Oil leak and cam expansion plug - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

SLK R171 General Discussion SLK 200, SLK 280, SLK 300, SLK 350, SLK 55 AMG

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Old 11-23-2013
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Oil leak and cam expansion plug

Greetings SLK owners,

After an eventful couple of weeks with our new SLK 350 we have finally had a success story

An oil leak was found.......not great news but looking at this marvellous forum soon revealed several suggestions. The cam expansion plugs looked a simple enough repair and the leak was from the larger of the plugs.

Surprise surprise the main dealer parts specialist needed some help in identifying the part but confirmed there was stock available.

Old plug prized off with screw driver - very little effort required. There was plenty of oil in the plug and it was easy to see how some of this would seep past the seam.

The existing cam plug has part number: A000 997 78 20

The new cam plug has part number: A000 998 56 90

Comparing the two I can see the new plug has a more pronounced o-ring. It could be that the existing plug o-ring has got compressed during its life.

Still, great news the leak was simple to fix. I thank the forum and its members in sharing several articles on this subject.

Following information from other articles I cleaned everything and installed the plug dry - in other words did not smear oil or grease on the new plug.

Overall, the easiest engine oil leak to fix!

Now onto the more serious issues of heated seat base and the random parking generator aka parktronic.

Enjoy a weekend of SLK driving.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg SLK350 Expansion plug location (Custom).jpg (41.6 KB, 143 views)
File Type: jpg SLK350 expansion plug location 1 (Custom).jpg (49.7 KB, 120 views)
File Type: jpg SLK350 expansion plug replacement (Custom).jpg (49.8 KB, 128 views)
File Type: jpg SLK350 old expansion plug (Custom).jpg (120.0 KB, 82 views)
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Old 11-24-2013
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Had the small one on drivers side replaced last week. In and out of dealership in one hour. 52,000 miles
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Old 02-12-2014
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I've got the same leak on the Driver's Side of my wife's SLK 280. I rarely drive the car, but she borrowed my Honda this week. It's been dripping forever on the garage floor, but never could quite confirm the location of the leak. After driving it the past two days, I noted oil smoke coming from under the hood at the windshield on the Driver's Side, this about 2 miles from home at a stoplight. The smoke would go away further into the commute.

Today I pulled over to a golf course parking lot, popped the hood and swiped my finger under the plug on the Driver's Side and got oil. It's dripping onto the exhaust.

Is there a DIY here on removal and installation? I did a search and could not find. Is this a simple pry out with a screw driver?

What's the cheapest on-line source for these plugs?

Thanks in advance,

Steve "Big T"
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Old 02-12-2014
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Yes, just pry them out, a little oil on the new one, and push back in with your hand.

They're dirt cheap from MB.
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Old 02-12-2014
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Place an old rag or towel right below the plug opening to catch any engine oil that may flow out.
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Pewter(cubanitsilber metallic)/Beige, PIII package, Airscarf, Hands-Free Communication System, Lighting package; Designo Black Leather Cover on e-brake handle(Thank you Bill T), SmartTop v3.x, John's 3BFM, M113 AMG OEM air filters, Modified R170 ant., clear side-markers & front parking lamps w/error-free LEDs, chromed front & rear turn indicator lamps, steel mesh at battery bay cover & cabin air intake, sock-over-seatbelt buckles, belt-loop guide protectors, Lamin-X fog lamp protectors, bilateral rear fog lamps enabled, AMG crest on gear shift knob
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Old 03-15-2014
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Does the SLK55 have expansion plugs similar to these?

I have a small leak near the rear of the engine that I have yet to find, there isn't much room at the back of the engine.

Thanks!
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Old 12-31-2014
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Many thanks to korgua and others regarding this problem!

I had recently noticed a small puddle of oil under the car when was parked up in garage. Reading this article I was quickly able to identify the culprit!
Just got back from the local Merc dealers with the larger of the two plugs. (Ł7.63 including VAT) Took me less than 10 minutes to fit.

I like a happy ending to a story
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Old 01-15-2015
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Thank you for your post, and the part numbers. I'm having that issue and so far all the clues are pointing to the cam plugs.

I believe that this problem became more evident with the lower temperatures in TX compared to FL.
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Old 01-30-2017
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I know this is an old thread, but.....

I'm having a similar problem with my 350. I've replaced the 3 plugs, 2 small ones and one larger, but there's still a small leak. I think it's coming from the 'thing' bolted on where the bigger of the two plugs would be on the drivers side (RHD) of the engine. Does that make sense?

Anyway, what is the 'thing' that's bolted on? And can I get a new gasket for it, so I can take it off and replace it, to hopefully stop the leak?

Thanks all..
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Old 01-30-2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosnibor View Post
I know this is an old thread, but.....

I'm having a similar problem with my 350. I've replaced the 3 plugs, 2 small ones and one larger, but there's still a small leak. I think it's coming from the 'thing' bolted on where the bigger of the two plugs would be on the drivers side (RHD) of the engine. Does that make sense?

Anyway, what is the 'thing' that's bolted on? And can I get a new gasket for it, so I can take it off and replace it, to hopefully stop the leak?

Thanks all..
Yes, leaks in the crankcase ventilation system are not uncommon. The large O ring gasket is not sold separately but you may be able to find one at a good hardware store. Also, before you do anything more you should check to make sure the four (4) bolts that hold the cover on are properly tight. The spec is stage one 6NM then stage two turn an additional 90 degrees.
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Old 01-31-2017
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Great. Thanks. So that 'thing' is ok to unbolt? There's no springs or other things behind it?
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Old 01-31-2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosnibor View Post
Great. Thanks. So that 'thing' is ok to unbolt? There's no springs or other things behind it?
Yes, you can unbolt it. It is just a cover. There is an oil separator under the cover, but nothing that will jump out at you. Once you have the cover off you should look at it carefully for any sign of a crack in the cover. They don't typically crack.
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Old 02-02-2017
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I just addressed this on our '07 SLK 280. Did the passenger side plug first, but that did not solve the leak. Then did the Crankcase Ventilation cover and that solved the leak. Very easy job to do. Only constraint is the firewall next to the battery on the lower left (facing the car) bolt. You have to push back on that firewall material to get a socket wrench in there. I hand torqued the bolts, no torque wrench as it would be tough to get in there. Vent cover was $16+ and some minor shipping cost from RockAuto.
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Old 10-19-2017
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"Ruby" went to the Doctor for her first exam. Cam plug oil leak. Minor repair.
Confirmed Brakes were new. She'll get brake line flushed and Vario Roof Lubricated and leveled.
Other than that she checked out great!
She was given an oil change recently but can't confirm its Mobil 1. So we'll give her fresh change as well.
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Old 03-12-2018
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So So So happy to find this thread, a big thanks to everyone that took the time to post pics and advice.
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Old 03-16-2018
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Just in case anyone from Canada has this issue Im posting the price I just paid from a local Mercedes dealer March 2018.
Canadian $$
- Large cap $ 12.82 + tax
- Small caps $ 6.95 + tax each
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Old 05-09-2018
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There's quite a few threads on this, but I would like to send my thanks to everyone who contributed to this topic (all topics, actually). I'm not sure how much it would have cost me to have this addressed by my dealer, but it cost me about $18 to do it myself. Simple, effective, and great instructions. The previous owner tried to fix it with black silicone, so I suspect he wasn't a member. Thanks again!
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