Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help

Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes ShopForum > Technical Information and Support > Tech Help

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-16-2003, 05:36 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 59
Coolant loss and heater smell from C36

Hello all,

I think i know the issue at hand, but I wanted to get some second opinions.

This weekend I drove out to Davis (20 miles east of Sacremento) for a friends graduation. It was pretty damn hot and I drove the whole stretch there at about 80 mph with the AC blasting. The car never really go too hot until I was in town and the it peaked out at about 115 deg C. On the way way home we go stuck in traffic and roasted for about 3 hrs with AC on full and averaging about 20 mph with sections letting us get to 60 mph before slowing to a halt again. On the home stretch (running at 80 mph again) the low coolant light came on. I drove home (the car was running at about 82-85 deg C the whole time with the light on. I added a 1/2 liter of water to the resevior at home after the system had cooled some.

The coolant is darker than normal, I cannot tell if there are drops of oil in it, but the color is more redish than orangish, which to me is a sign that oil is in there. I check the oil and the level is fine, the color is good, but I don' t know how to check if it has coolant in it. Also the heating / cooling system has smelt of coolant (sweet) for the past week or so upon start up.

I know that I should just bite the bullet- pull the head, replace the gasket, timing chain / tensioner and send the head out for a valve job while I am in there, but I am hesitant to do this for a couple of reasons.

1) it is not in my budget to drop 2k on a gasket, TC and valve job right now.

2) I don't have a mechanic I would really trust to do this right now. Anyone have a good one in San Jose?

3) I had some hope of doing the work myself, but given that this is my only car and I have not had to pull the head on a car in about 5 years, I am little gun shy.

Here are my thoughts. I know that the head gasket has a small leak at the rear (got to love the M104) and I am wondering if the leak has gotten worse and is now allowing coolant in the cylinder.

- How can I check this, short of draining the coolant and oil?
- Is it possible that a bad resevoir cap would allow some of the coolant to boil off?
- Is 1/2 a liter a reasonable amount to boil off over the course of a 250 mile, long hot drive with full AC?

What are some of my options?

Any suggestions would be welcome.

1995 C36 AMG
Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2003, 05:53 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Jacksonville Florida
Posts: 723
You can Buy some Block check at the Local auto parts store that will test the coolant for Blown Headgaskit/Cracked head,block

Inspect the The Radiator cap seal and Spring If the seal is Shot/Dry or the Spring binds Replace the cap..It helps to pressure check the cap..But since you dont have a Cooling system pressure Pump ..I Would Just get a New MB radiator cap

The Cooling Syetem Should NOT be Down any amount after that drive Unless You have a Leak
You Should Try to see if you can Borrow a Coolant system Testor
many Auto part stores will Loan you one To test The System ..To help you find Leak.
Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2003, 09:52 PM
MikeTangas's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
If you smell coolant coming from the heating/AC vents, I would suspect a leaking heater core.
Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis

2012 VW Jetta Sportwagon least its a diesel

Non illegitemae carborundum.
Reply With Quote


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:10 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page