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Old 10-03-2003, 11:45 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: oakland ca usa
Posts: 126
You may want to have the radiator flow and ability to cool off the coolant tested by using a infrared gun.It is a modern way of testing the tempature at the top of the radiator and then testing the temp at the middle and then bottom of the radiator to compare the difference.
This will give you a idea of the radiators condition rather than taking it out and replacing it when it still may be ok.You can also point the infrared gun at other points of the engine to check for differences in heat. It works greaty for catalytic converters and many other automotive uses.
Hope this helps
1999 C43
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Old 10-03-2003, 11:56 PM
Posts: n/a
Smile My problem was similar was the thermostat

You can check your thermostat. Only requires two bolts to be removed. Test in boiling water. Should open fully. If not replace for less than $15. Hope this helps.
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Old 10-04-2003, 10:46 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 8,150
The 300E has a funky double cross flow rad -- both hoses are on the same side, "bottom" hose is half way up. Coolant goes into the top, across, down the side, and back across the bottom half in the opposite direction.

Yes, if you have very hard water (and Miami does, it runs from Tallahasse all the way down the state over limestone) and use green coolant, you can make rock in the rad! Will plug in no time, that's why I recommend MB coolant (no phosphates) and distilled water.

The real diffuculty here is both the precipitation of calcium phosphate in the rad along with the serious corrosion problems phosphates will cause with aluminum. I'd rather replace the rad than the head.....

Cloggin of the rad can be checked with the infared thermometer -- there will be cold spots in front of the engine fan, where the most crud is.

Speaking of which, do you have residual pressure in the cooling system cold Mike? If so, you may nave other problems.

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 10-05-2003, 02:21 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Monrovia, CA
Posts: 490

I had an overheating problem with my '86 300E a year or so ago and it turned out to be an aux. cooling fan that was wearing out. Here's a quick test you might try. Get the engine temp to the point where the aux. fan comes on. CAREFULLY press in on the center of the fan hub with a piece of wood dowel or the like. If the fan speeds up noticeably it needs to be replaced. I'm not sure if you're relieving friction from a worn thrust bearing or making better contact with the commutator brushes by doing this, but either way it indicates an internal failure that can't be serviced. I replaced my fan and the engine ran much cooler, especially with the A/C on. My fan had about 95,000 miles on it at the time I replaced it.

I'd be surprised if your radiator needs replacing after only 4 years. Do you use distilled water to mix your antifreeze?

I also switched to Evans NPG+. Great stuff! Nonaqueous propylene glycol, non-toxic, 375 deg F boiling point, system runs at less than 2 psi pressure and they claim it to be good for 300,000+ miles between changes. Because there's no water in it, there's no corrosion. I've had it in for about 35,000 mi. so far with no problems, and I've put it through some very hard use.

Hope this helps,

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