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  #1  
Old 05-29-2002, 12:31 PM
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Unhappy High Engine Temp! Need Help Asap Guys!

My 86 560 SEL has up until now been running just fine at a steady 82 to 85 degrees whether or not the a/c is on unless its about 90 outside and I'm standing still in which it climbs to fluctuate just above/below 100 degrees. At that time the car just had distilled water in her system (because I was waiting for MB coolant to arrive) I recall that when I did replace with the MB coolant, she'd spit it up through the radiator cap and that was why I just put the water in it as a temporary fix.

I just replaced the coolant system with PEAK 50/50 pre-mixed antifreeze (which is also orange in color like the MB fluid) and ever since, she's been running at 100+ regardless of cruising at speed and almost 110 when stopping in traffic. She's been sitting since last Thurs because we left town and upon leaving for work this morning, I noticed that the radiator light came on/off and when I went to fill the car with gas, topped her up with water (again) but when on the highway,the temp shot up to 110+ and as I parked her, went up to damn near 120 and the aux fan kicked in.

Once parked I left her on (because the aux fan STOPS when you remove the key) but noticed the orange fluid bubbling out from the expansion tank area (leaking from the cap). This only happens when I've put antifreeze in her but she ran just fine with water. Any suggestions or advice how to get her back down to normal? I'm wondering if air is in the system. How do I check this and should I just go back to the distilled water? It has a new radiator and cap that have only been installed within the last six months. I'm paranoid that something is screwed with running her with such high temps if this is the case. I've been told that the 560's are supposed to run between 95 and 105 anyway but I've seen on threads that some run just above 80 (which mine did before now- with the water). Need suggestions as quick as you guys can get it to me before I leave here. I'm tempted to tow her home I'm so nervous. Thanks in advance and wish me luck!

Alan
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  #2  
Old 05-29-2002, 12:42 PM
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I'm not a 560 owner, but have gone thru similar situations with another 126 car.

Coolant raises the boiling pint and lubrictates various cooling sys. components. By running straight water, you are lowering the boiling point and providing no lubrication for your system.

It's possible that you have an excessively high concentration of coolant. Too much coolant can cause overheating. Should be no more than 50/50. It's also possible you have air in the system. Perhaps someone will chime in with 560 air-bleed procedures.

How about your thermostat. Is it installed correctly. There's an air-bleed valve on most that needs to be at the highest position.
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  #3  
Old 05-29-2002, 01:28 PM
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Yea the thermostat is working fine. This has only happened since I changed the coolant. I'm "hoping" it is just air in the system since the car hadn't been through anything to prompt me to change the coolant except me just wanting to put coolant in instead of just water. I also have a pretty steep hill from my driveway/garage area and thinking the slight incline didn't get all of the coolant to the system preventing it from keeping the air pockets out. Hopefully I can get some "expert" advice as far as testing to see if air is in the system and getting this air out if this is the case. Thanks for your input...

Alan
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  #4  
Old 05-29-2002, 01:30 PM
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also, the antifreeze is supposed to be a 50/50 mixture that needs no water to be added (although I've had to keep topping up with just that).
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  #5  
Old 05-29-2002, 01:40 PM
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I had dealt with this grief a year ago and it might sound stupid...

...is the coolant cap on securely?

Coolant will spill out of the overflow tube, but not from the cap...unless the cap isn't on properly. You may have to give it another 1/2 turn.

If it's not on tightly, the system doesn't have sufficient pressure...result: premature overheating!

Check that little detail first...switching coolant brands shouldn't create this much havoc!
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  #6  
Old 05-29-2002, 01:41 PM
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I had dealt with this grief a year ago and it might sound stupid...

...is the coolant cap on securely?

Coolant will spill out of the overflow tube, but not from the cap...unless the cap isn't on properly. You may have to give it another 1/2 turn.

If it's not on tightly, the system doesn't have sufficient pressure...result: premature overheating!

Check that little detail first...switching collant brands shouldn't create this much havoc!
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  #7  
Old 05-29-2002, 02:45 PM
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I thought about the cap isssue too and its on there pretty good (and its new). I just went out for lunch and saw where the antifreeze ran out and down the ground in the parking garage. I topped her up with water and took a 10 min drive in stop and go traffic with the cap off to see if perhaps she'd "burp" any air out of the system and so far the temp is back to about just below 80 cruising to about 82 standing still in 80 degree weather. I'm suspecting the air pocket issue and only the hot rush hour ride home will tell me something else (as this is going to be at least an hour and a half of stop and go in the sun).

I hope there's someone here to shed some light on their normal operating temps. I'm thinking I'll have to replace the coolant (again) with just the 50/50 premixed antifreeze and running her for about a half an hour without the cap to make sure the air is out. Also, I remember that before I changed the coolant, a tech from the MB dealer said to just fill it at the expansion tank and it would go into the radiator with no problem which I did. The last time I changed it to the water, I actually took the top radiator hose off and filled it that way (and didn't have these issues afterward). Could this also be the culprit? Any other ideas? It seems that its pretty much cured so far with the cap off but still weary at this point.

