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Thread: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

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    OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    ADMIN EDIT:
    New owner thread here: https://www.500eboard.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3817




    I wanted to ask the forum if there are any owners of the E500 or 500E with high mileages (>300k miles). I wanted to share experiences. My 1994 E500 odometer clicks currently @ 528k with the original engine, transmission, AC and rear axle.
    I have replaced all other aggregates (alternator 2x, waterpump 3x, power steering pump 1x, throttle body + 1 complete cable tree) but relatively few other things broke.

    thanks !....Martin

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    E500E Guru sheward's Avatar
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    My car has not seen much milage yet, Martin. I too am interested in hearing about other cars that have. Are you the original owner? Does the car consume much oil? We have some cars on the forum with 180,000 plus miles but i have never seen posts detailing anywhere near the miles you have. A great testimonial! Where are you located? Post some pictures if you can.

    drew
    Drew
    92 500e 58,500 miles
    92 500e 180,000+ miles
    93 500e 179,000 miles sold
    92 500e 110,000 miles sold

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    E500E Guru 036's Avatar
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Well, mine runned for now 324 Tkm, but i would say 80% is new =)
    Welcome, i also would like to see such a mile killer.

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    528kmi (850kkm)... that is awesome! Get that odometer fixed so it's showing the correct miles!!

    Oh, and welcome to the forum!

    Dave M.
    1997 E420 (Bugeyes)
    1994 E420 (Blondie)
    1994 E500 (Q-ship)
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    High mileage is the norm for a 500E, they were built to be long distance autobahn cruisers.

    With proper maintenance, a 500E would do +300TKM without major work or rebuilds. A mileage at which most other cars would seize to exist.

    Yours is one of the highest mileage examples out there, Please post pics !

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Thanks for the interest in my car. As for the oil consumption I am steady @ 1 quart/5000 miles for more than 6y now. Initially there was no oil consumption between the changes, then it increased to that level and stuck there. There is some leakage (drops) under the car but I suspect it's ATF from the power steering unit (a favorite leakage problem by Mercedes in all older cars). After replacing the throttle body the car accelerates like in old times, no power loss at all. The power as you all know is awesome.

    I live in the desert (SE California), so most of the problems I have is overheating (the cars moves 150miles daily incl. up the cajon pass on I15 to 4000ft) as we have >80F 10months of the year. Yes the engine gets warm (100C) and the two auxiliary radiator fans are busy and activated every day at least once in spring, summer and fall. Once one of the two broke, that was an emergency repair.......

    Pics : How can I upload them? (Need advice, thanks!). I do not have them as URL somewhere.....

    Martin P

    94 E500 528000 miles
    02 E55 113000 miles
    78 450SL 224000 miles

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    Senior Member JordiC's Avatar
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Thanks for the post and welcome to the board Martin. It's reassuring to know the transmission is still original after so many miles. It's a testament to the build quality, maintenance routine and climate. As for the oil consumption, 1qt/5000 miles isn't so bad.

    In the advanced message page you will find an "attachments" icon. Click on it to upload photos that are stored on your local hard drive.

    "I think that in any race engine, the nearer you are to it disintegrating, in general, the better it's performance will be." Keith Duckworth

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    here are the pics
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    I have 235,000 miles on my 1993 500E

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Perfect, i just say wow...

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Totally cool! I wonder if that's the highest recorded mileage for any 124.036 chassis? I have not head of anything even remotely close to mileage that high. Wow!


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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    I wonder if that's the highest recorded mileage for any 124.036 chassis?
    I bet....

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    92,000mi are left for the big 1,000,000km mark. I am sure the MB Museum will then buy it back from you.

    Tell us more about the car !

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Yes, definitely tell us about your history with the car. Better yet, please start an OWNER page in the "Owners and their Cars" sub-board and provide us with some more photos of the car, and more details of your ownership experience. It would be a nice resource for those of us who plan to keep ours long-term. That really is a lot of miles -- definitely the most I've ever seen. I've seen one or two cars with the high 200K to low 300K mark, and driven one with 250K on it (which was very tight) but this is amazing.

    A friend of mine in Portland Oregon has 538K miles on his 1983 380SEC (C126 chassis). He is on his second engine and transmission (refurbished at different times) but recently purchased a CL55 AMG so his SEC is now only used for special occasions.

