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Old 06-19-2002, 12:09 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Monrovia, CA
Posts: 490
300E - Hard Starting when Hot

I just bought my first Mercedes last night, a 1986 300E with 93,000 miles. The car is in excellent, almost like-new condition and runs flawlessly except that it doesn't want to start when it's hot. I just now started it for the first time this morning, and it started easily within 1-2 seconds, ran up to about 1100rpm for a few seconds and then settled down to about 800-900 rpm. As it warmed up, the idle came down to about 600-700 rpm. The idle seemed pretty smooth after the first 10 seconds or so. The car just had the 90,000 mi. service at a Mercedes dealer in January, so all of the adjustments, filters, fluids, etc. were taken care of.

After it's hot and it's been shut off for maybe 15-20 minutes though, it doesn't want to start cleanly. If I keep my foot off the accelerator it will mostly just crank over without even trying to fire, and if I give it any gas it will stumble a bit and finally catch on maybe the 3rd or 4th try, usually with half to full throttle. It runs rough for maybe 5-8 seconds and then settles into a normal idle and runs cleanly.

Are there any diagnostics I can do without any special tools to try to track down the source of this problem? Any likely common, inexpensive possibilities?

I haven't bought a service manual yet. Which one is recommended, the factory manual, Haynes, Clymer,...?

Thanks for any help,

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Old 06-19-2002, 12:13 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 571
Try the SEARCH facility.

Hard-starting-when-warm M103 SOHC motors has been discussed literally hundreds of times.
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Old 06-19-2002, 12:31 PM
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JCE JCE is offline
Down to the Wear Bars
Join Date: May 1999
Location: So Kalifornia
Posts: 2,189
Hi Gary:

Welcome, and enjoy your 300E! The search for words like 'warm', 'idle', 'start', '300E' will turn up a lot of threads - one of the better is 300E rough starting when warm. . . . It also has links to threads by Benzmac on this issue in the responses, so click on those as well.

Enjoy your ride!

2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

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