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MB M Class Owners Maintenance and Repair



  • 0435004350 Posts: 26
    I purchased my 2004 ML 350 used at just under 17K miles. In the glovebox was the vehicle "certification" record.
    I learned that brake linings were changed by the MB dealer at 14 K miles. Based on the manufacturer's certificate of origin that I received, the vehicle had always been a loaner/demo and I'm the first "street" owner. Had my vehicle in for "B" service a few weeks back, with a different MB dealer, was told everything was OK.

    In your case, rotors usually shouldn't go that fast unless linings aren't replaced soon enough or linings "fuse" into rotors.
  • I have a 99 ML 320 and the windshield washer reservoir was cracked. I had it replaced from a shop that services MB and BMW. They told me that this is a very common problem and the reservoir practically leaks when it leaves the dealership.
    Does anybody have the same problem?
  • John, I also have a 2004 ML500. The original brakes from Mercedes are a soft compound. I am sure you have noticed the dreaded black dust that always covers your wheels. My brakes did a little better in that I replaced them at 21K miles. I chose not to go back to Mercedes for the astronimical price for the same lousy brakes. I went to EBAY ordered after market cross drilled rotors from R1 concepts and then ordered aftermarket EBC heavy duty SUV dust free disk pads. I received all within a week. I personnally do not have time to do the install myself and had Midas do the install. What a difference! No dust, far better brake response and no squeals or squeaks. Only time will tell if they wear better, but at $580 dollars installed it was far less painful.
  • I hope you guys can provide some help!!

    I have a 2001 ml320 w 80k miles on it. There are a couple of items that I need some assistance.

    1. Is there a reservoir for the rear windshield wiper fluid? I fill the one under the hood, however nothing comes out of the rear wiper.

    2. The three headrest in the rear (2nd row) do no come down...I press the latch, however they wont come down but they will go up. (starting to obstruct my view)

    3. Today I noticed/heard that she seems to be idling high when in park or neutral (around 16rpm) I don't recall it ever doing that before.

    Please any assistance would be greatly appreciated
  • jungjung Posts: 2
    Yo john,

    here is a link ... keep it handy,,, first of all we are on our second ml 500 ,,, love them, as suvs go , do a lot of surfing with my family, perfect truck,

    brakes and rotors,,, I buy the metallic or ceramic pads from mr auto parts, front and rear are half what mb charges ... you do not need rotors at 18 k miles for sure,
    so buy the pads and have midas or anybody put them on they are very easy to replace,,,,always buy the metallic or ceramics they last longer ,,,, but will wear rotors faster ,, still not that fast ,,, mb service always exagerates in their favor ,,, so when you need rotors, dont buy mb stock, buy brembo, the best for $50 each,,,,front rotors wear first... you should get 35000 miles before you need rotors ,,, also the brake pads will last 30,000 miles ,,,, and they are not noisy ,,,, I run metallic pads on our ml500 and our clk cab ,,, most regular gas station mechanics will replace the pads for $100 to $150 ,,, it only takes 35 to 45 minutes max ,,,, even rotors don't take very long,,,, maybe 40 minutes max ,,,,buy parts online,,,,, find an independant mb mechanic in your area ,,,,save $$$$
  • jungjung Posts: 2
    Check Engine Lite means carte blanche to MB service guys,, did you check the gas cap first? if the seal is funky a loose fuel filler cap can be the culprit,,, via emissions regs,,, fuel filler cap must be wired to check engine lite ,,,, air mass is last resort ,,,transmission stuff is after last resort ,,,, filler cap costs less to replace when you do it still takes 24 hours for the system to recycle and clear the error message,,, go to anyone except mb service that can hook their computer to your ml and read the error codes so you know exactly what is wrong.
  • crzyaimcrzyaim Posts: 58
    We purchased a new 2006 ML 350 in September. So far the truck has been in the shop for almost a month if you add up all the visits. The first time I brought it in was for the jerking transmission. I was also getting a message saying "check oil level at next re fuelling." Apparently they installed a new program for the transmission and that seems to be some what resolved. The message was due to the engine oil gaskets not "seating" properly on the initial break in period. Here they had to run the truck at high rpms for approximately an hour to heat the gaskets to seal properly. My engine was also over two quarts low with only 2k miles on it. That seems to be resolved now.

