13 November 2011

Week 2 Clean up engine bay, order parts

This week I did not do as much as I wanted as I was waiting for the ignition parts to arrive. I did further clean the engine and have a clear picture of the oil leaks now. I also changed the coolant and placed a large order of parts from the USA.

Engine coolant change
After doing some reading up between the advantages of Coolant with anti-freeze vs Distilled water with Corrosion inhibitor, I choose for the latter. It never freezes in Adelaide and this option seems to cool better if your car can 'handle' it. As the owner's manual describes it as an option in warmer climates I went with that.
When undoing the drain plug a sign of past budget maintenance was apparent. There should be a copper crush washer (basically a hollow donut) but instead there was a very flat crushed version and a gardenhose variety rubber ring... Obviously that had to be replaced. Was very pleased that the Mercedes Service center did not charge... now that is a smart action as now I will go back more often for these kind of parts.

Engine clean
I got 10 litres of concentrated CT14 degreasing and a air cleaning gun for just under $50. This worked really well although what a mess... But at least now it is a much more obvious where the leaks are.
1. The oil drainplug is leaking. This is just a $1 washer that should be replaced anyway when I do the oil change, so that is easy.
2. Rear differential housing is leaking. This should be as simple as taking the cover off when I change the diff oil and apply a good sealant.
3. A power steering hose, was not properly connected just tightened it up
4. This one is a bit more of a strange one. It looks like the hoses from and to the oil cooler (next to radiator) are porous, so just seep oil. Replacements seem hard to get, so might go with an universal braided hose and pipe fittings.

Loose vacuum hose
During the engine clean I found a disconnected vacuum hose. After some searching found that it should be connected to the distributor, the line was quite dry so probably just snapped off. This would have effected the ignition timing when the car is cold (lack of power).

Ignition coil lead
When re-connecting the vacuum line above, I had to disconnect the spark plug leads, although I am planning to replace these when the spark plugs and rotor arrive, I could not get myself to put the old coil lead back, this one looked so old and dried out, I'm surprised it still worked... Put a nice new Bosch one in that came with the whole set.

Next week
A lot of the parts and tools that I ordered should come in early this week. Let's keep our fingers crossed...
Hope you enjoy this blog, speak to you next week!