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  #1  
Old 12-09-2016, 06:31 PM
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Question Resealing M103, what sealants should I buy?

I bought a 3.0L M103 several months back that is going into my 190E Sportline LE. It supposedly had a valve job done shortly before the car was wrecked and put into that yard I bought the engine from. I think the headgasket was also recently done and I don't want to mess with that right now unless I have to. I bought a leak down tester to check the health of the engine but if it passes, I'll move on to resealing the engine. I have bought the Elring headgasket kit and am about to order the Elring crankcase seal kit. I have a Victor Reinz crankcase seal kit that I am sending back because my faith in Victor Reinz seals isn't especially high. I have an Elring valve cover gasket as well.

So I plan to replace as many seals as possible, including the front and rear main seal, oil pan gasket,oil filter housing gasket, etc, basically whatever is in the kit and I can identify. The engine will be on an engine stand so It'll be easy to access whatever I need to access. The question is, what sealants do I need to use on this job? I know RTV is not recommended, but I've seen a lot of other ones thrown out there and I'm not sure which is best. I know I need to order the flywheel lock tool in order to replace the front main seal. Any tips for this job will be greatly appreciated.

EDIT: Anything else I should replace while I'm in there? This engine does have 200K on it. I'm not worried about the timing chain but should I do the rails?

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Old 12-09-2016, 09:25 PM
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Yes absolutely do the guide rails when you have the front timing cover off. Its not difficult and it'll extend the life of the chain.
My experience has been that even using the Genuine MB sealant doesn't make it leakproof for very long...you still end up with a fine "mist" of oil over the areas after 10-15k...

Victor-Reinz sucks, just avoid them aside from intake and exhaust gaskets...that's about the only gasket I've used from them that I didn't end up having to re-do.
Im about to re-do my valve stem seals after 80k as I am burning over 1qt per 4k miles.
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Old 12-09-2016, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ps2cho View Post
Yes absolutely do the guide rails when you have the front timing cover off. Its not difficult and it'll extend the life of the chain.
My experience has been that even using the Genuine MB sealant doesn't make it leakproof for very long...you still end up with a fine "mist" of oil over the areas after 10-15k...

Victor-Reinz sucks, just avoid them aside from intake and exhaust gaskets...that's about the only gasket I've used from them that I didn't end up having to re-do.
Im about to re-do my valve stem seals after 80k as I am burning over 1qt per 4k miles.
I wish the engine in the car was already the 3.0L, it's at 206K miles but doesn't leak or burn a negligible amount of oil between 5k mile changes. Alas the extra HP is very tempting.

And don't use the Victor Reinz intake gasket, I've heard they are too thin and don't seal for M103s. I used Victor Reinz paper gaskets on my brother's and dad's cars, hopefully they will last but I'm not incredibly confident after the valve cover gaskets started cracking withing 4 months.
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  #4  
Old 12-10-2016, 05:12 AM
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I used grey permatex sealer for the rear main seal on my 91 300TE. 5k miles and 18 months later its still not leaking. I also used the service rear main seal. Its just slightly wider to cover any possible wear on the crankshaft. Not sure it was needed but its what I went with.

I would replace both the timing chain and rails since you have easy access to the engine while its on a stand. It would likely be pretty tight in the W201 engine bay.
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  #5  
Old 12-10-2016, 08:35 AM
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Dont know if you can get Hylomar in your location but i would not fit any seals without some kind of sealer ..
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  #6  
Old 12-10-2016, 12:12 PM
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Can someone help identify what each seal is for:



The 11 o-rings/crush washers along the bottom of this image. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the flat circular gasket at the bottom is the oil cap gasket.



The nine o-rings/washers on the left side of this image in the middle.