    Cheers,
    Gerry

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    Senior Member Allgonquin's Avatar
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Dang! I thought I was hot stuff rolling over 350K miles on my '95 E300D this weekend. I would guess you must be the record holder for an 036. Congrats Dr P! Guess I've still got some life left in my '93 500E as I clock over 68K...

    Rgds,
    Chris
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    I´m thrilled to know what was done with the engine and gearbox all those years...

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    That mileage is certainly a credit to both it's build and owner. I see the badges proudly displayed on the grille ...

    I'm about to clock 500 000 km on a lesser model.
    Kevin

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Would love to know what brand/viscosity engine oil (and ATF) you have been using, and how often you change it. Whatever you're doing must be working pretty well!


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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Quote Originally Posted by DrP View Post

    Martin P

    94 E500 528000 miles
    Very impressive! Your story makes me proud to be an E500 owner and since mine only has ~63k miles it should last for many years to come

    Please tell us more about which lubricants you use in the engine and transmission and how often you change them.

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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Yes, fantastic! I'd also be interested to know how often you have done new timing chains & guides. I'm coming up on 150k and starting to feel like I'm driving a time bomb based on reports from others with timing chain issues at this mileage.
    1993 500E - SOLD
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    Re: High Mileage E500

    Garsh! I'm embarrassed to say my car only has 157K on it....zero chain issues on mine Prime; just change the oil often and hot....chain issues are not as a big deal as one would think; but it does happen...mostly to cars with poor maint. habits.

    Alois Ruf's car prolly has close to 400K on his now...but DrP has to take the honors as the most I know of. Congrats on such a great 'mile'stone (pun intended)
    1992 500E - Spruce Green(249) Cream-biege (275)
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Hi all

    thanks for your interest! Well all I can say is that this is the best car I have ever had and probably ever will have. I do not need to tell you guys but sitting in this car connects you with the road......

    As for ownership, I am the second owner. I bought the car from a dealer in RI with 79k miles on it. The first owner drove a lot like me, this is already one of the secrets to longevity in my opinion. The engine simply never gets really cold. When I come back at night and restart the car in the morning (here in the desert) the temp gauge has not fallen down completely in warm nights. When I start latest after one minute I am at the default coolant temp.

    Services : I do religiously oil changes every 7500 miles or so. All other filters every 30k, the belt every 60k. I used to exchange fuel pumps every 120k (I do not trust them completely, the only one time ever the car would not start [@105k miles] was because of defective fuel pumps). The car is not garaged. Tires need to be changed every 55k miles, I am on my 8th set (Michelin only). The engine has never, repeat never been opened. All gaskets, and "internal organs" like timing chain are original, as is transmission and rear axle (they have never been open either). The engine is not loud either, you still can place a bottle on top when idling and it will stay there (my father told me that simple engine test).

    The car is designed for the autobahn and here I drive <=80mph (most of the time, so the RPM is <3k, so what should break mechanically?
    Lately a lifter has been louder which I will leave as it is as it appears only from time to time. The aggregates (like alternator etc.) simply have not the life expectancy like the engine, in portion due to the heat I think.
    Last edited by DrP; 10-04-2011 at 12:37 PM.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    some additions : I use synthetic oil only, 10-W30 or 5-W30. ATF is changed only every 200k miles or so (my mechanic looks at the color). Brake fluid has never been changed. No repair has ever been done on the brakes except rotors (1 set) and pads of course. I do not brake often...(

    The front seat needs recovering, but that's not mercedes' fault but my frequent usage....AC is original (and yes you need it on a daily basis in CA). When I lived in Germany I had a 280SE (the DOHC engine, a great motor), I had no major problems with that one either....

