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  #1  
Old 07-01-2002, 08:43 PM
chipc66
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Question '97 E320 oil and filter change DIY

Hi,

I just picked up a '97 E320, and I'd like to do my own oil changes. I've come across the links below, but other than these I've yet to find any good resources for doing routine maintenance on my vehicle.

http://www.peachparts.com/Wikka/OilFilter1

http://www.peachparts.com/Wikka/OilFilter2

I think I can locate the oil filter cover and drain plug, but it would be nice to have an actual description of where these items are located and/or what needs to be removed to gain access. A picture or diagram would be even better. The links above are great, I just wish they were for my particular car

Information from 1-800-mercedes is that manuals for late model cars are not available; the only information is on microfiche or a very pricey subscription CD service. Is this true? Are there any other aftermarket publications that cover the 210?

Thanks for your input.
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  #2  
Old 07-02-2002, 03:26 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2002
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As an owner of a 97 E320, I think I can help you out. The oil filter is located at the back of the engine. There is an twelve dollar wrench that the dealer sells which will come in handy if you plan on keeping the car. I havent bought it because I put a latex glove on my hand and use some elbow grease. If you need the oil filter kit; you could probably find it on fastlane or you could buy it from the dealer for a couple of bucks more. The housing is a spin on set-up and all you really have to do is take out the old cartridge and put the new one in its place. The drain plug is on the bottom of the engine under the cover but once you open it, you will get really messy. If you dont have a jack dont even try to do the traditional oil change. The first obstacle is to get under the engine and unscrew the belly pan. Second obstacle is try not to lose any of the pan's corresponding screws. The third is how to clean the oil off your clean white garage floor. Try using a topsider, I use it and I like it alot. As oil goes, I use Mobil 1 10W30. I live in So. Cal and I don't worry about the cost of the oil because it costs 125 to change it at the dealer.
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  #3  
Old 07-02-2002, 04:48 PM
DTF
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Royaiii - Topsider question

Royaiii- what kind of topsider do you use? I bought the 'liquivac' and it collapsed after two uses and now I am looking at buying a topsider from a marine shop called the MVP or something like that. It is a metal can with a plunger attached. Please comment.
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Old 07-02-2002, 05:09 PM
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Big Boy Topsider-Metal construction-discontinued-I bought it for $38 from EBAY. Many people like pumping it 50 times with the hose sealed but I just pump it with it open. It takes about 15 min of pumping. Instanteous reward. Also less chance of making the canister collapse.
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  #5  
Old 07-02-2002, 05:23 PM
DTF
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Thanks for the immediate response. That might be it 'the Big BoOy'. It holds about 8 quarts right? Red can?
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  #6  
Old 07-02-2002, 06:30 PM
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Oil Change on '97 E320

I do this all the time on my same model MB. I pull the front up on a pair of ramps to which I fasten a short length of 2X12 as a "run-up" so the front spoiler will clear the ramp. There is a handy fixture you can make out of a gallon plastic milk jug to keep from getting oil all over everything, including yourself. Cut the bottom and about one-half of two adjoining sides out so that it will fit over the corner of the pan with the plug and direct the old oil down into the collecting pan. You have to hold the modified jug in place until the flow subsides but it works great.
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Old 07-02-2002, 11:12 PM
chipc66
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Thanks for your responses.

I've considered the topsider, but I suppose I'm a bit old school and I like getting the dregs off the bottom of the pan by pulling th plug. I've not yet removed the plastic cover, but is it painfully obvious once this is off, where the drain plug is? Anyone know what size head on the plug?

Regarding using ramps, does the attendant angle of the vehicle on the incline help or hinder a thorough draining of the oil? Is a better drain achieved when the car is on a level surface?

Thanks again.
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  #8  
Old 07-03-2002, 03:56 AM
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Blue can. The topsider really is the cleanest and easiest way to change the oil on this engine. Once I took my 97 E320 to the mech to do synth oil change and once he opened the drain plug it really pours down. Just imagine it going on your face and clothes. Unless you have stands how do you plan on getting under the front of the car. It is really low on the ground. Barely any moving space to unscrew the belly pan.
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  #9  
Old 07-03-2002, 10:51 AM
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Location: St. Louis, MO
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More re '97 E320 Oil Change

Once belly pan is off, requires 10 mm wrench, I think, the plug is quite obvious on the driver's side of the pan. I always buy filter from the dealer and he gives me the washer for the plug. A little oil will remain in pan because of ramp use but with frequent oil and filter change plus having oil hot and thin when I change it, that is no big deal. I'm in St. Louis, have always used Pennzoil 5W30 in my cars and have never had an engine problem or an oil burner on several cars with more than 85K miles. I change the Benz every 3-3.5 K miles. After al is done, i take the old oil to Autozone which gladly accepts it with a smile. Good luck!
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  #10  
Old 07-03-2002, 11:44 AM
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I don't have a E320 but it sounds like the same system as the 190. yes, using ramps help big time in removing the belly pan, or jacking up one side of the car. since the drain plug is in the front, you will not drain all the oil. as for the oil filter wrench. i got mine from target or autozone, just take the new filter to one of those places and they have a selection of different filter wrenches that plugs into the 3/8 inch socket. i think i paid something like $4 for it. But if you start doing the changes yourself, chances are you won't need a wrench as you can hand loosen it. its the first change that's the problem. Ken
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  #11  
Old 07-03-2002, 12:50 PM
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Location: Motor City, MI
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Where is the oil filter on the 320? Is it the part on the rear, top, driver's side of the engine, with little clearance from the firewall?
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  #12  
Old 07-03-2002, 12:59 PM
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Location: St. Louis, MO
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Location of Oil Filter on M104 Engine

Its at the rear top of the engine block, a little to the right as you face the firewall. Down under some hoses. Just enough room to reach in by hand or with with a filter wrench to loosen and extract the old filter element. Procedure is to loosen the cap of the filter container completely and raise the element up slightly (It's snapped into the underside of the cap.) Once the oil has drained from the pan, the filter element will be relatively free of oil and can be lifted out. Remove the old element, replace the rubber o-ring on the cap and snap in a new filter element. Replace cap, o-ring and element into container, tighten down to suit but not too much. Put the plug in the pan and add oil.

That will be $100, please!
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  #13  
Old 07-07-2002, 07:06 PM
chipc66
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Wink Results . . .

I just finished an oil and filter change, and I want to thank you all for your input. It was much easier than expected and only took about 20 minutes.

I used ramps and drained from the bottom. It is nice to get under the car and check things out; including careless work performed at dealerships (correcting mis-threaded cover screws). Okc329's suggestion for the milk jug funnel was excellent. I used a 1G plastic orange juice container--nice ergonomic handle and thick walls made it easy to hold while the hot oil was draining.

I've never used a topsider or other oil extractor, but I find with the ramps and homemade funnel, there's no need. Draining from below is quick, easy, and neat as long as you have a large enough pan to hold the spent oil
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  #14  
Old 07-08-2002, 08:27 AM
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Chip,
To each his own. If you're happy with the under-car method, go for it. On the other hand, if you search on "topsider", you'll uncover more info than you could possibly be interested in. One piece is very relevant, though, and that is an experiment where the topside and under car method went head-to-head and the topside actually drained out MORE oil than the gravity method.

I also like the convenience of sucking the oil right into the storage receptacle, instead of draining it into a drain pan, then pouring the oil into some sort of container to take to the recycler, then cleaning the drain pan, etc.

For what it's worth, most MB dealerships are equipped with oil tube suction machines for extracting oil, and MB has designed their engines since the 1970s specifically with this method in mind.
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