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The fuel sending unit on your car, once removed, can be disassembled for cleaning and inspection before replacing it. This is especially helpful since 1) replacement parts are very expensive new from Mercedes and 2) used parts are just as likely to be faulty as the unit in your car currently. Use this guide to help take it down and maintain it.



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  1. Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning, Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 1, image 1 of 1
    • With the fuel sending unit removed (if you need help with this see the fuel sending unit replacement guide) you can proceed to disassemble and clean it.

    • Start by wiping any fuel, grime and grit from the sending unit body to make it easier for you to work with.

  2. Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 2, image 1 of 3 Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 2, image 2 of 3 Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 2, image 3 of 3
    • Turn the fuel sending unit over. Handle it over a container like a bucket at all times as small amounts of diesel fuel may continue to dribble out as you turn it over.

    • On the bottom side of the fuel sending unit there is a small nut. This nut needs to be removed with a spanner bit as shown.

    • Turn it until it is removed from the base of the sending unit.

  3. Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 3, image 1 of 2 Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 3, image 2 of 2
    • Turn the unit back over and lift the top out of the tube that makes up the body of the unit.

    • There are two small plates (one plastic and one metal) behind the nut you removed. Mind the order of these. The metal plate is on the outside and the plastic is on the inside. Also note the orientation of the plastic plate. There is an inside face, and outside face.

    • Inside you will find the float and the three wires that make the sending unit work. You can see the three wires pictured here.

    • Inspect these wires carefully. If any of them is broken they will need to be repaired by soldering them back on to their contact points.

    • If these wires are intact, proceed to clean the internal components (wires, float, etc) and the inside of the tube with brake cleaner.

    • Be very careful when handling the insides of the sending unit as the three wires are very fragile!

  4. Mercedes W123 fuel sending unit disassembly and cleaning: step 4, image 1 of 1
    • Wait until the components are dry of brake cleaner, then re-assemble it.

    • Consider replacing the seal at the top of the unit, just above the threaded portion. A good seal is needed to prevent diesel aromas from permeating the trunk and/or cabin.

    • When done re-install the sending unit.

    great guide but I was not careful and when I removed the nut on the bottom (gently with pliers) I was not holding on to the right part and dropped the inside unit breaking the copper colored wire. I was able to solder it back and got the unit back in the tank….so far, it seems the gauge is working…no jumping and appears to be going down as I drive.  BE VERY CAREFUL with the unit, those wires are so thin and delicate. thanks for your site and all the advice!

    Bob - Ответить


To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

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Nicolas Siemsen

Участник с: 06.12.2013

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Master Techs Участник Master Techs


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awesome thank you, worked out fine and easy.

eviestar50 - Ответить

2.6 spanner is NOT correct. You will need a # 10 spanner bit to do the job. Otherwise, all other info is correct, and very helpful!

nourishlight3 - Ответить

For the tiny nut on the bottom I simply *gently* use some small Water Pump Pliers....


vwnate1 - Ответить

I have a Mercedes 409d I removed the sender unit and cleaned it,but broke the wires,is there definitely 3 wires to get soldered

Regards Kieron

kieron walsh - Ответить

Hi Kieron, I cannot say with certainty that this part is the same in the 409D. As you can see, this guide was done on, and written for, the W123 diesel. However, I can say with certainty that there are 3 wires on the W123 sending unit as pictured.

Nicolas Siemsen -

While cleaning I broke the silver wire that loops and counted as two wires.  I installed a copper wire instead of silver wire. The unit/gauge indicated  permanent full status. Apparently the resistance (ohm) difference between the  copper and silver wires makes the unit work properly.  All wires can be obtained by peeling off plastic covering from  speaker  cables and  extracting a thin line of wire from it

hussein - Ответить

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