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Old 08-10-2002, 07:59 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 6
W124 (1990 300TE) “Clunk” When Shifting

Mileage = 155k
The transmission was rebuilt at 130k and the front and rear flex disks were replaced at that time. I now have a “clunk” (sounds / feels like from differential area) when the car upshifts from second to third and a much more pronounced “clunk” from third to fourth. The “clunk” is most prevalent when the car is cold and then diminishes significantly as it is driven. When cold, there is even a modest “clunk” when slowing the car and the transmission downshifts ... at near stop. However, if the parking break is on ... and the car is shifted from reverse to forward, there is no noticeable “clunk” at that time.

In reviewing threads, my first inclination was a flex disk problem even though they had been replaced only 25k ago. When I called my mechanic, he said it was probably the differential bushings. He said this was a labor intensive job, particularly due to the interference with the self-leveling connections on the TE wagon.

Any insight pursuant diagnosis, or actions to be taken to effect a thorough diagnosis would be appreciated.

I did see threads by J.HIDALGO (“Differential rear mounts 124") and by 300EE320 (“Differential Mounts: Follow-up”). In both instances there was caution about how tough the job was. If it is the differential bushings (or mounts ... as I have seen them referred to in other threads), is the job actually more difficult on a TE wagon versus, e.g., a 300E sedan? Thanx much ... Qrash
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Old 08-11-2002, 07:48 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Cumming Ga.
Posts: 238
Yes, replacing the rear diff mounts on a TE is more difficult than on a sedan. On the TE you have one of the fuel pumps mounted in the area of the mounts and also the rear leveling plumbing makes things a little more cramped around the diff.
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Old 08-11-2002, 01:37 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 8,150
Check to make sure the vacuum modulator and associated hoses and connectors are in good shape before you attempt the diff bushings -- a leak will cause hard shifts and a serious "thump" with the engine cold.

1972 220D ?? miles
1988 300E 200,012
1987 300D Turbo killed 9/25/07, 275,000 miles
1985 Volvo 740 GLE Turobodiesel 218,000
1972 280 SE 4.5 165, 000 - It runs!
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Old 08-11-2002, 04:19 PM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Gainesville FL
Posts: 6,844
Diagnosis is simple, just look at them. Or on a lift have someone pull the thing in and out of gear. If its the mounts (which it probably is) the whole differential wil move significantly. Believe me its obvious.
Steve Brotherton
Continental Imports
Gainesville FL
Bosch Master, ASE Master, L1
33 years MB technician
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