2009 SLK350 (R171) Oil Consumption - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 10-25-2017
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2009 SLK350 (R171) Oil Consumption

Hi All,

My wife's 2009 SLK350 is experiencing unusual oil consumption. I have researched this site and only found issues relating to the 2005-06 models. There are no leaks that I can tell or see (no drops on the garage floor). My wife drives approximately 100 miles a day and is using about 1 quart of oil (Mobil-1 0 - 40W) every 2 weeks. Does anyone know of a known problem with this model or should we be using a different weight of oil? She has approximately 160K miles on the car. I'm worried that the piston rings may need to be replaced, which could mean big dollars to have this done. Not sure how much, but I'm sure it won't be cheap!
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#2 Old 10-25-2017
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Find a garage with a das/star machine they can perform a compression test, just to rule that out.
Is the oil cap cover with deposits?
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We had a soft plug issue with ours that was giving us a bit of a burning oil smell. But we never had any oil consumption problems. However we also have less than half the miles on ours as you do. Will be interested in your findings so I will know what to look for down the road.
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#4 Old 10-26-2017
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Sound like about a quart every thousand miles. Is the tailpipe black ? Also check the belly pan for oil. Has to be going somewhere. My clone has 134k miles and uses no oil between changes. Mobil 1 0w-40.


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#5 Old 10-26-2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millerm77 View Post
Hi All,

My wife's 2009 SLK350 is experiencing unusual oil consumption. I have researched this site and only found issues relating to the 2005-06 models. There are no leaks that I can tell or see (no drops on the garage floor). My wife drives approximately 100 miles a day and is using about 1 quart of oil (Mobil-1 0 - 40W) every 2 weeks. Does anyone know of a known problem with this model or should we be using a different weight of oil? She has approximately 160K miles on the car. I'm worried that the piston rings may need to be replaced, which could mean big dollars to have this done. Not sure how much, but I'm sure it won't be cheap!
This is definitely high, but does not have to be absolutely excessive ( 1000 miles = 1600 km / 1 quart = 1 liter).

Either, the oil is leaking into the combustion chambers, or out of the car. These amounts will be very visble, especially with the miles put on the car, so if there is a outgoing leak, yo'll see it (wet underbody panels).

If the oil is sucked in via valve stems (and bad valve seals, before that) the valves will accumulate soot and slowly coke up, ultimately giving bad performance and risk of burnt valves. Sometimes, this can be observed by a puff of blue smoke when starting, and perhaps not much thereafter.

The other way is thru the cylinder walls. Sometimes, cylinder walls are "polished" (way more complex that the word "polishing" implies) sometimes piston compression rings and oil scraping rings are stuck in deposits. Either (or both) make cylinders prone to oil leakage and hence, oil consumption. You will not catch this with a simple compression test - sometimes a proper leakdown test (compression testing for a longer period, measuring leakdown rate) can help pinpionting this. (However, it will not pinpoint if cylinder walls or piston rings are the problem.

Now to a suggestion: It is possible that some "italian tuning" could help. The reason is that ordinary, sensible driving will not load the engine enough to get really warm, and driving at high revolutions (at reasonable speed) may free somewhat stuck rings. So, take the car for a good spin and make sure it is redlined (or nearly so) and driven at speed up hills (to get hot). I will not promise anything, but it's nearly free (and somewhat fun) to do this and it may help, seriously.

If the oil is leaking into the combustion chamber either way, it will be burnt. If your car burns these amounts, it is not absolutely certain that it shows ("blue smoke") but it is not good for the cats and as a (bad) fuel , Mobil1 is rather expensive...
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Last edited by Anders S SLK02; 10-26-2017 at 08:20 AM. Reason: Arful Sprelling...
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#6 Old 10-26-2017
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Originally Posted by i860 View Post
Find a garage with a das/star machine they can perform a compression test, just to rule that out.
Is the oil cap cover with deposits?
I'm always curious and eager to learn: How can a das/star machine perform a compression test?
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#7 Old 10-26-2017
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This is how the test looks with my das machine on my slk 350
https://ibb.co/kY4VmR
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#8 Old 10-27-2017
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[QUOTE=i860;3910521]This is how the test looks with my das machine on my slk 350
https://ibb.co/kY4VmR[/QUOTE

I wasn't questioning the ability of the das to generate a report, but rather how are the physical compression values measured /established in the first place in order for the das machine to read them. I know how a traditional pressure gauge in the spark plug hole works, but am at a loss as to how the measurements are made in order to be interpreted electronically.