    As for driving : I am very gentle with the engine when it's cold in winter. Soft accelerations, don't stress it. I never idle the engine intentionally. When accelerating watch for the RPM/torque. You gotta have a feeling where the engine is willing to perform (which the V8 is almost always willing to do). Just don't play lead foot. I use cruise control 90% of the time (least stressful for engine). I try to drive as if I had an open bottle of expensive champagne in the trunk......
    Last edited by DrP; 10-04-2011 at 12:39 PM.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Wow. The synthetic oil changed every 7.5k is likely the reason it has survived this long. BTW, factory spec for oil is xW-40 or xW-50, btw, the xW-30 is not recommended for warm climates... again, being synthetic definitely helps. Check your owner's manual packet engine oil viscosity guide, you'll see what I mean. I'm somewhat speechless with the 200k ATF change intervals (must be synthetic ATF too!) changed by color... that's nuts. Even with synthetic ATF, I'd change it (along with the filter) every 50-60k... it's cheap insurance! The synthetic oil has likely helped the timing chain last that long (would LOVE to know what the stretch is, if any), and also the chain rails. Extended use of synthetic probably has the interior of the motor looking new.

    However, I think you are seriously playing Russian roulette by not having the chain rails replaced (and chain stretch measured) with >500kmi on the clock. At least some of the many rails are usually broken before 200k (on the average M119), I've seen it as early as 75k. There may not be any external signs, the only way to find out is to pull the valve covers and inspect 'em visually. I know your car and your driving habits are nothing even close to 'average', but it would be a shame to unexpectedly have a piece of rail break loose, derail the chain, and turn into a $$$$ repair like this poor guy (see post #9).


    Dave M.
    1997 E420 (Bugeyes)
    1994 E420 (Blondie)
    1994 E500 (Q-ship)
    1992 500E (Mach 5)
    1987 300D (Sportline Stage 2)
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Brake fluid never changed!?? Yikes. Me thinks time for a brake bleed.

    BTW, thanks for posting and sharing the history. Congrats on enjoying your car for that many miles and taking care of it to last that long. It give other owners hope that with proper maintenance these cars will last for miles and miles. I think you have had a bit of luck, combined with some great Mercedes engineering, but clearly you have done your best to properly take care of such a special car.

    Ricardo
    Last edited by RicardoD; 10-04-2011 at 03:13 PM.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    timing chain guard rails : I had to replace them on my old 450SL convertible, @ 223k miles. The older V8s were relatively sensitive in that area. The newer ones (>1990 engines) - I was told by several mechanics here in SoCal - do not have this problem. I have three very experienced W124 mechanics, neither ever replaced chain rails on this particular engine. Listen to the engine idling I could identify a loose chain in the 450 engine (clearly) before it broke but the E500 idling sounds still the same over the years. I might check and have the valve cover open if the lifter noise gets worse......

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Dang. I hate to dispute your mechanics, but they are definitely wrong in this particular case. M119 chain rail failures are frequent and well documented. Now, M119 timing CHAIN failures are very rare... the chains are often replaced when the rails are done "just because" (i.e., cheap insurance), not because the chains were actually in need of replacement. That is downright bizarre that experienced W124 mechanics had never replaced chain rails on an M119.

    My 1992 500E had the rails replaced at 142kmi by the previous owner. I don't believe there was any significant symptoms (i.e., noise or rattling) but as you can see in the photo below, the rails were most definitely not in good shape...!

    I'm not trying to scare you, but I'd be petrified with >500k on the original rails. Chain stretch can be measured with the valve cover removed, and if stretch is minimal, the chain does not need replacement. The late Marshall Booth had observed that chain wear was almost zero when running good synthetic oil, so I wouldn't be surprised if your chain was fine.


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    Dave M.
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    1994 E420 (Blondie)
    1994 E500 (Q-ship)
    1992 500E (Mach 5)
    1987 300D (Sportline Stage 2)
    Click here for my website
    Click here for my YouTube channel

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Pics of chain rails from an M119 with less than 80kmi - not the same engine as shown in the pics in the previous post:

    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Hi Dave

    thanks so much for your advice, I will take it seriously. My next oil change is @ 532k, maybe we will lift the valve covers then, I wanted to take a look at the valvetrain anyway because of that (funnily intermittent) lifter noise. I will take pics and let you guys know. I had the oil pan replaced @450k (the gasket leaked and was worn), the guy did not find any remnants of rails in there. It is a pity that they use plastic for the rails, this simply does not fit into a high performance engine. There should be other materials.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Oh cool - if the oil pan was off recently, and there was zero evidence of rail debris, that is a very good sign.

