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Mercedes-Benz C-Class Maintenance and Repair



  • black280black280 Posts: 5
    My congrats on your purchase. You probably bought the last quality built mercedes before they went down. That model year did'nt have much trouble I understand from what I have read. They usually need just oil changes and gas. I take it you are in Austin TX ? My sister and her husband live there and they have a ML and they love it. I have a C280 94' and it is a good car. Not bad gas milage either, I get about 26-28 MPG, for a sedan and a six, that is'nt bad. I have used high octane and medium grade fuel and mine seems to run well on chevron and texaco. Shell is terrible in my car 87-89 octane is what I usually run, sometimes 93 but that was before the gas prices.
  • I have had so many problems with my c class to. Make sure your daughter keeps all records ans reciepts of any work/problems she has with her car. theres a very good book "the lemon Law Bible, by Steve Lehto if she continues to have reocurring problems with her car. It is very fustrating to buy what we think is a problem free car, as i write this my car is back in the shop again. Sincerely c :lemon:
  • This is my third mercedes, and i would not ever buy again. Words speak for its self. All i can suggest is to really do your research, good luck sincerely C
  • kcapkcap Posts: 5
    You were absolutely 100% correct. It was the air blower assembly. THANK YOU SO MUCH! K
  • airig320airig320 Posts: 4
    What kind of mileage did you get out of your tires? My 2004 C230 needed new tires at 10K, dealer says I am lucky because I should only expect 5-10K out of them. Who is crazy here? Anyone else replacing tires that quickly? I have the sport package. :mad:
  • jpouchetjpouchet Posts: 38
    Continentals or Goodyears? Either way the OEM tires on the sport package should do much better than that depending upon your driving style. If you took the car to the local autocross every other weekend then yes, 4-5k miles would be all you could expect but even with Z rated high-performance tires and normal stick-your-foot-in-it every now and then driving you should do at least 12-15k. The new "eraser" style 35 and 40 series tires can go out pretty quickly but I thought the sport package comes with 45 series rubber and a slightly harder compound.

    Tire pressure can play a factor as well so with the new rubber keep the pressure to at least 32 psi. I tend to run my tires hard and they last longer. The sidewall pressure is just a starting point for most autocross / solo II drivers who tend to run them up to 42-45 psi for short periods of time. On my old C, non-sport, and the loaner C230 Kompressor Sport, I ran at least 32 and often went as high as 35 psi. Do drop the pressure down on long freeway trips or if in the heat of summer to 32 as extended operation at 80+ in 100+ heat can build up the tire pressure much further.

    Your ride will get stiffer, the handling will improve, and your tires should wear better.

