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General Mercedes questions

ataieataie Posts: 84
edited March 2014 in Mercedes-Benz
you can discuss and ask questions about 'ANY'
model and 'YEAR' Mercedes. Hopefully those of us
who drive these nice cars can help each other in
our experiences, and knowledge.

again any model, any year ......... thanks
«1

Comments

  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I guess all the members Mercedes' are running just fine, and no has any problem.....

    come on guys, I know these are fine automobiles, but we can still share ideas and learn from each other.
  • haspelbeinhaspelbein Posts: 227
    I've recently bought a '96 E320 with 23K miles on it from a dealer. I checked the engine and the transmission for leaks right after I bought it and everything seemed fine. A little later I discovered oil on the rear differential. I assumed it was the service seal and brought it back to the dealer, hoping it would be covered under the limited powertrain warranty the dealer gave me.
    We, it's wasn't the service seal, and the dealer had to replace all seals (transaxle, pinion and service) which were not covered under any warrany.
    While it's understandable defect because the car wasn't driven a whole lot, it hurts me to put down $700 after owning a car for two weeks.
  • wasjrwasjr Posts: 22
    I have just bought 74 450SL. What products are typically used to brighten the black portion of bumper and trim? I have talked to detail shops and standard blacking products used on tires do not last and leave a chalky appearance. Anybody have any ideas.
  • lancerfixerlancerfixer Posts: 1,308
    If Mercedes is like Volvo and Saab, the headlight wiper/washers don't have a separate switch; rather, they engage when using the winsheild wiper/washer.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    You can use a bumper and trim reconditioner, wasjr, such as from Griots garage. There's others available, but you may as well use the best.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I've been using Armorall or STP sun-of-a-gun on all the tires, bumpers, etc each time I was the car. and it has worked great.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    If you want the bumper shine to last, you need to have them repainted with a special flex paint that detailers use. Off the shelf products really are cosmetic and don't "restore" older bumpers that have already been damaged by UV light.
  • elcueelcue Posts: 2
    I am moving to New Orleans and would like to know a competent, honest, independent MB mechanic. Also, what has been MB owners' experience with MB dealership in NOrleans?
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    what's the normal temp. reading on a 300SE? Under normal driving condition mine is about 85C, and when stopped in traffic with A/C running close to 100C. both electric fans kick in. outside temp is about 95F. any thought about changing my termostat with an after market, low temp one?
  • mbnzorgmbnzorg Posts: 2
    let's all go to www.mbnz.org
    Forums for Enthusiasts by Enthusiasts
  • edwardh1edwardh1 Posts: 88
    What does an oil change cost at a MB dealer?
    In my town, toyota dealer charges $29, infiniti 89 (free loaner and car wash) but MB?? How much?
  • phung1phung1 Posts: 1
    cost me 49 bucks @ MB dealer
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    how do you remove the center part, by the gear shift where the window switches are, without doing too much damage?

    couple of window switches have been pushed in, and I need to pop them out.

    this is a 91 300SE.
    thanks,
    Shon
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    on my 91 300 SE, just a few inches to the side of the fuse box under the hood, there is a metallic box with a black dial knob on it.

    there are two settings (O) and (I). what is this box and what does the different settings do?
  • pita2000pita2000 Posts: 12
    I purchase a ML320, I had my fuel pump replaced and having the valve lifter replaced. Is there anyone else having major problems with there ML or is it an isolated incident?
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    changed my battery this weekend, and now the radio is asking for a code. have no records from previous owners. does anyone know if these radios came with a default code? hope someone along the way didn't change it.

    this is the factory Mercedes am/fm cassette on a 91 300 SE.

