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Old 05-12-2002, 09:38 AM
Posts: n/a
VERY basic coolant questions

Hello friends.

Have a quick question for you regarding the coolant overflow tank. On my old American cars, there was a big, clear tank that you could see the coolant level in and to check the level. On my 190e, I'm just not sure what to look for as it's different. I see a tank there, but it's a rather dark color and it's hard to see the coolant in there. There's a radiator cap at the top of it. This tank says "high pressure cooling system," but it seems a bit too murky for me to look through it. I might be looking in the wrong place.

Is it true that the overflow tank is way at the bottom on the passenger side somewhere?

I guess my question is -- how do I check the coolant level to make sure that all is good? I like to peek at it from time to time to be sure that all is in good order, and I'm just not sure how to do it on the MB's.

Thanks for your help, as always,
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Old 05-12-2002, 10:13 AM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Gainesville FL
Posts: 6,844
The coolant tanks used in MBs and most european cars are different from coolant recovery tanks used on domestics. The coolant tanks in domestics were not an actual part of the cooling system and were not under pressure. The reason for tanks in most MBs is to reduce the height of the radiator by placing the highest part of the cooling system not at the front of the engine compartment.

Most tanks are translucent, but often life's experience changes them to dark non transparent containers. In such case, if the coolant level light can't be trusted, one must open the cap and look inside to see whats there. AND unless one really knows what one is doing, it is best done cold.
Steve Brotherton
Continental Imports
Gainesville FL
Bosch Master, ASE Master, L1
33 years MB technician
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Old 05-13-2002, 12:24 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Vernon, CT
Posts: 1,846
You could remove the tank and try to clean it out. Or to se better, shine a flaslight on the tank and you should see the coolant levle.
1999 MB SL500 (101,000 mi)
1983 Porsche 911SC (149,000 mi)
2004 Volvo V70 2.5T (205,000 mi)
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Old 05-13-2002, 07:34 AM
Matt Crooke
Posts: n/a
Your best bet is just to take the cap off and have a look to make sure you can see the level. But make sure the engine is cold when you do other wise you will more than likely get burned as a fair amount of pressure builds up in an expansion tank when the engine is running.
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