Thanks for your imput.
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#9 Old 10-27-2017
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[quote=carguy;3912825]
Quote:
Originally Posted by i860 View Post
This is how the test looks with my das machine on my slk 350
https://ibb.co/kY4VmR[/QUOTE

I wasn't questioning the ability of the das to generate a report, but rather how are the physical compression values measured /established in the first place in order for the das machine to read them. I know how a traditional pressure gauge in the spark plug hole works, but am at a loss as to how the measurements are made in order to be interpreted electronically.

Thanks for your imput.
I cant tell if the magic machine does it like that, but if the engine don't get any spark (and, no fuel, that's easy enough to govern), the machine can test compression by simply measuring the current draw in the starter motor (because the motor would not start). Absolute values (repeated measurements between different engines) may be somewhat imprecise but relative values (between cylinders) would be quite dependable.
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#10 Old 10-27-2017
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From what i can see it something to do with the rpm.
I had done on my previous slk also a compression test after removing the spark plug and cracked the engine but that was measured in psi.
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#11 Old 10-27-2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i860 View Post
From what i can see it something to do with the rpm.
I had done on my previous slk also a compression test after removing the spark plug and cracked the engine but that was measured in psi.
@i860 what are the units that Star uses to report the compression?
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#12 Old 10-28-2017
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Das is using a RPM reading.
https://imgur.com/QkBwzaS
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#13 Old 10-28-2017
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From the looks of that table, it's possible that the scanner/testing SW is stopping the spark from each cylinder for a short while, measuring how much slower the engine goes. In the olden days (without electrogizmos), this was a rough and ready way to judge if cylinders were OK, remove the plug and listen to the engine. If no rev loss, no help from that cylinder, for any reason...

With precise measuring (rotational sensing) it would probably completely feasible to judge compression from power loss and cylinder resistance combined.

However, oldfashioned compression checking "meter in the sparkplug hole) allows for a few extra tricks, if compression is found to be "low" (below threshold) by above method. Squirting a little oil into the cylinder may tell if rings are the problems, by the oil sealing the ring gap, for example. But these days, inspecting cylinders visually (a camera probe in the spark plug hole) may be more useful.
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#14 Old 10-28-2017
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Yes, the precondition for the test is ( if my memory serve me right )
-connect the car to a battery aid ( i didn't have one ) das will detect if the battery is not strong enough and terminate the test.
-engine temperature above 80 degree Celsius
-fully press the acceleration pedal ( this will cut off the fuel on the cylinders, not sure about the spark as I didn't disconnect anything from the coil packs
-crank the engine a few seconds
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#15 Old 10-28-2017
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Just my opinion but if really want to know the condition of an engine, I do both a compression and a leak-down test. Any doubt also have a PC based borescope.


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#16 Old 10-28-2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i860 View Post
Yes, the precondition for the test is ( if my memory serve me right )
-connect the car to a battery aid ( i didn't have one ) das will detect if the battery is not strong enough and terminate the test.
-engine temperature above 80 degree Celsius
-fully press the acceleration pedal ( this will cut off the fuel on the cylinders, not sure about the spark as I didn't disconnect anything from the coil packs
-crank the engine a few seconds
WOT is for not messing up the measurement (pump resistance at minimum).

Thanks for sorting this out.
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#17 Old 10-28-2017
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Originally Posted by Padgett View Post
Just my opinion but if really want to know the condition of an engine, I do both a compression and a leak-down test. Any doubt also have a PC based borescope.
I agree. I have a USB borescope - there is no limits to what entertaining wiews to get, fuel tanks, clogged water drains - you name it... :-)
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Can you offer a link to the unit you have/recommend? I had access to a high end boroscope where I used to work, and found it very useful in a surprising numbers of circumstances. I would love to have something simple and convenient ...

tn

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anders S SLK02 View Post
I agree. I have a USB borescope - there is no limits to what entertaining wiews to get, fuel tanks, clogged water drains - you name it... :-)
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#19 Old 10-28-2017
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Can you offer a link to the unit you have/recommend? I had access to a high end boroscope where I used to work, and found it very useful in a surprising numbers of circumstances. I would love to have something simple and convenient ...

tn
Any generic Ebay USB borescope - I believe mine was under 10 bucks even some years ago (it still works). Actually, I would suggest getting a model for yor smartphone (Android ones are plentiful). Example:

7mm / 2m 5m Waterproof Android Endoscope Borescope Snake Inspection Video Camera | eBay

Please note: This is NOT "professional quality" if you have access to something serious.
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#20 Old 10-29-2017
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I use one of those as well.

- cylinder inspection
https://imgur.com/a/HzqEI

-balance shaft inspection
https://imgur.com/a/XhGut

-snapping the camera in the engine and removing the camera from the engine ...


https://imgur.com/a/FsBzx
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