BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: Mar 2007
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fix for the Steering Angle Sensor
My first real post! I own a 2000 ML 430, and the Steering angle sensor was failing from the moment I bought the car. I took it to a dealership which in turn just ran a diagnostic and confirmed it. Before I did that, I did change out the brake light switch, but it did nothing, but I am sure it was a good idea to change it out anyway.
So anyway. The steering angle sensor took me 1 hour to change. Removing the entire steering column was NOT NECESSARY. The sensor is simply mounted between two separate parts of the shaft, and slides off when you simply unbolt the shaft in the middle. It's accessible underneath the dash, and is very easy to access. The trick is to find a sensor for sale, because the rest of this job is super simple. You don't have to take the steering wheel apart, you don't have to unplug anything (except for the sensor you're replacing).
First, take your car and get the code. You need to know for sure what you are attacking. There should be a foreign car repair shop around that will hook up their handheld computer and get the diagnosis of your BAS/ESP light. Once confirmed that it is the steering angle sensor (my case the control box was giving a code as well in relation to the steering angle sensor, all related) you need to remove the black shield from under the dash. It comes off with two screws on the firewall, and two more on the upper dash trim. You can take a look underneath once its off and you can plainly see the column. You will also see a black wheel disc attached into the middle of the column. To take it out, remove the nut and bolt behind the disc that runs through a knuckle. You'll need a hex or something to hold the other side when you turn the other side with the right wrench or socket. Once loose, pull the steering wheel towards you. It will pull straight out and part of the sensor will fall on the floor. The other part of the sensor is held by three small hex screws, so remove those, and the rest will come off. Unplug. Now take the new one, plug it in, screw it back on with the same three screws. The sensor light wheel is next and goes on only one way working with the thread in the steering column. Push the steering wheel back down to expose some of the steel, and slide the plastic light guide back on (including a metal small disc that gives small pressure). From there, realign the knuckle, and press the steering wheel down the rest of the way. From there, rebolt the steering column. Make sure its down all the way and tight as you can imagine. It's life or death if you get this wrong, because if its not down tight and comes off while you are driving, you will lose control of the car. THIS IS SUPER IMPORTANT. Make sure its all the way in, and you can see it in between the knuckle and that the bolt pinches it tight. Test it by pulling back on the steering wheel. If its hard and tight, you're good.
Questions, email me.