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Garandman
04-09-2019, 01:08 PM
Our 2006 goes to a shop to tomorrow for mechanical maintenance and inspection. Going to have all fluids replaced, check suspension, etc.

I’ve been searching the site for the “hive knowledge” tips, like checking the glow plugs to see if they’ve been changed or are corroded; replacing the electrical connector during transmission service; etc.

This shop maintains our fleet vehicles (including two VMM diesels), works on Sprinters for another company, and does a fair amount of Mercedes work. So they seem know what they are doing: I just want to make sure they cover all the bases.

No doubt this information is covered 100X here, but I’ve been searching on terms like “transmission service” “checklist” etc and didn’t find it. Any help appreciated!

Aqua Puttana
04-09-2019, 02:06 PM
...

No doubt this information is covered 100X here, but I’ve been searching on terms like “transmission service” “checklist” etc and didn’t find it. Any help appreciated!
:idunno:

Off the top of my head.

Obviously a 10k mile OCI or per ASSYST prompt if you have that option.

Keep up with engine air filter changes. Use OEM branded parts. Be certain the filter is properly installed.

I don't believe in proactive injector seal replacements.

I don't believe in proactive glow plug replacement. That said, I have a glow plug failure on my 2006 and bought a full set of GP (Bosch or Beru) to swap in. 180k miles.

I do believe in 60k mile transmission fluid service. I change the tranny filter every 2nd, sometimes 3rd drain and fill. Draining pan and TC only is less messy than a pan drop to access the filter. The original filter was sized for "Once and done".

Many recommend 100k mile change of serpentine belt components. I personally don't change the parts out wholesale, but 100k service is good advice. For certain monitor the tensioner operation. Change the alternator when/if it gives reason.

Check the engine cooling fan viscous clutch. For certain clean the cooling stack and change it if your engine temp regularly strays up to 215F.

I'm sure others have more.

:cheers: vic

Garandman
04-10-2019, 12:53 PM
Doesn't have ASSYST but I want a clean start. So:


Cabin air filter
Engine air filter
Drain and flush cooling system.
Engine oil and filter. Going to ask for Rotella T6 Synthetic
Inspect injectors and glow plugs and service as necessary
Brake fluid replace
Transmission service, including replacement of the filter and electrical connector.
Differential service
Inspect front and rear suspension
Inspect brakes and service as necessary


Some of these items I'll do myself in the future, but I wanted service records, and working in the driveway in 40 degree rain is not conducive to quality work.

It goes in body shop next week and I've ordered new panels all around the bottom, new headlights, new tail lights, and new MB grille. They are going to take out the windshield and repair relatively minor rust.

Garandman
04-10-2019, 01:46 PM
I was told when I bought the van "Only use Mercedes ATF." It appears some other brands are also suitable, like Fuchs. Going to an independent garage, what should I suggest?

Garandman
04-10-2019, 02:01 PM
Also, the heater control seems to have one setting: "Make popcorn."

Is it the rotary dial on the dash that is pulled for service? I understand there are eBay services to rebuild?

Nautamaran
04-10-2019, 05:00 PM
Also, the heater control seems to have one setting: "Make popcorn."

Is it the rotary dial on the dash that is pulled for service? I understand there are eBay services to rebuild?

Check that the heater bypass valve (above the turbo shield) is functioning.
It is a normally open valve (“make popcorn”) so a wiring fault will result in full heat.
The temp control module (“ATC”) sends 12v to close the valve, so you should see voltage at the valve with the van on and the heat dial down in the blue. The dial moves a potentiometer, so moving it rapidly back and forth can help clean the winding and wiper inside. I’d check for valve voltage at the ATC end of the wiring harness before sending it out for repair.

That fluids advice is valid, but can become expensive if you buy only at the dealer. Mother Benz has an extensive fluids approval system (BEVO) and I defer to that. I’m sure there are some ‘approvable’ fluids that may not have bothered seeking the “MB-Approved” endorsement, but the products that have a spec listed are known to be suitable for service and I avoid those that don’t. There’s enough to go wrong in my van without me field-testing the chemistry of gaskets, seals, and catalysts to unknown additives...

