Water in Fuel Light WIF warning is on.

TrackSprinter

2016 Low Roof 144 2500
Went camping for Thanksgiving. Was able to button up most of the projects I had going on to make my TrackSprinter camping friendly i.e. insulation throughout, cover panels, etc.. Had a great time! It rained two of the three days. Discovered condensation in the driver side headlight (phuck) most likely from my HID hack job mod.

My point is, I got the WIF warning the next time I went to drive it after coming home. Not sure if the "perfect storm" weather conditions had anything to do with it, or if I got water from that Shell Station in Orange County on the way up to the mountains. The van has 21k miles, and I don't know if the fuel filter had ever been changed previous, as I am the second owner. I do know that the spare filter the original owner included with the purchase was the WRONG one so that may be an indicator if it was ever changed. I ordered a filter before pulling the original and wouldn't you know, I ALSO got the wrong one. GDit Mercedes!! Seems like 50 iterations of filters...

I got the dash light in the morning upon start up. And I will never again dismiss another dash warning until I understand what it actually means. Drove it 12miles to work, and went immediately for Google. Immediately freaked out when I found this thread during a search. Had it towed home.

Changed the filter. Used a little compressed air to evacuate the old filter into a container, waited awhile for the contents to settle while I changed the filter. If there was any water, it was microscopic and undetectable by the naked eye. Started it up, and no dash warning. I have driven it approximately 75miles since with no dash warning (yet).

To be prepared for a "next time" I believe I will invest in a rotary fuel transfer pump, and also a pre-fuel filter assembly as seen in another thread here. Unless your van is driven every day, there will be a good amount of gook and/or a small amount of water in your tank accumulated. Just depends on what it takes to get that gook/water into your fuel line I guess??
 

margal

Member
Filled up at BP station last night Sprinter shatter WIF light went on and no start
All it was coming from filter drain was water. Towed today to dealership
Here is the results
A. CUSTOMER STATES CRANK NO START. CHECK AND ADVISE. VERIFIED
REPLACE FUEL TANK (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE FUEL PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HIGH PRESSURE PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE RIGHT SIDE FUEL RAIL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE LEFT SIDE FUEL RAIL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE FUEL FILTER (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE ALL 6 INJECTORS (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE ALL INJECTOR HARD LINES (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE LEAK LINES (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HARD LINE BETWEEN RAILS (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HARD LINE ON HIGH PRESSURE PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
FILL WITH DIESEL FUEL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
DIAG TIME (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
B. PERFORM RECALL CAMPAIGN REPLACE DRIVER SIDE AIRBAG 2017030012
C. PERFORM RECALL CAMPAIGN REPLACE PASSENGER'S SIDE AIRBAG 2018110007
Status
Cost Deferred
$200.00 $1,091.83 $520.00 $2,416.87 $1,581.89 $2,369.82 $384.95 $1,899.68 $999.80 $804.80 $91.00 $91.00 $20.00 $400.00 $0.00 $0.00
Approved
X
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
X X
D. ________ I HEREBY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT I HAVE REMOVED MY PERSONAL AND/OR VALUABLES FROM MY VEHICLE AND THAT THERE IS NO FIREARM LEFT IN MY VEHICLE. I AGREE THIS DEALERSHIP WILL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ITEMS CLAIMED MISSING DURING THIS VISIT.
$0.00
X
Totals, Taxes and Fees Cost Deferred Approved
RO#: 600400 Mercedes Benz of Jacksonville
10231 Atlantic Blvd Jacksonville, FL ● (904) 300-2996 ● fieldsautogroup.com
2

Totals, Taxes and Fees
Estimate Subtotal Environmental Disposal Fee Tax
Estimate Total
Cost
$12,871.63
Deferred
$0.00
Approved
$200.00 $0.00 $14.00 $214.00

Around $14k in repair
Arguing with the station to get it covered
Does this happened to someone else
Please advise
Thanks
 