    Next step, try switching tire brands. Go to a sports tuner or serious tire / wheel shop and they'll walk you through the options.
  • airig320airig320 Posts: 4
    Thanks for the reply- it has OEM Michelin tires on it. They are non-rotatable due to the car having 17s on the back and 16s on the front. My girlfriend actually drives the car and granted, she is not the worlds best driver, but she doesn't beat on it. This is a real dissappointment and MB doesn't want to do anything about it. I find it ridiculous that they think 5-10k miles on a set of tires is acceptable. Based on this alone, it will be my last MB product. Otherwise, the car is great.
  • kcapkcap Posts: 5
    Anyone have an idea of what the actual cost is to repair the air blower on the C230? My mechanic claims 15 hrs to take apart dash (at $70/hr) plus installation of the air blower.
  • sshahsshah Posts: 2
    I also own '98 c280 and have the similar problem. I leave the key on the second level for 2-3 min (i.e. just before you turn the third time to start the car). Then it starts. I am still not able to figure out why this happens....if you know, please email me.
  • sshahsshah Posts: 2
    Yup same here. I just posted my message. Please email me if there is a
  • mezecamezeca Posts: 66
    Your mechanic is lying to you! Replacement time for this job is about 1-1.5hrs. The instrument panel does not have to come apart to replace the blower motor.
  • mezecamezeca Posts: 66
    Why on earth do you think that it is MB's problem for your tires wearing out? Especially when they are of the sticky Z-rated variety. There are too many factors that go into tire wear, but most notably is driver abuse and neglect, and MB should not be responsible for either one. I have 10k plus on mine with only slight feather edging on the fronts.
    On a side note, to all the other anti-MB enthusiasts, not a single problem to date. Unless you want to count the two nails in one front tire and one rear tire, both on seperate occassions of course. No charge to fix from the dealer. Maybe I'll complain to MBUSA that I shouldn't have to be incovenienced because their tires allow nail penetration, causing me to be late to work. In the letter I'll also mention that they washed my car which prevented me from wasting time doing it myself.
  • kcapkcap Posts: 5
    Amazing....I can't thank you enough for the info. I will bring it to someone else. At least I can walk in and be fully prepared now. THANK YOU!
  • airig320airig320 Posts: 4
    I do hold MB responsible. 10k miles on a set of tires is unacceptable- they chose the tires to put on the car, not me. On a 39k mile lease, that's 4 sets of tires at a cost of about $1000 a set. That's $4000 for tires during a lease- you find that acceptable? I have owned many cars and never had tires wear like that. This car is used for a daily commute to work- not racing on the autobahn. The car is not even what I would consider "high performance", it's a family sedan. I am not an anti-MB enthusiast as you put it- but I expect a certin level of value and quality, especially from a name like MB. If they don't want to stand behind their product, neither will I.
  • georgeb2georgeb2 Posts: 2
    I have a 2002 c240 and the vibration was in the right rear tire, went through individal tire replacements, and then the dealer replace all 4, and also replaced a rim. The service expert from Chicago came to Milwaukee and he drove the car and acknowledged there was a vibration, but I still live with it, they said they couldnt do anything more, I have since replaced all tires agian, going on 90,000. I believe there is something in the axel, but no one agrees. I am surprised no body has a runout micrometer, which if they raised the car and put a micrometer on the tire and ran the car they would see the vibration. they either dont have it or wont admit it, or dont wand to resolve the proble.
  • mezecamezeca Posts: 66
    Oh yeah you are absolutely right..........the tires say Mercedes on them, wow I didn't even know they made tires. Thank you so much for enlightening me.
    By the way, were ALL your other cars equipped with Z-rated tires?
    Not high performance? Then why did you buy ther "sport" package with the high performance low profile tires, Brembo brakes, and lowered suspension? Why not just buy a regular C-class with longer lasting standard performance tires?
  • ryericryeric Posts: 2
    I have a 1998 c220 CDI and had a vibration at about 60 miles per hour or above...went back to the dealer and got free new tyres etc etc eventually met a mechanic who told me it was the carrier bearing that held the drive shaft on its way to the back tyres.....went back to the dealers and told them to replace this....guess what - it worked....MB dealers and mechanics suck big time, even over here in Ireland !!
    Hope you fix your problem.
  • airig320airig320 Posts: 4
    What dealership do you work for, clown. I know MB doesn't make the tires, but the spec them. And no, it is not high performance- I consider a 911, Corvette, Viper, those are high performance. This is a SEDAN, just because they say "sport" doesn't make it high performance. If this was an exotic, high performance or specialty car, that's one thing. This is car used to commute to and from work. I don't know anybody who would consider the C230 their dream sportscar. I will change to longer lasting tires, thanks for the advice.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363 I think I have to speak up.

    MB warns you specifically in the brochures that the sport pkg tires, that is the Z-rated, staggered size ones on the C230 SS, will wear very much faster and provide dicey traction in rain and snow, compared with the standard tires. It is in plain English.

    I think the SS package is silly, and have said so many times. You want sedan refinement, then get or put on the standard wheels and tires, which is why we drive a C240. You want a "sport sedan", then do what you have to do. Lexus makes the same point about the IS300, and their equally silly decision to equip it with 45-profile, Z-rated tires - owners get to put up with a rocky ride, and wearout rates between 10k and 20k miles, but boy, they're "sporty"....

