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Fluid level checks Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2000 - 2007 Diesel C200 CDi - 2.1

OnDemand step-by-step maintenance & repair BETA

Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2000 - 2007  | C200 CDi - 2.1 Fluid level checks

  • time 5 to 30 minutes
  • difficulty 1

Underbonnet check points

1.8 litre petrol A Engine oil level dipstick B Engine oil filler cap C Coolant expansion tank D Brake/clutch fluid reservoir (under cover) E Screen washer fluid reservoir
2.2 litre petrol A Engine oil level dipstick B Engine oil filler cap C Coolant expansion tank D Brake/clutch fluid reservoir (under cover) E Screen washer fluid reservoir

Engine oil level

1 • Make sure that the car is on level ground.
2 • The oil should be at normal operating temperature.
3 • The engine should have been switched off for at least 5 minutes.
HINT: If the oil is checked immediately after driving the vehicle, some of the oil will remain in the upper engine components, resulting in an inaccurate reading on the dipstick.

The correct oil

4 Modern engines place great demands on their oil. It is very important that the correct oil for your car is used.
Engine oil grade Multigrade engine oil with a viscosity suited to the ambient temperature (see illustration) approved in accordance with MB sheets 229.1 or 229.3
Engine oil viscosity chart

Car care

5 • If you have to add oil frequently, you should check whether you have any oil leaks. Place some clean paper under the car overnight, and check for stains in the morning. If there are no leaks, then the engine may be burning oil, or the oil may only be leaking when the engine is running.
6 • Always maintain the level between the upper and lower dipstick marks. If the level is too low, severe engine damage may occur. Oil seal failure may result if the engine is overfilled by adding too much oil.
Some models, have a red cap fitted to the dipstick tube and NOT a dipstick. On these models, the oil is checked on the multifunction display unit on the Instrument panel. By pressing the up-and-down buttons on the multifunction steering wheel repeatedly, the ENGINE OIL LEVEL, MEASURING NOW! will appear on the display. Follow the instructions shown to achieve the correct oil level.
On models with a dipstick fitted, the dipstick cap is coloured red for easy identification (see Underbonnet check points for exact location). Withdraw the dipstick, and then use a clean rag or paper towel to wipe the oil from it. Insert the clean dipstick into the tube as far as it will go, then withdraw it again.
Note the level on the end of the dipstick, which should be between the upper (MAX) and lower (MIN) mark. Oil is added through the filler cap aperture. A funnel may help to reduce spillage.
Unscrew the cap and place some cloth rags around the filler cap aperture, then top-up the level. Add the oil slowly, checking the level on the dipstick frequently. Avoid overfilling (see Car care). If you need to renew the oil and filter, click below
- Close + Open