    Then a red message came up on the LCD screen with a battery symbol. Come to find out I needed a new alternator. This took over two weeks to come from Germany and got stuck in customs???? Doesn't MB have a parts warehouse in the US? How/why should a brand new vehicle need a new alternator?

    Next upon a cold start the serpentine belt was knocking and squealing. The dealership found it to be a faulty tensioner. This was ordered from Germany as well and was in stalled last week. I noticed over the weekend that the noise was not gone on a cold start and when accelerating I was hearing the belt whine as the rpms increased. Well today I got towed to the dealership. The belt shredded to bits and as the pulleys were turning, the shredded belt was knocking on the hood of the truck. The smell was awful. The belts that are still attached are tore and shredded, but this other belt is sitting at the bottom of the engine compartment in bits. I don't know what exactly they will find this time as I had to do a late bird drop off. But I am thinking there has been way too many problems with this truck for only having 4200 miles on it. I am guessing that the tensioner was put on too tight, but I don't know much about this at all. I do know I am really tired of this expensive vehicle being at the dealership more than it is in my driveway.

    Has any one else experienced anything like this with their vehicle or any other strange problems. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
  • crzyaim -

    Someone posted the same issues you are experiencing (or at least close to it - see details from that post below). He was able to get MB to buy back the vehicle.....a new expensive vehicle should not be sitting at the dealer's garage for this may want to speak to an attorney and get legal advice.....don't pay for an expensive lemon - just my $0.02

    " #150 of 155 Re: Reliability Issue [wbwynn] by newmowner Dec 23, 2005 (6:59 pm)
    Bookmark | Reply | E-mail Msg
    Replying to: wbwynn (Dec 20, 2005 8:12 am)

    i am sure you read my posts about mine. i had major tranny issues and safety concerns regarding my 2006 ml350. mbusa ended up buying it back from me once it was in the shop for the requisite lemon law period. i absolutely loved everything else about the vehicle. i was sad to actually let it go, but did not have a choice. maybe in a couple years, i may reconsider. it is sharpest SUV in its class."

    Good Luck...
  • gm1120gm1120 Posts: 22
    Just curious, did you get the jerking transmission fixed? A lot of us has had the problem and no resolution. You really should get your money back, it looks like you got a lemon. I've had mine for 8 months with 9700 miles, aside from the very occassional jerk and the gear noise when shifting between park and drive, it's been fine.
  • sam127sam127 Posts: 1
    I'm in So. California and have a 2003 ML 350 "Inspiration Edition". It just rolled 28,000 miles yesterday. Has anybody sold one on the open market recently? I want to sell mine, and I'm getting what I think are low ball offers from dealers (to be expected) and from "no haggle" car buyers. The only problems, as compared to others I have seen on this site, have been needing the steering column replaced twice before 3,000 miles (I thought that was ridiculous) and the exterior back window trims and back hatch corner trim pieces have needed replacement - everything has been under warranty. I also have needed a new set of tires already, and front and rear brake pads. Mine is a brilliant silver, charcoal interior Inspiration Edition with upgrades, plus it has a 2 year 100K transferrable extended warranty. It is in above-average condition and is so pretty - I have mixed feelings about letting it go. I see asking prices for private party sales for cars similar to mine anywhere from $24K - $29K. Has anybody sold one privately recently, or gotten more than $23K from a dealer - where? Thanks.
  • I have ML-500... It is asking security code for radio, but when I try to enter it on the numerical keyboard, it doesn`t want to accept any digit... I have the exact code, how to enter it?
  • vasiljko,

    I had the same problem 2 days ago, I called the dealer and he gave me the wrong code, so when I enter it thru the keyboard it keep on saying WAIT. Then I called the dealer again this time he give me the right code. But my MCS still tell me to wait, then the dealer told me to put the key in the ignition for atleast 1 hr and max 24 hr, then it will ask you the code again, so after 1 hr it ask me again , this time I put the right code and it took it.
    Radio is working now.
    Try calling the dealer if it dosent work.
  • Freshwater,

