S55 control arm and ball joint replacement - what to do? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 11-19-2009, 02:38 PM Thread Starter
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Date registered: Nov 2009
Vehicle: 2001 S55 AMG
Location: Westchester New York
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S55 control arm and ball joint replacement - what to do?

So the other day I was driving on the highway, with an S55 2001. I heard a bit of a screeching sound, and afterwards anytime I'd drive slowly or turn the steering wheel slowly, the front was making a creaking sound. This was especially true when going over bumps slowly. At speed on the highway there is no noise.

OK, so I took it to Mercedes and got it checked it. Both lower ball joints have a lot of "play" and wear on them, and the control arm too - they said the control arm bushings are a little bit cracked. (But not broken).

So the cost to replace those 3 parts is $1620. The parts themselves aren't expensive...but the labor is like 125 an hour. Is there anywhere legitimate that I can get this done cheaper? Any good indie Mercedes Techs in the NY tri-state area?

Also...strangely enough it was raining today and after they looked at it the noise stopped - Is it possible the water lubricated it a bit?

Is it safe to drive with the ball joints a bit worn? How long can I drive it for, or is it something that needs immediate attention?


Last edited by crashtest; 11-19-2009 at 02:55 PM.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 11-19-2009, 08:00 PM
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so first of all, i am sorry to hear that you are having problems with your mercedes. I have been working on mercedes for over 4 years now and hopefully i can help. the balljoints and lower control arm bushings are both very common issues with the 220 s class. As far as safety goes, i would say that you probably aren't in any immediate danger. I have seen some very messed up balljoints and contro larm bushings. i have never seen a balljoint on a mercedes come apart, but i am sure it could happen if it went long enough. As far as the lower control arm bushings go, if they crack to much, they outer part of the bearing can actually end up rubbing against the front subframe and overtime this will start to cut through the subframe. If this happens then the entire subframe will need to be replaced. i would definately recommend having this done at your dealership, it is very easy to damage the boots on the balljoints during installation and this will cause the boots to not effectively seal the inside of the joint. Also the lower control arm bushings have been upated and now have 2 extra plates that go on each side of the bushing to protect the subframe if the bushings crack in the future. hope this helps
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