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Engine overheat and power loss

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Got an engine overheat, with bells, followed by a loss of power. When it cooled off and started again, the same thing. 2006 Smart for 2 Purs with 63,000kilometres and no earlier problems.What can I expect when the dealer calls me??

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Wait and see, it's hard to say. Probably a belt broke....

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Best Case - the car is in Limp mode and can be reset after the problem is resolved (broken belt, bad water pump, no coolant).Worse case - you either warped the head/valves or the rings have lost tension/block is warped.Most likely - if you shut it down as soon as the issue become apparent then you are probably okay but on tap for a full on examination of what happened.Dealer can tell you pretty fast (word of caution - they usually start out saying you need a new engine - then do a diagnosis) if they do a compression test. You have to pull an injector and have the right adaptor.Make sure they change the oil too - once it gets too hot it can breakdown - also it will show if there was any coolant in the oil - sign of the head warping enough to blow the head gaskets (head gaskets are very critical on diesels - they have much higher compression than a gas engine).Cheers,Cameron

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Someone else had this problem, and the dealer replaced the water pump under warrenty. They also replaced the belts.

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Same symptoms - maybe different problem - ;) you only know once you check it out.Cheers,Cameron

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many thanks all - it was a water pump belt that had just disappeared!! and an A/C belt that was deteriorating

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Good to hear it was simple - makes me happy I change my belts before they break - some folks like to live on the edge - right Mike? :P Cheers,Cameron

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Mine only have 30 K on them (so far)

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One thing to watch out for is proper coolant level. There is a little ledge in the coolant resevoir and the coolant should not be lower than that. From time to time the water pump will seep some coolant out which is a warranty issue but if it were my car and it was retail Id just top off each month. Then when it was more often than that id replace the pump. Also there is a very specific bleed proceedure, you need a vacuum bleeder available from blue point (snap on's cheaper line) "rad kit plus" you need an air compressor for it to work.Troy

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Check the outside of your radiator at the front of your car,and make sure it is not plugged up with insects,etc.

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It was the belt (where are my brownie points?).

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It was -26.5 C today, my car overheated and I got the power loss, I was in a suicidal place to stop but I pulled over as far right as possible, the road was icy and the shoulder was a massive snow pile, I shut it down and prayed, waited about 4-5 minutes, I figured since it is that cold, it will cool off fast and it did, 3 bubbles on the water temp gauge, I drove another mile and saw the 5th bubble again, I stopped again, shut it off, let it cool and started again with 4 bubbles on the gauge, I drove to the next exit, got off and pulled over just as the 5th bubble came on again, stopped, shut it down, waited once more.It was 6:00AM, dealer is not open yet, so I decided to take it there since I was about 2 km away, half way there, the 5th bubble again, stopped again, waited, then started and was at 4 bubbles, as soon as I turned the corner to the dealer, it went right back to normal, one bubble on the gauge ??? so I drove to work and it was fine all the way to work.My belt was replaced 2 months ago and if it was the belt it would not have fixed the problem by itself, if it was low coolant, wouldn't it have remained hot?I was thinking maybe a frozen thermostat that finally opened, like why would it suddenly fix itself and go back to normal temperature???Al

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It was -26.5 C today, I would get the antifreeze checked. I had that happen on an old truck I used to have, no flow through the rad as the coolant had gelled. Every time I stopped the engine cooled off quickly no heat through the cabin heater either.Alan

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I checked the belt and the coolant level, the belt is fine but the coolant was low, it took about 500 ml to get it about 1/4" above the little tab inside the coolant overflow tank, I might be 100 ml above the MAX line, I'm guessing I was about 400 ml bellow MAX, could this be why it read this hot?Al

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The symptoms sound like your radiator froze. The temp went back to normal when the rad thawed out enough to circulate coolant. You can get a gauge to check the coolant, or take it to a mechanic to check it.When you added more coolant, was it pre-mixed, or straight anti-freeze?MG

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The symptoms sound like your radiator froze. The temp went back to normal when the rad thawed out enough to circulate coolant. You can get a gauge to check the coolant, or take it to a mechanic to check it.When you added more coolant, was it pre-mixed, or straight anti-freeze?MG

The 500 ml I added today was suppose to be pre-mix, but after you asked, I thought I'd make sure that it is, even the head mechanic in our shop thought it was pre-mixed but turned out it was not, I guess now I'll have to siphon some out and add water.We buy it in 45 gal. drums, our extended coolant is pre-mix but this one is not. It is all for diesel engine though with a neutral PH, this stuff is actually purple now, it used to be green, the extended is red like dex-cool almost but I did not use that, as I know you can't mix dex-cool with other coolants.Thanks,Al

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The symptoms sound like your radiator froze. The temp went back to normal when the rad thawed out enough to circulate coolant. You can get a gauge to check the coolant, or take it to a mechanic to check it.When you added more coolant, was it pre-mixed, or straight anti-freeze?MG

You're in Gibbons, I was wondering if your rad ever froze on your car?

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It was -26.5 C today, I would get the antifreeze checked. I had that happen on an old truck I used to have, no flow through the rad as the coolant had gelled. Every time I stopped the engine cooled off quickly no heat through the cabin heater either.Alan

Alan, usually if it gels, it could be straight antifreeze, mine had never been touched yet as it didn't need to, today I just added about 500 ml straight, if it doesn't mix with what's in the system, the overflow tank will gel, I hope not but it might happen, I have no idea how much will flow through the system at -25 C, it is currently parked inside but I will have to drive home soon.Al

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You're in Gibbons, I was wondering if your rad ever froze on your car?

Not on my smart car, but I have had it happen in the past in other vehicles. There have been a couple of reports on the site of people finding that the coolant wasn't rated for the cold weather. Maybe someone at the factory put in stuff rated for the climate in Europe, rather than the artic.By our house thermometer, it was -33 this morning, and the 4 1/2 year old original battery in the smart just wasn't up to starting it.MG

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Was this work done on your car by an authorized Mercedes-Benz smart car dealer?If not,that may be part of the problem. Smart cars have been known to get an 'Air-lock' in the cooling system,especially after an anti-freeze flush.If your car hasn't yet had the thermostat and anti-freeze changed, it's time.

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-22 C this morning, all I did so far is add 500 ml of coolant and made it to work without any problem as always, yesterday was colder, -26.5 C and was low on coolant, I guess I'm good for now, we'll see if it is fine next time we get to -26 or colder.I will try to test the coolant today or tomorrow.And in the spring I will change the coolant and thermostat.And to answer Prairieboy's question, no work has been done, all I did was add 500 ml of coolant, the car was as it came from the factory until now, the only thing ever done by the dealer was replace the intercooler fan over a year ago otherwise my car has never been to the dealer yet. I do my own servicing, I even replaced the pan with one with a drain plug at my first oil change.Thank to all,Al

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-26.5 C today again and no problem, I guess half a litre low on coolant can cause a lot of trouble, I'll have to check that level more often, I checked it today and after 3 days, it is still the same, I guess there is no leak to worry about, just normal evaporation.Al

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You might want to have your cooling system pressure tested, just to be sure.

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Just an update, today is Feb 3rd, we had -30 C last week and never had the overheating problem, I guess if anyone ever read this thread, I would suggest you check your coolant level before anything and fill it up to where it needs to be, mine was only half a litre low and after adding the half litre, I never had a problem since.Al

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To be safe and completely worry free,i'd be having Mecedes-Benz do a complete antifreeze /radiator flush and fill,and have the antifreeze and thermostat changed as well.Then your car should be totally reliable for the next five plus years.

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