Engine oil and filter change

1 Frequent oil and filter changes are the most important preventative maintenance procedures, which can be undertaken by the DIY owner. As engine oil ages, it becomes diluted and contaminated, which leads to premature engine wear.
2 Before starting this procedure, gather together all the necessary tools and materials. Also make sure that you have plenty of clean rags and newspapers handy, to mop-up any spills. Ideally, the engine oil should be warm, as it will drain better, and more built-up sludge will be removed with it. Take care, however, not to touch the exhaust or any other hot parts of the engine when working under the vehicle. To avoid any possibility of scalding, and to protect yourself from possible skin irritants and other harmful contaminants in used engine oils, it is advisable to wear gloves when carrying out this work. Access to the underside of the vehicle will be greatly improved if it can be raised on a lift, driven onto ramps, or jacked up and supported on axle stands. Whichever method is chosen, make sure that the vehicle remains level, or if it is at an angle, so that the drain plug is at the lowest point. Where necessary, remove the under tray from under the engine.
3 Working in the engine compartment, on 611 and 612 engines, undo the retaining bolts and remove the engine trim panel cover (see illustration) . On 646 engines unclip the cover from the top of the engine. Locate the oil filter/housing on the front left-hand side of the engine (see illustration) . Place a wad of rag around the housing to absorb any spilt oil, and then unscrew the oil filter cap. Note: By removing the cap, the oil will drain from the housing into the sump.
Remove the engine covers (612 type engine)
Oil filter location (646 type engine)
4 Lift the old oil filter element out from the housing, and discard it.
5 Working under the vehicle, unscrew the sump drain plug about half a turn. Position the draining container under the drain plug, and then remove the plug completely (see illustration) . If possible, try to keep the plug pressed into the sump while unscrewing it by hand the last couple of turns (see Haynes Hint) .
Draining the engine oil
HINT: As the drain plug releases from the threads, move it away sharply so the stream of oil from the sump runs into the container, not up your sleeve.
6 Recover the sealing ring from the drain plug.
7 Allow some time for the old oil to drain, noting that it may be necessary to reposition the container as the oil flow slows to a trickle. Remove the oil filler cap from the camshaft cover.
8 After all the oil has drained from the engine, wipe off the drain plug with a clean rag and renew the sealing washer. Clean the area around the drain plug opening, then refit and tighten the plug to 30 Nm (22 Ibf ft).
9 Remove the old oil and all tools from under the car, then refit the undershield and lower the car to the ground.
10 Wipe out the oil filter housing and cap using a clean rag, then fit a new oil filter element to the housing.
11 Fit a new O-ring to the cap then refit it and tighten the nuts or cap as applicable. Tighten the cap to 25 Nm (18 Ibf ft).
12 Remove the oil level dipstick then fill the engine, using the correct grade and type of oil. An oil can spout or funnel may help to reduce spillage. Pour in half the specified quantity of oil first, and then wait a few minutes for the oil to run to the sump. Continue adding oil a small quantity at a time until the level is up to the lower mark on the dipstick. Finally, bring the level up to the upper mark on the dipstick. Insert the dipstick, and refit the filler cap.
Engine oil quantity 6.5 litres
Engine oil grade Multigrade engine oil with a viscosity suited to the ambient temperature (see illustration) approved in accordance with MB sheets 229.1 or 229.3
Engine oil viscosity chart
13 Start the engine and run it for a few minutes; check for leaks around the oil filter cap and the sump drain plug. Note that there may be a delay of a few seconds before the oil pressure warning light goes out when the engine is first started, as the oil circulates through the engine oil galleries and the new oil filter before the pressure builds-up.
14 Switch off the engine, and wait a few minutes for the oil to settle in the sump once more. With the new oil circulated and the filter completely full, recheck the level on the dipstick, and add more oil as necessary.
15 Dispose of the used engine oil safely.

Coolant level

Warning: Do not attempt to remove the expansion tank pressure cap when the engine is hot, as there is a very great risk of scalding. Do not leave open containers of coolant about, as it is poisonous.

Car care

7 • With a sealed-type cooling system, adding coolant should not be necessary on a regular basis. If frequent topping-up is required, it is likely there is a leak. Check the radiator, all hoses and joint faces for signs of staining or wetness, and rectify as necessary.
8 • It is important that antifreeze is used in the cooling system all year round, not just during the winter months. Don’t top up with water alone, as the antifreeze will become diluted.
Antifreeze type MB 325.0 000 989 08 25 or 000 989 21 25
The coolant level varies with the temperature of the engine. When the engine is cold, the coolant level should be up to the level marker inside the filler neck of the expansion tank.
If topping-up is necessary, wait until the engine is cold. Slowly unscrew the cap to release any pressure present in the cooling system, and remove the cap.
Add a mixture of water and the specified antifreeze to the expansion tank until the coolant level is halfway between the level marks. Refit the cap and tighten it securely. Should you need to replace the coolant, click below
- Close + Open

Coolant replacement

1 Warning: Wait until the engine is cold before starting this proc- edure. Do not allow antifreeze to come in contact with your skin, or with the painted surfaces of the vehicle. Rinse off spills immediately with plenty of water. Never leave antifreeze lying around in an open container, or in a puddle in the driveway or on the garage floor. Children and pets are attracted by its sweet smell, but antifreeze can be fatal if ingested.

