Mercedes-Benz C-Class Care and Maintenance

wabendswabends Member Posts: 102
Has anyone bought the cleaning kits from the MB Collection site? If so, how do they compare with local stores such as Pep Boys?


  • diwc240diwc240 Member Posts: 172
    I went to the website and filled out their "Personalised Paint Care Presciption RX": type of car, clear coat paint, zip code, how many miles on it, what year etc...and how many hours per month you want to spend cleaning your car. (There are also a couple of good Barry Meguiars Car Care Clinics in Real Audio at the website.)

    It came back with:

    Phase I = Wash = Meguiar's Gold Class Premium Car Wash Shampoo & Conditioner;
    Phase II = Surface Prep = Meguiars Gold Class Clear Coat Prep & Swirl Reducer (more important for dark colors);
    Phase III = Polish = Meguiars Deep Crystal System Polish
    Phase IV = Protect = Meguiars Gold Class Clear Coat Car Wax
    Phase V = Maintain = Meguiars Quik Wax

    So I picked up 4 of the 5 plus Meguiars "Endurance" Tire Cleaner (at CarParts) and some Meguiars "Hot Guns" wheel rim cleaner at Costco.
    Think it all came to about $60. Now I just need a weekend of good weather.
  • wabendswabends Member Posts: 102
    Dennett and diwc240: thank you very much for your rapid response to my question. It is truly appreciated. As diwc240 said, if I could get a nice weekend without any rains in the Shenandoah Valley, I would love to clean the car.
    BTW, I plan to use your recommendations on our two other vehicles and I will share the outcome with you.
  • diwc240diwc240 Member Posts: 172
    By NYCA Post # 2691:
    For those who don't know, Zymol is a two step process. HD-Cleanse to clean and prepare the surface, followed by one of the various waxes. Carbon wax is specifically designed for darker colors. Yes, it can "fill in" some light scratches, but I have found that if you add a coat of Meguiars Show Car Glaze after the HD-Cleanse and before the wax coat, you can not only get a better "fill in", but also a dazzling shine to the finish..

    By jmsintx Post # 2695:
    PINNACLE Souveran. PIN-312 8 oz. $69.US
    The absolute best wax ( shine, depth, ease of use, swirl hiding, longevity etc.) is Pinnacle Souveran. I have used all of the waxes discussed on these boards. All I can say is try it once and you will understand what I mean.

    Request a catalog from:
  • diwc240diwc240 Member Posts: 172
    Sandy, (reply to Post # 2720 Main Discussion)
    Try going to and filling in the Paint Care Prescription form. It looks like it will accept Cdn postal codes etc...Based on that and a number of other factors (it will tell you what the "acid rain" is like in Toronto, etc...) it returns a detailed prescription for your model year car, clear coat paint etc...

    Any of these excellent products: Klasse, Liquid Glass, Meguiar's, Mothers, Pinnacle, Zaino, Zymol will make the C shine beautifully. Cdn winters and road salt require frequent washing IMO... Ian
  • diwc240diwc240 Member Posts: 172
    Looks like another good "Detail Guide":

    Lots of good advice.
  • karin5karin5 Member Posts: 1
    My 1995 c280 engine stopped & check engine light came on while driving,after several unsuccessful attempts to start the car, it started w/out like always. I'm going to take it to my local MB dealer on Monday-Anyone have any idea what this could be-I really do not want to face a large repair bill.
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    FYI I have had my y2k C230SE K Sport almost one year and have used Tanner's leather cream on the seats, door panels & headrests so far with excellent results. I prefer Meguiar's products but could not find their leather dresssing anywhere locally, and I live over 50 miles from the MB dealer who was closed for the weeekend anyway. So far the chance I took seems to be OK - seats are soft and the stuff seems to be gentle enough to them. Only drawback is a treatment only seems to last about 3 months before the seats get a dry feeling to them again (guess that keeps Tanner's in business which is cool since their stuff appears to work). I really don't care about price but Tanner's just happens to be cheap ($3.50 a bottle) and also conveniently available at WalMart.
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    After almost one year of ownership I've only driven my y2k C230SE K Sport about 2500 miles due to too much work and not enough play! Most of my driving is on the weekend and occasional long trips. Could someone please give me the Cliff's Notes version of why I should go with Mobil 1 - or not?? I absolutely love the C-Class and would appreciate your advice.
  • lperakislperakis Member Posts: 49
    My C320 was hit by a truck about a month ago. No structural damage as the truck was going about 2 mph and backed into me. So here is my question....

