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Old 15-01-2009, 01:21 PM
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Default W211 E320 CDi - Engine Oil Level Measurement, again!

Hi,

Yesterday I carried out an engine oil level comparison check on my 2004 W211 E320 CDi (3.2 litre, straight-six).

The engine was hot and I gave it a generous 30 minute rest period for the oil to drain back into the sump.

First I removed the engine cover and took a dipstick reading of the depth of oil in the sump - the oil depth measured 130 mm.

Then I used the dashboard electronic service measurement system to take a measurement of the volume of oil in the sump - this was reported as 6.5 litres.

From the oil level check charts that Russ (SM rf065) kindly posted for me, the 130 mm oil depth requires 0.5 litres of oil to bring the level up to the full mark.

I was told that the correct (full) volume of oil in the sump is 6.8 litres so, if that figure is in fact correct, the electronic service measurement system is telling me to add 0.3 litres of oil to bring the level up to the full mark.

A discrepancy of 0.2 litres between the two measuring systems seems rather high.

Please could someone with access to the WIS database look up what my E320 CDi 'sump full' oil volume should be when using the dashboard electronic service measurement system? If it is actually 7.0 litres (rather than 6.8 litres), that would relate perfectly with the 130 mm dipstick measurement.

2004 E320 CDi (3.2 ltr. straight-six)
VIN: WDB2110262A606222
Engine No: 648961 30 076464

Thanks,

Razoo

BTW, I topped-up with 0.3 litres of oil (Mobile 1 0W40).
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Old 15-01-2009, 03:05 PM
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Wis states 7.3 litres oil capacity in your engine. (after oil & filter change).
I assume some of that will be taken up by the filter and not all is in the sump?

Wis also states that the engine should be warm when switched off & only a 5 minute wait is required.

Russ
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Last edited by rf065; 15-01-2009 at 03:42 PM.
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Old 15-01-2009, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rf065 View Post
WIS states 7.3 litres oil capacity in your engine. (after oil & filter change).
I assume some of that will be taken up by the filter and not all is in the sump?
Hi Russ,

Yes, some oil remains in the filter housing, thereby reducing the volume of oil in the sump. Vehicle handbooks often give two engine oil change capacities; one with oil filter replacement, and one without oil filter replacement. The quoted oil capacity without oil filter replacement should be equal to the volume of oil in the sump (at 'Full'). Unfortunately, the Mercedes' handbook doesn't give this information.

Quote:
WIS also states that the engine should be warm when switched off & only a 5 minute wait is required.
That's true, but my engine was 'hot' so I gave it a while to cool down. Also, 5 minutes is a minimum wait time for warm oil to drain back into the sump - longer (within reason) doesn't matter.

As Mercedes have gone to the not inconsiderable trouble of designing and fitting the electronic service oil level measurement system that gives the volume of oil in the sump in litres, they must surely quote the figure for the volume of oil in the sump when the level is at the 'Full' mark. Otherwise the whole scheme falls apart because if the volume of oil at 'Full' isn't known, then the measured volume of oil cannot be subtracted from it to give the volume of top-up oil required.

Some MB dealerships only use the electronic service oil level measurement system when doing an oil change, so they must know what the volume of oil in the sump should be when at the 'Full' mark.

I think an oil filter generally holds around 0.5 litre of oil, which would confirm my figure of 6.8 litres in the sump, if the total refil capacity (including filter replacement) is 7.3 litres, as you say.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 15-01-2009, 05:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razoo View Post
As Mercedes have gone to the not inconsiderable trouble of designing and fitting the electronic service oil level measurement system that gives the volume of oil in the sump in litres,

Problem is, the electronic level on mine has shown the engine to be 0.8 of a litre short of the 6.3 litres my engine holds in the past. Even after putting a 1 litre bottle of mobil 1 & the dregs from another bottle in, it was still showing 0.1 short according to the electronic level. It can also give a different reading from day to day for no known reason.

