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  #1  
Old 01-12-2004, 03:12 PM
blueriomedina's Avatar
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Question Engine Oil Additives

Oil additives

What is the general consensus on using oil additives specifically the engine stop leak? Can they be use in Mercedes engines; are they good, or bad for an engine?

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  #2  
Old 01-12-2004, 04:18 PM
Ali Al-Chalabi's Avatar
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Don't use them, just use a quality engine oil. I would either fix the leak or let it leak, I would never use a stop leak additive.
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2004, 04:23 PM
BlackE55
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I would only use a stop leak product if it was a vehicle that I knew was on it's last legs and I had no intention of keeping for any extended period of time -- "drive it 'till she dies" type of situation.

What sort of leak do you have?
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  #4  
Old 01-12-2004, 09:11 PM
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A wild guess says 300E or something with an M103 or M104. Stop leak additives typically don't work with head gasket leaks.

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  #5  
Old 01-12-2004, 09:20 PM
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Unhappy Front of engine oil leak

It just started to leak from right front side of the engine. I have not been able to exactly pinpoint the origin but the oil seems to drip on top of alternator then follow the right side cooling transmission oil line. I have just finish doing some repairs; I changed the serpentine belt, belt tensioner, tensioner shock, LF and RT transmission cooling hoses, thermostat, and did a flush of the cooling system, using MB recommended coolant/products. Seems that I started to notice the oil leak (which is brown/amber engine oil) after replacing the mentioned parts which makes me wonder if putting the new belt and tensioner may have trigger the oil leak since the new belt put new tension (to pulleys) to the different parts on the front of the engine? Or perhaps the leak has been there all along at least since I purchased the car back on October 03, but I just never noticed since the car had the engine bottom cover, and Reading from the Bentley Owner’s Bible pg 139 “Sometimes the gasket will leak oil to the outside parting line between the head and the block. Many times this leak will not leave oil puddles, as the oil only leaks when the engine is running (except for small quantities of residual oil). Because the engine is tilted 15 degrees to the passenger side, oil will just drip down into the air stream and leave the undercarriage with dark stains. The engine will have measurable oil loss without any signs of puddling”. This I believe was/is what happen to me and probably every owner of the infamous 104 engines, as long as you have the plastic bottom engine cover on, you may never notice any engine oil loss, or dripping, since most of the oil will either fly away so to speak, or pool on the engine bottom cover. I had left intentionally the bottom engine cover off, because I wanted to make sure there were no leaks from any of the work I have just completed, mainly the transmission oil from the cooling hoses, and coolant, and that is when I first notice the oil leak on the floor of the garage.

It is kind of deflating to have a Mercedes (with low miles 63,300) with so many inherent problems/defects. At first it was love at first sight with my 95 E-320, but already I am beginning to feel that this may turn into a love/hate relationship in which I’m afraid hate may be the winner. I still can not believe a car of this caliber can have so many problems, and not cheap to fix; $1800 to fix the head gasket, $600 to fix a timing cover leak, $600 to replace the engine wiring harness, and the list goes on.

Thanks for responding but my question has not been answer, what is the reasoning behind not using oil additives products, why are they bad?
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  #6  
Old 01-12-2004, 09:36 PM
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Don't give up, it's only money.
What can I tell you?
The car is 9 years old & things go wrong ( even if they are pricey ).
I believe any additive that would seal a substantial oil leak, may also have a tendency to possibly clog the pick-up screen on an oilpump.
There, not much help from me, but lots of sympathy.
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  #7  
Old 01-12-2004, 09:50 PM
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You can try one of the "high mileage engine oils" such as MaxLife. They help old, hard engine seals with conditioners. Its no magic and it isn't perfect, but I have seen so good results with engines that need valve stem seals. Doesn't eliminate oil useage, just reduces it.

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  #8  
Old 01-13-2004, 09:15 AM
I told you so!
 
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Bluerio, even though you mentioned the upper timing cover gasket was replaced, it sounds like it's leaking from there. Is there any reason to believe it's NOT coming from there? Sealing the upper timing cover is tricky. It's easy to do screw up and do a bad job. Oil stop leak products are not the way to go.
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2004, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kestas
Bluerio, even though you mentioned the upper timing cover gasket was replaced, it sounds like it's leaking from there. Is there any reason to believe it's NOT coming from there? Sealing the upper timing cover is tricky. It's easy to do screw up and do a bad job. Oil stop leak products are not the way to go.
Kestas,
I was just quoting what it will cost (more or less) to do some of these gaskets jobs, but no, I have not done any of them in my car. When I first bought the car I took it to the MB dealership in town to have all the fluids changed and to have it inspected for things that needed to be change/fix and they gave me this list:

1. Rear Brake Pads $31.00 labor $105.00

2. Belt Tensioner $249.60
3. Tensioner shock $52.00
4. Serpentine Belt $40.00 labor $570.00

5. Transmission Cooler Hoses L&R
(R) $49.00
(L) $42.00 Labor $165.00

6. Trans Flex Disc $106.8 labor $260

7. Diff Side Seals
w/oASR x2 $14.0 ea
w/oASR x2 $21.0 ea labor $500.0

8. Drier and Line Mounting not correct
Line hose $62.00
Drier $145.00 labor $520.0

Parts $846.00 labor $2,015.0 Grand Total parts& labor $2,861.00

They never mention any leaks in the engine due to the head gasket or any other gasket so I was assuming that everything else was ok.