    The car was painted about a week ago. When do I apply a coat of wax to the repainted areas? Now, a month from now? 6 weeks from now?

  • newmbfannewmbfan Member Posts: 59

    Wait at least a month. You need to let the thinner evaporate and this takes some time. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise!

  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    For those of you interested: I found postings in another message board, accordingly I will have my first '00 C230K oil change done before 3k miles with Mobil 1. Will try to bring my own oil to the dealer as mentioned in another post. I don't want to look cheap, but also don't believe in paying more for something I can buy cheaper elsewhere (matter of principle).
  • 6speed26speed2 Member Posts: 1
    New 240C seems to have a windshield fogging problem when AC is on. The middle of the fron windshield seems to develop condensation on outside as well as inside when AC is on. Have tried multiple setting changes to no avail.. does anyone have solution?
  • xclusiv1xclusiv1 Member Posts: 1
    I am interested in getting feedback from C220 owners. I want to know your overall opinion of the car (such as performance, maintenance, etc). I am considering purchasing one and would like to hear others that either own or have owned the car.
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    I owned a 1995 C220, leased new and bought - had it for 5 years & 40,000 miles. The car was solid and dependable, the only time it did not start was due to a dead battery at the 5 year point. Several maintenance issues came up including dashboard gauges that needed replacement (fuel gauge intermittently inoperative), A/C stopped working one summer - MB replaced the condensor, radio station search buttons became worn out - MB replaced the radio, and climate control temperature would vary at times - MB replaced sensor in overhead console. All of these were minor cost as they were replaced under the original warranty, with the exception of the climate control sensor which was only about $100. Performance was good - not lightning fast, but 3 mpg better than my current Y2K C230 with the Kompressor engine. Average city and highway mileage over 40,000 miles was 28.86 mpg.

    I would consider a 1995 C220 again, but would want the extended warranty if it were offered to me. If you want more info about my C220 experiences, please e-mail me at [email protected]

    - Paul
  • hocky1hocky1 Member Posts: 13
    I currently own a C180 which I reckon is basically the same car with the exception of a smaller 1800 engine. I have only taken over this recently from another owner and it seems to be running ok. It has done 180000kms and is a 1994 model. Problems found were stiffly moving sunroof which refused to tilt upwards, workshop estimated cost of A$1200 to service/repair. Aerial makes noise going up and down. Battery power drains off after a couple of days. Rear headrest switch does not work. CD player running a bit slower than normal. Centre airflow adjuster jammed. A few rust spots under the paint(blisters) on roof forward of the sunroof. Suspension good over smooth roads, rough over roads with holes or over rail lines. Fuel pump in the rear buzzing for a few minutes(about 10mins) after engine started. Rearview mirrors damaged easily by passing motorbikes(knocking them) and do not swivel like new models(left side is damaged-housing only). Action taken- new battery put in -A$120, sunroof tracks oiled and completely fixed for 5 cents of lubricant, other items to be fixed later. Quote for replacement rearview mirror assembly installed A$250 with matching paint. Please look out for these problems apart from many other usual items like engine, transmission, gearbox, brakes, electrics, windows and so on.
  • hocky1hocky1 Member Posts: 13
    I have this C180 from 1994 and the trim strips are getting small spots along the edges bubbling and getting discoloured. Looks and feel like rust, but the strip is aluminium or some alloy? What can I do about this to stop further damage? Any cream, potion which can stop this? Where can I buy replacements if any and how to get them off?
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    Sorry, I never kept my '94 C-class long enough for that to happen. If it's like regular rust you would probably be better off getting replacement metal, as I found when living on Cape Cod in Massachusetts (salt air near the ocean).

    - Paul
  • jelecroyjelecroy Member Posts: 6
    I was cleaning my car yesterday, putting on MB/Meguiars leather care, and noticed that the drivers seat bolster was cracked and worn through the color. Looks like it is worn from a rub when I get in the car.

