Mercedes 126 repair – forgotten liquids, II

The Mercedes 126 Repair: Forgotten Liquids, Part I we looked at the rear differential. Now let us focus on another fluid that most owners will never interfere with – power steering fluid.


Most Mercedes 126 owners will never take up their recirculation ball governor. But those who have achieved new results in the importance of pure fluid in the steering wheel. In addition to the main screwdriver assembly and the contact surface between the ball nut and the actual rotation speed of the Pitman, there are several needle bearings. All these moving parts are lubricated by a uniform flow of power steering fluid. The stronger the fluid is contaminated, the faster these parts will be. And the worn steering wheel means sloppy steering, potential safety risks, and expensive repair or replacement. (The power steering pump, on the other hand, is much easier and can be easily exchanged and well-used units can be purchased for up to $ 50.)

There was a dispute with automatic transmission fluid (ATF) in this system. Despite the fact that the ATF was given in the owner's manual, the ATF is not what it was and was somewhat hostile to many gaskets in the steering system. Ideally, the ATF must be disconnected from the smooth, old power steering fluid. While synthetic liquids are available, conventional fluids are perfectly fit.

To replace the fluid, support the front of the vehicle to the socket so that both front wheels descend from the ground. Remove the hose channel and secure the return hose to fold the "breather pipe" bolted into the pump and direct the hose to a suitable container for catching the old fluid. Insert the breathing tube or loosen it with a 19 mm wrench and turn it up to fill the tank without losing fluid from the return valve. The usual procedure here is to start the engine and add the fluid while the pump quickly displaces the old fluid. But this process involves some major disadvantages. Most is a one-man operation. The flow velocity is so fast that there is a high risk that the pump will dry out and breathe air without the need for a continuous flow of fluid. If things went out, you need help to stop the engine immediately. If you do not have the help and you do not want to risk pump damage or air into the system, you should do the right thing.

Fortunately, it is perfectly possible to pump the old fluid in an extremely controlled manner, simply turning the steering wheel from stopping to stopping. Keep the fluid level in the tank over the filter to prevent air from entering and continue until you are sure that the liquid leaving the recirculation hose is clean. You need 2-3 km to fully charge the liquid, though if you try to remove all the traces of the (red) ATF, it may take a bit longer to create a completely clean container. When happy, reconnect the return hose and rinse the system thoroughly by turning the steering wheel forward and backward with the engine running.

This is of course a perfect opportunity to change the pump in the pump and check the rubber hose hoses, if necessary. The fact that Mercedes seeps a filter in the power steering pumps tells us something about the importance of pure fluid. How many other car makers do this?

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