I since decided that I would try to do as many of these things myself, and during the Christmas holidays I went ahead and did the belt tensioner, shock, belt, L &R transmission cooling hoses, thermostat, flush the coolant, and added new MB coolant. I bought all my parts from FastLane, which I highly recommend, Phil has been more than helpful he has going out of his way in trying to help me. So I was kind of disappointed when I discover this new leak coming from the front of the engine, and how much of a pain they can be. And as you know we MB owners tend to be perfectionist when it comes to our cars and no matter how much we ignore a problem it will always remain in the back of our heads until we get it fix. Like I said I have not been able to exactly pinpoint the source of this leak but I hope it is the Timing Cover Front Gasket and not he Head Gasket. Either way I would not tackle such a job as changing either of those two gaskets I believe that is something I will just have to bite my lip and take it to the dealer so it can be done right.

My question about the oil additives was to make sure I understood why it is best not to use them in a relative good engine, and the problems associated with the use of these additives.

Thanks for your responses.
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  #11  
Old 01-13-2004, 12:19 PM
blueriomedina's Avatar
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by w126
[B]Why engine oil additives are bad, some links:


Ted.

That was certainly eye opener, very informative, thanks for the links.

Blue
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  #12  
Old 01-13-2004, 01:07 PM
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blueriomedina,

Your mechanics labor rates are very high from what I can see. You many want to shop around unless you really love his/her work and the work is above and beyond what is necessary.

Just as an example my mechanic quoted me approximately $160 - $180 to install all four brake pads, pad sensors and rotors on my W124. He is top notch and very meticulous with his work and the best mechanic I've had an opportunity to work with, and yet reasonable.

He charged me I think $65 to install my serpentine belt, although I don't know the difference between the 3.2 and 5.0, anyone know if the 3.2 is more difficult to do?

Anyways, certainly worth investigating.
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2004, 02:16 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by placo1
[B]blueriomedina,

Your mechanics labor rates are very high from what I can see. You many want to shop around unless you really love his/her work and the work is above and beyond what is necessary.

Afshin,

You are right those prices are ridiculous high they were a quote giving to me from the MB dealership here in SA. I have been doing most of the work myself with quite a substantial saving of money just by ordering the parts from FastLane. Just to give you and idea of the difference. The MB dealer would have charge for parts and labor $1,167.60 to change the following:

Belt Tensioner $249.60
Tensioner shock $52.00
Serpentine Belt $40.00 labor $570.00

Transmission Cooler Hoses L&R
(R) $49.00
(L) $42.00 Labor $165.00

I did this job myself; the same parts from FastLane came to be $234.00 so in parts alone I saved $198.60. I save overall $933.60. That is not including a new thermostat, and coolant change which I also did, Thermo from FastLane ~~ $14.00 had it ship overnight cost me extra $13.00, the coolant from MB dealer $10.00/gallon X2. No matter how you cut it if you can do the job yourself you can save quite a bit of money. Of course I know I won’t be able to do everything, limiting factors such as tools, and time, will probably make me take the car to the dealer or a mechanic that specializes in MB.

Blue
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2004, 02:29 PM
I told you so!
 
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I can understand your frustration. My answer is to switch cars twice a year. The E320 cabrio is my summer car (I can't afford lay out the money for this car and just let the rust eat at it). So I have all winter to address any issues the car has, assuming they aren't emergency repairs. Same with my winter car. I don't have to rush through any repair jobs, plus I can do the complicated repairs.

Consider working on your own car a second job.

Some of the jobs quoted should overlap. Head gasket replacement also involves doing everything needed to fix the upper timing cover seal leak.
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  #15  
Old 01-13-2004, 02:54 PM
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Sounds like you're very meticulous with your maintenance so why try a questionable quick fix?

Oil leaks aren't disastrous so long as you maintain proper oil levels. Continue maintaining and when you have the $$ fix it properly. Also remember that what may look like a valve cover leak may actually be something else. Example: My PPI MB Dealer said my passenger side valve cover had a significant leak which would need to be addressed. My indie and I cleaned out my engine bay and monitored the engine for the next couple of months. Turned out the leak was caused by the oil filler cap and two breather hoses. The engine hasn't had a leak since. I'm guessing you've already cleaned your engine and sourced the leak but just in case it may be worth it if you haven't.

Good luck and don't get dissapointed, it is a mechanical object which offers qualities other vehicles can never provide.....so take the good with the bad.
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