    I knew when I selected the leather option that the leather would not wear as well as MB Tex, but I didn't expect to see severe wear indications after only 18 months and 20,00 miles. I've treated it every month or two with MB leather care, to prevent cracking, etc. I'm not a small guy, 6'1 and 200 lb, but I haven't had wear like this on any other car's upholstery. This seat reminds me of what my 1964 220S leather looked like after a dozen years.

    Anyone else noticing early wear on their leather upholstery in a new C-class?
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271

    I have not noticed such wear on my 2000 C230, but it is not a daily driver.

    I would hope that if you brought this to the attention of your service rep. that MB would replace it - as it wore out during the warranty period. I would also hope that the seats are actually more durable, and yours was perhaps a manufacturing defect.

    - Paul
  • ticosticos Member Posts: 19
    I am seeking advise on what kind of grease/oil I should use on the power antenna metal of a 1996 C280. The antenna makes an awfull sound everytime it extends when the radio is turned on and you can see it is sticking due to lack of lubrication.
    Thanks in advance for the suggestions.
  • avro2avro2 Member Posts: 6
    I have the Java leather interior and Capri blue exterior, wonderful combination, but! That java leather gets easily stained and every two to three weeks I have to clean it; and when I do, the residue, which I clear, is black in colour. Anyhow, never the less the seat belt’s too make a mark on the seats and that needs cleaning from time to time – anyhow, to make matter’s worse, the passenger side seat has a rip in it! 6 months old and already it feels like it has aged…

    Few other issues – I have requested my front girl to be changed – two bloody bubble have appeared on the silver (the dealership is getting that fixed); next thing – the driver seat moves slightly from side to side when I take turns and its bugging the hell out of me (the dealership is getting that fixed).

    Next thing – the paint is so soft that it is prone to chips – another issue!

    Anyhow, other then that – could some one please let me know if they are having problems with their trunk release? Today it would not open – then this evening it did! What is with that?

    Great car, a just a few things issues – Always driven a Benz and will always drive one!
  • avro2avro2 Member Posts: 6
    I did not opt for the Bose system (never make that mistake again)! Never the less, I was listening to a few CD’s of mine tonight and a higher then normal level (blaring) and after about 35 minutes the sound of the speakers were distorted and when I changed tracks or CD’s there was a scratching sound audible through the speakers. I have also noticed that when I go on long trips exceeding 4hrs – the CD shuts off on me – I don’t know if it gets over heated or what – I do feel tremendous heat when I do open the tape deck! Anyhow, I checked the speaker this evening and they sound fine – any advise?
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    Why did you not get the Bose system?

    BTW I don't have it either, but it was not by choice.

    - Paul
  • avro2avro2 Member Posts: 6
    I have a 2002 C240 and have been using premium gas/ petrol 91 octane. That’s what the dealership said I should be using. Now, I was wondering if I could step a notch down to 89 octane – the cost of gas is crazy up here in Canada and with the onset of a war, things are not going to get better.

    I truly believe that what the dealership is telling me is a bit of a crock! Would they be a detrimental affect on the engine – I do not think there would be a considerable drop in performance or reduction in mileage.

    Your comments would be appreciated!
  • purutcupurutcu Member Posts: 3
    Robert - I have a 2001 C320. My wife drives it and the fogging drives both of us crazy. There was an article in the MB Magazine about fogging up and it gave directions on how to get rid of them. Like yourself, we tried every possible setting. Weather being very humid down in Florida, it's almost impossible to see while driving. We try to shut the vent on the dashboard off and try to deal with it. Please let me know if you have found a way to control the fogging.

  • agrant1agrant1 Member Posts: 3
    I've got a '98 C280 with 87k miles. Runs like a, well, like a Mercedes is supposed to. How many miles can I run it before it starts to ruin me? Anybody out there with more miles than that on theirs? Problems? Success?
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271

    Sold my '95 C220 at 41,000 miles. Current '00 C230 only has 6,750 on the clock with no significant problems to date.

