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Mercedes-Benz C-Class Maintenance and Repair

mapman1138mapman1138 Posts: 68
edited September 2014 in Mercedes-Benz
...that I have to wait at least two more months before mine gets here! Who knows if I'll even have a job by then?


  • The C230's power steering pump and reservoir is located under the gray plastic cover on the intake manifold side of the engine. Does anyone know how you get this cover off to access the power steering pump/reservoir?
  • Is anyone experiencing issues with the sound of the car? Not in general, but only when you first start the car. The sound eventually subsides into a much quieter engine sound, but for about 30 seconds, it's quite load. I had a parking garage porter comment on the sound, and I've been conscious of it ever since.
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    Yeah, it's louder than normal for awhile when I first start it up in the morning. I wouldn't be worried about it.
  • m3fanm3fan Posts: 30
    I don't own one, but I've read a few reviews and the consensus is that the C230 Kompressor makes those noises. That's SUPERCHARGED for ya! Keep it noisy! ;)
  • lukymelukyme Posts: 46
    This is my only slight dissapointment with my C230K. This engine is not as refined as what I'm accustomed to. Such as the Japanese V6's (some 4's too), Previous BMW, ect. I'm not complaining, as I knew what I was getting. I drove the C240 Sedan with that little V6, and it was so much smoother. But I wanted the sport coupe. It really growls when you first start it up, but just as you indicated, within a minute or so, she quiets down. They all do it. Maybe thats why the sales person always started one up, and pulled it around for me to test drive only after it warmed up.
  • The cabin is so air tight that I found myself have to slam the trunk hard in order to close it. Sometimes I have to try 2-3 times before it closes properly.
  • jjpeterjjpeter Posts: 230
    I've noticed our C230 sounds a little "agricultural" when it first lights up. But like all have mentioned, once it warms up (after about 30-45 seconds) things smooth out. The earlier model, in the 99 and 2000 C class was even less refined. For this go-around some internal improvements were made to quiet the motor down. I'll say one thing though,,, this little motor goes! Once that blower kicks in, one gets throw back into the seat and you just hold on! I don't know of another 4 cylinder motor that is currently on the market that has the thump of this German 2.3 liter Kompressor. None.
  • jpnwdcjpnwdc Posts: 42
    jjpeter - you obviously have never driven a Saab 9-3 SE HOT (High Output Turbo) or Viggen. Saab's 4 cyl. turbos are known for getting tons of power and torque from relatively small 4 cyl. engines. They are also quite smooth and refined, much more so than the Kompressor engine. (I've driven the C230 and currently have a 2000 Saab 9-3SE.) The C230 probably handles better, especially since it's rear wheel drive.
  • Picked up my car on 2/6/02 from service dept.of Berberian European Motors in Stockton, CA, my local dealer. C230K C Coupe, build date 11/01, in service date, 1/6/02, Purchased from Auto Stiegler, Encino CA. Mileage at time of service, 1,683.

    1. Rearmost muffler heat shield rattles when door, hood or hatch closes.
    1a. Heat shield hold down bolt loose, dealer retorqued bolt.

    2. When manual seats are brought forward, carpet mats catch on seat sliders, rolling over and goughing out the foam backing and leaving grease marks on top of carpet mat.
    2a. MBZ regional rep verified with 3 other like vehicles, he will relate to MBZ, they will notify dealer when a resolution is available so a warranty repair can be scheduled.

    3. Aluminum trim in console is mismounted, about a quarter of an inch high on right side, near cupholder door.
    3a. Service advisor pushed down hard on trim, it popped down into place and stayed.

    4. Rear hatch rubbing body opening at bottom outside corners, leaving abrasion marks in paint on hatch and top of bumper.
    4a. MBZ regional rep verified with 3 other like vehicles, he will relate to MBZ, they will notify dealer when a resolution is available so a warranty repair can be scheduled.

    5. Front grill top mounting bolts loose.
    5a. Service advisor tightened bolts.

    6. Windows down feature with electronic key, need to be within 2 feet of car receptor to make windows operate.
    6a. No resolution yet, dealer could not verify until I picked up car and demonstrated problem to him. While pointing key at receptor in door handle, locking/unlocking works fine, window up/down feature only works sporadically. Same results with either key, windows feature will always work when very close to car, but intermittenly when further away. Service advisor will check with tech and call me.

    7. Rattle in passenger door.
    7a. Dealer tech lubed/adjusted side panel by glovebox.

    8. Tires have 37 lbs of pressure all around from dealer.
    8a. I haven't adjusted tire pressure yet, 32 lbs all around seems to be the accepted norm in my area. Mercedes recommends 28 lbs in front and 32 lbs in rear, but says additional psi is ok.