I would be more inclined to follow the dipstick if I wanted a true reading, it cannot really fail as it has been tried & tested to work for over a hundred years now. Trust Mercedes to mess about with a system that works.

Russ
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Old 15-01-2009, 05:31 PM
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How does one find this service oil level measurement in the computer ? It does not tell you in the Handbook..........cheers ,Derek
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Old 15-01-2009, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by delboy777 View Post
How does one find this service oil level measurement in the computer ? It does not tell you in the Handbook..........cheers ,Derek

Maybe you have a dipstick instead?
I'm sure if you had it, the manual would tell you how to use it.

turn the key to the first position & press the mileage reset button 3 times, you should hear a beep to confirm.

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Last edited by rf065; 15-01-2009 at 06:14 PM.
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Old 15-01-2009, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by delboy777 View Post
How does one find this service oil level measurement in the computer ? It does not tell you in the Handbook..........cheers ,Derek
If you do NOT have an engine dipstick, then the handbook should tell you how to check the oil level using the basic electronic oil level measurement feature. This is NOT the SERVICE oil level measurement; it is a much more simplistic function, primarily aimed at owners with an IQ lower than their shoe size. Basically, all it tells you is 'Oil level OK', 'Add 1 litre of oil', 'Add 2 litres of oil' or 'Too late, scrap the engine!'

The service oil level measurement is not mentioned in the handbook. It took me quite some while to find out how to access it. The service oil level measurement gives a readout in litres of the volume of oil in the sump (although judging by some member's comments, it might be more of a random number generator).

The sequence is:

Note: If the engine has just been running, let the vehicle stand for around 10-15 minutes before starting this procedure.

1. With the vehicle on level ground, put the key into the ignition and turn it clockwise to position 1 (first position).

2. Use the leftmost menu button on the steering wheel (the icon looks like a page of text partly on top of a blank page). Press this button slowly and repeatedly until the speedometer centre display shows 'Temp' (e.g +1.0 C) at the top.

3. Press the 'Reset' pushbutton on the extreme left-hand edge of the instrument cluster (just to the left of the clock) quickly 3 times. The speedometer centre display should change to the engineering menu showing battery voltage 'UB' (e.g. UB: 12.2V).

4. Press the 'Up Arrow' on the left of the steering wheel ONCE. The speedometer centre display should change to show several rows of information. The bottom row should read, 'Oil level _._l'

5. Turn the ignition key clockwise from position 1 to position 2 (second position). Wait patiently for a few seconds and the _._ should change to show the exact volume of oil in litres (e.g. Oil level 6.55l).

6. Turn the ignition key anti-clockwise to position 0 (OFF) when you have finished taking the reading.

This sequence works on my 2004 E320 CDi, but I can't say whether it will work on your vehicle. As your vehicle is 2001, I suspect it won't.

Razoo
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  #8  
Old 15-01-2009, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rf065 View Post
<snip> Trust Mercedes to mess about with a system that works.
Absolutely - keep it simple and reliable. MB's electronic oil level measuring system was an unnecessary and over-complicated foray into pointless extravagance.

I guess MB wanted to show Ford how to do it (IIRC, Ford tried an 'electronic dipstick' on their Granada model. It used to suffer badly from condensation on the sensor and gave all manner of false readings).

At least MB have gone back to the traditional dipstick on the latest V6 CDi E-class.

Razoo
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Old 15-01-2009, 09:42 PM
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I got a 230 SL500 06 2006 for a friend, and that has a dip stick and the dash reading
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Old 17-11-2009, 06:58 PM
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[QUOTE
2. Use the leftmost menu button on the steering wheel (the icon looks like a page of text partly on top of a blank page). Press this button slowly and repeatedly until the speedometer centre display shows 'Temp' (e.g +1.0 C) at the top.]

The menu is accessed from the default data displayed - so you may have 'Speed' instead of 'temp' as default display on this menu - if so, follow instruction 3 from there...

An excellent post - many thanks
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