Last edited:

margal

Member
Filled up at BP station last night Sprinter shatter WIF light went on and no start
All it was coming from filter drain was water. Towed today to dealership
Here is the results
A. CUSTOMER STATES CRANK NO START. CHECK AND ADVISE. VERIFIED
REPLACE FUEL TANK (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE FUEL PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HIGH PRESSURE PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE RIGHT SIDE FUEL RAIL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE LEFT SIDE FUEL RAIL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE FUEL FILTER (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE ALL 6 INJECTORS (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE ALL INJECTOR HARD LINES (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE LEAK LINES (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HARD LINE BETWEEN RAILS (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
REPLACE HARD LINE ON HIGH PRESSURE PUMP (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
FILL WITH DIESEL FUEL (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
DIAG TIME (NO CRANK NO START (FUEL CONTAMINATED ))
B. PERFORM RECALL CAMPAIGN REPLACE DRIVER SIDE AIRBAG 2017030012
C. PERFORM RECALL CAMPAIGN REPLACE PASSENGER'S SIDE AIRBAG 2018110007
Status
Cost Deferred
$200.00 $1,091.83 $520.00 $2,416.87 $1,581.89 $2,369.82 $384.95 $1,899.68 $999.80 $804.80 $91.00 $91.00 $20.00 $400.00 $0.00 $0.00
Approved
X
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
Fail
X X
D. ________ I HEREBY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT I HAVE REMOVED MY PERSONAL AND/OR VALUABLES FROM MY VEHICLE AND THAT THERE IS NO FIREARM LEFT IN MY VEHICLE. I AGREE THIS DEALERSHIP WILL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ITEMS CLAIMED MISSING DURING THIS VISIT.
$0.00
X
Totals, Taxes and Fees Cost Deferred Approved
RO#: 600400 Mercedes Benz of Jacksonville
10231 Atlantic Blvd Jacksonville, FL ● (904) 300-2996 ● fieldsautogroup.com
2

Totals, Taxes and Fees
Estimate Subtotal Environmental Disposal Fee Tax
Estimate Total
Cost
$12,871.63
Deferred
$0.00
Approved
$200.00 $0.00 $14.00 $214.00

Around $14k in repair
Arguing with the station to get it covered
Does this happened to someone else
Please advise
Thanks
Engine swept cost from dealer 20k
I have 440k miles and it is 2016
What would you do in this situation
Can’t afford to wait long as this is a work van and start repair or replacement
Is there other way to fix it with out further issues once the water gets into fuel system
Thanks
 

99sport

Active member
I'm surprised Denis hasn't offered advice as this seems to be his bread and butter. The formatting on your quote is wrong so it is not possible to figure out how the dealer itemized the costs, which would be very helpful for determining if the costs are reasonable.

As no one else has weighed in, I'll give my 2 cents based on what I have read from this forum (mostly in this thread). Water has the potential to damage the injectors and high pressure fuel pump. The plan the dealer proposes is a shotgun that will certainly fix everything. A more cost effective approach would be to send all of the injectors out to a Bosch certified center for testing. I think the testing is about $100 each and I believe they give you a credit towards a rebuilt injector if one is needed and the cost for a rebuilt is $500 each. For a T1N an OEM high pressure pump is $1100 from places like Europarts SD. I don’t know if this can be tested, so I’d probably replace. My recollection is the high pressure fuel line / manifold is like $500, but I see no reason why this couldn’t be cleaned out as there are no precision clearances involved in any of the lines.

My take, having not every experienced this personally, I’d send the injectors out for testing, replace the high pressure fuel pump, replace the fuel filter, drop, drain and flush the fuel tank. While the tank is out you might as well replace the low pressure pump as it isn’t too expensive in this context, although I think it is likely still ok. Then you need to flush the water out of all the lines. The consensus seems to be this is about a $5K repair on the 5 cylinder T1N.

Theoretically, the fuel station should have insurance that will cover this - if you can prove it was there fuel that did it. If you got a tank of mostly water, which you seem to describe, one assumes that the station should be able to check their tank and find the water.

Good luck, and again a photo of the estimate showing the itemized costs would be helpful.

Edit: Since you asked what would you do, with 440K miles, I would not put 14K into the engine - unless you get the gas station to agree to pay first. I'd call Metric motors in Canoga park and see what they have in stock / can get. They sell brand new engines straight from the factory in Germany, with a MB warranty, for less than the cost of a MB rebuild from the dealer. I am not familiar with the OM642, so I don't know if this will work for you: https://mercedesengines.net/bluetec/ In fact, I installed one of their motors in my van. I was very happy with the motor and my interactions with them.
 
Last edited:

Bobnoxious

For a few dollars more
Always get a gas station receipt!!!
 

