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Pelican Technical Article:

Mechanical Cooling Fan Removal

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$150

Talent:

***

Tools:

Pliers, 8mm Allen key or Allen key socket with breaker bar.

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz 300SL (1990-93)
Mercedes-Benz 500SL (1990-93)
Mercedes-Benz SL320 (1994-97)
Mercedes-Benz SL500 (1994-02)

Parts Required:

cooling fan blade, cooling fan clutch

Hot Tip:

Put a piece of card board to protect the radiator when you loosen the fan fastener

Performance Gain:

Keep the engine running cooler on hot summer days

Complementary Modification:

Change the fan blade while you change the mechanical clutch

Mercedes Benz uses a mechanical cooling fan with clutch assembly to keep the engine cool. The mechanical clutch is a viscous type clutch. When the viscous clutch is still cold the fan clutch is loose and the fan will not spin as fast as belt driver pulley that drives it. As the engine compartment and the engine gets hot the fan clutch starts to grip. This forces the fan to spin faster with the belt driven pulley. As a cooling fan clutch fails the fan is allowed to spin slower even through the heat should cause the viscous clutch to grip and spin the fan faster. In this tech article we will go over all the steps necessary to remove the cooling fan assembly.

This photo illustrates the engine compartment looking at the top of the radiator cooling fan shroud.
Figure 1

This photo illustrates the engine compartment looking at the top of the radiator cooling fan shroud. There is normally a clip that you need to pull out of this opening (green arrow) but this one is missing. Remove the clip from the opening if you have one.

Rotate the inner part of the fan shroud in the direction of the blue arrow until you reach here (red arrow).
Figure 2

Rotate the inner part of the fan shroud in the direction of the blue arrow until you reach here (red arrow). You can now move the inner shroud back towards the fan as four pins have been removed from their grooves in the outer fan shroud.

Remove the upper cover for the radiator by simply pulling it upward in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 3

Remove the upper cover for the radiator by simply pulling it upward in the direction of the blue arrow.

This photo illustrates the driver side of the radiator fan shroud from the engine compartment.
Figure 4

This photo illustrates the driver side of the radiator fan shroud from the engine compartment. Use pliers to remove the clip (green arrow) that holds the outer fan shroud to the radiator. Here the clip has already been removed

This photo illustrates the passenger side of the radiator fan shroud from the engine compartment.
Figure 5

This photo illustrates the passenger side of the radiator fan shroud from the engine compartment. Use pliers to remove the clip (green arrow) that holds the outer fan shroud to the radiator. Here the clip has already been removed.

Slide the shroud upwards in the direction of the blue arrows and remove it from the engine compartment.
Figure 6

Slide the shroud upwards in the direction of the blue arrows and remove it from the engine compartment.

Move the inner fan shroud towards the radiator and slide the shroud upwards in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 7

Move the inner fan shroud towards the radiator and slide the shroud upwards in the direction of the blue arrow.

Use a piece of cardboard to protect the radiator.
Figure 8

Use a piece of cardboard to protect the radiator. Loosen the 8mm Allen head socket recessed in the middle of the cooling fan clutch. Do not try to remove the 8mm screw right away, just loosen it. You can also use the short side of an 8mm Allen key if you are worried about damaging the radiator.

You will probably have to hold the cooling fan pulley (green arrow) still while you remove the 8mm Allen head fastener recessed in the fan clutch.
Figure 9

You will probably have to hold the cooling fan pulley (green arrow) still while you remove the 8mm Allen head fastener recessed in the fan clutch. You can use a strap wrench or a large pair of channel lock pliers.

Once the 8mm fastener is loose remove the breaker bar or ratchet and thread the fastener the rest of the way by hand.
Figure 10

Once the 8mm fastener is loose remove the breaker bar or ratchet and thread the fastener the rest of the way by hand.

With the 8mm Allen head (if that is what yours used) still in the fan clutch and the fastener removed tilt the cooling fan and lift it out of the engine compartment.
Figure 11

With the 8mm Allen head (if that is what yours used) still in the fan clutch and the fastener removed tilt the cooling fan and lift it out of the engine compartment. If you used an Allen key to remove the 8mm fastener you will have enough clearance to loosen the fastener, remove the Allen key and remove the fan.

Secure the cooling fan clutch and loosen the three 4mm Allen head screws to separate the fan blade from the fan clutch.
Figure 12

Secure the cooling fan clutch and loosen the three 4mm Allen head screws to separate the fan blade from the fan clutch. It is recommended that you replace the fan blade with the clutch but it is not necessary. Installation is the reverse of the removal steps. Fit the fan blade to the fan clutch and tighten the fasteners. Install the fan clutch assembly on the pulley and tighten the fastener. Position the inner fan shroud over the fan. Install the outer fan shroud in between the fan and the radiator and make sure the two tabs and the bottom fit into the two slots at the bottom of the radiator. Install the two clips that hold down the outer radiator shroud to the radiator. Fit the radiator cover. Install the inner fan shroud into the outer fan shroud in the position you used to remove it making sure to engage all four slots and rotate the inner shroud until the slots are aligned at the 12 o'clock position. Install the clip to secure the inner shroud to the outer shroud. Spin the fan by hand and verify it does not hit anything. Then start the engine and visually inspect the fan blade to verify it is not close to hitting anything.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Hussain Comments: What kind original Sachs or behr
June 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Both are possible for many vehicles. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
luca Comments: the manual recommend to keep the fan clutch vertical all the time. is this important?
Luca
March 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don;t see that note in the Mercedes-Repair info. Can you share the repair document and vehicle associated with it? - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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