    - Paul
  • hocky1hocky1 Member Posts: 13
    Agrant1 - Mine has gone 190,000kms and doing quite well still. This is about 115,000miles ???? Its a 1994 model not available in the US. Only had it for about 6 months and having some problems sorted out which were ignored by previous owner like jammed centre airflow roller(something broken inside dash), noisy aerial which jumped out and was replaced(still noisy), front bushes changed,water pump, serp. belt and tensioner changed, fuel pump and filter changed(tricked into this one!), radio faceplate changed(looks new now), new battery, jammed rearheadrest fixing now, passenger side RV mirror assembly replacing now(knocked by some idiot), dodgy speedo being fixed, front bonnet(hood) and bumper resprayed for stonechips and golfball sized dents, squeaking driver's seatbelt(I give up), driver's seat not keeping height adjustment(falls back when you get in again), sunroof fixed with Benz grease, noisy muffler getting fixed and last item is damaged rear boot lock(still working). Long list to fix, cost a few dollars, but I love the car, so $$$ not an issue, only time off the road!!
  • agrant1agrant1 Member Posts: 3
    Good information; I'm going to hang onto mine for the foreseeable future!
  • lxgmblxgmb Member Posts: 41
    It worked about 1 month ago. I don't think it freezes. It is 52F now outside. Any ideas?
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363
    ... a look and listen at the reservoir will give you a clue. Someone needs to listen at the same time you try to use the system - if you can hear the pump humming, the pump is probably flawed or plugged. If you hear nothing, it could be the pump, or it could be the relevant fuse. And without sounding flip, the reservoir is topped up, we can assume?
  • mbowner1mbowner1 Member Posts: 2
    I just purchased a C230K about a month ago. My dealer said to use 89 in the summer and 87 in the winter, unless you live at sea level. Then it is necessary to use 91 octane. I live about 2000 from sea level and use 89 and it runs fine on that.

    Hope this helps.
  • paul_ppaul_p Member Posts: 271
    I plan on keeping my '00 C230 10 to 15 years, and it gets nothing but premium. In '95 I believe it used to state the requirement "Premium Unleaded Fuel Only" right on the instrument cluster.

    I believe the label on my fuel filler door (and certainly in the Operator's Manual) still says to use "Premium Unleaded Fuel Only."

      - P.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363
    ...the octane requirement is proportionally reduced, and in some markets, you can't GET 91 octane fuel. HOWEVER, regardless of temp and altitude, you should be using the highest octane available if it is lower than 91.
  • mb240slkmb240slk Member Posts: 3
    hey Ive got 01 c240 glacier white java interior. Had lots of problems I'm now on my 4th set of keys. My drivers seat edge the seam was ripping they fixed that. my cars been in mb service for over a week I'm driving a huyundai accent. They have figured out its the command center but thay have technical support helping. Everytime they get it all cleared and then run the system all the warning lights for ie esp engine light etc..
    So I'm curious to see what they do. Has anyone else had problems?
  • sgsutnsgsutn Member Posts: 3
    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
  • burkejpburkejp Member Posts: 3

    i had an older benz (87 300E) and i was always told to put a min octane rating of 91 in it. so i continued to do so.

    however, i just bought another benz (97 C280) and while talking about gas, he said that even though it states "Premium Unleaded Fuel Only" on the dash board, that's essentially a German thing. 89 Octane gas IS premium fuel in Germany and throughout the rest of Europe as well.

    Thus, i was told to not bother paying the higher price for what we here refer to as "premium"... consider the German's definition of "premium" as 89 Octane.

    In fact, and surprisingly enough, my mileage actually increased. i've gone 425 mi (680 km) before the fuel light even came on. never made it that far on 91 Octane.

    So, yes, 89 is fine (already confirmed this with the local Benz dealer) and you won't damage any of the fuel system components or give up horsepower or any other performance.

    hope this helps.

    good luck!
  • burkejpburkejp Member Posts: 3
    the best advice (although not the cheapest) is to go ahead and let them run the diagnostic test. that single warning light will come on for many reasons. it could be a single sensor is going bad (i.e. coolant temp sensor, etc.) or it could also indicate a problem such as a failing fuel injector or too many other possibilities to count.