    2002 C230K Hatchback Coupe, Alabaster White with Oyster Cloth interior, 6 Speed manual trans, Bose Stereo and 6 CD Changer.
  • Hi folks,

    I'm flip flopping between the RSX type S, the Saab 9-3 SE and the C230. The baby benz sure has some nice safety features. But how do you all deal with no rear wiper? I'd be at a serious loss in my Integra right now without one.

    Seems odd, no? Anybody have some clues?

  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    I was going through the same choices as you this past summer. I decided on the ccoupe. The lack of wiper really isn't a big problem, though it would be nice to have. So far, the only real problem that I've had is with standing water on the rear on start-up.
    I can't comment on whether it's a problem in the snow, since we had none in Jersey this winter (sure, no snow right after I decide to get steel rims and snow tires - go figure!). But I haven't really felt the need for one at all.

    I know that you didn't ask, but I'll give you my reasons why I picked the ccoupe over the other two anyway: the rsx has virtually no back seat, esp. headroom. The Saab's pedal placement is odd, and the colors really suck the past two years as they limit the choices in prep for the new 9-3. Also, both are fwd with fewer safety features. Finally, my color (Orion blue) is just too good to pass up. Good luck with the choices! Enjoy the test drives.
  • Anyone has suggestions as to how I can boost the power of the antenna? First of all, let me ask a really basic question. My understanding is that this car has a diffused antenna so nothing is supposed to stick out, right? I just want to make sure there isn't a button that I should press to activate the antenna.

    I live and work in areas that have lots of valleys. I almost have no reception to any FM radio stations.

  • 78280z78280z Posts: 2
    When the weather is warm, I live in Texas, and the auto fan is on, blasting fan on high, the car will stutter like it is out of gas and die. This happens when standing still or moving. This has happened 6 days so far, since Dec., and on days it happens it continues all day long, unless I turn off the fan. Dealer has had the car two times and has not been able to find anything wrong. This is my first MB and I am not impressed so far!
  • timjacktimjack Posts: 7
    Has anyone taken in the car to have the high pitch whine fixed that occurs in the 1st start of the day? Carol at 800-FOR-MERCEDES has the car and hers doesn't make the noise and thinks it's unacceptable. She told me to have service start up a couple next to mine to see if they make the noise also.
  • w1patw1pat Posts: 2
    my dealer has just informed me that my c230 with 48,000 miles needs a $650 air flow meter. my car has had all recommended services. has anyone else has this type of emission control problem?

    [email protected]
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271
    I had this occur on my 1995 C220 and the dealer told me it is perectly normal. The car always did this when it was cold, the mechanics told me it was something to do with the emissions system. It did it from 00015 miles right up through 40,000 when I traded the car. My y2k C230 does not do this though, so it must have a different design.
  • I also have to be within 2- 3 feet for my auto window down feature to work(#6 on your problem list) I also have to stand there for about 3-4 seconds for it to activate. I have changed batteries and everthing else involving the remote works fine. If you find out anything, please pass it on.
    1998 C230
  • This is my first MB - I will get the pre-owned MB warranty - how expensive are they to maintain? Salesman says $1 per day?!
  • Just read all of your comments. 1st time on this thing. Think its a good idea. Bought c230 in Jan 2002 and have to be honest, I've had zero major problems and love the car so far.
    1. Rough engine. Bothered me a little at 1st, but then got used to it and am happy now. Just didnt have that throaty rumble that I thought a car like this should have. Engine is supposed to be very reliable though and so thats good.
    2. Opening windows, etc with keys. Yes, its a problem, but I don't realy do it, so it hasn't bothered me too much. After reading your comments, realize it wasn't just my imagination and that you have to hold the key close to use this function. If this is the case, what's the use of the function anyway? Hope MB gets this fixed.
    3. Have the sport package and have noticed quite a bit of wear on the tires. Don't think I'll get more than 12000 miles on these (Michilin zr rated). Have gotten varying answers from the dealer, but this is what I've found out and what I'm going to do. The Mich's I've got on the car right now are the summer sport tires. They only have a treadwear rating of ~ 200. This is very low. Combine this with the car's heavy weight ~4000 lbs (thats alot for sch a small car) and its no wonder the things wear out quick. So, Michilin makes an all season YR rated tire that has a treadwear rating of ~400. 1st, I've driven this car in snow once and its an experence I don't want to hacve again. Rear wheel drive, wide tires, lots of power, look out. 2nd these YR rated tires are still low profile, etc, etc, so the look will be the same. 3rd, I don't think I'll sacrifice so much in handleing.
    Anyway, jyst some issues I've had. Hope this helps
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    and thanks for your message. I'm sure other C230 owners passing through here will appreciate your notes. Feel free to also join us in our main Mercedes-Benz C230 discussion. Happy motoring!