    I didn't undrestand should I only left the key in the ignition or it should be on the first or second level of contact?
  • It should be ON like a level before the car start.
    They called it in ON position. Where you can see all the lights comes on the dash board.
  • Hi! I know that a lot has been written here about the sludge but I just want to clear a few things for me. I own a 2002 ML 320 with 54k miles on the clock and recently I noticed a strange deposit forming on the oil cap. It has a coffee-and-milk color and is definitely wet and oily. My first thought was my engine has blown a head gasket but now I am not sure. My antifreeze level is not dropping (at least not in a noticeable way in about two weeks) and my oil level is not rising. Oil in the dipstick is the blackest kind of black (I've seen a blown head gasket before and oil on the dipstick was coffee-and-milk color and oil cap deposit was more like a froth in a cappuccino). My last oil change was about 12k miles ago at my local MB dealer and my FSS still shows 1800 miles to the next A service. Also there's nothing dripping from my tailpipe and it is dry. In the light of all that head gasket failure seems less likely to me now. I was not aware about that sludge problem but now that I've read about that on this forum I start to think that this might be the case. I wiped out my oil cap but 2-3 days later this thing showed up again. I am a little puzzled now. One mechanic told me that all this FSS and 12k oil change intervals is a big B.S. and I should change oil every 4-5k miles, not every 12k miles. He told me to do an engine oil flush and see if the thing will show up again and watch the antifreeze level closely. I've also read about a class action suit extending engine warranty in some 1999-2001 MLs - what about 2002? Another piece of information - when I bought the truck it had 40k miles and I only changed oil once at about 42k during a scheduled B service. I believe it was serviced my MB dealer because all service until 50k miles is free so who would go elsewhere. Any advice on what might be the problem? Might it be the gasket? The sludge? Should I get rid of the truck while it still drives OK? Thanks for all the help!
  • kiiwiikiiwii Posts: 318
    The free oil change is only up to 36k miles. What kind of engine oil did you use for the last oil change? Full synthetic oil must be used on MLs.
  • Actually free service on 2002 model is included as long as the warranty is not expired (4 years or 50k miles). Last time I serviced it was at the local MB dealer so I presume they used synthetic oil
  • What is a fair price to replace a passenger side mirror. In my case, the mirror, casing and inside electronics need to be replaced. I have a 2002 Mercedes ML320.
  • kiiwiikiiwii Posts: 318
    I remember there was a class action against MB oil sludge problem back in 01 or 02. The settlement was that MB offered 8 yr or 100000 mile warranty on the engines. I'm certain this covers the V6, not sure about the V8. You may want to call MB service for more details.
  • kiiwiikiiwii Posts: 318
    I'd say you are looking at $500 or more. To replace the mirror costs about $100 (parts + labor). The casing is about $150 without installation. I don't know how much the mirror motor costs. Check with a local bodyshop. They can give you a better estimate.
  • The cover of the towing eye (the middle large rectangular one) in the rear bumper of my ML320 was lost in an accident. I have been searching to buy one to replace it. Any information would be appreciated. I live in the washington DC area.
  • rayml320rayml320 Posts: 1


  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Is that temperature in degrees Celsius?

    tidester, host
  • levanenlevanen Posts: 1
    The 'check eng.'light came on and the 320 runs a little rough. the m-b dealer said it could be the air blower,$1100.00 I declined, the car then started to run fine and the light went out . Today it came back on, running a little rough again. I called a garage that does m-b work. The tech said it could be a sensor in the fuel - inj. system. Might only cost $300.00 to fix. Who do I believe?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    Lots of auto parts stores will read the codes for you for free; may be worth a shot to see if something turns up that way.

    Steve, Host
  • kblankokblanko Posts: 1
    I live in Accra, Ghana and drive a 98 ML320, which has been generally reliable. Lately, it has developed a serious problem in its transmission. It won't shift out of 2nd. My mechanic thought initially that changing transmission oil and filter would fix problem, but that didn't happen. He now tells me that the clutches have to be changed. This is a big ticket fix, so I want to make sure that he's got the diagnosis right. Does anyone have any experience with this kind of a problem?
  • mcqueen4mcqueen4 Posts: 6
    I have 3 different tires suggested:

    Goodyear Fortera Silent Armor - $818.39 installed, tax, etc.(70,000)

    Bridgestone Dueler H/T = $768.61 (60,000)

    Cooper Hercules Terra Track SUV - $622.53 (60,000)

    All three tire stores claim their brand was rated #1. Looked at many sites and came here.

