Oil Level Sensor Issue - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 11-30-2012
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Question Oil Level Sensor Issue

Anyone have to replace or deal with an Oil Level Sensor where it begins to constantly display the oil level warning light and tells me that I'm -2 quarts? (i.e. 2 quarts low.) It was pretty intermittent at first, but now the oil light is on constantly. (All through this time there has always been oil on the dip stick, about halfway which would tells me that I'm 1 quart down from Full/Full.)

I would think that 2 quarts low means that I would be at 4 quarts from the full/full mark on the dipstick. (Or about half of the 8.5 quarts max.)

I suspect the sensor has gone bad, but I probably should check the connections just in case - if I can locate them. Any suggestions?
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#2 Old 11-30-2012
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My '05 350 had the same problem -- it would go off every second or third drive of 30 minutes or longer. Eventually I replaced the sensor, it is made by Hella. It was easy to do, but I did have to drain the oil and remove the oil pan. I did mine during an oil change. On the M272 engine, MB uses sealant, not gaskets, to seal the pan to the engine. The pan, like most oil pans, has a flange around the perimeter -- a flat surface that provides a mating surface.

A few things:

1) The pan is not very willing to separate from the engine because the old sealant works like a glue. Fortunately, there is a welded nut in the flange that you can thread a bolt into -- to separate the pan from the engine by force. A wedge tool will help finish that job.

2) You'll want something to clean the pan and the engine -- get rid of any old sealant before re-installing.

3) You will need some sealant when you put the pan back on. I used Silicone-based high-temperature RTV sealant because it was close to the composition MB called for (I couldn't justify a 55 gallon drum of the MB stuff for just one job).

MB has specific instructions on exactly how to run the bead of sealant around the flange -- including the size of the bead. You should follow those instructions verbatim so that no excess sealant ends up in your engine and there are no leaks.

Pay attention to the instructions for the sealant too -- in my case, I had to run the bead, install the pan within X minutes, hand-tighten the bolts, wait a few minutes, and finally tighten the bolts to the final torque. And then I had to wait a few more minutes to allow it to harden.

I've had no false alarms in the six months since.
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#3 Old 11-30-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efair View Post
My '05 350 had the same problem . . . I've had no false alarms in the six months since.
Thanks; so it looks like replacing the sensor would be the best way to resolve the problem . . . Now if I only had my own garage/area to work in!!

Looks like the unit for my 320 would run between $110-130 online . . . but the getting to it would be tough in my apartment parking lot. Somehow I'd bet that my MB dealer will want closer to $500 to do the job, I'll see I guess.

I've talked to my dealer about doing this all with a "minor service" (which is close to being due anyway and would normally include an oil change) as well as replacing the battery which is 5+ years old. I could probably do all these things but I tend to be a bit reluctant to work under the car where my feet could be hanging out into an area where someone else might pull in.

I would think the basic engine arrangment might be close; do you have an upper and lower oil pan? Did you remove one or both? (I would think just the lower.)
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#4 Old 12-01-2012
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Correct -- I removed just the lower pan. The sensor is very accessible once it's removed and is held in place with just two bolts. Mine was $25 plus shipping -- from MB.
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#5 Old 12-01-2012
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#6 Old 12-01-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efair View Post
. . . Mine was $25 plus shipping -- from MB.
Dang!! Are we talking about the same sensor or did you get the deal of the month!! Every place I've see has it listed in the $100+ range.
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#7 Old 12-01-2012
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Probably not the same sensor -- I have a different engine from the OP.
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#8 Old 12-07-2012
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Well, I was thinking it would be about $500 . . . but I forgot that when they drop the pan, they'd need 8.5 qts of synthetic oil, plus the filter, etc.

My cost, about $760 . . . So, about as what might be exprected, though I'd hate to have to work out what their hourly rate actually is. (Would have cost me about $200 for the parts/oil, etc. and damn near impossible to drop the pan in the apartment lot.)
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#9 Old 03-09-2013
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How did it turn out... Just curious.
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#10 Old 06-16-2015
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I'm having this same issue currently with my 2001 320.


Just got the car serviced, its got 100,000 Km on it now and from the past few days while driving there is a beep sound and the readings on the odometer and trip meter go blank and then the trip meter shows the oil symbol and its got a flashing "HI" coming on and off against it.


This all goes away if you press the odo reset stalk but if left as is then suddenly the yellow oil lamp on the left lights up and the odo area has a reading "-2L'


I have checked the added the two liters thinking the level might have gone down, the dip stick shows the oil is full but this problem is ongoing.


Could it be a bad sensor ?


Please advice.


Cheers


Wasif
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#11 Old 06-16-2015
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It probably is a bad sensor if you've confirmed the oil level is correct!
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#12 Old 06-16-2015
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So ignore the message of spend a nearly a grand? That'd buy 40 5-qt jugs of Mobil 1 0W40! On old cars, unless you are a perfectionist, you should learn to ignore lots of things!
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#13 Old 06-23-2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efair View Post
My '05 350 had the same problem -- it would go off every second or third drive of 30 minutes or longer. Eventually I replaced the sensor, it is made by Hella. It was easy to do, but I did have to drain the oil and remove the oil pan. I did mine during an oil change. On the M272 engine, MB uses sealant, not gaskets, to seal the pan to the engine. The pan, like most oil pans, has a flange around the perimeter -- a flat surface that provides a mating surface.

A few things:

1) The pan is not very willing to separate from the engine because the old sealant works like a glue. Fortunately, there is a welded nut in the flange that you can thread a bolt into -- to separate the pan from the engine by force. A wedge tool will help finish that job.

2) You'll want something to clean the pan and the engine -- get rid of any old sealant before re-installing.

3) You will need some sealant when you put the pan back on. I used Silicone-based high-temperature RTV sealant because it was close to the composition MB called for (I couldn't justify a 55 gallon drum of the MB stuff for just one job).

MB has specific instructions on exactly how to run the bead of sealant around the flange -- including the size of the bead. You should follow those instructions verbatim so that no excess sealant ends up in your engine and there are no leaks.

Pay attention to the instructions for the sealant too -- in my case, I had to run the bead, install the pan within X minutes, hand-tighten the bolts, wait a few minutes, and finally tighten the bolts to the final torque. And then I had to wait a few more minutes to allow it to harden.

I've had no false alarms in the six months since.
I have the same problem. Was wondering where you found the instructions on how to reseal the oil pan after installing the new sensor.
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#14 Old 06-23-2016
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STAR Service Manual.
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#15 Old 02-18-2018
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Sorry to reopen this old thread. I am going to replace the sensor and looking for some help.

I am looking at the sealant linked below, will it work?
https://www.amazon.com/Permatex-8218...dp/B0002UEN1U/

I came across the another set of instructions for the R170 and the oil pan removal is not required according to those:
https://www.pelicanparts.com/techart...eplacement.htm

Any help would be appreciated. Thank you!
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#16 Old 02-18-2018
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Your vin number?

Remove_install bottom part of oil pan.pdf
http://docdro.id/8GNGYF0

Remove_install oil level sensor.pdf
http://docdro.id/omUWnbv
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