Cooling system draining

2 After allowing the engine to cool completely, cover the pressure cap with a wad of rag, and slowly turn the cap anti‑clockwise to relieve the pressure in the cooling system (a hissing sound will normally be heard). Wait until any pressure remaining in the system is released, then continue to turn the cap until it can be removed (see illustration) .
Removing the pressure cap from the coolant expansion tank
3 Position a suitable container beneath the radiator, and then slacken the drain plug on the bottom left-hand corner of the radiator. Allow the coolant to drain into the container (see illustration) .
Remove the radiator drain plug
4 Reposition the container so that it lies beneath the engine block drain plug, which is located on the side of the cylinder block (see illustration) . (Certain engines are fitted with a drain plug with an integral nozzle, to which a length of rubber hose can be connected.) Open the drain plug and allow the coolant to drain into the container.
Cylinder block drain plug
5 Once all the coolant has drained, remove the drain hoses and close the cylinder block and radiator drain plugs.

Cooling system flushing

6 If coolant renewal has been neglected, or if the antifreeze mixture has become diluted, then in time, the cooling system may gradually lose efficiency, as the coolant passages become restricted due to rust, scale deposits, and other sediment. The cooling system efficiency can be restored by flushing the system clean.
7 The radiator should be flushed independently of the engine, to avoid unnecessary contamination.

Radiator flushing

8 To flush the radiator disconnect the top and bottom hoses and any other relevant hoses from the radiator.
9 Insert a garden hose into the radiator top inlet. Direct a flow of clean water through the radiator, and continue flushing until clean water emerges from the radiator bottom outlet.
10 If after a reasonable period, the water still does not run clear, the radiator can be flushed with a good proprietary cooling system cleaning agent. It is important that the manufacturer’s instructions are followed carefully. If the contamination is particularly bad, insert the hose in the radiator bottom outlet, and reverse-flush the radiator.

Engine flushing

11 To flush the engine, remove the thermostat, and then temporarily refit the thermostat cover. Adjust the heater control to the maximum setting.
12 With the top and bottom hoses disconnected from the radiator, insert a garden hose into the radiator top hose. Direct a clean flow of water through the engine, and continue flushing until clean water emerges from the radiator bottom hose.
13 On completion of flushing, refit the thermostat and reconnect the hoses.

Cooling system refilling

14 Before attempting to fill the cooling system, make sure that all hoses and clips are in good condition, and that the clips are tight. Note that an antifreeze mixture must be used all year round, to prevent corrosion of the engine components (see following sub-Section).
Coolant quantity (all models) 8.6 litres
Antifreeze type MB 325.0 000 989 08 25 or 000 989 21 25
15 Remove the pressure cap, and fill the system by slowly pouring the coolant into the expansion tank to prevent airlocks from forming.
16 If the coolant is being renewed, begin by pouring in a couple of litres of water, followed by the correct quantity of antifreeze, then top-up with more water.
17 Once the level in the expansion tank/header tank starts to rise, squeeze the radiator top and bottom hoses to help expel any trapped air in the system. Once all the air is expelled, top-up the coolant level to the MAX mark. Refit the pressure cap securely.
18 Where applicable, unscrew the plug from the coolant sensor housing, on the upper surface of the cylinder head. As soon as coolant starts to flow out, refit the plug and tighten it. If none flows out, pour coolant into the hole vacated by the plug until it begins to flow back out. Refit the plug and tighten it securely. This removes any airlocks in the cooling system that might inhibit the operation of the coolant sensor(s).
19 Start the engine and run it until the thermostat opens – the radiator top hose will begin to heat up as coolant flows through it of the radiator when this happens.
20 Check for leaks, particularly around disturbed components. Check the coolant level in the expansion tank/header tank, and top-up if necessary. Note that the system must be cold before an accurate level is indicated. If the pressure cap is removed while the engine is still warm, cover the cap with a thick cloth, and unscrew the cap slowly to gradually relieve the system pressure (a hissing sound will normally be heard). Wait until any pressure remaining in the system is released, then continue to turn the cap until it can be removed.

Antifreeze mixture

21 The antifreeze should always be renewed at the specified intervals. This is necessary not only to maintain the antifreeze properties, but also to prevent corrosion, which would otherwise occur as the corrosion inhibitors become progressively less effective.
22 Always use an ethylene glycol based antifreeze, which is suitable for use in mixed-metal cooling systems.
23 Before adding antifreeze, the cooling system should be completely drained, preferably flushed, and all hoses checked for condition and security.
24 After filling with antifreeze, a label should be attached to the expansion tank or header tank, stating the type and concentration of antifreeze used, and the date installed. Any subsequent topping-up should be made with the same type and concentration of antifreeze.
Caution: Do not use engine antifreeze in the windscreen/tailgate washer system, as it will cause damage to the vehicle paintwork. A screenwash additive should be added to the washer system in the quantities stated on the bottle.

