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Old 04-05-2003, 07:13 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Kingsport, TN
Posts: 375
Replaced oil level sender on W126

Hi everybody,

Today, I replaced the leaking oil level sensor and its plastic connector that had come apart on a 1987 420SEL. While I could have just replaced the o-ring, I decided to replace the whole thing.

One problem encountered was a snapped oil pan bolt. 2 bolts on the driverside go actually through the oil pan and serve to hold a bracket onto which some part of the A/C unit is connected. So there is a nut each on top of 2 oil pan bolts. Not realizing that, I struggled with these two to loosen them. And eventually, the bolt snapped. Luckily, the nut on top turned the bolt out through the other end. Home Depot had a replacement.

So watch out for these 2 bolts when you remove the oil pan.

When tightening the oil pan, the gasket split at some bolts. (see picture) I tightened it very slowly to 6 ftlbs first and it started to split long before I reached that value. The required torque is 8 ftlbs and I tightened it eventually to that value. Anybody experienced this? Is it going to leak? I cleaned the bolts with WD40, did that make them too slick and thus did I overtorque them?

Thanks for your help.

Reinhard Kreutzer
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Replaced oil level sender on W126-splitting-gasket-rear.jpg  
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Old 04-07-2003, 05:37 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Kingsport, TN
Posts: 375

I drove the car in city traffic today and think I got it to operating temp. Afterwards, the splitting gasket does not seem to leak, but it might be too early to tell. The sensor does not leak anymore.

I brought my torque wrench to Sears today to have it recalibrated. I used the torque wrench to open a differential filler cap at about 125 ftlbs some weeks ago and that might have "disturbed" it.

I'll let you know how much it is once I get it back.

Reinhard Kreutzer
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Old 04-07-2003, 05:54 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,160
You may want to invest in a good 1/2" drive breaker bar sometime. Sure saves the poor old torquewrench.

Btw., I always back off my "click-style" torque wrench to 0 ft/lbs. before I store it, so there is no stress on the spring.
2007 C 230 Sport.
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Old 04-07-2003, 07:24 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Kingsport, TN
Posts: 375
Thanks manny,

I always put them to 0 too and this wrench has served me for about 20 years, although sometimes I might not have used it for a year or two. I thought by setting it to 110 on a 40 ftlbs cap should be ok.

This was my first real gasket (I love o-rings!) and I still cannot tell how much torque is needed. I saw the gasket come out and probably should have stopped at that time regardless of what my torque wrench said. I also might not have put enough oil on the gasket so that it had a better way of slipping into place rather than splitting.

If it leaks, I'll replace it at the next oil change.

Reinhard Kreutzer
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