    I would still replace the upper rails proactively, even if they appear to be ok visually. I forgot to mention in the previous post that it's the upper 5 rails (inside the cylinder heads) which have a high failure rate. The bottom 2 rails (inside the timing cover) have a low failure rate. This is a good thing, because the labor required to R&R the timing cover is miserable, so they are not often replaced. My local dealer techs said they almost never touch the lower 2 rails inside the timing cover, but often replace all the upper rails in the heads.

    For the lifter noise, when the valve covers are off, check all the plastic oil tubes. The ends can pop off which will reduce oil pressure to a lifter (and, slightly reduce oil pressure in general). Generally when this happens the lifter tick is quite loud and not intermittent. If you find one of the caps popped out, replace that tube. If they are all ok, the tick is very likely due to a worn lifter... if that is the case I'd replace all 32 (@ ~$20/ea, ouch) to avoid repeating the process several times in the future. Hopefully it's just the oil tube issue, those are cheap & easy to replace. I just did this on my E420, it's sooooo nice to finally have that tick-tick-tick gone!



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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Dave,

    thanks so much for your advice, I will look after the tubes. The noise is really intermittent (today it was on 3x and off 2x during my 5 trips when I started the car) with no evidence regarding coolant heat, highway or not or similar. I hd the feeling that with filling up with Chevron the ticking became less but that might be an illusion. I assume a worn lifter (maybe with something jamming the oil path to the lifter, intermittently) and the neighboring one helps pushing (or not). The intermittent fact is something that puzzles my mechanic as well. He told me today (after my scared call about the timing chain rails... that he has a stethoscope where we can peak into the oil well as well as down the timing chain guide. I am looking forward to that.....

    He by the way sternly remains with the fact that M119 engines do usually not have a timing chain/rail problem. Maybe it's a California thing, less damage @ higher temperatures, I don't know.....

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    My California car has rails in similar condition as Dave's at only 130xxx miles. The only sign at all was an intermittent tick that became more frequent over the course of a couple months. Little pieces from the rail had been sucked against the screen to my oil pump and completely blocked the flow of oil! Still working on the repair. I have not been using synthetic, so that probably has helped the longevity of your engine, but I would definitely check this out if I were you. The easiest way to see is to drop the lower oil pan and check for pieces. The gasket can be had for just $10-$20 and there are only 24 small bolts I believe. You mechanic should be able to do it with no more than an additional hour tacked on to your next oil change.
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    the comments of J-sauce and Dave make a lot os sense to me, thanks so much for enlightening me in that puzzle. I have the camera investigation of the oil well and the chain rails schedules for early November, I let you guys know. My mechanic told me a replacement of the upper rails cost me ~ $3k as the whole front of the engine has to come off. I might have to bite that bullet......

    I had other thing that puzzled me over 1/2 year but is fixed now : the car intermittently changed from normal driving to the gas pedal stuck @ idle, it did not react to the foot anymore. Particularly annoying when on the interstate in rush hour....I had (idling!) to get over to the side line and restart the car (the effect cleared, some times for days, sometimes only for minutes). The culprit was a defective idle switch (located behind the gas pedal) which sent an erroneous signal to the throttle body electronics and caused the electronics to switch into continuous ASR mode, i.e. gas pedal disabled. The throttle body was replaced but the real issue was that ($20) switch. No issues since then. Hope this helps if s.o. has a similar problem.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    The common rail failures do not require the front timing cover to be removed, and can save you a LOT of money by just replacing them.

    Check out the first couple of posts on this thread: http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r129...icking-19.html

    Dave outlines which rails are the ones that are the usual culprits. There is some useful info in that thread, but it is 38 pages long and not all of it is pertinent.
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Extremely impressive
    Sveinbjörn Hrafnsson

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Well today was the day my mechanic drained the oil and we looked inside with a camera. I could not believe it but the rails (on the passenger side), the chain and the oil pan were absolutely clean. No debris, cracks, sludge whatsoever. We will not open the engine or valve covers so far. My ticking might still be a defect lifter or oil tube but it would not explain the intermittent character of the noise. At least the timing chain tract is ok @ mileage 532000. Update will follow....

  37. #37
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Brilliant !

    High tech tools Vs old take everything apart method.

    Keep that engine block factory sealed for as much as possible... till the 620,000mi mark!

