole explanation she gave) I am more inclined it is just the fact that she is driving it and then sitting in traffic and noticing the rise in temperature before the fans kick on because I let it run in the driveway and took it for a drive around the neighborhood for a while and noticed nothing out of the ordinary (definitely not the close to 120 reading my wife told me about), I also pulled the top hose on the radiator and emptied it in to a glass and what I found was the green antifreeze (I know and I am getting going to the dealership to get the right stuff tomorrow) but the antifreeze has a brown hue to it, it does not look or smell like oil and I had my neighbor double check and he agrees, so if this is not oil what is it?

the next thing is that while standing in front of the car looking at it there is an oil leak on the front left side of the engine, it looks as if it is coming from the valve cover near the plastic cover at the front of the engine, my question is, is it ok to spray the engine down with engine bright and rinse it off so I can get a better idea of where it is coming from? and the next thing is, are the any spots that a particularly vulnerable while spraying down the engine? I have had a few cars (a Saab 99 is definitely one that comes to mind) that you had to be very careful while cleaning the engine and compartment.


any info and ideas would be appreciated


thanks,
dan

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  #2  
Old 08-25-2008, 09:14 PM
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Location: USA
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I would pressure test your cooling system with a pressure tester. You may have a headgasket leak which will show up in a pressure test results.

The coolant maybe just old and needs to be changed.

For the oil leak degrease and rinse and apply talcum powder to suspected areas and idle the car.

You may want to do a compression test and see what you get. If you have add oil then you have a leak.
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1986 300SDL, 211K,Dealership serviced its whole life
1991 190E 2.6(120k)
1983 300D(300k)
1977 300D(211k)

Last edited by Oracle12345; 08-25-2008 at 09:20 PM.
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  #3  
Old 08-25-2008, 10:03 PM
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Join Date: May 2007
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Just a point of interest, the m103 engine is notorious for oil leaks coming from the U shaped timing chain cover seal. If you look at the picture of the head gasket kit on any online parts store, its the one that looks like a U or a C. I just had my head gasket done (this seal included) and within 10,000 miles, the leak has popped up again. If you aren't too anal about your engine, and the head gasket isn't leaking and your coolant system is fine, then just live with it - it won't/shouldn't leak too much oil. Just make sure you remember to check on the head gasket and coolant system though as was mentioned in the previous reply.
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  #4  
Old 08-25-2008, 10:38 PM
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If I do have to have the head gasket replaced would it be better to also have the valve guides and seals replaced as well, and maybe a valve job.

I have read not to surface the head since it will mess things up some things (too tired to remember all the details)

now, what parts of these jobs can I do? I know the valve job would be a shop but would I be able to do the head gasket, valve guides, seals, and springs I guess, since this is an 89.


I will also get some cleaner to degrease the engine and some radiator flush, I am hoping that the antifreeze was just old.
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  #5  
Old 08-25-2008, 10:46 PM
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I forgot to ask about the pressure testing equipment. can someone point me in the direction of a decent pressure testing system for the cooling system and one that can be used in the spark plug location.

they do not make one that does both do they?


thank you,

dan
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  #6  
Old 08-26-2008, 02:11 PM
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http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00946342000P

it is attached to your radiator

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00947089000P?mv=rr

screws to your spark plug holes in the head
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1986 300SDL, 211K,Dealership serviced its whole life
1991 190E 2.6(120k)
1983 300D(300k)
1977 300D(211k)
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  #7  
Old 08-27-2008, 06:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oracle12345 View Post
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00946342000P

it is attached to your radiator

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00947089000P?mv=rr

screws to your spark plug holes in the head

Here I was looking for something that was not the discount auto route with out trying to go snap on or mac quality either, somehow craftsman did not cross my mind.

I do have one question about the radiator pressure setup, I have a 1989 300 TE and I am not sure if this is normal but I do not have a cap on my radiator, the only one cap I have is now the reserve tank, does that sound right and can I use the testing kit off of the reserve tank.


thanks,
dan
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  #8  
Old 08-29-2008, 06:04 PM
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You have a closed system or in common terms a cooling system that has the extra coolant stored in a tank instead of spilling onto the road when the pressure is to great.

To test the pressure you would attach an attachment to the expansion tank.

In a pressure test all you are looking for is whether the cooling system holds vacuum. A good system will hold it and the needle on the gauge on the tester will not move. A bad system will not hold i, indicating you have a leak somewhere and the gauge on the tester will drop.

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1986 300SDL, 211K,Dealership serviced its whole life
1991 190E 2.6(120k)
1983 300D(300k)
1977 300D(211k)
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