    thanks,
    Shon
  • pita2000pita2000 Posts: 12
    your going to have to see mercedes benz dealer at the service center, so they can get the serial number on the radio.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    over the phone in about 5 minutes.
  • jono4jono4 Posts: 8
    Very impressive list of ataie's cars. Have thought of buying an MB. Own a '67 250-s in very shaky shape, drive a Pontiac daily. Live way, way, way out in boonies(nearest dealer 70 miles). Apprehensive about breakdowns and repairs this far into the sticks. Am encouraged by ataie's comments. Have eyeballed the E models. Need something with heft for long drives, thus the Pontiac. C model too small and S model beyond my means. Have put 30,000 miles on Pontiac in 11 months and this is normal. Good to know what dealer charges for oil change. Local dealer said something about a $350 check up every 30,000 miles (or as it 15,000 miles?). Do the newer ones run on premium gas? Pontiac uses 89 octane and gets approx. 24 mpg.
    Jono
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    go for a MB Diesel........ it wont let you down. Don't know what are you planning to spend but on Diesel, there's just nothing to do. gas and go, and do oil and filter every 5k miles. can't beat that. my 300SD as heavy as it was got about 30-35 mpg.

    by the way, I'm selling two of my current MB (91 300SE and 64 220SE) thinking about going with a 560SL (86-88).
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    compare to all the MBs I've had the 190 felt like a toy. very light, but agile. Know a couple of people who have had 190s, and both had problem with Radiator, and A/C. also for some odd reason the front windshield cracks real easy (smallest of rocks).

    I've heard the 2.6 is a much better performer than the 2.3 engine. They are good, but don't expect it to be as smooth and durable as the S class Mercedes.

    other models to consider: 300E (not the 2.6) many around at a very good prices.

    best of luck.
    Shon
  • thanks. i did like the way the 190 behaved..light in a heavy way, if that makes sense! i'd still like to know if the price is good. also, other than oil changes, will the car nickel and dime me to death...?
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    check out these sites:

    http://www.mbnz.org/W201/

    http://carpoint.msn.com/

    as you know I love MB cars, but the only car that would not nickel and dime you would be an older MB diesel. but that's not for everyone.

    190 is MB in name only. If you buy don't let that change your image of MB as a company. They had to offer a good value car and 190 at the time was their solution. today they're offering the C220 and C280, in order to compete.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    few posts ago I listed all the Benzs' which I've owned in the past 15-20 years. From that list Diesels have been the most reliable ones. I sure do like the 74-80 S body (80 300SD). The last one I owned few years ago, had about 250,000 miles on it. It was super clean inside and out and I think I paid about $3000 for it.

    If you prefer a little more modern look, go with the 81 300SD and up. They used that body until early 90s. I currently have a 91 300SE (http://go.to/300SE) which I'm selling to get a 2 door model.

    It's funny how my wife always hated the Diesel cars (slow and noisy), but it's not noisy from inside the car, only for people outside. and beside I really like the noise from a diesel engine.

    If you do buy the 80s diesel MBs make sure you look for oil leaks (major mess on the driveway), and the A/C controls. something about those darn knobs. Also the glow plugs light shouldn't take 5 minutes to go out before you start the car. 15 second should do it. (some better plugs are available now). also check the water pump for any sign of rust or even a drop of water ($$$). make sure your electrical are working fine and he trany changes gear smoothly (but not too smooth, and slipping into gear) that should do it.

    good luck and don't let the miles worry you, and remember you don't have to pay too much to get a good old MB.

    Shon
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    bobby, I have to reiterate ataie's warning about making sure the climate control is working properly, especially in the 116 body (80 300SD). This can be one of the most problematic areas for this body. The 300D (123 body) is a little better, but not by much.
    Make sure that the climate control servo, mounted on the upper corner of the firewall on the passenger side, is not cracked near the bottom or leaking coolant. This part, even from an aftermarket source, is at least $325, and over $600 at the dealer. I encourage you to check these areas carefully.
    The mileage on both these cars is not bad, should be plenty of life left as long as normal maintenance has been performed.
    If you decide to buy I can point you to good parts sources that offer genuine parts at substantial savings. Just drop an e-mail.
  • thanks and ataie and burdawg for your thoughts. The 81se/sd and up is more modern, but i think i like the 80 better. i thought the 84D, while not as modern as the 81se/sd, looked a little more "mainstream" than the 80...but that's part of the MB fun...the 80, that is. Forgive my ignorance, ataie, but you said the diesels are slow...doesn't the "turbo" part help?!? I looked back at your list...do yo find when you buy an MB then sell it a few years later, do you break even, lose or make money? If I take the plung, burdawg, i'll check the servo as you suggest, and find out about those parts deals. thanks again
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    remember my list is not all the cars I've had. I change cars about 2-3 a year. add a different car or two between each MB. see, I always came back to the three pointed Star to lead me home.

