W210 Turbo Diesel (not CDi) starting problem

bigcraigy300

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Jul 11, 2011
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6
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W210 Mercedes E300 TD
Hi All

My E300 turbodiesel hasn't been the easiest to start since i got it, but it did always start. It ran a bit lumpy for the first few seconds then it would be fine running and start straight away once warm. the glow plug light stopped on for about the first minute of driving too but when i went to it this morning it just turned and turned and turned, didn't even try to fire up but was running no problem last night no issues. Could this be the glow plugs needing changing or a fuelling problem??? any help appreciated.

Thanks
 

Tinkerer

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May 5, 2011
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Norfolk
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W210 E220 CDi
Hello and welcome,
It certainly does sound like the glow plugs although I would have to say that in the current warm weather I do not need to wait for the light to go out before I start mine. You say it used to run lumpy for a few seconds which may have led to some unburnt fuel going into the exhaust and perhaps some extra soot also going to the EGR valve, see Spera's thread in this forum. I checked mine and was amazed at how it stayed running with so much of a blockage. But start with the glow plugs and work your way around. Hope this helps.
 

johnsco

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E280CDI SPORTS ESTATE and C200 KOMPRESSOR SE Coupe (1.8 lit petrol)
In this weather, I would expect it to start without the glow plugs.

The problem is almost certainly caused by your fuel system drawing air.
The system will often self-bleed after a bit of cranking and then will run fine.

When the car is not running, the air gets in and the problem occurs again.

Likely location of the trouble is the network of plastic fuel pipes around the injector pump under the inlet manifold.
The o-ring seals on these deteriorate and need replacing.
This is how the air gets in.
Only solution is to replace these seals.
Look out also for cracking of the pipes.

First of all look for air bubbles in the pipes.
We have had two of the E300TDs, and there always have been a few bubbles.

But ... There should be only a few.
 

toolman1954

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Hi, You can attack this problem in 2 ways. One is to go to the dealers and ask the parts man to sort out new rubber "O" rings for each end of the many pipes, and if you ask nicely he will give you a print out picture of all the pipes and "O" rings and where each one fits--which is invaluable !! Second way is to just buy all new pipes which have all the "O" rings already fitted, obviously this way is more expensive as each pipe is about £6/£7, but if yours have never been changed then your pipes might be getting a tad brittle and then prone to leak when you disturb them, personally I thought the new pipes were a good investment. Oh and again ask parts man for a print out of where they all go so you dont get confused.
 

Dichtung

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Oct 16, 2007
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N.W.
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W203 2.2Cdi
Testing the glowplugs without removing the inlet manifold can be done easily by removing the sixpin connector from the glowplug relay and connecting a meter to the connector pins in turn.

No electrical continuity between any pin and a clean chassis/engine point shows that its corresponding glowplug is kaput.

An easy to do check, which IMHO could save a lot of time. :thumb:
 
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bigcraigy300

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Jul 11, 2011
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6
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W210 Mercedes E300 TD
Hi again

Tried the car again last night and there's no smoke at coming from the exhaust when cranking, something a friend said would happen if it was glow plugs playing up. So is there a way of priming these engines by hand just to get it running??

thanks for all info
 

Dieselman

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Jul 13, 2003
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34,206
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Peugeot 403 Convertible
No hand primer, but when the engine is turning over watch for air bubbles in the clear fuel pipes.
A 300 won't cold start without glow-plugs, but it's unlikely all have failed together.
 

philiggy

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Apr 13, 2007
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Yorkshire
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C180 Estate & C220 CDI
I had exactly the same problem I changed ALL the pipes and the O ring on the pre filter and it was fine.

Phil
 

Dichtung

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W203 2.2Cdi
No hand primer, but when the engine is turning over watch for air bubbles in the clear fuel pipes.
A 300 won't cold start without glow-plugs, but it's unlikely all have failed together.

Had a BMW 325tds, and one summer morning cranked but wouldn`t start.
Plenty of fuel pressure; no bubbles.

Rang a mobile technician, explained, and he said "Can`t come at the mo;" "Went to one of those last week; all the glowplugs were out. Check em"

Hard to believe, but put 6 new Berus in and presto.

Tested the old plugs, and all were kaput. Rang the Technical guy back to thank him and he thought I would have had 2 or even maybe 3 plugs down for a while and being summertime would not have noticed.

Tought me a lesson I wont forget. Let`s hope BigCraig300`s problem is fuel, because getting glowplugs out of that engine can be a pig of a job.
 

johnsco

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It is almost impossible to believe that all 6 glow plugs are out.
We've had two of these cars.
On the first, the glow plugs were changed at around 90,000 miles due to lumpy starting and smoke.
On the second, they were changed at 130,000 miles for the same reason.
In each case, a couple of plugs had gone open circuit.

If you change the o-ring seal on the pre-filter, make sure the seat for the o-ring is perfectly clean.
The seals are not expensive.
 

peapod

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newbury
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E300TD est, a180cdi
Hi Johnsco, Thanks for this, I have not yet changed my plastic pipes and the fuel filter is due so will do them. It sounds like an inlet manifold off job is that correct please?
 

johnsco

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To change the glow plugs, it is necessary to remove the inlet manifold.
To change the pre-filter and o-ring, you can get at these easily without removing anything first.
To do the plastic pipes ... You can certainly change some of them without removing the manifold.
Not sure if you can actually get at them all.
Have a look.
It should be self-evident.
 

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