Van runs, cuts out. Merc want another £2000

Berrera

New member
Hey guys,
okay, I'm in Germany (traveling) with my 2005 sprinter. We had black smoke coming out of the exhaust, so I took it to Mercedes who charged me over 2000 euro for an injector check and refit (all four) aswell as brakes. They changed the fuel line aswell. The injectors were badly fitted so the needed new bolts and seals-they were checked by bosch and everything came back fine.

After they did the work, the first time I started the van it would fire up then cut out. On second attempt ,it would take a while to start maybe 15 seconds of turning over and it would kick into life.

Now I have just broken down (the van edc light came on and It gradually slowed down). I'm at a Merc garage in Frieberg. The van starts and cuts out after a few seconds. They tell me it may cost 1000 just to find out the issue, then the work plus parts might be another 1000!

I think this might be the end of my trip! Does anyone have any idea what the problem is? Anything I can check? I imagine it's a fuel/pressure issue.

If you leave the van say 30 mins it will run for about 10 seconds; the longer you leave it the longer it will run for. If you try turning it over straight away, after its run, it will just keep turning over.

I hate Merc centres and, frankly, wouldn't be here if I was back in the UK.

Anyone know any good garages around here?
 
Last edited:

NelsonSprinter

Former Nelson BC Sprinter
What engine does yours have?
Black smoke usually means too little air / too much diesel or turbo is off/leaking air.
Best to drive with a Sprinter code reader to tell you why the engine stopped.
Try to find a Sprinter specialist, not just a Merc dealer, often independent Euro shops will be better/cheaper.
Do you have clear fuel lines with air bubbles showing?
 

Berrera

New member
Thanks for the reply.

The black smoke is gone now that was due to badly fitted injectors bubbling up fuel, three of the four leaked.

Now it just starts runs for a few seconds then dies. I dont know if this is something to do with Mercedes work.

Its a 313.

I can see a few bubbles in the fuel line...is that bad?
 

NelsonSprinter

Former Nelson BC Sprinter
Thanks for the reply.

The black smoke is gone now that was due to badly fitted injectors bubbling up fuel, three of the four leaked.

Now it just starts runs for a few seconds then dies. I dont know if this is something to do with Mercedes work.

Its a 313.

I can see a few bubbles in the fuel line...is that bad?
Yes, should be no bubbles, bubbles can drop fuel pressure and engine dies. Most common cause of bubbles is leaking O-rings at fuel filter connections. Lube them up with thick oil or grease may stop the bubbles. Every connection /hole in the fuel filter must be lubed, including the water drain knob at bottom should not be tight, just lightly tightened
 
Last edited:

Berrera

New member
Thanks, I will give this a go.

Do you know the best way to test the fuel rail pressure? I have a gauge but couldn't see a nipple on the rail for attachment.
 

NelsonSprinter

Former Nelson BC Sprinter
Thanks, I will give this a go.

Do you know the best way to test the fuel rail pressure? I have a gauge but couldn't see a nipple on the rail for attachment.
No connection to test FRP except injector line. Not recommended as it's 6000 PSI or something big. Sprinter scanners can show the fuel rail pressure
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
OK thinking logically and since you do not have a scanner at hand this makes life difficult.

So I am going to assume it ran without cutting out previous to having some injector work done.

Since the engine harness was disturbed to do the work the logical thing is to check this first.
One of the most prevalent issues is a bad , misplaced or bad camshaft sensor or socket found at the back of the valve cover . If the cam sensor signal cannot be seen and shake hands with the crank sensor and go "synchronized" , the engine will cut out as you describe.
The same can be said of the crank sensor especially when hot losing a signal and causing a prolonged engine stall at traffic stops.
Without scan tool you are like navigating an open boat without GPS or a sextant in North Sea somewhere off the Flamborough light.
All the best
Dennis
 

Berrera

New member
Thanks, I will have a look for any visible damage. Yes, it never did the start then cut out thing before. It like it has fuel then runs out in a matter of seconds.

I wish Mercedes would just try and fix something, instead of replacing everything!

It took them 4 days to change the brake pads and tell me I needed to go to another garage to get the snapped stretch bolt replaced (which they snapped).
 
Last edited:

Berrera

New member
Right, I have an update. There is alot of air in the clear fuel lines. I Have replaced two, and Mercedes is getting the other delivered today (the high pressure pump to low pressure pump line).

I can see after I have stopped turning the engine over, the fuel starts running back down the pipes. When I replace the last fuel line (mentioned above) if the problem still persists could there be any other reason for the fuel running back down the lines? High pressure pump seals/ pipe to tank line- O-ring on the regulator? I remember this being a bastard to get off as its at the end of the rail.

Thanks guys, for your help.
 
Last edited:

Patrick of M

2005 T1N 2500 (NA spec)
2 things,
1. If you are traveling long distances with an older sprinter, you really need a decent scanner.
2. Barring that you need to find a specialist in Sprinters (especially older ones) that can sort you at a reasonable price, and by specialist I don’t mean a MB dealership where many of the techs work on more modern rigs all day, but a smaller operation. If in doubt keep your eyes peeled for some older ( or any) Sprinters doing deliveries/working (might be hard to find +10 year old models in modern modern Germany) , call the phone #/business on the van and see if you can find out who does the servicing.
 