    Hatchbacks & Wagons Host

  • Thinking of getting the MB C230 and am wondering how it handles in the snow. I live in Ontario, Canada where we get some and have had a few close calls in the past. I wanted to check this out as far as handling goes before I sign on the dotted line...Comments?
  • I have a 6 month old Mercedes C230. Since I have owned the car, it has been intermittently dropping out of cruise control. On one instance I got a malfunction message and my dealer did some work on the car, but it did not fix the problem. I am wondering if anyone out there has a similar problem and was successful in getting it fixed. If so, I would like to hear from you.
  • My 2002 C230K with 1900 miles has creaking noises coming from the windshield's bottom/far-edge of dashboard. It starts out quietly and gets quite loud as you drive on. Has anyone experienced this problem?
  • Glad I dropped in...Seems some of you need some reassurance. Snow.. dusting.. drive in a lower gear, that is what the sports shifter is for...tap it to the left, down the gear range. Snow...deep.. don't they plow the roads where you live? Just kidding. Like all rear wheel drive cars with traction control, the idea here is to go slow. Sometimes letting the car go without any pressure on the gas pedal will get you started. As your momentum increases, small amounts of pressure will bring the car to speed.
    Noise...from the engine... If it is a 2002, that supercharger does make noise when first started. Get used to it. If it is a 2003, with the loss of one horsepower and a significantly smaller engine ( 1.8 ) have the dealer check the balance shafts.
    Let me know if this helps.
  • Before you invest, check out the 2002 car issue of Consumer Reports. The RELIABILITY section has some interesting info. If you're looking to buy a $35,000+ MB, you will be smart to check these ratings..........
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271
    I'm interested - can you give a web link?
  • retguyretguy Posts: 3
    Mine is a C320 with 1200 miles on it. Orion Blue is a knockout color esp with Oyster Leather interior. I find the steering effort high when attempting quick turns from a start. What up with that? Why does the recirc light go out on it's own with the auto temp on?
  • berrillberrill Posts: 3
    Hi I purchased a new C Class coupe in 2002, it’s the new spec 1.8 litre compressor motor, evolution spec.

    I purchased the car from new; it now has 8,000 miles on the clock. Due to my frustration I have given the car back to the dealer and they are giving me a new 2003 model, unfortunately I have to pay in an additional $ 4,000.00.

    It seems as if most of you are extremely happy with your cars, so this gives me faith that my new one will give me years of trouble free motoring, I would love to hear your comments on the problems I have had.

    Here they are, remember this is a new car.

    EPS failed
    ABS failed
    BAS Failed
    The boot has to be slammed to get it to close
    Starter motor replaced
    Ventilation control knob ceased
    Sunroof wind deflector jammed.
    Ineffective air conditioner
    Doors unlock whilst driving
    Occasionally when pulling off the engine idles roughly, as if it’s operating on one cylinder, pressing the accelerator has no effect, the engine works fine after turning it off and on again
    Seatbelt sensors failed to detect the passenger was not wearing their belt.

    The worst problem must be the constant rattles that emulate from the sunroof and the hatch back where the drawstrings attach to (Please e mail me if you have managed to solve these problems)

    Fortunately after reading your comments it seems as if there are many happy customers out there hopefully my second Coupe will be better please feel free to e mail me on [email protected] with your comments
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356
    You have quite a long, bizzare list of problems there - - if I were in your shoes, I think I'd also choose to drop the $4K to swap cars.

    Insofar as diagnosing the problems, the most common theme is electrical/electronics. Its not really normal for so many subsystems to fail independently, so I'd suspect it to be something more basic. For example, a bad alternator could be putting out "dirty" power which then fries the other sytsems.

  • tsberkey4tsberkey4 Posts: 40
    I just bought my first benz this week- a c230 coupe. I know that I am responding to posts that are months old, but my salesman explained to me that the reason you have to be so close to the car to operate the windows is that it is mandated by safety requirements. Since the windows work in both directions (up AND down), you must be able to see them so that no one (i.e., a small child) could be in the way while the windows were going up. Hence, your door locks can operate on radio frequency over longer distances, while your windows MUST be controlled by infra-red, which only works within a very few uninterupted feet. Try doing your windows once and while they are in motion, put your other hand in between the key and your car. The windows will stop.

