1998 E300TD fan blades sheared (see photo's) and damaged radiator - cause?

Discussion in 'Engine' started by stormyk, Jan 31, 2011.

  1. stormyk

    stormyk New Member

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    Hi,

    I own a 1998 E300TD. I've had it from new and done 161k miles in it. It's been well looked after but is now showing some signs of age.

    The other day, I heard a clunking noise when I started her up. I've got one glow plug down at present so I thought it was just associated with that as the noise disappeared when I revved the engine.

    However, after 10 minutes, my low coolant light came on. When I got home, I looked under the bonnet only to find that some of the fan blades (the fan attached to the engine block - not the electric fan) had completely sheared off:dk:. Further investigation showed that the fan blades had somehow 'moved' so that it was now hitting the radiator - this caused the fan shear as well as damage to the radiator (see attached photos). I've pulled (what's left of) the fan and whilst it moves slightly it's difficult to tell whether the bearing (or is it a clutch on the fan?) has gone as it is being held tightly by the belt. I've cheked that the radiator and the plastic housing (that the fan rotates inside of) hasn't 'slipped' (the housing is fixed to the car body but the fan is mounted on the engine block) but it is rock solid so have eliminated that.

    I believe it will be just a matter of replacing the radiator and the fan (clutch fan?) but am reluctant to do it until I know that doing so will fix the problem. SO....

    1) Can anyone shed any light as to what has caused the fan to shear and how I can check it?

    2) Is it easy to fix? ie any special tools needed etc (I am a competent DIY car person). If you can point me to a step by step guide that would be most helpful (even if it's just to do part of the job eg remove radiator)

    Any help would be gratefully received

    Regards

    Keith
     
  2. moonloops

    moonloops MB Enthusiast

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    Engine mounts gone? Causing engine to move around ??
     
  3. alexanderfoti

    alexanderfoti Active Member

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    I cant see any pics :(

    I Would recomend engine mounts too, Mine were shot causing the top of the fan blades to hit the housing..
     
  4. biturbo

    biturbo Active Member

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    Had exactly the same problem with my w220 eclass

    The frame underneath the rad had bent in. Pushing the radiator forward when the engine revved and creamed the rad. Took 3 radiators fitted to see what the problem was. The garage just pulled the frame back abit and it was fine.

    Did it i think banging the bottom on the car on a ramp coming out of a car park.
     
  5. renault12ts

    renault12ts MB Club Veteran

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  6. peapod

    peapod Active Member

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    Oh dear sounds grim, to get the fan off I have a long 8mm hex key with a piece of string attached. tie it on somewhere to stop it falling down into the undertray if you drop it. then find a gap in the blades to get your hand in to put the key into the central bolt tricky but easier without blades!. Then put a steel tube over the key as a lever and hit it anti clockwise from front with luck it will free it, it has always worked for me. I ran through December without the fan. was tired one night and left it off, great feeling of satisfaction saving fuel but the watching the temperature in traffic gets tedious.

    On the subject of radiators. I replaced my gearbox cooling pipes to the rad last summer and have just had another leak this time it was corrosion of the aluminuim cooler gb oil cooler lug on the radiator caused by a copper washer and road salt I think, the corrosion was probably there when I did the job last year but unnoticed.
    I was a pain to take the rad out for a second time but I filed the union carefully to get a sound metal seal and used silicon jointing compound and coated it externally as well hopefully it will last.

    Also the unions, flexible to solid pipe, hang just below the front subframe be aware that if you curb your car front end, these unions on my car get hit and this can disturb the radiator gearbox oil cooler joints and this may well have been contributory to my leaks best to reverse toward kerbs. Peapod
     
  7. johnsco

    johnsco MB Enthusiast

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    I have never dared try it, but Dieselman (who used to post here) assured us all that the fan could be taken off this car with complete safety.
    The car is so over-cooled that it would never overheat.
    (He said)
     
  8. peapod

    peapod Active Member

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    hi Johnsco, I had a BMW 2002 in 78 drove it down the M1 almost flat out with a large load and no fan it was fine until watford gap services. When I stopped the coolant vaporised in about two minutes no damage fortunately! But diesel man may be right. But a tailwind does not help either. Trouble is it will only overheat at a time when refitting the fan is inconvenient. I think we all have to be prudent over this one. But Olivier might try it after all scotland is cool.
     
