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Old 02-08-2002, 06:51 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Edinburgh Scotland
Posts: 3
Water damage to MB600 SEL

Hi, My beautiful second user MB 600 SEL was written off by insurance after travelling through a large puddle of water (- mid shin high). I was travelling at about 10 -15 mph and had no option but to go forward. The explanation I have had is that water from the bow wave got into the engine and caused the engine to seize. Has anyone else had or heard of this problem. I feel that this is a design problem or MB should publish this as a health warning to owners!! My older 230 TE estate regularly had to ford a small river without problems (although I did use to worry about the electrics gettin wet). Grateful for feedback.
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Old 02-08-2002, 07:00 PM
Ali Al-Chalabi's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,837
Do you mean that water got sucked into the intake manifold? If so, water is very hard to compress and could cause enourmous cylinder pressures, which could damage the engine.
Ali Al-Chalabi

2001 CLK55
1999 Dodge Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel
2002 Harley-Davidson Fatboy
Merlin Extralight w/ Campy Record
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Old 02-08-2002, 08:01 PM
chupr98's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Vancouver BC
Posts: 134
Hi, I too have a problem with MB design. My alternator on the 103 engine shorted out after I hit a puddle of water. The location should have been moved higher rather than placed at the bottom

Peter Chu aka PIKACHU
08 C300 Premium Pkg, MM Pkg, Sport Pkg, Keyless Go
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Old 02-09-2002, 05:16 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Edinburgh Scotland
Posts: 3
Yes, believe that water must have entered via the air intake and entered the piston chambers (is this possible?) and then since water can not be compressed damage will result - I had no idea that this could happen but my concern is that this should happen so easily - with such a small amount of water on the ground - is ther no way of preventing this? Thanks for replys!
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Old 02-09-2002, 12:38 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 378
I heard that Ford Explorers can also suck water into the engine intake. The air cleaner intake has to be low or water splashes up and into the air stream. I suppose that you could move the air hose and ensure that it is higher. Old Dodge trucks sucked air from the passenger compartment by the glove box. Not likely to get water there. As far as the alternator, it is mounted low on lots of cars. My 103 engine has a large plastic belly shield that looks like it might protect the alternator from splashing water.
1967 250SL
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Old 02-09-2002, 12:57 PM
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Water Damage

Yes in fact water can be sucked into the engine via the air intake.
If you look you will see the intakes at headlamp level.
This kind of damage usually includes bent connecting rods and damaged pistons, it is repairable but at great cost!
If you intend to repair that engine precautions should taken a.s.a.p. to prevent water/rust damage to other components.
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