99sport

Active member
See my above edit about a new replacement engine. Also, a used take out is an option.

The dealer did not itemize between parts and labor so its hard to assess costs. See the following links for parts prices. A fuel rail is $800 ($500 from Europarts) - how do they charge $2400 for it? It cant possibly take $1600 for install. They want $2400 for a high pressure fuel pump. Genuine MB rebuild is $1000 and new OEM from online MB dealer is $1300. It cant take $1100 to install this. Why can't they clean the tank and lines rather than replacing with new. Why aren't they offering you the option of a genuine MB rebuild where available? Maybe I am missing something, but I think they know they have you over a barrel and are trying to squeeze every penny out of you they can.

These links may be helpful to assess part costs:
https://europarts-sd.com/mfg-subcat-item.asp?cID=41&scID=384
https://www.mbonlineparts.com/v-201...-v6-diesel/fuel-system--diesel-injection-pump
 

99sport

Active member
I believe the Bosch certified injector rebuild center is in Florida, so you might get a quick turn around of your rebuild. I'd also contact them and ask if there is a local shop they sell a lot of injectors to that they can refer or recommend you to. I don't know if this is the place that the pros like Dennis use, but I suspect it is: https://ocaladiesel.com/fuel-injection/ They claim to rebuild the pumps too, and I bet would know what parts actually need to be replaced vs cleaned for water contamination. To make a medical analogy, I think you need a second opinion - call those guys and see what they say.
 

margal

Member
See my above edit about a new replacement engine. Also, a used take out is an option.

The dealer did not itemize between parts and labor so its hard to assess costs. See the following links for parts prices. A fuel rail is $800 ($500 from Europarts) - how do they charge $2400 for it? It cant possibly take $1600 for install. They want $2400 for a high pressure fuel pump. Genuine MB rebuild is $1000 and new OEM from online MB dealer is $1300. It cant take $1100 to install this. Why can't they clean the tank and lines rather than replacing with new. Why aren't they offering you the option of a genuine MB rebuild where available? Maybe I am missing something, but I think they know they have you over a barrel and are trying to squeeze every penny out of you they can.

These links may be helpful to assess part costs:
https://europarts-sd.com/mfg-subcat-item.asp?cID=41&scID=384
https://www.mbonlineparts.com/v-201...-v6-diesel/fuel-system--diesel-injection-pump
Thanks again
As I spoke to service advisor he pointed out that once the water gets into fuel system it is hard to clean it out completely as there might be some metal savings and sediments remain. And later on it will have problems eventually.
Yes that cost includes labor not taxes but still a lot to me
 

margal

Member
See my above edit about a new replacement engine. Also, a used take out is an option.

The dealer did not itemize between parts and labor so its hard to assess costs. See the following links for parts prices. A fuel rail is $800 ($500 from Europarts) - how do they charge $2400 for it? It cant possibly take $1600 for install. They want $2400 for a high pressure fuel pump. Genuine MB rebuild is $1000 and new OEM from online MB dealer is $1300. It cant take $1100 to install this. Why can't they clean the tank and lines rather than replacing with new. Why aren't they offering you the option of a genuine MB rebuild where available? Maybe I am missing something, but I think they know they have you over a barrel and are trying to squeeze every penny out of you they can.

These links may be helpful to assess part costs:
https://europarts-sd.com/mfg-subcat-item.asp?cID=41&scID=384
https://www.mbonlineparts.com/v-201...-v6-diesel/fuel-system--diesel-injection-pump
Tying to see the parts cost but all it shows discounted.
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
I /we have fixed several of these water in the fuel incidences,
One in particular was an ambulance that was filled up in Casper Wy, with what was supposed to be 20 gallons of DERV but really was rain water.
The prices upon a quick perusal seem on the high side and in most cases be stated as a bit OTT.

I can make some constructive suggestions if still valid, however if I get contradicted I will stop the discourse.
I suggest you PM in the short term to discuss.
Cheers Dennis
tel: 720 344 1877
 

margal

Member
I /we have fixed several of these water in the fuel incidences,
One in particular was an ambulance that was filled up in Casper Wy, with what was supposed to be 20 gallons of DERV but really was rain water.
The prices upon a quick perusal seem on the high side and in most cases be stated as a bit OTT.