  9. Benzowner

    Benzowner MB Enthusiast

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    I thought it was a viscous fan on the E300, if any resistance was encountered I would have thought the fan would stop rather than shear the blades off. Maybe more to it.
     
  10. johnsco

    johnsco MB Enthusiast

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    The fan on the E300TD is a viscous coupling (At least ... Our two cars are like this).
    If the fan is rotating at high/medium speed, I can see it breaking the blades off if it strikes anything.
    I wouldn't like to stick my fingers in there !!
     
  11. Olivier

    Olivier MB Enthusiast

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    bmw is not the E300TD.
    As a test I have been driving no fan and RAD blocked on the city centre and around, it was over 25 C outside, pushing the revs hard, it never over heated :thumb:
     
  12. johnsco

    johnsco MB Enthusiast

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    Hi Olivier.
    So - Should I be brave and try it ?
    It would be tragic to wreck a good engine !
     
  13. Olivier

    Olivier MB Enthusiast

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    Well, why would you want to do it?
    I did it as I followed DM adventure when he was doing it all, I was doing the same.
    I still have the rad half blocked and took the fan off this winter as there is no need for it at those temperature, or even warmer anyway. But its me, and I wouldn't like to be the guy who made you wrecked your engine :eek:
    I have my electric fan belt broken too, this is something I look into when its going to be warmer. One fan is working the other not.
     
  14. peapod

    peapod Active Member

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    Olivier very good, how about a roller blind with the cord on cup hooks in the headlining with sunshine labels.
    Joking apart. should the electric fan work without the ac switched on please ?? if so I will have more courage to hang up may fan. Peapod
     
  15. Olivier

    Olivier MB Enthusiast

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    Hi Peapod,
    this is something new to me too, the electric fan. They were suppose to only work ""from what I was told"" when the A/C was on, to cool the compressor.
    Well,about a week or 2 ish ago, the car was parked, idling as I was steaming the engine to clean any oil gunk in the pods, getting hot, the A/c and the cabin fan were off and the electric fans kicked in below 1oo degres. Then from what I can see, the electric fan do kick in to cool the engine even if all is off.
    Olivier
     
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  16. Olivier

    Olivier MB Enthusiast

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    Hi Johnsco,
    just reading my post, it should say:
    the question you need to ask yourself is why would you want to try it. Better performance or else.
    Better phrased then:
    why would you want to do it.
    Its annoying that I can not edit a post... Tut tut.
    Anyway, I thought I better rectify this :thumb: .
    All the best.
    Olivier
     
  17. johnsco

    johnsco MB Enthusiast

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    Hi Olivier.
    The clear advantage would be a small improvement in fuel-economy.
    That was Dieselman's reason for doing it.
    I certainly would not blame you if I tried it and then blew my engine.

    Regarding the electric fan, this comes on when you use the air-con ... As you know.
    I remember that when I had a W126 (380SE), the electric fan came on if you left it idling for a long time to add to the cooling from the viscous-fan.

    Now, I've never seen it do this on the E300TD ... But it will not happen if the car is over-cooled anyway.

    Now that it is confirmed that it will come on (even if the A/C is not on), this gives me greater confidence to remove the viscous fan.
    Cheers.
    Johnsco
     
  18. Olivier

    Olivier MB Enthusiast

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    you will be fine, just keep it in the boot for a wee while for peace of mind if you think you are going to over heat and think you might need to put it back in, its easy and quick enough to put it in and out :)
     
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  19. peapod

    peapod Active Member

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    Olivier thanks
     

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