    No one with the C230 SS should complain about poor tire mileage - it goes with the territory, period. Some owners have squeezed 20k miles out of these tires, but replacements between 10k and 15k are common. For one thing, you can't really rotate these tires - the staggered sizes mean you can't move them front-to-rear, and most models use unidirectional tread designs, which means you can't rotate them side-to-side, either. The Michelins will generally be better than either the Contis or Pirelli or Goodyear alternatives, but they all are designed to give max dry stick at the expense of everything else. If that's not what you want, put 4 equally sized wheels on it, either 16 or 17 inchers [to eliminate the need for staggered sizes - the car comes with wheels that are wider on the rear than on the front], get the appropriately sized H or V rated touring tires, and you'll be fine.

    And I don't work at a dealership, but I have been buying MBs for 40 years. I KNOW what I want out of the cars, and thus avoid "sport pkgs" at all costs. To each their own...

    (Finally, I'll observe that I rotate all 5 tires [I have the spare equipped with an alloy wheel] on my C240 at 3-4k intervals, because it's about a 30-40 minute job in the garage with four cheap floor jacks from WalMart. At 15k miles, it's hard to see that any of them are worn at all.)
  • Hi All,
    My 1995 C180 Elegance :cry: has a strange fault that has developed, All my electric windows and the sun roof will only work with any door open, as soon as you shut the door nothing. this has only happend in the last few weeks, first two windows and then them all.
    If anyone is looking for genuine parts you can get them from german & Swedish at 80% off the list price, they are available on line.
    Please try to find a solution to my strange problem.

    Many thanks

    John :)
  • ocean95ocean95 Posts: 2
    Hi all and I apologize that this is so long.

    I had a 2002 C240 (purchased at the end of March 2002) that was involved in a serious car accident in Feb 04. I was stopped at a light and a drunk driver hit me going about 55mph and pushed me into the van that was stopped in front of me. Both the front and back of the car was severely damaged. The air bag did not go off nor did the seat belt restrain me during the impact and I hit my head on the steering wheel. The vehicle was totaled. Since then I have had continuous back pain and am in need of corrective surgery for the scar that is now on my forehead.

    Mercedes Benz was contacted when this happened and they sent an inspector out to look at the vehicle. I received a letter that was very general back from Mercedes Benz stating " The vehicle's seat belt emergency retractors deployed as they were designed to for a belted front occupant when the system's first deployment threshold was reached in the accident. In the circumstance of a belted driver, an air bag will not deploy unless a second higher threshold is reached". Huh? Bottom line is Mercedes Benz denied that the vehicle's emergency devices did not work when they should have. Yes I understand that someone else hit me and the accident was their fault. However, the emergency items are suppose to work and be reliable in an accident. And how high does a threshold have to be for them to work.....the car was toast!

    This was my third Mercedes and my last. The company treated me badly after I reported the accident to them and did not even have the professionalism or courtesy to spell my first or last name correctly on their correspondence. I spoke to several attorney's who informed me unless someone dies or loses a limb then it would cost over $100K to sue Mercedes Benz because they would drag it out through the court system.

    I know that there is no guarantee with any car that you drive if the equipment is going to work but when you buy a car from a company that is suppose to be one of higher standards then you expect nothing but the best. Obviously Mercedes is no longer a company that is considered of high standards.......if they were then they would not mass produce them as they do now and would make a product of quality not a lot of non-quality products.

    I hope that this does not happen to you all and hope that if you are thinking of buying a car from Mercedes or Chrysler (who owns Mercedes) then please think again.
  • gbrowngbrown Posts: 4
    Dear "ocean 95,"

    Sorry to hear about your terrifying accident and subsequent injuries. I know you said that you have spoken with several attorneys regarding Mercedes liability without much success. In case you were interested, I wanted to recommend Krohn & Moss, a nationwide law firm that specifically handles auto manufacturer defects, lemon-law, and breech of warranty. I hope you haven't already exhausted this option. They can be found easily online. Good luck.
  • ocean95ocean95 Posts: 2

    Thank you for this information. I will look them up. Talking to various Mercedes owners, I understand that Mercedes has had this problem with all models not just the C-class. Computer problems I understand is the biggest complaint. I have two friends who got rid of their Mercedes within 6 months of their purchase. One car was an ML and the other an E-class. I would not put down this problem as one isolated incident because Mercedes no longer makes a quality vehicle.
    Thanks for your help!
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...but that's baloney.