    It's really a bad setup when you have an indicator light on but have no idea of the system to which the problem pertains. but, in most cases, that multi-function warning indicator is saying there is something minor that needs to be corrected. thus, the diagnostic testing fee is the most expensive part of the whole deal, in most cases. and you cannot reset the warning light without the dealer attaching the computer and resetting the system that has an error.

    in my own experiences, it has always been some sort of sensor or electrical switch that weren't working at 100%... cheap to replace... besides the testing fee.

    good luck!
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363
    I'm sorry, but it is absolute nonsense that "89 octane fuel is the same as 'premium' in Europe".
    In fact, the exact opposite is the case - the best motor fuel in Europe has higher octane than the most common [91 avg] available here.

    Look, this is not religion, you can do whatever you want, but there are good, sound, technical reasons why MB specifies a min 91 octane fuel for this car. Using a lower octane has two effects, neither of them good: the engine computer will retard the timing to compensate, and that in turn has several negative consequences: higher fuel consumption, less power, and over the long pull, the chance for heat-related problems [using up spark plugs sooner, for example]. It's just false economy to drop 2 octane points in return for 10 cents a gallon.

    Running this car requires certain expenses be borne - this is one of them.
  • wardoggiewardoggie Member Posts: 5
    I am looking at buying a used car. A 1996 C-220 with only 47k miles had its engine warning lights on when I test-drove it. The salesman (it was a used car lot that specialized in European cars, but not specifically MB) said it was common for cars that sat for a while to do that, but when I asked him when it came in, he said, "oh, five days ago." So, this sounded fishy to me.

    Anyway, should this trigger a warning light in my head or is the car a pretty safe bet? It would be my first MB, but not my first euro car (that would be an Audi A4 four years ago).

    Thanks in advance,
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363
    ...about this car.


    If this car were a legitimate contender, it would have been bought at the auction by a Mercedes dealer, and sold as a Certified car. The miles on this car would make any dealer salivate, if they are legit and the car has no serious problems. My advice is to walk away, no matter how attractive the car sounds. At the very least, it needs a complete, top-to-bottom inspection by an authorized MB technician, including a full explanation of the warning lights.

    Sorry I can't be more supportive - this smells bad, even over the internet....
  • wardoggiewardoggie Member Posts: 5
    Thanks, for the fast reply. I am new here on Edmunds and appreciate the frank discussions I've read so far :-)

    It seems to me that if it were a trade-in, it might not get to the dealer network. Could that explain this possible gem?

    Anyway, there are lots of great cars on the market. I will continue looking and if this one is still around in a few days, I will ask the sales guy(s) if we could have it checked out first.

    Best regards,
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363 legitimate dealer is going to tell you to drive the car away with warning lights on.

    In any case, no matter where the car came from, I simply would never buy a newer MB without complete service records...OR...a bulletproof, comprehensive or the other is a requirement, unless you yourself are a skilled mechanic.
  • rlmrlm Member Posts: 1
    Good to hear, I just bought a 2000 C280 with 34K miles for 19K, excellent condition. Unfortunately, not from MBZ, so no warranty, should I get extended?????
  • tmay2tmay2 Member Posts: 1
    My 2000 c230 has close to 50K on it. Over the past few weeks the little wrench light comes on with a mileage count down number...

    My guess is that this would mean scheduled maintenance is due. Has anyone seen this before? I could just go to the dealer, but I'd at least like to know what the light really means first...

  • jrct9454jrct9454 Member Posts: 2,363
    Exactly what you think it means....time left before servicing.
  • knutknut Member Posts: 1
    I had a 1997 Mercedes C230 which had the engine light come on. 660 Dollars later I decided to trade in the car for a new 2005 Mercedes C240 4matic.
    I advise everyone not to buy a C-Class out of warranty.Even I tried GOOD WILL request no chance.
    I like the C-Class as long as it is under guarantee
  • tizertizer Member Posts: 23
    Has anyone had any experiences with getting an oil change for a 2001 c class at a Expressway franchise? My C240 will need a B service soon and the dealer quoted around $350! Now that the car is 4 years old with 65,000 miles and out of warranty a $70 expressway oil change is attractive. Expressway said they can do it but with no drain plug and dipstick I am apprehensive about letting them near this car.
    Overall this has been a solid reliable car, I had some niggles the first 18 months but all taken car of under warranty.
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