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    a quick update : my mechanic and I decided to take off the valve covers and look. Well (thanks to the forum!) we detected the left and right major rail being broken (clean cut in the middle but still hanging together, not into small pieces). The top one looked good (unbroken) but we will exchange it as well. That's why the oil pan was clean, no debris. The chain looked and felt tight.
    It took him some time to get the rails out (from the top) and we will change the chain too, as everything is open now. After half a million miles maybe not too early. Lesson learned here (for my other cars): using synthetic oil really prolongs your engine life (no sludge seen anywhere) and your valve train endurance. I hope this will solve the clicking problem as we did not find any defect lifter or oil tube. He will measure the valve opening tolerances this week, let's see..update will follow when I drive it again....

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Glad you find a potentially devastating issue for your engine in time that it didn't cause what could have been significant damage. Indeed there is some serious wisdom on this forum.

    Keep us in the loop, because

    Cheers,
    Gerry

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Another engine saved by the Dave Meister! I'm surprised that you did not find pieces in the oil pan. I still suspect some may have been missed with a camera inspection. Glad to hear the king will remain on the road!
    "Digestion kills r/t's!" -- 400Eric
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    Best E.T. w/ N2O: 12.794 @ 110.82 - N/A: 13.805 @ 102.94



  41. #41

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    I have my 500 back now...WOW a valve job can do wonders. Following findings :

    1) Use synthetic oil. My mechanic showed the car around his colleagues on the internet, they were asking "where did you get this new M119 from?"...it's not me but the oil !!! Now he is called a liar by his friends, nobody believed the mileage (532070 @ the time of the repair).

    2) on the left side ALL lifters were replaced, one looked bad, one other marginal...so we decided to replace all 16 of them. None on the right side..all tolerances were ok. All cams looked clean, no streaks, the lifter heads looked even, not slanted

    3) no broken oil tubes, none were replaced

    4) the two (big) side chain guides were broken (clean into two pieces), they were replaced. The top one was not broken but replaced as well. The side ones were broken apparently by wear/temperature stress but (at least visibly) NOT by the chain itself. No "rails" carved into the plastic, just little color differences where the chains were....so the chain tolerance was ok. Unfortunately we did not take fotos as I was out of town.

    5) the (double) chain had NO measurable difference to the new one, in tension or length affirming #4...but we replaced it anyway as everything was open.

    When the covers were back on again the clicking was even louder but vanished after 300miles or so. The lifters had to be "hammered in".

    To quote from this forum : It's soooo soothing to have that clicking noise gone, no diesel anymore...(

    The best thing : I feel (subjectively) the engine has discernibly more power, maybe 10hp/3% or so. And this after driving the AMG in the meantime all the time ! Stepping on the gas and you see the dust in the rearview mirror.....I will watch the gas consumption now maybe this has improved too....the valve timing definitely has changed a little ...

    I am a happy camper. Drove yesterday and today together 700miles to reintroduce myself to the car again. It just runs perfect...Thanks again to you of warning me of the M119 valvetrain weakness! It is the old rule : when something needs to be fixed DO NOT procrastinate !..it only makes things worse

    Do you guys follow Irv Gordons Volvo P1800 3mio miles record on a single car? Same philosophy : do maintenance as prescribed and fix rather earlier than later.....
    Last edited by DrP; 11-17-2011 at 06:51 PM.

  42. #42
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Glad to hear the good news! I too am a huge fan of top-notch synthetics, and your experience is further confirmation of the benefits (particularly the lack of measurable chain stretch). Would your engine have lasted as long, or looked as clean inside, using plain old dino oil? Maybe, maybe not, but it would have likely required 3kmi change intervals to have any chance of similar results on dino juice. With appropriate drain intervals, there's no extra cost to using synthetics, so it's kind of a no-brainer to me. However I would in general look into running something a bit thicker, I believe you were using an xW-30 oil (?), where the M119 spec'd an xW-40 or xW-50 for use in warm climates. Not a huge deal though.

    Interesting that the car has a bit more power now... let us know what happens to fuel economy, I suspect that may increase a bit as well. You should be all set for another 500kmi. Just think, you could possibly have the first documented million-mile M119 *and* .036 chassis! That would be way too cool...


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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    When I did the top-end on my M117 (heads/valves included) I also felt a little more "sharpness" or "crispness" to things but not really much power improvement. Maybe 5HP or so but that's not really discernable. It's really a hard feeling to describe but it's sort of a newness or crispness to how things operate.

