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Old 11-08-2013, 01:19 AM   #1
2012 Solera
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1,022
Fuel Filter Maintenance Alert

The Solera fuel filter, per the owner's manual, is to be changed every 20,000 miles. I just had a bad experience involving that maintenance item I thought I should alert other Solera owners to.

There is no Freightliner or Mercedes Sprinter facility anywhere near me. I called our local Ford dealer, and he told me he does Sprinter maintenance and could handle the periodic maintenance on my Solera. I had him do the 10K maintenance, all seemed okay, so I had him do the 20K maintenance when that came do.
About 9000 miles after the 20K maintenance (while we were approaching Oklahoma City) we suddenly lost power. Got the Solera to the Oklahoma City Freightliner facility. On investigation, they found that a seal on a large air hose - which has to be removed to access the fuel filter, and was therefore removed and replaced by Ford at the 20K maintenance - had been improperly re-installed, and had been sucked into the turbocharger - destroying the turbo. They replaced the turbocharger, the charge cooler, the large air hose, the seal that did the damage, and did the 30K maintenance with a fuel filter replacement. As the damage was caused by improper installation of the seal / air hose by Ford, not covered by warranty. They got us back on the road in 24 hours - and the vehicle ran well on the trip back to California - kudos to OK City Freightliner! I'm currently in contact with Ford to attempt to get reimbursed for the job.

So - if you do your own PM's on your Solera, or use an independent or other non-Freightliner/Mercedes facility, be extremely careful with the turbo air hose and the seal between the hose and the turbo - which must be removed to access the fuel filter. The tech at OK City Freightliner said he always replaces the air hose seal to the turbo when he does a fuel filter change. The hose clamp installation is also critical, I understand. Big expensive (over $3K) mess if done improperly and lets go - as mine did.

2012 Solera "S"
Calif SF Bay Area
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Old 11-08-2013, 06:14 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Greensboro, NC
Posts: 775
OMG. Thanks for the report. Glad we have a MB dealer here. I'll let them handle the 20K maintenance.

Ed (N4RWU) & Becky Taylor
Mistie (Walks 4-down)
Greensboro, NC
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Old 11-08-2013, 06:21 AM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: New Orleans, LA
Posts: 632
Wow. Glad everything worked out, thanks for posting. We have an appointment for our 20K maintenance when we return from Charleston week after next. Luckily we have a MB Sprinter dealer near us.
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Old 11-08-2013, 11:34 AM   #4
Robert Mayberry
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Point Richmond
Posts: 87
Just curious. How much are people paying for the 10,000 mile service? Is there a difference between Mercedes and Freightliner in the cost?

Mine always seems to be four or five hundred at Freightliner.

Except the 40,000 one that was $1,100 because they changed the transmission fluid and filters. Plus another $130 in Oregon at a Mercedes because Freightliner put 2 extra quarts of fluid in the transmission. Started coming out the vent once we got to Shasta. Could smell it and see it dripping on the ground. Had to stop in Medford to get it done right.

2011 Solera
San Francisco
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Old 11-08-2013, 02:25 PM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 342
Did my own 10K oil change. Took approximately 13 qts plus filter. Used spec Mobil 1 formula M and was about 86 bucks total. I suggest measure what you take out and replace that exact volume with the replacement oil. That way you won't run into any over/under fill issues. The MB system monitors the oil level pretty well, trust me on that. Took about fourty five minutes with the learning curve figured in, will have it down to about a half hour next time. The maint code thread I had previously reseached and posted here, worked on clearing the maint. indicator that triggers at 10k.
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Old 11-09-2013, 09:51 AM   #6
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Naples Fl
Posts: 355
10000 coming shortly.....oil is here already from amazon, will do it myself.

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