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Old 06-25-2002, 07:53 AM
junior member
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 592
bumper falling off 123

the rubber bumper pad attached to the rear bumper of my 83 240d
has been slowly separaring from the bumper. no big deal. yesterday i
noticed that the pad had pulled a little farther away from the bumper.
looked closely at the situation. the bumper itself is now separating from the
car on the right side. as near as i can tell the bumper is glued to the
telescopic struts that are bolted to the car. is this indeed the
case? how does one reattach the bumper to the strut? damn, i would
have thought that the the bumper would have been secured by some
type of mechnical fastener. thank you.
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Old 06-25-2002, 08:59 AM
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Old Lyme, Connecticut
Posts: 3,596

The bumper is attached with mechanical devices. On my 1982 240D the rear bumper is an aluminum casting with some mechanical mounting clips cast into the inner surface of the bumper. These clips fit the heads of the bumper shocks, kind of like a "T-slot" arrangement. The mounting sequence is to put the bumper shocks into the clips, then run the shock tubes into the recesses in the frame, and bolt up the flanges. Once the tubes of the shocks are in the recesses, the bumper cannot disengage the clips. Older cars have a different clip arrangement, which I believe involves bolting the clip hardware to the bumper.

When the bumper gets old and the aluminum gives way to corrosion (the inside of the bumper is a place where no one usually washes, and sand with road salt collects by the pound there, leading to this problem. On the driver's side, the hot exhaust usually accelerates the process.) the clips begin to rot away. Once they are gone far enough to let the bumper begin to fall off, the solution is to either buy a used bumper from a car down south, or fabricate a new clip arrangement and bolt it into position. You may be able to convert to the older style clips, but I am not sure about that. I know I fabbed some new clips and bolted right through the bumper. This lasted for another 5 years or more, but eventually the aluminum began to crack at the bolt holes. My daughter replaced the bumper with one from another junked car at the college auto club (a W123 Diesel fanatic there donated it to her cause as the school told him to have the car towed to a junk yard or else...) a year or so ago, and that bumper is working fine. I think it has the old style clips, but I have not checked.

Good luck, and I hope this helps. Jim
1986 Euro 190E 2.3-16 (291,000 miles),
1998 E300D TurboDiesel, 231,000 miles -purchased with 45,000,
1988 300E 5-speed 252,000 miles,
1983 240D 4-speed, purchased w/136,000, now with 222,000 miles.
2009 ML320CDI Bluetec, 89,000 miles

1971 220D (250,000 miles plus, sold to father-in-law),
1975 240D (245,000 miles - died of body rot),
1991 350SD (176,560 miles, weakest Benz I have owned),
1999 C230 Sport (45,400 miles),
1982 240D (321,000 miles, put to sleep)
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Old 06-25-2002, 09:00 AM
84300DT's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Mass.
Posts: 2,218
bumper glue failure

happened to mine. used coat hangers at the corners - thread through between the bumper and the rubber, around the bumper to conveniently placed holes attached to the body. does the job and does not look too bad until can find some type of super glue to use on the inside or some other method (drilling though bumper so to bolt onto the bumper mounting struts??)
realize the above jury rig is not the greatest but at least am confident i won't see the whole bumper falling off on the highway behind me
1984 300D Turbo - 231k....totalled 11/30/07 RIP
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Old 06-25-2002, 09:03 AM
Potomac German Auto
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Frederick, MD
Posts: 407

I believe that the 1977-1981 (W123) chassis had a slide on shock absorber and the 1982-1985 (W123) had a bolt on shock. Both of which are changable. You basically have to remove the 17mm nuts that retain the shocks to the car. Once you have removed the bumper you can determine which style you need to get.
1997 C230
2002 ML320
2000 BMW 528I (WIFEY'S CAR)

"Excuses are crutches for the unfounded."
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