    Love my ML and won't let hubby trade it in for a BMW.
  • gm1120gm1120 Posts: 22
    I have a 350ML, I purchased a stock 500ML tires and rims to put in my ML (it's much nicer looking).
    Can someone please tell me how much tire pressure the ML 500 have. Thanks!
  • crzyaimcrzyaim Posts: 58
    Can some one tell me how/where you load the DVD's on the rear seat entertainment system. I have not actually seen a unit and wanted to know how this works. Also can you hear the DVD through the sound system or only with the wireless head phones? Also, how many DVD's does the unit hold? Any information would be grateful. Thanks.
  • lorryfanlorryfan Posts: 76
    kblanko -

    Is your tranny a manual one or automatic? Transmission not wanting to shift out of 2nd or won't shift out of 2nd could be a combination of several issues. Can you get a diagnostic check from your local MB dealer or a private garage? Is your check engine light on?

    Most commonly and frustrating issues reported on this forum has been related to transmission jerkiness when you come to a stop light and start moving again when the lights change.

    BTW, the 98-01 models were recalled by MB for an out-of-sync harmonic balancer that could also adversely affect the transmission. Good luck.....and let us know how you fare!
  • Has anyone had problems their catalytic converter making excessive noise? We own a 2000 ML320 with approximately 55,000 miles on it. I believe there was a recall recently put in effect, however, when we took it to the dealer, the dealer (Silver Star Mercedes Benz In Thousand Oaks) did not have the part there. As time has gone on (it has been about a month since I first noticed a different sound in the exhaust) the noise has gotten worse and the car now sounds like it has had a bad aftermarket muffler job.
  • I had the same problem and the MB dealer in the US said that it is a bad battery problem. After changing the battery the situation was fixed. Try to replace the battery and see what happens. Good Luck
  • jhinscjhinsc Posts: 399
    We haven't heard a strange noise from our 2000 ML320, but when it was in for some warranty work recently, the MB dealer took it upon themselves to just replace the cat. converter. I didn't even know about the recall.
  • Well, we have gotten some paperwork in the mail from Mercedes about the recall, though it is not posted on edmunds. We took the car into the dealer for service on Friday because it just was not driveable anymore with such loud exhaust. (It sounded like a NASCAR). All though they didn't have the part in yet, we were allowed to exchange our car, free of charge, for a loaner until the work is completed. The loaner is just fine for now because it's a nearly brand new (it has 1300 miles on it) 2006 Mercedes C230 with the new 2.5 liter V6. Sweet car, especially with the bright red exterior and black leather interior this car has.
  • gary0251gary0251 Posts: 1
    Can anyone help me with a the passenger mirror that the spring has come loose. I purchased a used housing and that spring is loose as well.... HELP PLEASE...........
  • jsi1307jsi1307 Posts: 1
    So, once again I am taking my 2003 ML350 in for service. I have had nothing but issues for the last two years. The car has lost power steering and I have had numerous, what I assume to be, transmission issues. The car continually shakes while at a stop and then fails to shift while accelerating. My favorite is when it fails to shift on the freeway! All but once, the dealership has claimed to find no issues witht he car. The last time it was in for service, I was informed it was missing an integral part of the engine software (which was apparantly installed). Nonetheless, the problems started up again. The dealership makes me feel like I'm crazy, but I know something is wrong with the car. Any insight on the transmission issues???? Thank you!
  • I'd go for the Bridgestone though they're pretty even with the Goodyears, but slightly better. The Coopers would be my last choice in those 3.
  • ran111ran111 Posts: 9
    I recently purchased the Bridgestone Dueler H/T Alenzas to replace the Dunlops which were OEM on my 2000 ML320. The Dunlops had 34,500 miles on them and were well worn. I purchased the Bridgestones from a Firestone dealer and with a 4-wheel alignment, lifetime balancing and rotation, got out the door for $780. The ride is now more car-like, quiet and smooth with improved cornering. Wet traction is better although I have not tested yet in snowy conditions. web site has user ratings and comparisons on tires for the ML. The Alenzas were rated #1. Check them out.
  • div2div2 Posts: 2,580
    I have a friend who had to replace the lock cylinder on a ML320. He also got a new transponder key. The problem is that while the key works and will start the truck, he is-using the M-B directions-unable to program the key to lock/unlock or activate/deactivate the alarm. Any ideas? Thanks!
  • That's interesting. First of all, do you have the 17" or 16" wheels on your ML. Because we have the 16" wheels and they came from the factory which General tires not Dunlop like I've heard people say they've had on their car. also says that the oem equipment for the 2000 ML320 was Dunlop, not General. Maybe it has something to do with manufacturing date and a change in tire contracts.
  • ran111ran111 Posts: 9
    I have 16" wheels that came standard on the ML320. The 17" wheels were standard on the ML430 that year. I recall that both General and Dunlop provided OEM tires for the ML, at least in MY 2000. Back then, there were many discussions on this forum about the pros and cons of each brand of tire.
  • wmunson2wmunson2 Posts: 1
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Welcome aboard, WM!