Brake and clutch fluid level

Note: On manual transmission models, the fluid reservoir also supplies the clutch master cylinder with fluid.

Before you start

9 Make sure that the car is on level ground.
10 Cleanliness is of great importance when dealing with the braking system; so take care to clean around the reservoir cap before topping-up. Use only clean brake fluid.

Safety first!

11 • If the reservoir requires repeated topping-up, this is an indication of a fluid leak somewhere in the system, which should be investigated immediately.
12 • If a leak is suspected, the car should not be driven until the braking system has been checked. Never take any risks where brakes are concerned.
Warning: Brake fluid can harm your eyes and damage painted surfaces, so use extreme caution when handling and pouring it. Do not use fluid which has been standing open for some time, as it absorbs moisture from the air, which can cause a dangerous loss of braking effectiveness.
The MIN and MAX marks are indicated on the reservoir. The fluid level must be kept between the marks at all times. If topping-up is necessary, first wipe clean the area around the filler cap to prevent dirt entering the hydraulic system.
If topping-up is necessary, first wipe clean the area around the filler cap to prevent dirt entering the hydraulic system. Unscrew and remove the reservoir’s cap.
Carefully add fluid, taking care not to spill it onto the surrounding components (use a funnel). Use only DOT 4 Plus; mixing different types can cause damage to the system. On completion, securely refit the cap and wipe away any spilt fluid.

Washer fluid level

13 • Screenwash additives not only keep the windscreen clean during bad weather, they also prevent the washer system freezing in cold weather – which is when you are likely to need it most. Don’t top-up using plain water, as the screenwash will become diluted, and will freeze in cold weather.
Caution: On no account use engine coolant antifreeze in the screen washer system – this may damage the paintwork.
The screenwash fluid reservoir is located on the left-hand side (as seen from the driver’s seat) of the engine compartment, behind the headlight. Pull up the filler cap to release it from the reservoir.
When topping-up the reservoir, a screenwash additive should be added in the quantities recommended on the bottle. It could also be time to replace the wiper blades. For details, click below
- Close + Open

Wiper blade replacement

Note: It is possible to park the wipers in a Service/Winter position with both wipers pointing upwards to allow unrestricted removal of the blades. To do this, operate the wipers within 10 seconds of switching off the ignition. The wiper arms can now be lifted away from the windscreen.
Check the condition of the wiper blades; if they are cracked or show any signs of deterioration, or if the glass swept area is smeared, renew them. For maximum clarity of vision, wiper blades should be renewed annually, as a matter of course.
To remove a windscreen wiper blade, pull the arm fully away from the screen until it locks. On standard wipers, swivel the blade through 90º, press the locking tab with your fingers, and slide the blade out of the hooked end of the arm.
Where applicable, don’t forget to check the tailgate wiper blade as well. To remove the blade, depress the retaining tab and slide the blade out of the hooked end of the arm.

Power steering fluid level

14 Park the vehicle on level ground and set the steering wheel straight-ahead. The engine should be turned off; for the check to be accurate, the steering must not be turned once the engine has been stopped.
Caution: The need for frequent topping-up indicates a leak, which should be investigated immediately.
15 The power steering fluid reservoir is located at the front right-hand side of the engine on 1.8 litre petrol models and at the front left-hand side of the engine on all other models (see illustration) .
Power steering fluid reservoir – 1.8 litre engine
16 A dipstick is incorporated in the filler cap. Wipe clean the top of the fluid reservoir, then unscrew and remove the reservoir cap and dipstick.
17 Wipe the dipstick clean, then screw the reservoir cap fully back into position. Unscrew the cap once more, remove the dipstick and check the fluid level, which should be between the MAX and MIN marks. Note: There are two sets of marks – 20° marks are for checking the fluid when cold, and the 80° marks for fluid at operating temperature (see illustration) .
Power steering fluid dipstick markings
18 Top-up the fluid level to the MAX mark, using the specified type of fluid (do not overfill the reservoir), then refit and tighten the filler cap.
Power steering fluid MB 345.0 hydraulic fluid A 001 989 2403
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