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Mercedes 300D Suggestions

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  • rocquerocque Posts: 37
    Hi Shifty, I went to look at a 1982 300sd with 324km on it. The body was o.k with just a few little spots of rust it. It started right away,but idled a bit rough(THE SALES PERSON SAID, DON'T WORRY THE CAR IS 20 YEARS OLD....WHAT EVER) anyway, what the deal on the climate control....no matter what button I pushed, nothing happened.......even though I could here the fan working I think...The guy told me that it was cheap to get fixed, what am I really looking at..........ps he's asking 6500$ cnd
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,633
    Hmmm.....roughness could be something simple, like the two fuel filters (large one and the pre-filter) or it could need a new set of glow plugs (about $60 + 1.5 hours labor).

    As for the climate control, there is a bit of a delay but it should kick in after a short time.

    You tell him "if it's so cheap to fix, why don't you do it and I'll pay for it before I buy the car".

    I'm sorry to be so geocentric....how much is $6,500 cdn?

    If you really like the car, ask the dealer to change the filters and/or glow plugs and get the climate control working.

    WARNING: Rough idle on a 300D could also mean low compression in one cylinder!
    On a diesel, given the high compression ratios, any drop, even in one cylinder, ha a pretty strong effect on idlling.

    People never adjust the valves on these engines like they should, so you could also have a tight valve.

    So tell the dealer to square the car away.

    Any 300D should start instantly and idle smoothly within 5-10 seconds.
  • rocquerocque Posts: 37
    Shifty I saw a nice 1992 mercedes sd. Are they as good as the older ones(quality stand point)
  • capbillcapbill Posts: 1
    I have been enamored with the oft touted great engineering of the MB autos but am baffled when I read on these boards about owners having to replace their engines on 300's after only 100,000 miles. I am seriously considering getting a 1992 300 but am concerned after reading these postings. I presently have a 1985 Buick Sabre with 255,346 miles and other than brakes, tires and batteries, have only had to replace the catalytic converter and had a minor transmission repair since the auto was new. Am I being stupid to think that any used, well cared for, Mercedes I purchase will do as well?
  • Don't believe everything you read on the Internet and even if you can believe it remember that it is anecdotal evidence which gives no clue as to owner maintenance (or neglect), previous history of the car, etc.

    I'd estimate about 95 out of 100 people complaining about Mercedes quality have never owned one, and of the 5 who have owned them and had bad experiences we often don't know the complete circumstances.

    Certainly, every now and then any car made will cough up a few poor examples, but given the quality that goes into a Benz engine I'd say that a failure at 100K would be far more the exception rather than the rule.
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    capbill - As our host pointed out, there are exceptions with each auto nameplate, and I'd say your Buick with 255,000+ miles and minor upkeep expense was an extreme exception! My own experience differs dramatically -- by far, the worst build quality car I ever owned was a Buick Super (many years ago).

    Mercedes diesels are probably in a class by themselves when quality and longevity are considered. The thousands of Mercedes diesel taxis in Germany speak well for their quality and endurance. My wife has a 1977 300D with 97,000 miles, and she's fond of saying that it's almost broken in! But then, I ensure that it's properly maintained, and it's garaged whenever it's not on the road. When we drive it and stop, people keep trying to buy it from us!

    Bottom line -- if a Mercedes diesel is given proper care and regular maintenance, it should last a very long time and accumulate many miles.
  • Seems to me that any claim proporting that an entire product line of a distinguished automaker is deteriorating rapidly in quality would have to be supported by some rather substantial, timely and thorough evidence.

    If it isn't supported by such, one would have to suspect malicious intent.
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    If your Post # 148 regarding a claim that an entire product line of a distinguished automaker is deteriorating rapidly in quality was aimed at my comments about Buick, I suggest that you read my post again. There was no such claim, and there was certainly no malicious intent. The Buick I reported about was a horror story on wheels, and whatever could go wrong, DID. That was decades ago, and as a result, I've never owned another Buick.

    I'm reasonably sure that my experience has been repeated by owners of every make of automobile that's ever been on the road. And I would say AGAIN that ANY car that is driven 255,000+ miles with minor upkeep expense is, indeed, an extreme exception (Mercedes diesels included -- they DO need regular maintenance and frequent upkeep that often is costly). I believe you're aware that in Germany, Daimler Benz awards 100,000 Km. grill badges to owners of Mercedes diesels as they accumulate each 100,000 Km., and some grills sport four or more such badges!
  • No, no, no such intent whatsoever.....didn't even cross my mind. Sorry for the misunderstanding if that's what it looked like.

    It was just a general comment about brand-bashing.
  • mbdrivermbdriver Posts: 426
    Glad I wasn't the target or focal point. Maybe I'm just getting more sensitive in my old age.