As for the crankcase gasket set, I am returning my Victor Reinz set, and there are a few other options, should I go for Elring, Goetze, or pony up for OEM? Same question if I order the repair size real main seal? As I understand it, both Elring and Goetze are OEM suppliers to Mercedes.
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Old 12-10-2016, 01:32 PM
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Here's a better picture of the small bits from the head gasket set:
3 copper washers
2 thinner aluminum washers
2 thicker aluminum washers
1 thinner o-ring
1-thicker o-ring
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:01 AM
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I was just going to suggest that since you have total access to everything, you should just go with MB genuine brand/OEM manufacturer. Spending the extra $$ in this situation is well worth it so you don't need to worry about whats going to happen to those parts within the next few thousand miles or years, vs the next few hundred thousand miles or decades. Just my 2 cents
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Old 12-11-2016, 03:36 AM
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w123fanman, recommend buying all gaskets and O-rings from a MB dealer ... either locally or online at wholesale prices. Where you need a sealant use the MB black sealant that comes in a caulking gun-like applicator ... it's fairly expensive, but very effective. Especially for the upper timing chain cover dabs at the end of the U-shaped gasket which is a job you don't want to repeat anytime soon.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:12 AM
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I can go to OE if it's really necessary but I know at least for the headgasket kit, Elring is the supplier to Mercedes so they probably also supply the crankcase gasket set. Goetze was the supplier for the 16v headsgaskets. I know the argument of OE vs OEM but does it really matter in this case? Granted I have not looked for long but I've yet to find a report of a failed Elring gasket, just lots of threads arguing about whether people should buy OE or not. I can return the head gasket set but I have to pay return shipping and a restocking fee to then pay twice as much for what's likely the exact same thing.
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:40 PM
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w123fanman, if you know for a fact that Elring is the supplier to MB then use the Elring products. It's more important to me to use genuine MB parts and not have to repeat a job, rather than save a few dollars. That's my approach to DIY jobs. Having said that I do use Textar brake pads; however, brake pad replacement pales in comparison to a head gasket replacement.
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Old 12-11-2016, 03:20 PM
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I think what I'll do is return the head gasket set and order all of the gaskets separately and not the head gasket itself since I don't need it. That'll make it about the same price. I don't think there's any real concern but yall are right, better safe than sorry.
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  #13  
Old 12-12-2016, 06:09 PM
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the sealants you want are

toyota FIPG
GM engine sealant

(1 of the above) - GM is cheaper and better in my experience.

anerobic red sealer (for the timing case etc) like the factory did.
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Old 12-13-2016, 04:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by w123fanman View Post
I can go to OE if it's really necessary but I know at least for the headgasket kit, Elring is the supplier to Mercedes so they probably also supply the crankcase gasket set. Goetze was the supplier for the 16v headsgaskets. I know the argument of OE vs OEM but does it really matter in this case? Granted I have not looked for long but I've yet to find a report of a failed Elring gasket, just lots of threads arguing about whether people should buy OE or not. I can return the head gasket set but I have to pay return shipping and a restocking fee to then pay twice as much for what's likely the exact same thing.


I use aftermarket, typically Elring or CRP seals.

VR left a bad taste in my mouth after doing a top end on an M103...sprung a leak from the oil pressure port in short order. This is common on this motor, but very with the VR gaskets. For instance, the 247k original gasket on the 300E weeps from the oil port some, the 50k VR gasket on the 300SEL pours out.

Their valve cover gaskets also crack apart fairly quick. I priced out an OEM M103 gasket at my dealer, it was about $51 picked up. Online is about $40 + freight.



The small set of orings and such, one is for the water pump and one is the rear cylinder head seal.
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Old 12-13-2016, 07:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hit Man X View Post
I use aftermarket, typically Elring or CRP seals.

VR left a bad taste in my mouth after doing a top end on an M103...sprung a leak from the oil pressure port in short order. This is common on this motor, but very with the VR gaskets. For instance, the 247k original gasket on the 300E weeps from the oil port some, the 50k VR gasket on the 300SEL pours out.

Their valve cover gaskets also crack apart fairly quick. I priced out an OEM M103 gasket at my dealer, it was about $51 picked up. Online is about $40 + freight.



The small set of orings and such, one is for the water pump and one is the rear cylinder head seal.
I decided to go OEM for the crankcase set as it's only $15 more then Elring but for the top end I'm only going to buy the timing cover seal and camshaft seal from the dealer, that's only about $15. I will use the rest of my Elring headgasket set beside the head gasket as I don't think this engine needs one.

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