    regular Diesels are slow, even for MB lover. Turbo diesel is the way to go. They start like a snail, then they snap your head back when the turbo kicks in. I live in Dallas so I would consider a regular diesel almost dangerous for entering freeways around here.

    if going diesel go turbo....

    PS: 81 and up 300SD has a valve that makes the turbo smoke a little less. not sure about the other models.
  • hey ataie and burdawg! in your opinions, of the 81-93? sd's or sdl's, are there any years which are better than others? Budget wise i guess i'm looking at something int he 80's.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    I would go with as late a model and low mileage as you can get. Also, I prefer lighter color interior and exterior-they seem to me to hold up better.
    The later models have better climate control systems. I don't remember what year the 126 body went out of production, late 80's, I believe. Let me check....
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I'm not picky. get the best for the money. go with value vs. $$.

    you may find a 82 300SD for $3000, or a 87 for $7000. well if all is the same, I'll take the 82, because 90% of the car is the same. drive it for a year and sell it. You can probably get your money back on 82, and you'll lose some on the 87.

    if you're keeping it for a long time, then go with the most $ you can spend and the latest model possible.

    I change 2-3 cars a year so I need to be able to recover my cost.

    Shon
  • nhzignhzig Posts: 1
    Does anyone know where to get brake dust shields for a 2001 SLK230?
    Are there other ways to get the dust from getting on the wheels/body?
    Thanks
  • pat455pat455 Posts: 603
    You might want to look at a small topic in our Aftermarket and Accessories Conference here:

    brakedust (Topic #561)

    There are not very many posts, but the consensus there seems to be that shields may not be a very good idea.

    Pat
    Community Leader/Maintenance & Repair Conference
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    anyone know the reason for too much free play in my steering wheel? this is a 73 450 SLC. Also if you have nay idea of approximate cost to fix it.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    You probably need a new steering box, unless other front end parts (idler arm, tie rod ends, etc) are worn. Most folks I know with older high mileage MB's have had to replace the steering gear. I'm assuming that you mean free play in the sector gear, which means you can turn the wheel back and forth excessively without the front wheels moving.
  • Well I finally had my 190E 2.3's engine rebuilt by an independent shop - ($1,500 vs $5,000+ had I gone to a franchised MB shop)

    Only problem is that the "Engine Check" light is now set to on - I know that this is really more to do with the emissions control gear than physical engine condition but how can I get it reset?
  • thor8thor8 Posts: 303
    I own a new ML430 and also a couple of old Unimogs 406, the amazing thing is that they are over 22 yrs old and dont have a rattle, and this vehicles are rugged offroaders, they are built in a plant of their own in Gagenau, Germany, the quality is the old mercedes, no skimping in good materials.
    I am in the process of restoring them at least to A class, mechanically they are in perfect shape but now they need the spit and shine to go with them, it is an absolute pleasure to own them and to restore them, plus a new replacement is about 150K.
    Changing subjects, I read somewhere, that Mercedes is going to bring up the Maybach, for those that are not familiar, they used to be the grand cars of germany (not related to mercedes) or the Rolls Royce of germany, during the war the factory made tank engines like for the Panther and Tiger and after the war the car production was never brougth up, they went to manufacture diesel engines,(MTU).
    It would be interesting to see what turns up.
  • I used them back in Africa - great vehicles but unfortunately waaaay out of my price range. Could eat any SUV in a blink...
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    buying an 84 380SE and need to know if these are single or double row timing chains. I know Mercedes had problem with them, and it was changed in the later models, but not sure when.

    the engine is running very quiet, and I don't hear the chain making any noise.... so should I even be concerned. the car is very clean inside and out, with about 135k. How are these engines? I've had the 91 300SE and 450SEL and long time ago an 81 380SEL, but don't remember.

    thanks,
    Shon
  • pat455pat455 Posts: 603
    And after this one, ataie, how many Mercedes will you own? :-)

    Pat
    Community Leader/Maintenance & Repair Conference
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I keep coming back for more.....