    Congratulations and you should be good for at least 250K more miles on 'er now (witih appropriate guide/chain replacements, of course).

    Cheers,
    Gerry

  44. #44

    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Glad to read this update.

    Now will you please get the brakefluid changed.

  45. #45
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    After this last batch of Mobil Delvac 1300 Super, I will be switching to synthetic thanks to this thread.
    "Digestion kills r/t's!" -- 400Eric
    Click Here to view my mod thread

    Best E.T. w/ N2O: 12.794 @ 110.82 - N/A: 13.805 @ 102.94



  46. #46

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    new update : I drove now 10k miles with the new valve train. Mostly the ticking is off but sometimes I can hear it again. I read on German E500/W124 V8 related websites that other owners had a similar problem, the ticking would erratically appear or disappear even after repair of all the tubes/chain/lifters. Maybe they just have to be roughed in, we'll see. I have the 540k inspection coming up and they will look at that phenomenon again. More pressing is an oil leak somewhere on the right side (maybe the valve gaskets) that causes oil to drip on the exhaust and giving the car the appearance as if it were on fire. It might be the oil filter (where the pressure sensor sits) housing as well as it is next to the exhaust. Anybody who had a similar "smoking" problem, let me know. And yes, I will exchange the brake fluid. My old mechanic rather recommended not doing it because it would eventually ruin the brake cylinder (he has seen that in other cars) as the brake fluid system is usually rather tight and impenetrable. I never had a brake fluid loss. But the brakes are "soft" so new fluid probably helps.....update will follow

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    If things are smoking underhood, that's a pretty serious oil leak! I'd tackle that as soon as possible ! Hopefully it's not a head gasket.

    My best guess with regard to valvetrain wear is just mileage, really. Just overall wear due to your mileage on the car. Those things take a beating, and I can't imagine how worn & out of whack the tolerances on the valvetrain parts must be after 500+K miles. Personally, at that mileage, I'd pull both heads and have them 100% refurbished or replaced wholesale with lower-mileage units.

    I've never heard of new brake fluid ruining a brake cylinder (I take it you mean the master cylinder) but even if that somehow were to happen, master cylinders are very cheap items and not at all difficult to replace. One of the few things that is easily accessible in the .036 engine compartment If your brakes are soft/spongy, you have either a) bad brake lines to the calipers; or b) air in the system. That entails a thorough bleeding, and if that doesn't work, a brake system inspection and/or rebuild/replacement of the master cylinder and calipers. Have your brake lines been replaced? If not, that is a safety item that should be replaced, as they are rubber and the brake lines do age and bubble, sometimes internally where you can't see it. I replaced the original brake lines on my 1989 560SEC just a couple of years ago. They were in bad shape after 180,000 miles as a California and Pacific Northwest car. Strongly, something to consider.

    Cheers,
    Gerry

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    The oil leak & smoking is worrisome... I'd figure that out ASAP. If it is valve cover gaskets, that is good news, as it's an easy fix. Don't let the mechanics apply sealant to the gaskets in an attempt to "help" the problem though! The gaskets should always be installed dry. The oil filter & sensor are much lower, but oil leaking from there could possibly blow backwards onto the exhaust. A leak that severe should be fairly easy to locate.

    Gerry is correct on the brakes... pressure bleed the system and replace the fluid. MB specifies this should be done every 2-3 years, max. Old fluid can give a soft pedal. The brake hoses are a good item to replace on principle after 15-20 years... rubber parts just do not last forever. OE hoses are fine but I'd get the WRXtra.com stainless braided hoses, they're actually less than new OE.

    The only way I have ever heard of a master cylinder being ruined is when brakes are bled the old fashioned way, pumping the pedal, where the pedal is pushed all the way to the floor. This is always a bad idea and yes, it can destroy a master cylinder. However, the factory method specifies pressure bleeding (not touching the pedal at all) and this method absolutely can not, in any way shape or form, damage the master cylinder. Make sure DOT 4+ fluid is used, btw.