“Shell ATF 134” is MB-Approved to Bevo sheet 236.14 and 236.12 and works well in the Sprinter transmission. 236.12 is backwards compatible with 236.10, which is what you’ll likely find listed in your manual.

Rotella T6 5w40 is good oil, but the 228.31 mb-approval it carries is not a listed oil spec for the OM647 (sludge problems at long change intervals?) so if you choose to use it I wouldn’t run it as long as a full-SAP oil. (I buy two jugs of Mobile1 0w40 Euro Car Formula when I see it on sale, then I price the T6 and wish the Mobile1 was stocked in pails too... but then I remember what a tank of fuel costs and chill about the small price difference of a 10,000 mile oil change :thumbup:)

-dave

Garandman
04-12-2019, 10:34 AM
This forum is organized a little differently than most. Like most, “Search” may not give you what you are looking for.

If you are a new owner, I suggest the “T1N Writeups” section. https://sprinter-source.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=110

This will answer many of your questions, but those comprehensive threads don’t necessarily show up high in the search results as they may not have recent posts.

There are links to four transmission service threads in https://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=11568

Garandman
04-12-2019, 10:50 AM
An update after the shop has had the van for a day.

The exhaust system was leaking and a new OEM is $2,520. They are having a local muffler specialist fabrucate a cat-back system for around $400.
Although the van drove well, lower ball joints and inner and outer tie rods were worn out.
Front shocks were fine (May have been replaced at 110K). Rear shocks appear to be OEM and were worn out.
There was a leak in one rear brake line. Being replaced.

Nothing shocking for a 13yo vehicle with 146,000 miles.

Aqua Puttana
04-12-2019, 04:37 PM
Oh boy. Oil!!!!

...

Rotella T6 5w40 is good oil, but the 228.31 mb-approval it carries is not a listed oil spec for the OM647 (sludge problems at long change intervals?) so if you choose to use it I wouldn’t run it as long as a full-SAP oil.
...

-dave
Are you asking the question, or do you have some data?
If a question, I don't believe that sludge will be a problem with Rotella T6 5w-40 Full Synthetic diesel engine oil (blue jug). It is a well regarded high detergent turbo diesel engine oil.

I found it interesting that some of the diesel engine oils which were listed as MB228.3 spec oil met the MB228.31 MB spec and are now listed on BeVo as MB228.31 approved WITHOUT REFORMULATION.


...
It has been MB BeVo approved for T1N Sprinters for some time.

It appears that they are on the same track as many formerly approved MB228.3 *only* 15w-40 engine oils. It has been changed to a lower ash formulation to work for vehicles with DPF.

The question for those who want to strictly follow the MB specifications is if the Delo is approved for both MB228.31 AND still maintains MB228.3 spec. [See the Delo 400 LE comment below.] Technically MB228.31 only is not approved for the T1N 5 cylinder diesels.

Personally I would use, and have used a MB228.31 spec oil and not worry about it. Many have been doing so.

Frito has 115k miles on nothing but Rotella T6 [5w-40 full synthetic in the blue jug MB228.31 approved only]. :thumbup:
Mobil 1 difficult to source here. :idunno:

(Some have maybe not noticed that their 15w-40 oil of choice has changed from MB228.3 to MB228.31 over the years.)

"Chevron Delo 400 LE, which already meets MB 228.3, was approved for the new specification without reformulation. MB 228.31 approval requires running the full suite of API CJ-4 tests, plus passing two additional engine tests developed by Mercedes Benz; MB OM611 and OM441LA."

The OM611 and OM441LA refers to Mercedes standard test engines. ACEA uses the same test engines.

Added:
"Without reformulation" hints that the MB228.3 is still valid.

*************
Another diesel engine oil with MB228.3 and MB228.31 on the label. (Not necessarily on the BeVo list.)

Gulf Synthetic Super Duty Plus Diesel Engine Oil, SAE 5W-40
85823

Added: It seems that the Gulf oil above is more common across the pond, not the USA. I have no idea why, or where my supplier gets it, but I snap it up whenever it shows on the shelf.

