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Old 03-07-2002, 10:07 AM
Posts: n/a
Humble Pie, Sealing one's Lips

Brother of The Benz, Ashcan, err ASHMAN
My PC and I died at the same time, consequently we were off the wire for some time.
Replacing the electrical part of the Spiderman was easy except for the cost.
In Time I will be back with my old self.
The valve stem seal topic has brought about some members I'm not familiar with and visa versa.
So be patient and I'll step on someones toes.
Happy Trails Beep Beep from The Spiderman in Houston!!!
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Old 03-11-2002, 08:27 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 39
Talking valve stem seal replacement

I just replaced the valve stem seals on my 1989 260e yesterday with seals I bought from Fastlane. Thanks to Dennis for the multiple postings with helpful info. I also used a K-D #2078 valve spring compressor and it worked fine. I borrowed it from a friend; so that saved me a few dollars. Due to the wheel shaped handle I did have to loosen the transmission fill tube and remove the air cleaner assy. Snap-on has a nice one (CG90) for about 45.00 and you can remove the handle and operate it with a socket. I was using a quart of oil every 1000 miles. The car only has 52,000 miles on it but the old seals were definitely worn. I've only had the car since last August and it had 43,400 miles on it when I bought it from the original owner. He was retired and only drove the car short distances so I believe that accounted for the wear. I've been using mobil 1 since I bought the car but did put in Castrol 20/50 to see if the oil consumption changed; it didn't. I put in Mobil 1 10-30 after I finished the seals. I thought about using the 15-50 mobil 1. For those using Mobil 1 what weight are you using? I did check for play in the valve guides anf they were fine. I really enjoy this site and the folks at Fastlane were friendly and quick to ship.
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Old 03-15-2002, 02:22 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Texas
Posts: 38
This may be a dumb question, but did you have to remove the head in order to do this? Thanks!
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Old 03-15-2002, 01:59 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Texas
Posts: 38
But can you feel if the valve guides are loose and need to be replaced with the head on? How can you tell if your valve guides are loose? Thanks again!
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Old 03-16-2002, 09:20 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Joliet Illinois
Posts: 309
Valve Guides

Yes, you can feel the looseness in the valve guides when you replace the valve stem seals. I used compressed air to hold the valves closed and also had each piston at TDC so the valves could not fall into the cylinder. After I took off the valve spring and seal, I turned off the air pressure and wiggled the valve stem to check the valve guide wear. It is kind of a judgement call whether the movement warrants valve guide replacement. I could feel a small amount in each valve guide and figured it was okay. I thought of using a thin wire, like a guitar string, to gauge the clearance but was afraid of scratching the valve stem or guide.

Replacing the valve stem seals is not a difficult job on the M103 engine. I replaced my valve seals with the expectation of doing a complete valve job in a year or two. My car has about 130,000 miles and still has the original head gasket and valve guides.

- John
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Old 03-16-2002, 09:43 AM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Gainesville FL
Posts: 6,844
If you are doing this job yourself, there is very little reason to check the valve to guide clearance. The cost of the seals is insignificant, you are already there. what would you do other than worry?

Put the seals on and see how long they last. In 50k or more you can assess the situation again. The seals are going to fix the problem! Even if the wear is beyond tolerance; which only experience can check with the valves installed.

The one thing you should check is the valve guide to cylinder head firmness. They can not be loose at all (and are almost never loose), but we had a 420SEL last week with Blue motor (block was painted blue) that had three loose guides. One hole required the use of a second repair size 14.4mm intake. Only the second or third I have seen that bad in hundreds of V8 guide replacement jobs.
Steve Brotherton
Continental Imports
Gainesville FL
Bosch Master, ASE Master, L1
33 years MB technician
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Old 04-18-2002, 11:08 AM
brookspw's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 551
See, that is what is so good about this board. Someone like SteveBFL that can tell us what has happened (or hasn't happened) in hundreds of cases. Not theory, but actual, real experience.

Thanks -- brookspw
1994 C280, dark green metallic
105k miles

1991 190E 2.6, Black
191,500 miles
(sold to another forum member)

2003 Chevy Tahoe LT, Redfire Metallic
105k miles

1989 Mustang GT Cobra Convertible
43k miles
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