    I do hope other members can provide the feedback you request.

    I'd like to recommend that you turn off your CAPS LOCK as people tend to pass over messages typed in ALL CAPS.

    tidester, host
  • kkjmkkjm Posts: 4
    My 06 ML has clocked 11000 miles. During the recent winter, 2 squeaks coming from the front - left and right - each time when the vehicle is turning about 120 degrees slowly. Went to dealer a couple of times, could not replicate the problem because i) dealer is about 15 miles away 2) it squeaks a few times and goes off. But there was one time the temp was 20 degree and the squeak on the right stays. Brought back and the dealer heard it - and replace the right axle. The left squeak remains as this is not as serious as the right - and the dealer says 'PROOF IT'. I'm determined to bring it back to proof that I'm not making this up.

    Also the back absorber (both sides) making 'thud' sound going thru a hump at about 5mph and also driving thru eneven roads. Brought back to dealer a couple of times and again they say 'PROOF IT'. Again,, after driving about 12 miles on the highway at 70+MPH, whatever noise there is goes away, end up looks like I'm making this up. Of late, I realised that this happens when it is raining, and it is damp. I'm now on the lookout and will bring this back to the dealer again to 'PROOF IT' and make my point.

    Very dissapointed with MB response to the issue. Why would they think I spend time making this up? Each time I hear this 'thud' noise, my blood pressure goes up and wondering why I have made the decision to go with MB instead of Lexus. This 'thud' noise from the rear is especially embarassing when I've friends - they starts to laugh at MB quality and I felt like a fool as the owner.
  • pfentonpfenton Posts: 16
    My wife's 98' ML 320 is scheduled for an appointment next
    week to have the crankshaft pulley balancer swapped out.
    The open recall is still in effect for the 98 and 99 year
    models with the defective part # 00-000. The recall will
    be totally free according to the Ray Catena dealership in
    New Jersey. Be proactive and check out the recall ASAP.
  • pfentonpfenton Posts: 16
    The Ray Catena Motor Car Corporation (Edison, NJ) did honor
    the open recalls and replaced the harmonic balancer and did
    check the steering hydraulic power assist hose, piping and
    connection clamp which were fine. No charge for either the parts or labor. I am a satisfied owner of two MB vehicles.
  • franzjfranzj Posts: 1
    I have experienced the same "THUD" noise coming from the rear of my ML350. I also realized that it occurs on damp or rainy days. Clearly a problem with the rear absorbers or suspension. Brought it to my local dealer and they heard the noise on a rainy day. Brought it back the next week to be repaired(on a dry day) and they said that they could not hear the noise so they could not fix it. By the way, my 5 year old daughter asks me all the time "What is that loud thumping noise?". Maybe Mercedes should hire her? Actually, it seems they would prefer NOT to hear the noise. What happened to Mercedes? Sad day when you can get better service at your local Hyundai dealer!
  • rocky1facrocky1fac Posts: 3
    I have a ML320 1999, it has a noise in the engine like a tick or knock. Sounds like a valve cam hit. Not there on start up but when the warm up occurs. Worst at low rpm when stopped but in drive. If I push selector up to Neutral position the rpms go up and the tick goes away. Sound goes away when driving. Took it to a mechanic who figures it is a wrist pin snce the sound is midway up the engine. Any ideas?
  • rocky1facrocky1fac Posts: 3
    I have a 99 ML320, it has a tick or knock in the engine. Not present during start up or for the first 15 mins. After warm up it starts mainly at ideal with car stopped and in drive at low RPM load knock. When I shift into Neutral when still at stop sound goes away as rpms pick up. No sound at full drive. I took it to a mechanic and he said it sounded like it was coming from the middle of the engine and suggested wrist pin. Sounds like a valve tick to me, any ideas...oh please not a rod failure. I just bought it and the dealer said the noise was with the car since new and they have never been able to figure it out. It was a MB dealer.
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