:2cents: vic


Almost all turbo diesel engine oils have moved to low(er) ash formulations. If you are using 15w-40 oil it is likely now MB228.31, even if it was at one time MB228.3 officially.

My personal opinion is that MB228.31 spec oil is fine for T1N's. There is no reason for Mercedes to go back and retest/relist for a 16 - 20+ year old ancient model van.

BUT, back to the topic of general maintenance.

:cheers: vic

Nautamaran
04-12-2019, 07:19 PM
Thanks, Vic, I was asking the question. :thumbup:
My sense is also that the 228.31 oils are fine, but without putting in the hours researching the data I am simply shy to go off-sheet for a full 10,000 mile OCI, and I’m certainly not in a position to recommend doing so.

Back to topic... :wink:

-dave

Midwestdrifter
04-12-2019, 10:04 PM
The T6 and T5 both did well on sludging in tests (I am not sure if I can find them now). Its really hard to find a common HDEO that doesn't have a high enough temperature and detergent rating these days.

On VW 2.0T engines they specified a common non-synthetic blend 10+ years ago. It sludged badly. A common fix was to run diesel specific oil (with some seafoam) for a few short changes. Today there are many gasoline rated synthetics that are perfectly fine in the gas turbo engines. Its amazing how even the cheap stuff has improved in 15 years.

Aqua Puttana
04-13-2019, 01:55 PM
... and I’m certainly not in a position to recommend doing so.

Back to topic... :wink:

-dave
I'm not recommending either, but not condemning based on a fluid recommendation from 20 years ago.

I did offer my observations though. As MWD pointed out, small displacement turbo diesel engines are no longer a rare power plant. Many modern oils are formulated for them.
...

Almost all turbo diesel engine oils have moved to low(er) ash formulations. If you are using 15w-40 oil it is likely now MB228.31, even if it was at one time MB228.3 officially.

My personal opinion is that MB228.31 spec oil is fine for T1N's. There is no reason for Mercedes to go back and retest/relist for a 13 - 20+ year old ancient model van.

BUT, back to the topic of general maintenance.

:cheers: vic
MB no longer cares about our beloved T1N's with the possible exception of any marketing exploitation. Color me cynical.

:2cents: vic

NelsonSprinter
04-13-2019, 05:52 PM
Did they inspect the ball joints using the Sprinter specific design test?
At 146K they probably are worn, but using the universal ball joint test even a 1 day old ball joint fails.

Garandman
04-13-2019, 10:47 PM
Did they inspect the ball joints using the Sprinter specific design test?
At 146K they probably are worn, but using the universal ball joint test even a 1 day old ball joint fails.Going to ask Monday. Assume you are referencing https://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15656

The design of the Sprinter front suspension has the ball joints in constant compression, even when the vehicle is raised and the wheel is off the ground.

Traditional ball joint assessment methods are completely inappropriate for the Sprinter.

The factory recommendation (also FedEx recommendation): DO NOT even attempt the traditional method of measuring axial play (up and down play) by jacking of the lower A arm and then prying on the stub axle. This will likely show an 'alarming' amount of play which would result in a failing grade. Alarming for a traditional ball joint design but NOT the Sprinter.

Replacement should be considered only if the dust boot is torn (risk of contamination and loss of lube) or excess pivot friction or noise is present due to lack of lubrication (If the boot is not torn it is unlikely that lubrication will be an issue).

Garandman
04-15-2019, 07:40 PM
The shop is familiar with this procedure as apparently it applies to some other Mercedes vehicles. One definitely needed changing so I had them replace both.

They used 15-40 Rotella which meets the 128.31 Spec. Plenty of others have used it, but I’ll probably have an oil analysis done at 6,000 miles to see how it’s doing and establish a baseline. I’ll do the next change myself.

