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Windshield Washer Reservoir Pumps and Level Sensor Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Windshield Washer Reservoir Pumps and Level Sensor Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$10 to $100

Talent:

**

Tools:

10mm socket, flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W124 (1986-95)

Parts Required:

New reservoir, heater, pump, gaskets, sender, fluid

Hot Tip:

Save the drained fluid to a clean container

Performance Gain:

You can see out the front windshield

Complementary Modification:

New windshield wipers

The windshield reservoir on the W124 has the level sensor, windshield fluid pump, optional headlight washer pump and heater all attached to it. In this article we will show you how to remove and replace the pump, the level sensor, heater, as well as the reservoir itself. The reservoir is located in the front right corner of the vehicle and the pump(s) sit on the outside of the reservoir itself.

The windshield washer fluid reservoir is located in the front right corner of the engine compartment (red arrow).
Figure 1

The windshield washer fluid reservoir is located in the front right corner of the engine compartment (red arrow). You do not need to remove the air cleaner lid, box (yellow arrow) or the over flow reservoir (green arrow) to perform these jobs. I removed them for photographic purposes only. If you would like to remove them for any reason please see our articles on air filter and coolant overflow reservoir replacement for additional assistance.

There are three components on the reservoir besides the reservoir itself: the level sensor (green arrow), the windshield fluid pump (yellow arrow, some reservoirs contain an additional pump for the headlight washers and the fluid heater (red arrow).
Figure 2

There are three components on the reservoir besides the reservoir itself: the level sensor (green arrow), the windshield fluid pump (yellow arrow, some reservoirs contain an additional pump for the headlight washers and the fluid heater (red arrow).

Level Sensor- Separate the level sensor from the wiring by squeezing in the clips and pulling the connection from the unit (red arrow).
Figure 3

Level Sensor: Separate the level sensor from the wiring by squeezing in the clips and pulling the connection from the unit (red arrow).

Level Sensor- Use a large flathead screwdriver and gently pry up the sending unit from the reservoir (red arrow).
Figure 4

Level Sensor: Use a large flathead screwdriver and gently pry up the sending unit from the reservoir (red arrow). Work your way around the top raising each side evenly until you can grab it with your hands and pull it out.

Level Sender- Pull the level sender (red arrow) straight up and out from the reservoir.
Figure 5

Level Sender: Pull the level sender (red arrow) straight up and out from the reservoir. Make sure that you do not allow the rubber gasket to fall into the reservoir (yellow arrow).

Windshield Fluid Heater- Begin by using a flathead screwdriver and removing the two clamps and coolant hoses from the top of the unit (red arrows).
Figure 6

Windshield Fluid Heater: Begin by using a flathead screwdriver and removing the two clamps and coolant hoses from the top of the unit (red arrows).

Windshield Fluid Heater- Gently pry the lid off the top of the reservoir (red arrow).
Figure 7

Windshield Fluid Heater: Gently pry the lid off the top of the reservoir (red arrow).

Windshield Fluid Heater- The heating unit is full of twists and turns (red arrow).
Figure 8

Windshield Fluid Heater: The heating unit is full of twists and turns (red arrow). Use care and take your time when removing it from the reservoir.

Fluid Reservoir- If you are replacing the reservoir and transferring all of the elements to your new reservoir please follow all the steps listed above.
Figure 9

Fluid Reservoir: If you are replacing the reservoir and transferring all of the elements to your new reservoir please follow all the steps listed above. You will need to drain the fluid from the reservoir until below the windshield washer pump. If your fluid is good there is no reason to throw it away. Get a fluid pump (yellow arrow) or turkey baster and transfer the fluid to a clean container.

Fluid Reservoir- The reservoir is held in place by a tab that sits in a rubber socket on the bottom and by a large plastic screw where it attaches to a metal bracket (red arrow).
Figure 10

Fluid Reservoir: The reservoir is held in place by a tab that sits in a rubber socket on the bottom and by a large plastic screw where it attaches to a metal bracket (red arrow). Mercedes uses a large plastic screw/knob (yellow arrow) because of all the potential for corrosion. Unscrew the knob and lift the reservoir from the mount.

Fluid Reservoir- Pull the reservoir straight up and you can see where the tab (red arrow) sits in the rubber grommet (yellow arrow).
Figure 11

Fluid Reservoir: Pull the reservoir straight up and you can see where the tab (red arrow) sits in the rubber grommet (yellow arrow).

Windshield Washer Pump- With the fluid drained below the pump level you can replace the pump.
Figure 12

Windshield Washer Pump: With the fluid drained below the pump level you can replace the pump. Begin by disconnecting the wiring harness (red arrow) and then using pliers and removing the clamp and washer hose (yellow arrow).

Windshield Washer Pump- You can gently pry the pump up and out from the grommet it sits in within the reservoir (red arrow).
Figure 13

Windshield Washer Pump: You can gently pry the pump up and out from the grommet it sits in within the reservoir (red arrow). The yellow arrow indicates where the headlight washer pump would be located if the vehicle was equipped with one.

Before installing a new reservoir make sure to check and clean the area around the reservoir of any old dirt, debris and coolant.
Figure 14

Before installing a new reservoir make sure to check and clean the area around the reservoir of any old dirt, debris and coolant. Installation is the reverse of removal.



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Comments and Suggestions:
Sam Comments: Be careful at figure 6. If the car's engine has just been running the air conditioning unit will have been pressurized. If the hoses shown in the figure 6 image are removed coolant will pour out under pressure. Make sure that the engine has not been running for a long time as the coolant will be hot. Also, if the hoses will be removed from the fluid heater tubes make sure that you have a container handy to catch the fluid that will come out under pressure.
December 5, 2016
Mike Comments: Awesome, Thanks for the tip
August 27, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 

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