Last edited:

vanski

'05 Snow Camper, '17 170 4x4, Adventure Vissionary
If you have a bunch of air bubbles you have a vacuum leak. I’ve remedied this a few different times on your motor type. They didn’t replace the fuel filter did they?

I happen to be in Stuttgart down the road and if you have some tools I might be able to help? Mostly just a screw driver for those fittings.
 

NelsonSprinter

Former Nelson BC Sprinter
Right, I have an update. There is alot of air in the clear fuel lines. I Have replaced two, and Mercedes is getting the other delivered today (the high pressure pump to low pressure pump line).

I can see after I have stopped turning the engine over, the fuel starts running back down the pipes. When I replace the last fuel line (mentioned above) if the problem still persists could there be any other reason for the fuel running back down the lines? High pressure pump seals/ pipe to tank line- O-ring on the regulator? I remember this being a bastard to get off as its at the end of the rail.

Thanks guys, for your help.
If you can see fuel moving down the bubbles after stopping the engine, the fuel connection to the low pressure pump may be leaking air/ not seated and locked. Is there a white clip at the connection, and is it pushed into the center or pulled out from the center?
 

Berrera

New member
They are both good ideas. Still alot of old Mercs on the road here so will keep my eye out for a company name.
 

Berrera

New member
Thanks for the response and kindly offer. They ordered the wrong part so I will replace the last T piece clear pipe tomorrow morning (the one that runs between the hp pump low pressure pump).

And no, they didn't replace the fuel filter but I am going to in the morning-it's only a year since a I did it, and it seems fine, but I may as well remove the possibility of a bad connection at the top. I have replaced the pipe today that Nelson refers to but it didn't cure the issue (I also greased it up like you suggested).

I will do those two jobs and, failing that, I will run a small piece of pipe from the fuel filter into a jug of diesel and see if it's not something to do with the tank pick up pipe.

Vanski, that's very nice of you, but I wouldn't want to put you out. If I can't cure it tomorrow any advice you could give on the Vacuum leak would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you both.
 

vanski

'05 Snow Camper, '17 170 4x4, Adventure Vissionary
No problem. I’ve come down with a Euro cough so I’m kind of out for some of our plans as my sleep schedule is messed up. My lady is finishing up her work meatings and we’re out of here tomorrow....

I’m not sure I’d change out the FF. I was only asking because that’s a common place where vacuum leaks are introduced with your configuration (I’m assuming yours is the same as the 2002-2003 Sprinters in the states where there’s a water in fuel sensor at the bottom of the FF), and if it was changed out or messed with that could be where the leak is.

From there, all the clamps and yes the white plastic clips (one at the FF and the other going into the fuel pump if I remember correctly) and the o-rings need to be snug and have no vacuum leaks.

Also, the more dissembly which occurs is going to cause the fuel to escape the system and you will need to prime the system or you won’t be able to start at all (once again, I’m assuming you’re doesnt have the lift pump like our 2002-2003). Once the offending leak is cured, the system is primed, and it starts, any air will be bleed out assuming the leak is fixed.

I’d start by not changing out anything. If it starts you might be able to hear the leak while running. Go over all the connections making sure they are snug.
 

Mickyfin

Member
Can you not bleed the fuel rail?
 

vanski

'05 Snow Camper, '17 170 4x4, Adventure Vissionary
If there’s a leak causing air to get into the system it doesn’t matter. Once the leak is fixed and it runs a while my experience is it will bleed any air left in the system on its own.. I don’t know exactly how :idunno:

Fix the leak, run it with variable rpm in nuetral, get back on your trip...
 

Berrera

New member
Thanks for your response guys. I changed the filter and topped it up with diesel, put the last pipe on (a bastard to fit).

It still didn't work! So I ran a clear piece of pipe from the dog leg on the fuel filter (intake from tank) into a cannister of diesel-so I could check there was no problem before the filter to the tank. And there is no fuel being pulled up the short clear pipe into the fuel filter! I took the t piece on way connector off the fuel filter and capped it as sometimes it can fail and air can be drawn in that way-still didn't work.

No one I know, has ever known of a lp pump failure on these- its the front mounted one on the lter models. But even if there was a later problem like HP pump, O ring on rail, Injector issue, surly fuel would still be sucked up the pipe right?:thinking:
 

vanski

'05 Snow Camper, '17 170 4x4, Adventure Vissionary
You will need to prime it from the jug all the way to the pump... it won’t just suck it up. You either need to pucker up buttercup and suck the fuel up via mouth, put your thumb over it once it’s up to the top, and then quickly place on FF, or get an inline hand pump and do the same.
 
Last edited:

Berrera

New member
Okay, I did what you told me, Vanski, put a hand pump on the outlet of the low pressure pump and sucked the fuel through.
Now the pipes are free of air and the van starts (sometimes) then cuts out.

****!! So I think it must be a pressure issue. I don't have a scanner, but I do have a fuel pressure tester. I'm told this is a little dangerous screwing onto the rail as the pressures are to high is this correct?

Will tour around the site and see if I can find an answer.

I think the O-ring on the reg was changed a year or so ago. If that is indeed the case it could be the high pressure pump.
 

Top Bottom