Gabe Athouse
04-16-2019, 01:43 AM
There’s a user on here who decided to never change his oil on his sprinter. Just filters and had black stone lab testing. At over 700k miles his oil was still fine. So apparently the t1n isn’t too picky. Now, if this discussion was over on the ford truck diesel forum there would be opinions that no current oil will meet the demands of the engines, because they keep reducing the good qualities in engine oils to reduce emissions. SO they use oil additives to bring their oils up to par. It gets very complicated and expensive. But those engines are more demanding on oils. My point is that while oils have gotten better, and semi synthetic oils have gotten a lot cheaper, they are constantly messing with the formulas and doing things that can affect the longevity of our engines.
I just sold my ford, but through my research I ended up buying archoil additive package for the oil, and I also used optilube summer blend fuel additive mixed with outboard engine 2cycle oil to mix into the fuel to bring the lubricity of the fuel up, as they have cleaned the fuels to the point where they can’t self lubricate injection systems anymore.

Garandman
04-16-2019, 08:23 AM
I’m all set with oil. Really, really, really, really, really all set.

Waiting to get the van back to make sure the rust patch panels are a good fit; change the headlight assemblies; change the grill; replace the festoon interior bulbs with LED’s; check the heating and cooling systems for function (been too cold to try AC); and continue cleaning up the interior before applying some sound damper and ordering Thinsulate.

Also looking to see if I can match the gray fabric of the headliner with yard goods: if so we will probably fabricate panels to cover the cargo area and replace the ones on the rear doors.

This van has the EK1 option. I’d like to add an aux battery but the starter battery is conventional and the battery we have for aux is AGM. Trying to figure out if I need an AGM-specific DC -> DC Charger, or can get by with a simple isolator. My experience with multiple batteries is on small power boats, and we never “mix and match,” always used two identical batteries. Don’t need a solar option.

ncos
04-16-2019, 01:45 PM
This is my recent "avoid avoidable breakdowns away from home/good stuff to do" punch list:

If you don't have records for service history, like me, my punch list of preventative items I'm working through is:

Oil Change
Coolant Flush/Replacement
Waterpump and Thermostat Replacement
Coolant Hose Replacement
Belt,Pulley, and Tensioner Replacement
Turbo Hose Replacement
Fuel Pump Service (tighten/Loc-tite backside fasteners) (and soft line replacement)
Fuel Filter Replacement (and soft line replacement)
Cabin Air Filter Replacement
Engine Air Filter Replacement
Transmission Service with Conductor Plate Check/Replacement and DARF if applicable
Injector Leak-Off test
Brake Fluid Change
Brake Wear Check
Brake Line Greasing (corrosion prevention)
Rear Diff Lube Replacement
Fuse Block 1 Replacement
Engine Ground Check
Check/Reinforce wire harness behind Fuel Filter

But...I'm new to all this. This list is the best I could put together from scouring the forums and some conversations with MMS. Other Sages and Greybeards may have better advice (and additional items).

Garandman
04-16-2019, 02:53 PM
Fuse block 1 replacement?

Aqua Puttana
04-16-2019, 03:01 PM
Fuse block 1 replacement?
If you're going to invest in that, after installing I would carry the removed spare.

I repaired the 2004 bad solder joint, but other than that the FB#1 is original 15 years, 328K miles. FWIW.

:2cents: vic

JoeyB
04-16-2019, 03:07 PM
If you're going to invest in that, after installing I would carry the removed spare.

I repaired the 2004 bad solder joint, but other than that the FB#1 is original 15 years, 328K miles. FWIW.

:2cents: vic

Info on this bad solder joint? I have an 04 also, thanks.

Aqua Puttana
04-16-2019, 03:34 PM
Info on this bad solder joint? I have an 04 also, thanks.
Unless you have symptoms it's no worry. Some info starting here.

https://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?p=374375#post374375

:cheers: vic

Garandman
04-16-2019, 07:19 PM
All four of my dash vents were missing pieces so I bought two new panels. Any tips on removal and replacement? Found a great video for passenger side, driver side, nothing!

http://youtu.be/3iyeZLgsb8I

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-7hKwpxT/0/d415e50b/L/i-7hKwpxT-L.jpg

Garandman
04-16-2019, 07:21 PM
Van is going to body shop this week, got the rust repair panels from Mill Supply.

