How to Repair Sprinter Glow Plugs


A Mercedes Benz Sprinter glow plug repair is a tricky endeavor but a necessary one particularly for owners in cold climates who want quick startups. The glow plugs are the diesel engine's equivalent to spark plugs and an ignition system. Without properly working plugs, the Sprinter may not start. When one glow plug goes bad, odds are the rest of the plugs are going bad too. Save yourself some time and trouble by replacing all the plugs at the same time.

Things You'll Need

  • Wrenches
  • Magnetic pickup tool
  • Socket set
  • 4 glow plugs
  • 2 heat shields
  • Teflon paste
  • Anti-seize lubricant
  • Disconnect the battery as a safety precaution.

  • Remove the injector lines, the injectors and the injector pump. Below the injectors are the heat shields that will need replaced. Remove the heat shields.

  • Disconnect the buss bar. Beneath the buss bar, you will have access to the glow plugs. Use a socket or a box-end wrench to remove the glow plugs. Use the magnetic tool to pick up the plugs as the fit is tight and you may not be able to get your hands in to grab them.

  • Apply the Teflon paste on the new plugs and install them. The magnetic tool will help you get the plugs into place, then use wrenches to tighten. Make the plugs snug but not overly tight. If you use a torque wrench, aim at about 15 pounds of torque.

  • Replace the buss bar, then install the new heat shields. Replace the injector lines, injectors and injector pump. Use the anti-seize on the injectors to prevent future problems with disassembling. Tighten the injectors to about 55 pounds of torque.

  • Start the Sprinter and check for leaks. The engine may be hard to start the first time. Continue to crank the engine until it starts. Double-check for leaks.

Tips & Warnings

  • While you may want to keep your Sprinter in top running condition, one or two bad glow plugs will not prevent the vehicle from starting, although the van may be difficult to start. Consider whether it is worth taking the chance, particularly if you live in a warm climate where glow plugs are seldom needed.
  • Glow plugs will break under pressure. Be careful when removing the plugs or the cost to have the broken plug removed will negate any cost savings you made in doing the work yourself.

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  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/ Images
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