Alan
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  #8  
Old 05-29-2002, 03:43 PM
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An easy burb tecnique is to feel for heat at the hose from the thermo neck to rad. When it gets hot, you know the thermo has opened. Now, with the fill cap off, grab the hose with a gloved hand and firmly squeeze several times [ with eng running].
This will burb the system.................
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  #9  
Old 05-29-2002, 03:54 PM
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The way I do it is as follows:
Disconnect the top radiator hose and turn the hose "up" at the engine end. Pour coolant/water/water wetter mix in at the reservoir until water starts running out at the block. You will get a little water coming out at the radiator end of the hose too based on how tight your clamp is. Anyway, pour a little more water in the reservoir and then rotate the hose and attach at the block end and tighten both clamps. Once you start running it you will want to run the heater on full blast to make sure you circulate through the heater core.
The mix is as follows:
1 bottle of Redline Water Wetter
40% MB coolant (coolant of your choice, please don't get started on a coolant brand discussion)
Remainder of distilled water.
I use a one gallon clear plastic jug and pay close attention to the mixture. It is WAY easy to get too much coolant in the mix. Go purchase yourself one of those Prestone mixture testers and use it to get the mix to approximately 40 coolant/60 water and use the Water Wetter.
oh yea - I do what AD says to do too with the burp thing.
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  #10  
Old 05-29-2002, 04:26 PM
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Is the hose from the reservior to the overflow tank in the fender intact? You will have to remove the fender cowling to be sure, but that's only about 6 screws. I didn't think it to be anything but cosmetic/neatness until I replaced the hose. Ran at 90-110 prior and stays at 82-84 since.
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  #11  
Old 05-29-2002, 04:32 PM
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Alan,

After 4K miles in the 560 I find 80-82*C to be the norm in temps up to 100*F. You need to get a coolant mixture tester, like $2 at the local Pep-Boys. Like Jim suggested aim for a 40-45% coolant to 55-60% water mix, and a bottle of water wetter (I run 45/55 on the 560).

Also check that hose that Earl suggested.
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  #12  
Old 05-29-2002, 05:03 PM
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Thanks Mike, Guys! I'm on my way outta here to see how she acts on the way home. I was contemplating doing the radiator hose up thing when I get her home later tonight (and I'll stop at Pep Boys to check on that mixture tester deal). Will update ya in the morning when I get back to work. Wish me luck and thanks for coming thru (again). I was just wondering if my thoughts of how to go about this was in sync with what the "super forum" would also do. Have a safe and blessed day guys!

Alan
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  #13  
Old 05-29-2002, 11:07 PM
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My mechanic showed me a car, that the cap was on tight, but the connection of the metal neck for the cap, would twist on the water bottle a bit.

So it wasn't making a proper seal. Replacement of the bottle worked.

If you tighten the cap, and feel any movement of the cap after it is secure and tight to the water bottle, check the water bottle filler neck to see if its loose. if it is, replace that bottle.

Alon
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  #14  
Old 05-30-2002, 09:34 AM
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I've been thru almost 6 gallons of antifreeze since last night. I've removed the top hose to get the coolant directly into the radiator, etc and it worked for a while as I drove around my subdivision but immediately would spit the coolant back out as I was trying to top her up with the car running and the heater on. She went up to 120 again and after I shut her off, I'd hear the gurggling sounds in the cabin (from the heater coils I assume).

I would then just let her cool down enough to top off again, replace the cap and run her a while...repeating this until she was "full" in the expansion tank. I filled the containers with water last night and loaded her up just in case she wanted to act up this morning.On the way in, she was at 80-82 steady on the highway drive in (about 74 outside) but as soon as I got off at my exit, she shot up to 110 and stayed there although I cruised at about 35-40 mph to my building. Upon pulling up to my usual spot in the parking deck, she's got a bit of a coolant smell and a very small amount of steam coming up from under the hood by my pass side window (by the battery tray).It's funny that you mention the bottle Ash because I was noticing some bubbling around the neck where it actually connects to the bottle which--no matter how tight the cap is, its seeping. I was in my trusty "560 parts catalog" (Mike knows the one) looking for a replacement.

Anyway, the saga continues as she sits in the parking deck until I can get to her again later on today.Another MB tech has said that the car is SUPPOSED to run at between 90-102 degrees and this is driving me nuts! I picked up the mixture tester although I was unable to do any testing because of time or lack of it. The dang thing wouldn't hold any coolant down (I still think its air along with the bottle issue) and seems this will be a battle for now. I'm thinking I should've just left well enough alone with just the distilled water because EVERYTHING was seemingly just fine and now has become a PITA! I didn't think it would really be a mixture issue since the coolant was already a 50/50 mix and at this point has quite a bit of water added to the mixture. Still welcome any suggestions and thanks for the advice so far.

Alan
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  #15  
Old 05-30-2002, 10:10 AM
moedip
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Just a thought - Check your viscous fan. When the temp. starts to climb - rev up the motor and see if the fan turns at full speed - if it lazily spins at higher revs - change the fan. I have changed the antifreeze several times in my 88 560sel for various reasons and never had the problems you have. Sounds like the engine is overheating from lack of cooling. Since the aux fans are working - that leaves the viscous fan as a possible suspect. Another possibility is the rad - feel the surface of the rad at different places and look for cool spots that indicate a plugged rad.One other possibility (Ihope not though) is that you have a leaking head gasket that is pressurizing the cooling system creating the air bubbles. The coolant container and cap could give problems as described but be prepared to go farther a field for the solution.
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