    Dave M.
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Subscribed for the next update

  50. #50

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    new update after big 60k service : yes I changed the brake fluid...(. The valve ticking is gone now, with the new bank of lifters AND changing to 15W-40 oil. The thicker oil apparently helps. This is so soothing, no ticking !...the culprit for the smoking oil on the exhaust was two things : the O-ring of the oil pressure sensor and the gasket for the oil filter housing, the fresh oil came out there and dripped directly on the exhaust bend located just behind (and was sucked up directly into the blower to the interior...kind of suicidal)...It is fixed now, no smoke or smell. My mechanic was pondering that it could also have been that with this (extensive) leak there was not enough pressure buildup for the hydraulic valves. Could be. So I am relaxed now, car current mileage is 540.100, she drives beautifully like always.....
    Last edited by DrP; 01-26-2012 at 07:03 PM.

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Awesome !!!



  52. #52
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Oh, wow, you've driven 12k miles in this short time? Impressive!

    Glad to see everything is fixed. On to the 625k mi (1 million KM)!

  53. #53
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    This is what you call a "proper daily driver", 150miles a day!!! Not unusual for cali I guess. My sister's 2004 SLK230( just 4 cylinders) just clocked up 210kmiles - she commutes from Vaccaville to San Francisco daily...nuts! I often use it when I visit and it's bloody uncomfortable!
    Last edited by bing; 01-27-2012 at 04:32 PM. Reason: grammar
    1994 E fünfhundert (170kkm sold )
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    2001 CLK55 AMG (79kmiles)

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Ahh, Vacaville .... how I miss thee, o' Nut Tree.....





    Also immortalized in the opening line of this song:




    I woke up one day in Vacaville
    Round the corner from the pen, phat house on the hill
    All the homies in the pen straight locked down
    But I gotta get dressed and hit the Oaktown

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  56. #55
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    1994 E fünfhundert (170kkm sold )
    1997 S 600 L (164kmiles sold )
    2004 ML270 (64kmiles remap oil burner sold)
    2001 CLK55 AMG (79kmiles)

  57. #56

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    well how can you have a W124 E500 and NOT drive it as much as you can??? I have a 120 mile commute 6 days a week, we go hiking, to National Parks or to the beaches on the weekends, visit Northern Ca very often, our kids live near San Diego and in San Francisco, so the miles come together pretty quickly. 1000miles/week is rather the norm than the exception....I don't look at my car, I drive it...(

  58. #57
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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Quote Originally Posted by DrP View Post
    well how can you have a W124 E500 and NOT drive it as much as you can??? I have a 120 mile commute 6 days a week, we go hiking, to National Parks or to the beaches on the weekends, visit Northern Ca very often, our kids live near San Diego and in San Francisco, so the miles come together pretty quickly. 1000miles/week is rather the norm than the exception....I don't look at my car, I drive it...(
    Well said sir.

  59. #58

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    Another update after I detected that the engine is still loosing oil after the oil filter housing had been fixed : : the culprit turned out to be the timing chain front cover gasket, i.e. the front part of the engine (well hidden behind servo pump etc.). This is not easy to exchange, the heads would have to come off, essentially a total overhaul, which at this mileage does not make a lot of sense as there is no need for piston work or similar. And it's 30h of work. So I have to live with that and watch the oil level like a hawk to minimize the ticking, as the ticking starts to occur with oil levels in the lower third of the (allowed) range. It's all about the oil pressure build up......I have driven now 40k miles with a ticking engine as it started around 500k (and with no visible damage to valves, lifters or cams), so let's see how far she goes....

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    All I can say is extraordinary DrP! I love my car even more now...and I fully subscribe to your driving, not looking at the car mindset. It is no surprise to hear how many miles you drive on a regular basis, as I like the rest here I'm sure, can't get enough of the "unique driving experience" the 500 delivers every time you get behind the wheel. The downside is living in a 4 season environment(storing the car) that doesn't allow year round pleasure.

  61. #60

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    Re: OWNER - DrP **High Mileage E500**

    New update : I have another opening of the valve covers by a friend of mine, a German mechanic with >40y experience. He is retired and will get the car for two weeks to fix that annoying intermittent clicking. He thinks it's collapsed lifter. They should stay up even after the engine is off, we'll see. In addition I am moving to SoCal for a new job. Of course I will move into a town 50 miles away from where I work, what did you expect?...:wink:...there are of course several reasons for this but accumulating mileage is on the top portion of that list...... well I like to drive

    Current reading is 547000. More after the valve covers are back on again, end of April

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