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  #1  
Old 04-24-2007, 09:20 AM
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Behr or Nissen? - 300SE

Thinking of preemptively replacing the radiator on a 91 300SE. Its got 60K on it and still has the original radiator. It isn't showing any issues, but it seems like these OE Behr radiators were/are iffy with the neck breakage I've been reading about. Its 15 years old, so I'm a little nervous with it.

If I go ahead and replace, is one brand better than the other? Is one a better "value" than the other?

Thanks!

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Old 04-24-2007, 09:41 AM
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Behr is OEM, Nissens is aftermarket. You decide if the extra cash is worth it to you...

Regardless, replace the trans cooler lines and the rad hoses while you're in there.
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Old 04-24-2007, 01:01 PM
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I replaced the factory Behr with an aftermarket Behr last year.
Big difference in material thickness and robustness - the replacement unit has very thin metal on the fins and supports. It works okay so far, but is just cheap-cheap-cheap by comparison to the '91 original.

You can get the plastic side-tank replaced and re-o-ringed. The new side-tank will have a reinforced hose neck. I would recommend that if your rad is in really good shape otherwise.

DG
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Old 04-24-2007, 01:49 PM
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Thanks! Yeah, the OE radiator looks really good right now. Only 60K miles on the car. I'm just worried about the age. Interesting to hear the replacement Behr is "cheaper" than the original.
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Old 04-24-2007, 03:41 PM
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I ordered an Nissen from ******** about 2 monthis ago. It works fine, and look like the behr i just replaced. Even if you buy BEHR, it is most likely made by a third party. I used to be in automotive. Once the service parts supply agreeement has expire, the OEM has a lot more slack on the part quality.
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Old 04-24-2007, 05:55 PM
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Radiator...

Stay with the BEHR- I have found that time and time again it is most important to go with what your Benz had in it from New. Especially for resale........

P.S. I see you are in NJ??? me2!

Saddle River here
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Old 04-24-2007, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falsapartenza85 View Post
Stay with the BEHR- I have found that time and time again it is most important to go with what your Benz had in it from New. Especially for resale........

P.S. I see you are in NJ??? me2!

Saddle River here

I have a 5.5 yr old Denmark made Nissens for a 300e(w124) which starts to leak at the trans cooler line top line.
Just bought a brand new af Behr,but this one is from South Africa.not installed yet,but the cooper/brass fitting already show some green stuff,I think that must have been QC at the factory,cos otherwise the rad looks brand new.Never had that in the Nissens though(green copper sulphate coating)
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Old 04-24-2007, 09:22 PM
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If you want a used behr rad from a 89 300se, but has the outer edge of the neck cracked, you can have it for shipping charge.
You can play with this one as a repair project and standby.

Otherwise don't sweat it ! Just don't overtighten the hose clamps or get that part of the neck reinforced before it gives.
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Old 04-25-2007, 09:09 AM
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OK. I think I'll keep what's there being careful with it and watching for problems. When it needs to be changes, I'll likely go with the Behr. Hopefully, this one will last awhile!

Falsapartenza85 - yup, NJ! (Dumont)

Thanks!
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Old 04-25-2007, 09:31 AM
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What Color is your 300SE?

hey nj300SE! If your 300SE is dark blue, with the dark blue lower valance and that caramel/ saddle colored leather interior- let me know when you wnat to sell....
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Old 04-25-2007, 10:13 AM
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Sorry Fals! - its "Astral Silver" I believe.
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  #12  
Old 04-25-2007, 11:01 AM
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Damn-

Quote:
Originally Posted by nj300se View Post
Sorry Fals! - its "Astral Silver" I believe.

Oh well, if you ever see a Blue one, hit me with a message!
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-My Garage-
1996 E320: White 118,000 miles ~Dad's Driver~
1996 E320: Green 109,000 miles ~Mom's Driver~
~My Babies~
2000 SL500: Desert Sand 96,000 miles
-Previoulsy Judge Judy's-
2008 E350 4MATIC Sport
-Flint Grey/ Ash/ Black Birds Eye Maple-
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  #13  
Old 04-25-2007, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nj300se View Post
OK. I think I'll keep what's there being careful with it and watching for problems. When it needs to be changes, I'll likely go with the Behr. Hopefully, this one will last awhile!
Just remember, when the neck breaks off (and it will), it will happen at the worst possible time in the worst possible place.

Hopefully when it breaks it will leave you just enough of a nub to reattach the hose and drive somewhere safe.

I only say this because the consequences of this failure can be catastrophic.
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Old 04-25-2007, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by brewtoo View Post
Just remember, when the neck breaks off (and it will), it will happen at the worst possible time in the worst possible place.

Hopefully when it breaks it will leave you just enough of a nub to reattach the hose and drive somewhere safe.

I only say this because the consequences of this failure can be catastrophic.

I know you are right about that. I want to replace the most important/oldest stuff first, so I was thinking belts, brake hoses and then radiator and affiliated hoses. I can't do it all at once, so I am trying to prioritize - but you got me rethinking the radiator as that is EXACTLY what will happen to me!

Thanks

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