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-tq4nmDb/0/4e0cc374/XL/i-tq4nmDb-XL.jpg

Nautamaran
04-16-2019, 09:01 PM
All four of my dash vents were missing pieces so I bought two new panels. Any tips on removal and replacement? Found a great video for passenger side, driver side, nothing!
Driver’s side is straightforward: two screws up under the arch, then pull straight out in vents to dislodge the tabs that hold it all in, tipping it forward.

The passenger side is certainly more involved... be sure to remove the Bat(-) and allow time for the airbag to disarm before removal, and do NOT power up the van again until the airbag is reconnected (unless you have a scanner that can clear the resulting SRS code).
Pay attention to the airbag’s position before removal, and to its “path out”... there is a clip under the bottom front edge that is tricky to get hooked back on during installation.

If your partner, like mine, likes putting their feet up during long drives, then these helpful stickers will prolong the life of the louvres - though they may also shorten your relationship? :bounce:

-dave

Garandman
04-17-2019, 05:37 PM
Should I get this manual, or are there other options?

https://sprintermanual.com/shop/

Midwestdrifter
04-17-2019, 05:44 PM
All you need and more is here. diysprinter.co.uk/reference/

The site above likely most got their content from the diysprinter site...

Garandman
04-18-2019, 04:22 PM
Making headway. Filters changed, brake line repaired, rear brakes done. Confirmed the temperature control and REST heater are working.

Dropped off at body shop today.

JoeyB
04-18-2019, 04:53 PM
All four of my dash vents were missing pieces so I bought two new panels. Any tips on removal and replacement? Found a great video for passenger side, driver side, nothing!

http://youtu.be/3iyeZLgsb8I

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-7hKwpxT/0/d415e50b/L/i-7hKwpxT-L.jpg

Where'd you order these from? I need to buy some also. Thanks!

Garandman
04-18-2019, 10:32 PM
Steve White Motors on eBay. $201.41.

“New Mopar Dash Trim Panels - Right & Left Sides

Part # 5104261AA & 5104262AA”

Garandman
04-20-2019, 01:41 AM
The van has a NAPA Legend battery, which I believe is AGM. It has the EK1 option. I have a spare Optima Red Top from a car we sold, so I'd like to install that to use for light weekend camping use: a thermoelectric cooler, small fan, recharge phone and iPad.

Can I just use a simple battery isolator to keep from running down the main battery, or do I need something more capable? The starter battery is much larger and higher capacity than the Red Top (Group 35, 44Ah). Or should I use something like a Blue Seas Automatic charging relay?

Midwestdrifter
04-20-2019, 02:04 AM
For light usage a regular relay (50A minimum) will work fine. The alternator is in the 13.8-14.2V range, which is fine for a lightly cycled battery.

No need for a matching AGM, just pick what is a good quality and fits.

Garandman
04-23-2019, 01:04 AM
A guy who finished a build has offered me a Sure Power Model 1315-200 Battery Separator. This would seem to do what I need?

Nautamaran
04-23-2019, 02:56 AM
A guy who finished a build has offered me a Sure Power Model 1315-200 Battery Separator. This would seem to do what I need?

...and more. Your Red Top doesn’t need much charging current (15-20 amps max?) so you’re not likely to ever see the 200 amps this relay is rated for, and I wouldn’t enable the “auto aux start connection” since that Red Top isn’t offering much to the cranking effort.

-dave

Garandman
04-26-2019, 08:47 PM
Driver’s side pretty much done except paint.

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-WCQnwWR/0/fba012d0/L/i-WCQnwWR-L.jpg

Right side will be finished this weekend or early next week.
https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-Z67nnwc/0/ccf10b18/L/i-Z67nnwc-L.jpg

There’s a dent in the RR quarter to pull out, corrosion around the windshield, and and that will do it!

Nautamaran
04-26-2019, 10:32 PM
In case you haven’t peeked, there is a series of rubber plugs on the inboard face of the rockers that can be popped out to access the cavity within. I made use of them to get a layer of wax preservative sprayed inside of mine...