    I just sold my 91 300SE, because it was slow and steady, so I wanted something faster. well guess what? I bought a 300ZX, it's fast but not nice and comfortable like a big Benz. So to make thing easy on myself, and keep my wife from going crazy with me changing cars every two months, I'll 'TRY' to keep the Z even after I buy a big Benz.

    But honestly as many Mercedes that I've owned, I've always come back to them. between each of those cars, I've had VW, SAAB, VOLVO, and many others..... but nothings a Mercedes, once you drive it you're hooked.

    thanks,
    Shon
  • pat455pat455 Posts: 603
    I believe you, I've heard those sentiments before. Enjoy!

    Pat
    Community Leader/Maintenance & Repair Conference
  • pat455pat455 Posts: 603
    Hi Shon,

    Someone around here may have an opinion, but generally you will get better buying advice in our Smart Shopper and/or our Sedans Conferences.

    You may want to take a look at the existing topics in both those conferences to find another good place to ask.

    Let us know how it turns out!

    Pat
    Community Leader/Maintenance & Repair Conference
  • thor8thor8 Posts: 303
    Threads are stripped while thigtening, number one spark plugs are thigtened to a specific torque set by the manufacturer and using a torque wrench, the most common amateurish mistake is to thigthen a spark plug too much, you will be sorprised to see how little torque is called for the spark plugs, while is prety much without cosequence in an iron head, there is no much forgiving in an aluminum head. Another thing since this shop has been doing your service for a long time they also should have taken precautions for the plugs not to seize, if that is what they claim.
    Second, is their screw up.
    Third, I dont see how can they justify that much money, the helicoils cost very little, for a few dollars you can buy them all, and the installation consist in running a tap, and then threading the coils in the new thread, the only problem that I can see, is metal filings inside the cylinders, in your case it may call for removing the head, then I can see the the expense in labor and new gaskets, but even then not that much.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    he's full of it....... I can understand over tightening theory, but you'll need a air tool or something to get them so tight that can mess up the treads. Get him to fix it, without a penney out of your pocket. His incompetency shouldn't cost you even $10.

    And find another mechanic.... So tired of these people blaming the fine engineering. They need to know they're not working on a Buick.... and not everything can be fixed with hammer, glue and extra muscle.

    my 2 cents,
    Shon
  • thor8thor8 Posts: 303
    Not really, just a pull handle and a socket, thats all it takes to strip a tread. That is where the professional touch comes in.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    how much life is left on a 89 260E with 152k, which has checked out good mechanically today. The only current problem is a little oil leak from the valve cover gasket??

    no major repair has been done or needed by previous owner. Timing chain is not making any noise. engine is running very smooth and quiet. transmission shifts very nice. Inside looks brand new. he's asking $5500.

    thanks,
    ataie
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I almost bought an 88 just a few weeks ago, but changed my mind on convertable in Dallas area. too hot or too cold, and I can do without the wind noise.

    as for the engine and trany, I've heard good thing. HP is around 201, and the car can move....

    do a carfax and pay the $50 for Mercedes to check it out. At least you'll know what you're getting into right away. The few I looked at most had sever engine oil leak from rear of the engine. Also check under the carpets for wet spots or rust.

    best of luck.
  • sddlwsddlw Posts: 361
    Check out the topic:
    Classics: Mercedes 380/450 sl
    the moderator is very knowledgeable about SLs, and the discussion is not limited to the earlier cars.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    I doubt that plugging the car was the problem. Also the oil filters are good every other oil change, which is about 10k-15k. If you do a 'good' oil change, you should be good for 5000-7500 miles.

    try getting the car to a Mercedes shop and have them check it out. good luck.
  • Anyone have any problems w/ a high mileage e420?
This discussion has been closed.