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Old 12-07-2001, 11:24 AM
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Surging? Fuel starvation on a 76 450SL

Car was stored for two years. Had MB mechanic come by the house and determine that fuel pump was seized. Towed to his shop, he emptied fuel tank, replaced fuel pump, fuel filter and cleaned the filter at the fuel distributor. Picked it up at his shop ran two miles, started loosing power then essentially died. Towed back to his shop, he wants to pull gas tank and have it recoated inside. The car runs beautifully for about 10 minutes then starts to act like it is not getting fuel. If it sits it then starts up and runs again for about ten minutes. Also, what is the function of the suction damper that is between the tank and the fuel pump. Does it have a vent line that could be clogged?
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Old 12-07-2001, 12:12 PM
Mike Stone
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Fuel Starvation Problem

Try running it without having the fuel tank cap on.

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Old 12-07-2001, 12:41 PM
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Thanks for the suggestion

Tried it without the gas cap - same thing happened - I listened to the fuel pump during the time it was running - even when it was trying to stall the pitch never changed.

I don't want to muddle the issue, but wasn't 76 a unique year for catalytic converters relative to their position in or near exhaust manifolds. If they are shot could they be causing an exhaust restriction when they heat up?
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Old 12-08-2001, 05:28 AM
dpetryk's Avatar
Electrons can do anything
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 1,071
I would take a hard look at the fuel distributor. My 87 420sel sat for 1.5 years and I had gremlins until I cleaned the fuel distributor with solvent to remove the varnish that had accumulated in it. I have never done this but I often wondered if running solvent thru the entire system might clear things out.

When a car sits, the fuel deposits varnish in the worst places. Areas like the little orfices and small screens in the fuel system components. I would take things apart piece by piece and clean them with a good solvent that disolves varnish.
I got too many cars!! Insurance eats me alive. Dave

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87 420sel - 240k
89 560sl - 78k
91 420sel - 205k
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Old 12-08-2001, 10:24 AM
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I know what you are saying is true having resurrected several vehicles through the years. The question is why would it have to run for 10 minutes for that to become an issue? Could leaky injector seals be an issue but would that show up at cold start time and improve with heat? Can the fuel accumulator cause the issue? If we equate time running with engine temperature, what opens or closes or starts or stops with engine temperature? I am sure the answer is simple and logical, I just lack the skills and abilities in this area to see the logic.
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