    Hope this helps you.
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271

    I've had my '00 C230 for almost 3 years and did not know this. Thanks very much!!

      - Paul
  • I have a 2002 c320 with 21k miles and seem to have a fair number of chips in the paint on the hood. Also, the windshield, which I had replaced last February after taking a small stone, chipped again while on the freeway in Massachusettes. Is it just coincidence or do these cars chip more easily than normal?
  • No matter what car brand you own everyone is complaining about the new water-based paints that are environmntally friendly but chip easily. The old acrylics and enamels that were solvent based have been legislated out of existence and until someone develops some type of "new" coating that is more chip resistant while still being environmentally friendly, we have to put up with what is currently available. Some people feel that paints colors with more pigment in them are more chip resistant. The most popular Mercedes color (silver) has less pigment than other colors. I own 3 different Mercedes (2 silver, 1 white) and the white does not seem to chip as easily as the silver. White has more pigment than silver so this theory may have some credence.
  • I purchased the vehicle brand new this January. No problem yet. I've got 4k miles on this baby. Anyone out there experienced any problems with this vehicle, pls let me know. Thanks.
  • I recently purchased my Kompressor and have gotten several dead batteries after leaving the car sit for a couple days. The dealer has replaced the battery twice with no success. They're now telling me I need a built in charger (that they want to charge me $300 for) and I'll have to plug the thing in every night. They tell me that this is a common problem in Mercedes of every class. (They actually don't call it a problem, according to them everybody who owns a Mercedes plugs their car in). For some reason I find it hard to swallow that you can spend so much money on a car and have to plug it in. (especially since they never told me this when I first had the problem).
    I'm just wondering if any body else has had this problem. Are they telling me the truth??
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271
    They have got to be kidding. I never heard of such a thing. If your battery keeps dying, something is draining the current. Insist they find the fault, especially if it is under warranty.
  • My wife owns a 2003 C230K coupe and has approximately 9,100 miles on the odometer. She NEVER has had the battery drain issue and has at times left the car sit for 2 weeks without using it. I find it hard to believe that a Mercedes Service Department thinks their customers are that ignorant! It is either time to call the Mercedes zone representative or take the vehicle to another dealer for warranty service. Do not put up with this level of customer service. It is one of the reasons that Mercedes is sinking rapidly in J D Powers customer satisfaction surveys.
  • You have a dealership that is trying to screw you. I can't think of any car gas engine car that would require overnight charging. I would call the district manager for Mercedes and report this dealership.
  • I have a 1999 c280 with 64500 miles. The engine warning light indicator comes frequently. I have replaced the gas cap which didn't help. I visited dealer who informed me that a diagnostic had to be performed at $150.00. Is there a "reset switch" on the engine. I had one on my Lexus. What could this problem be? Any suggestions
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Hi sgsutn - Sometimes disconnecting the negative battery cable (for a minute), and reconnecting it, will clear any trouble codes the computer has stored. This has worked for me (different make/model though). Be sure to turn off the radio/electrical accessories in your car before doing this. If the code is cleared but problem is still there, then the code/light will probably return after a few drive cyles.

    Btw, some auto parts stores (like AutoZone) will pull the codes for free and decipher why the check engine light is on.

    For more discussion on warning light & trouble codes, check out this discussion. "Check Engine" light. Also, here's another discussion that you may find helpful: MB C-Class Owners: Care & Maintenance Good luck.

    Host of Hatchbacks & Wagons
  • i have a 98 c230 with 40,000 mi. took it in for an alignment, and was told tie rod was worn, but the tire shop said entire rack assembly has to be replaced tie rods can't be changed alone, they were also going to ckeck with the dealer on this but said cost could be $1600 for part plus 3 hr. labor, can anyone offer some input on this. thanks, carmen
  • I have a 98 C280 and the dealer told me it needs new shocks. I am contemplating going with after market Koni shocks. Bilsteins are standard on this car. Does anybody have any experience with Koni shocks on their Benz? I am also open to any other brand.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    design786 - If you don't get a response here soon, you should copy/paste your question into one of our other C-Class discussions. To start, here's Mercedes-Benz C-Class (Coupes & Hatchbacks) and Mercedes-Benz C-Class Sedans. Good luck.
    Host of Hatchbacks & Wagons
  • stefrzstefrz Posts: 1
    I think the dealer is taking advantage of me. Its been in 7 times for service problems since last Oct. 5 of those 7 I've had them look at the engine because it shakes and barely runs in reverse in the mornings when backing out of my driveway. The dealer keeps telling me they find nothing wrong and they can't replicate the issue. Seems like it has a start up engine problem but Mercedes won't admit it.