    In any case, I think consumers ultimately decide which brand of autos survive and which bite the dust. I remember Nash, Studebaker, DeSoto and more recently, Plymouth. Soon Olds will join the list. For a while, Audi was on the ropes, at least in the U.S. market. Some would say, "Too bad." Others might say it was bound to happen. My bet, though, is that we'll never see Mercedes or BMW discontinued.
  • When Mercedes dies, all car companies will be dead right alongside it and we'll be driving some kind of anti-gravity pod.
  • Hello everyone. I have a 1987 300 SDL w/140K, and hope that somebody can help me with a problem.

    City driving in hot weather (all summer here in New Orleans, LA) sends the coolant temperature gauge almost to the red. Then the A/C compressor shuts off, making it unbearably hot for passengers. However, after stopping car and turning key to accessory, the gauge will show about 100 degrees (far below overheating).

    My independent mechanic has more than 20 years exp. working on MB. He says the reading when the engine is not running is the accurate one and the car is in no danger of overheating. He replaced radiator and all hoses about a year ago; replaced thermostat last month and flushed radiator. Also, electric fan works. He is not really sure what the problem is, but thinks it might be the gauge itself. It seems to me that it must be something else, b/c I wouldn't think a bad gauge would cause the compressor to switch off and on.

    Any ideas? Thanks in advance!
  • Well this is easily enough solved with a common automotive thermometer. Any good radiator shop should have one.

    Don't play guessing games with a possibly overheating engine.

    Also, 100 degress can't be right, or if it is, you have another problem. No engine could run properly at 100 degrees for very long, it would sludge up.

    So if the gauge is right while driving you have a problem, (overheating) and if it's right while on accessory you have another problem (running far too cold).
  • Sorry , but don't have a 300D question and this site was as close as I could find for a Mercedes question on my 1988 560SL.Can someone tell me why the two center dash air vent never blow any air? The side dash vents are fine. I jut bought the car and the prev.owner said they never did blow air. Bogus answer I suspect. Also where's the evaporator drain at? When I turn right water runs onto my feet.No water ever apears to be draining from under the car when the a/c is on. The air is cold from the two side dash vents. any suggestions appreciated. Bill C. Email ceipower@aol.com
  • Anyone remember the name of that Mercedes technical site that is often mentioned in Town Hall? He should check in there on this question.
  • Mr. Shiftright, thanks for your response. I wasn't clear in my earlier message, but I meant 100 degrees C, not F. According to the manual, the car redlines at 125 C/257 F, so 100 C would be in the normal operating range. My mechanic did check the temp, and said it is running around 100 C. He says the car is operating properly, but "thinks" it is running too hot, which causes the A/C compressor to switch off. He said he thought the gauge was bad, but not sure, so since it would cost $300+ to replace, he didn't want to replace it and that not to have been the problem.

    I have two concerns: one, with the compressor cutting off all of the time, it is very hot inside the car. Two, if the car were to overheat, I wouldn't know it. I don't think it is the gauge itself, because I don't think the gauge would read incorrectly, then switch off the compressor. Maybe I'm wrong on this, but isn't another component reading the temperature, switching the compressor off, and then sending the incorrect info to the gauge?

    I've had two local independent MB mechanics look at it, and neither one can figure it out. Maybe I should just replace the gauge and go from there? Thanks.
  • I think somebody needs to find out what device disconnects the a/c compressor clutch and go from there. Maybe it's a defective pressure switch.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    westmullen:
    Are you sure the compressor goes off strictly due to temperature? Could it be caused by low vacuum in the climate control? Since this is a diesel, I assume it has a vacuum boost pump. Is it working right? Also, if your freon charge is low the pressure sensor in the high pressure line could be turning off the compressor to prohibit damage.
    I keep the vacuum systems on my old 280SE tight as a drum (well as tight as a 23 year old drum can be) and under high load such as accelerating uphill from a standing start in hot weather it will sometimes lose enough vacuum to disable the climate control until it recovers. BTW, my 280 usually runs around 90-100 C.
    kodename:
    That center air vent not operating could be caused by many things. A defective vacuum solenoid or linkage, a faulty switchover valve, or even the climate control servo itself. I'm not as familiar with the system on that model as some others, but I would suspect that it's not to far different than the older cars. I think the first place I would look is the vacuum solenoid on the vent flapper itself, unfortunately it's probably the hardest to get to. Most times they recommend removing the dashboard to get to it, but I've done it on other models without doing that. It's not easy though.
  • Well if he had leaking vacuum, probably the engine wouldn't shut off, right?

    He should be able to actually look and see if the a/c compressor clutch has been disengaged or not.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    As long as the check valves for the secondary vacuum systems (central locking if so equipped, and climate control) are working a vacuum leak in these systems won't cause run-on since they will keep air from flowing backwards in the system. Yes, you can see if the compressor clutch is disengaging or not, but if the climate control shuts off due to loss of vacuum the compressor will disengage.
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