I can make some constructive suggestions if still valid, however if I get contradicted I will stop the discourse.
I suggest you PM in the short term to discuss.
Cheers Dennis
tel: 720 344 1877
Thanks
The vehicle is totaled by gas station insurance
Not worth to fix it
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
Thanks
The vehicle is totaled by gas station insurance
Not worth to fix it
That is too bad if it was in great condition otherwise. At least you now know your direction and can move forward.

Good luck.

vic
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
Thanks
The vehicle is totaled by gas station insurance
Not worth to fix it
Well then you can imagine the "insurance huddle" with ambulance downed for 2 weeks. :devilish: o_O :)
The repair was about $15,000.
It would probably have been much less but a kind soul of a trucker got involved pouring a big brown bottle of additive in the tank then doing his best to start it .:thumbdown:
(I think that's what really did it in.)

Ambulance claim was $15,000 per diem lost revenue x15!!
Towing
from Casper to Denver .
Repair cost etc etc.
Of course stuff like this gets resolved in geological time with attorneys and their costs tacked on the end as --Wotsit called?
Addendum costs!:)

Of course in our Anglo Saxon monetary world its called the acceleration of money .
Wonderful.
Cheers Dennis
 

Goran

Member
Iv3 only had my van 3 weeks and j drove to seattle amd back from phoenix and my fuel filter light came on. I only fill up qt pilot amd loves. Wonder if they have a bug with the fuel system.
 
Hey guys. Wanted to post an update. My WIF light has been on constantly since my last post in 2019. I've drained the fuel several times and never saw anything bad. The fuel always looked like the photo I posted earlier. The filter, per the dealership, only has 7899-miles on it as they say they changed it and all other filters/fluids prior to my purchase. I have read some posts where the issue is actually caused by the wires that's routed to the sensor possibly being pinched due to the angle/tightness caused by the mount? Should I replace the fuel filter anyway? If so, Mann (Shown below)?

 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
... I have read some posts where the issue is actually caused by the wires that's routed to the sensor possibly being pinched due to the angle/tightness caused by the mount? Should I replace the fuel filter anyway? If so, Mann (Shown below)?
:idunno:

I would want to clear the WIF warning if reasonably possible. Be aware. There are some kinda fragile clips on the fuel lines. Check the filter change Write-ups for details.

When you change the filter the sensor wires could then be inspected and repaired if needed. The removed filter can be emptied as much as possible and stowed in a plastic container or double plastic bag to keep as a spare.

A comment.
WIF is not a very common problem. The problem is that the results of not addressing a real WIF situation can be very expensive or even catastrophic. There are many early year NAS aka NAFTA T1N owners who have changed out to a filter that doesn't have the WIF sensor. (Air leaks can be a problem in the early T1N's before in tank fuel pumps.) To my knowledge there have been no reports of WIF issues for those Sprinters.

My thoughts are that small amounts of water are removed from the fuel tank during normal use. Otherwise I would expect that any moisture would just continue to add up and eventually become a problem.

"Personally I wouldn't be at all surprised if biodiesel blended fuel is moving water out of the fuel tank with no serious consequences. If that was a problem I'm sure that we'd be hearing about it. "

Post #8 here.


:cheers: vic
 

Bobnoxious

For a few dollars more
Hope no one put DEF into the fuel tank? Maybe bad sensor.

Looks similar to 2015 OM651 fuel filter with permanently attached water in fuel sensor, drain hose and valve.

According to Mercedes Benz, fuel filter replacement is based on time and or miles whatever occurs first. Some claim fuel filter is good for the life of the vehicle.

Then there's the consequences of biofuel, Mercedes Benz originally claimed detrimental to their vehicles but now seem to minimize its potential harm.

Best place for application to fuel filter is the dealership. Some model years, the filter was changed mid-production year.

Unless you're the original owner or, you can't go by a what is currently installed because it may be incorrect.

I would change the filter just for preventive maintenance.

If it is the same filter is in a OM651, it's a piece of cake. The biggest challenges is removing and installing the Clic R clamps.

When I replace my fuel filter I bought the clamp tool and reused the originals.

Another thing I did was place shop rags all around the area to soak up any spilled diesel and corked-off hoses until ready to re-position on the new filter.

Prior to starting, turn the key to second position for one minute and it fired right up.
 

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