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  #1  
Old 02-19-2003, 12:40 PM
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New 300CE owner - what might leave me stranded?

I've recently purchased a very nice 1990 300CE (with the 3.2l CIS-E equiped engine), and need some advice on preventative maintanence. What I basically want to know is what things on these cars could possibly leave me STRANDED? I haven't seen complaints of radiator neck cracking or B2 piston problems like on the w126 cars, I have already familiarized myself with the OVP relay, and I know the t-chain isn't an issue, but is there anything I'm missing?

I want to trust this car as much as I trust my w123 diesel, which I know inside and out, so bring on the advice! Its time to start bonding with the coupe!

Thanks everyone.

GregS
'84 300D, 173k
'90 300CE, 162k
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  #2  
Old 02-19-2003, 04:29 PM
J.HIDALGO's Avatar
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Fuel pump relay comes to mind!

Also problems with alternator brushes.
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'86 300E
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  #3  
Old 02-19-2003, 04:53 PM
volosong
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"New 300CE owner - what might leave me stranded?"

Running out of gasoline? Sorry, couldn't resist.

Seriously, I am also a new owner of a 300CE, '89 model in this case. Have put about 5k miles on it in the past two months. What I'm still a little concerned about is exactly how many miles I can get out of a tank of gas. Every Mercedes I've owned does not record the fuel level acurately. When the low fuel warning light comes on, I don't know how many miles I have left, (No! It isn't something I do regularily. I just have my favorite stations that I like to give my business to.). I'm not sure exactly how many gallons I have left when that light comes on. Do I have 20 miles left, (as in my truck), or 35+ as the owner's manual seems to indicate (assuming a 1.5 gallon reserve tank).
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  #4  
Old 02-19-2003, 06:37 PM
chicago124
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GregS:

Replace all the fuses. Don't assume they are good.

Unless you know its been done, replace the vacuum hoses connected to the idle control valve. If one of those goes, you are stranded. It happened to me.

I'd look at all the hoses as suspect unless you have a receipt showing their recent replacement date.

As for the radiator neck, I do not know if the CE has the same radiator as the 300E -- if it does not have the reinforced neck, it will break on you. That can be checked quite easily though.

Look at the thermostat housing -- is it plastic or metal? If plastic, order the metal upgrade now and replace it. Don't wait for that one. Probably already done by a previous owner but check anyway.

When was the water pump replaced, if at all? Never? It will go when you least expect it.

Check the other vacuum hoses and lines for dry rot, etc. I'd spend the dollars to replace them anyway. Pretty cheap insurance.

Change the oil hot and often.

Drive it often:-) MBs hate sitting around.

chicago124
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  #5  
Old 02-19-2003, 06:57 PM
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Check your freeze plugs - just had one let go. My car only has 59K but PO must have been filling with water only! The freeze plug corroded to the point of failure.
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  #6  
Old 02-19-2003, 09:05 PM
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Wiring harnesses have been a problem on W124s. They will cause very erratic engine operation.
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  #7  
Old 02-19-2003, 09:48 PM
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Thanks guys. I have already replaced the fuses as a matter of course. The thermostat housing is made out of metal, and I guess I'll have to wait until I flush the coolant to check for a reinforced neck.

The fuel pump relays can give trouble in these cars? Where is it located?

Keep the advice coming!

Thanks,

Greg
'84 300D, 173k
'90 300CE, 162k
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  #8  
Old 02-19-2003, 09:58 PM
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Fuel pump relay is located behind the battery...

right next to the OVP (which can also fail). The OVP is a small silver box with an "american style" fuse on under the red top. The fuel pump relay is right next to it.
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  #9  
Old 02-20-2003, 01:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Aaron
Wiring harnesses have been a problem on W124s. They will cause very erratic engine operation.
maybe not on his car - they are a problem in 93-95 model years and not just w124's...
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  #10  
Old 02-20-2003, 07:49 PM
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Pay attention to the tranny. If it starts to slip or shift hard get it serviced pronto. B2 piston failure is a *****!
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