    My A/C blower broke this past March. When I picked the car up at closing time, I drove off the lot and realize about 3 miles down that heat still wasn't working. This happened to be a Friday, so I had to go the weekend driving in Chicago winter weather with steam coming from my mouth - it looked like I was smoking a cigarette. When I brought the car back on MOnday, they simply said - Oh we just happened to get a defective blower.....never said sorry. What are the chances of a year and half old car having the blower break the first time, but then have the replacement be defective? Sounds like bull.

    The car seems to have no acceleration at times. I can have the gas pedal floor when accelerating at a stop light and also when merging onto an expressway - yet the car has absolutely no pick up. It is very moody- sometime drives great, then other times I can feel every gear change while driving and it has no pick up. The dealer tells me I probably just bought bad gas or didn't buy 93 octane. I have never put anything BUT 93 octane in my car and I buy my gas from Mobil all the time - sometimes shell - nothing else.

    The breaks have to be 'cleaned' every six months because the special breaking system gets a build up of 'break dust'?????? Has anyone else been told this? I've brought the car in 2 times because the car wasn't stopping very good and seems to be slipping. This is how they responded. They when I called another Mercedes dealer, they said they have never heard of this.

    Last week I had it in for repairs. The sunroof wouldn't open. The dealer told me it was an electronic problem.

    If anyone has had similar issues- I would like to pursue a lemon law case for the engine issue. My car has 20,000 miles and is 2 years old now.

    I think my starter motor needs to be replaced. As the weather is getting chillier my car is starting its morning 'stalls' at startup. This only happens when the weather is colder than 60F. When I back out of the driveway it shakes and sputters. Then as soon as I put it in foward drive -its fine. It does idle very rough and sometime sounds like its running on diesel. I know something is majorly wrong but Mercedes is going to try to string me along until my warranty expires. They keep saying their computer diagnostics can't replicate the problem.

    Last week my sunroof wouldn't open....they said it was an electrical problem and had to fix.

    My a/c is very moody. Some days doesn't seem to blow cold air at all. Sometimes when I need the heat, the car bearly heats up.
    About 5 months ago the blower broke and had to be replaced. I think its on its way to breaking again. How did you get them to admit the air was ineffective?

    I also notice that the car sometimes seems to be running on one cylinder. Sometimes it has great pick up and drives great, then other times I have it floored and it barely picks up. Is this what you experienced?

    How did you get them to give you the new car? I just want to get rid of this piece of junk. My next car is going to be Japanese.

    Any insight you could provide would be most helpful and appreciated.

    [email protected]
  • Could you please post the name of the M-B dealer you have been dealing with in Chicago? I would like to know so that I can avoid them. It sounds like you are getting the runaround.
  • ahsanahsan Posts: 1
    Hi, I am about to purchase a 98 C280 with 75K miles. THe car seems to be in failry good conddition, any suggestions or opinions on how this car is?
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    Suggest you go to the mainline C-Sedan thread elsewhere in Edmunds and read the last few entries there. The watch-out-fors are nicely spelled out.

    The '98 was the second year of the new automatic, and the first year in our market for the new V6 - there are some things you need to look at, and they are well summarized in this thread.
  • robaarobaa Posts: 2
    We just had our 1st mini snow storm in the East and my 2002 c320 sport sedan (rear wheel drive) has the worst traction I've ever had. Does any body know if strictly snow rated tires will help or that's just the way it is with this car.

    PS: the MB 24hour service was helpful in suggesting that the ESP must be turned off, or the tires will not turn if slipping. When ESP the is on, and you are at slippery start up, you can forget about going anywhere.
  • rowlandjrowlandj Posts: 254
    If you have the summer tires due to the sport package you will want to change them out for dedicated snows. You can get a package on that will arrive ready to mount.

    I have done this on my c-coupe and I am very pleased with the results.

  • crvolscrvols Posts: 23
    I have a 2002 C230 Coupe with the standard 16" wheels. I bought a set of Michlein Artic Alpins from Tire rack mounted on a set of $105 rims, total cost about $900. I put them on in October and take them off in April. They (or something similar) are what you need. They are quiet and smooth unlike old "snow" tires. Good tracking especialy with my auto transmission in winter mode.
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