    IF you have an actionable case against MB in this situation, any reputable attorney willing to work on contingency should be willing to take it. Without seeing pictures of the vehicle, I can only guess at whether the threshold for airbag deployment was reached in this case. Any lawyer who is hesitating is probably hesitating for the right reasons....and here's why:

    The car manufacturers have been beaten up lately [by the same legal profession] because of the deployment of airbags that caused MORE injuries than they were designed to prevent in the first place. For this reason, most car makers have set the deployment level quite high for any situation where the seat occupant in front is wearing a belt. You were, your injuries were minor in comparison to the physics involved, and the car did what it was supposed to do - crumple around you to save your life. IF the driver's airbag had deployed, depending on how close to the wheel you sit, you might very well have wound up with far more serious injuries than actually occurred.

    I have been hesitant to comment on this, because there is much data that would need to be gathered to make a real judgment - but since you've made it clear that you think Mercedes did not take care of your safety in this case, I have to say....I doubt it very much. I do agree that it should be easy to find a competent attorney to take this case, IF you have a case. The fact that some people have already expressed reservations about doing so without charging you [what was it, over $100,000 ?], makes me wonder about how solid it is.

    You've used this forum to tell us that MB makes an unsafe product and doesn't care; I'm using the same forum to disagree about as strongly as I can

    And let me make one final point: it is not as if I am unfamiliar with your situation - in the late '80s, my wife and I, and my best friend [who was sitting in the back seat] were involved in a similar incident, with similar speeds and weights involved [a mid-'70s Toronado, weighing nearly 5000 lbs, hitting our '88 Camry from the rear, stopped, with the speed difference being at least 50 mph]. Injuries were minor, including a pretty serious head hit on my buddy against the glass in the back seat [no concussion, but a trip to the hospital anyway]. The car was literally folded up from the back window into a 12-18" clump of metal and rubber. We staggered away, but never thought to blame anybody but the driver of the Olds. I actually was grateful for the fact that Toyota had done its homework, and seemed to have produced a car that would keep us alive in that situation [no fire, no one permanently disabled]. I guess we missed something.
  • ryericryeric Posts: 2
    Stupid, I have a c220 CDI, a 1998 and it still has the original battery. Its never been charged and does a lot a short trips.
    I had a friend who had a nissan that done this and it was part of the main wiring block. In your case I'd suspect the alternator or something is not charging the battery and then draining it when it sits idle.
  • gbrowngbrown Posts: 4
    By now I am sure that you have read the "sorry...but that's baloney" response to your unfortunate situation. I'm sure that he could have expressed the same opinions in a more constructive manner with much less acerbity of tone. I will attempt to refute with a more amiable approach. Based on his description, the auto accident he was involved in did not involve front-end impact/damage. Your seatbelt should have restrained you enough to prevent you skull from striking the steering wheel. I am sure the attorneys that you met with did not tell you that you did not have a case, only that because you did not sustain a threshold of injury - "loss of life" or "loss of limb" would they be inclined to aggresively pursue a case against Mercedes that would not yield a settlement worthy of their efforts. They are correct when they informed you that Mercedes would drag out the litigation process for as long as they possibly could (years). We currently have an ongoing lawsuit with Mercedes (not involving injuries, but engine failure), and we were advised by the attorneys that Mercedes is indeed known for being one of the worst, if not the worst, in drawing out the "discovery phase" of a lawsuit. We are not paying our attorneys upfront, but on a contingency basis. I hope in your case that the person who injured you, and left you with permament scarring, had adequate BI insurance to cover the extend of damages they caused. That in no way should release Mercedes from liability, but litigation is a challenging process, especially when dealing with vicarious liability.
    Don't let others make you feel powerless or crazy, your seatbelt should have deployed and even Mercedes knows that. Unfornately, they also know the laws. They knew you would have difficulty in finding contingency representation. They had nothing to lose by telling you that your seatbelt operated as designed. If you do find representation, Mercedes will "deal with you" then. Again, good luck.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...without apology for my tone, I will repeat that the original post contained an explicit charge that Mercedes had failed in its duty to protect this driver from harm.

