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Fuel gelled, now knackered fuel pipe seals?

Discussion in 'Engine, Drivetrain, Fuel and Exhaust' started by CRH71, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. CRH71

    CRH71 Senior Member

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    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    Location:
    Kent
    Your Mercedes:
    C250 TD
    I wonder if I can tap into the combined wisdom here once more please?

    1998/9 S202 C250TD, 170,000 miles. Decided to fail to proceed yesterday when it was showing -4.5 on the dash display (has been an absolute first-time cold starter up until then - even at -3 showing on the dash). Popping the bonnet basically showed the diesel fuel in the clear plastic pipes to have a jelly-like consistency (thanks, local supermarket!) so it was left until yesterday afternoon to thaw out, whereupon it did start after significant cranking, then taken for a good 20 mile run to try and recharge the battery which had taken one hell of a beating at that point.

    Whilst running, small air bubbles could be seen in the clear plastic pipes which research tells me could well be the O-rings on the fuel pipes past their best.

    This morning, again, it failed to start so I borrowed the MIL's 'spare' Mitsubishi Shogun (also known as the Petrol Eating Beast - 3.0L V6!) and left mine, again, to thaw out.

    Once again, this afternoon, it did restart, again after a lot of cranking and nearly flattening the battery - once again, it was given a good 12 mile run to recharge the battery.

    During the course of the day, I have phoned my local independent (luckily I was sitting down) and he quoted me a staggering £230 to replace the four clear fuel pipes under the bonnet. Sadly, I am not in the position of being able to lob this kind of money away, BUT we depend on the car as my wife is pretty ill and we might need to use it at any time, day or night if I need to get her to hospital.

    Enquiries at MB ascertained that the parts only were £44.53 inc VAT but MB themselves said that changing them is a good 'couple of hours work' so the previous quote I had been given was reasonable - MB couldn't come near it.

    OK, I know these motors are a tiddly bit complicated, but 2+ hours to change four fuel pipes from the block heater to the filter and filter to injection pump does seem to me to be ever-so-slightly extracting the urine.

    Anyone got an idea of how complex these pipes truly are to change? It doesn't LOOK like rocket-science and actually looks as though the job could be done without removing things like the inlet manifold but I'll bow to someone's superior knowledge or experience of the C250TD lump (OM605).

    Better still, anyone got a DIY on it, or links to same? I can wield the odd spanner (just reluctant to because (a) it's chilly outside and (b) we're not supposed to repair cars outside the house - it's in our tenancy) and don't mind having a go myself. At that sort of cost, I've probably got little choice.

    Alternatively, any other independents close to me (and by close, I mean within about half a tank's worth of diesel that I've now got to use up to replace it with stuff that HAS been winterised - I'm in North Kent) who would be interested in this job, but won't charge such an excessive price to do it?

    Or, of course, is my local indie right and the job is genuinely a £230 job??

    Edit : I've left it down the street tonight, facing downhill in an attempt to prevent the fuel draining back (if that is genuinely what it's doing - the symptoms suggest that it is).
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2012
  2. Dichtung

    Dichtung Member

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    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2012
    Location:
    Lancashire
    Your Mercedes:
    W210/1999/E300tds
    Hi, My car is a 300td, but I would think that the fuel pipe layout is nearly identical.
    Actually changing the pipes is a doddle, accesibility is the main drawback.

    Thoroughly cleaning the area first is a must , because crud dropping into pumps valves etc., when the pipes are removed, will knacker the injection pump.

    All the pipes are simply pulled out and pushed in. Most of the pipe ends have a white securing clip. this clip is pushed (not pulled ), and this expands securing claws which allows the pipe to be pulled out. Pipe ends without a white clip are simply pulled out. (Could be tight) All new pipes have a new O ring fitted.

    When the old pipes are removed from the electrically operated shutoff valve, (2 on top and 1 underneath), it is a good idea to remove the this valve completely and renew the O ring at the rear. Remove 2 Tork screws; top right on the valve and 1 in a groove just above the eletric plug,(see pic) and this valve will pull straight out. At the back of it is a short stub of a pipe; slide the old O ring off and slide the new one on. This O ring obtainable from MB for coppers. Cleanliness here is an absolute must. When replacing do not overtighten the screws. (Steel screws into aluminium pump) Good luck.
     

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  3. Dichtung

    Dichtung Member

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    Joined:
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    Location:
    Lancashire
    Your Mercedes:
    W210/1999/E300tds
    Sorry wrong Pic.
     
  4. Bolide

    Bolide Senior Member

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    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2002
    Your Mercedes:
    BMW 525 Diesel Touring
    Fitting the pipes is fiddly but anyone can do it. But bear in mind that it's not the pipes that leak - it's the O rings. I used to replace the O rings on E300 Diesels that had this problem.

    Nick Froome
     
  5. Dichtung

    Dichtung Member

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    Joined:
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    Location:
    Lancashire
    Your Mercedes:
    W210/1999/E300tds
    IMHO I can`t see how diesel fuel starting to gel will have caused this problem. Extreme low temperature might have put paid to a pipe becoming brittle with age.

    The air may be being drawn in further down the line.
     
  6. spock500

    spock500 Senior Member

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    Location:
    Milton Keynes
    Your Mercedes:
    300TD, 1998
    Derek on here (silversaloon) sells an excellent kit made of viton (immune to biodiesel) O rings.

    It's easy to do but perhaps not the nicest of jobs in these temps.
     
  7. Steve@Avantgarde

    Steve@Avantgarde Forum Supporter Authorised Forum Supporter

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    Joined:
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    Location:
    Bristol/Somerset
    Your Mercedes:
    C220CDI AMG Line Premium, SLR McLaren Roadster, SL55 & C32AMG
    Inlet manifold removal is required which isnt hard and it helps with access, no more than an hour and a halfs work.
     
  8. Matt_EClass

    Matt_EClass Senior Member

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    Joined:
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    Location:
    Orpington, Kent
    Your Mercedes:
    W211 2005 2.7cdi
    Hi CRH71, if your in north kent, have you tried Wright Tech? Andy is the owner 0208 308 9175 (Sidcup / Ruxley corner)

    Hes very resonable and always goes the extra mile, he does all the servicing on my W210 and got me out of a bind a couple of weeks ago when mine wouldnt start (turned out to be a buggered injector)

    Top class indie cant beat his service.

    Good luck!
     
  9. OP
    CRH71

    CRH71 Senior Member

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    Location:
    Kent
    Your Mercedes:
    C250 TD
    Thanks for the recommendation. I've been to see Andy today and have to say, I was very impressed with him.

    Just waiting for a quote now (couple of other bits he pointed out could do with being attended to at the same time) and then will start saving up the pennies!
     
  10. spock500

    spock500 Senior Member

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    Location:
    Milton Keynes
    Your Mercedes:
    300TD, 1998
    If your fuel has gelled MB you can always add petrol to help viscosity in cold weather.

    MB used to recommend this on some models although not so much with common rail engines.

    Have a look at the veggie forums where it's used commonly for this purpose.
     

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