    I disagree. Strongly.

    And I wish that the uniquely American approach to this, i.e. immediately invoke the legal system to sue everyone in sight, were leavened with just a bit of common sense. That is another discussion.

    Let's just say that if you are looking for a car that will be safer than any contemporary Mercedes-Benz, be sure you are asking the right questions. Apparently, in this case, the right questions would include getting an engineer to evaluate the airbag deployment thresholds for all four directions of possible hits, and making sure that whatever new car you pick will be BETTER than an MB in the particular circumstance described in this incident. BMW? Volvo? GM? Ford? Toyota? Honda? Which of these makes a car that will better protect you in this circumstance than an MB? Once you've answered that question, AND can cite the engineering data to back up such an answer, I guess you know what to do.

    Acerbic? You bet. The more I thought about this incident, the more disturbed I got. We are being urged to boycott MB and Chrysler products because they "don't care" about safety. We can agree to disagree that this is an appropriate response to this case.
  • gbrowngbrown Posts: 4
    Airbag deployment aside (I agree that is a discussion which warrants extensive debate), any insights as to why the seatbelt did not properly restrain the driver's head from striking the steering wheel during an accident with front and rear impact/damage resulting in a total loss?

    I am unaware that "we are being urged to boycott MB and Chrysler..." You are obviously an advocate of Mercedes and I respect your enthusiasm and insights. Unfortunately, there are those of us who have had bad experiences with the company through no fault of our own. I am sure the majority of automobiles manufactured by MB perform optimally, but they should accept responsibility when they do make the occasional error.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    "I hope that this does not happen to you all and hope that if you are thinking of buying a car from Mercedes or Chrysler (who owns Mercedes) then please think again."

    You can put your own spin on that statement from the original post. It sounds to me like advice not to buy their products.

    I am most certainly NOT an "advocate" for Mercedes. They have made more than a reasonable number of mistakes lately, and should be [and are being] taken to the woodshed in the marketplace as a result.

    I can't put this any more plainly: I do not believe MB is making an unsafe car. I would need a lot more proof than this one accident description to believe that. And I would want some equal proof that the competitive products [brands cited above] would behave differently in the narrow circumstance of this crash.

    Here's my problem: we have here a single crash situation [ and they are all different, by the way ]; the victim says that the car didn't protect him properly; his description of what happened, and how it happened, leave me with a lot of doubts that this is true. We are asked to then draw the conclusion that he is being treated unfairly by MB because they refuse to pay for his injuries. You are willing to agree with him; I am not. I think he has every right to go after the at-fault party [the other driver], but am unwilling to blame MB for any aspect of this. [As noted, I think I would have been a lot more likely to be grateful for a car that protected me as well as this one did him in the circumstances]. I would feel this way whether he were in a Mercedes or a Hyundai, and that is why I challenge everyone reading this to find a safer car [in the described crash situation] than this one.

    I just don't buy into the idea that his C240 had some defect that prevented him from walking away unscathed. The seat belt tensioners and the airbags both have thresholds for deployment - the former seems to have been reached, but didn't prevent contact with the steering wheel; the latter clearly wasn't reached, and it might have been just as well, or you could have added a broken nose or fingers to the injury list. I guess I don't believe these systems are going to prevent all injuries in every circumstance. No defect has to exist for this to be true.

    I'll shut up, now. Too many of these forums get spoiled by verbal tennis matches. I respect your opinion, but just disagree.
  • techiejohntechiejohn Posts: 2
    Hi All,
    My 1995 C180 Elegance :cry: has a strange fault that has developed, All my electric windows and the sun roof will only work with any door open, as soon as you shut the door nothing. this has only happend in the last few weeks, first two windows and then them all.
    If anyone is looking for genuine parts you can get them from german & Swedish at 80% off the list price, they are available on line.
    Please try to find a solution to my strange problem.

    Many thanks

    John :)
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