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Old 09-17-2007, 03:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Date registered: Nov 2006
Vehicle: 1998 W210 E430
Location: Chicago, USA
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Unhappy e430 Catalytic Converter - Help!

Ok,

So, my Catalytic Converters on my e430 seems to have just went out at 79,800 miles. Well, that would be fine if it was February 2006, but unfortunately it's now not covered by warranty.

I went into my local repair shop and they offered to repair / replace them for $3200!!!

That is completely ridiculous, considering the cars are only worth, in MINT condition around $10,000-$15,000, at this point.

I might as well just sell it to a junkyard.

So, i've got a few questions related to that:

1. They said that I need to "automatically" replace the oxygen sensors with it. Is that for real or are they trying to rip me off by replacing something completely unnecessary? I'm feeling they're trying to rip me off.

2. Can an Eastern Catalytic Converter:

eBay Motors: Eastern Catalytic Converter Mercedes E320 02 01 00 99 (item 110169192288 end time Sep-18-07 11:27:10 PDT)

be adequate as a replacement? I mean, the main difference between my e430 and an e320 is the engine, so I don't see why an e320 Catalytic Converter can't work on an e430, but maybe you guys are better experts at this. $100 worth of parts versus $3000 would be like a miracle to me.

3. If not, can a DEC Catalytic Converter do the job?

Auto Parts and Accessories Catalog - 1998 Mercedes Benz E430 Catalytic Converter

Even that, at $800 worth of parts instead of $3000 would be phenomenal.

Mind you, I have to replace both of them, since they're both rattling like hell.

Thanks!
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Old 09-17-2007, 04:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi, Jay.

When you have a chance please fill out your online profile re: car and location.

I take it your car is more than 8 years old? You're just barely under the mileage limit (I'm just over...)

On the cats, there are several aftermarket ones, so long as your pipes are good they can just be welded in. I think Magnaflow makes some, if you search around you'll find several posts on the topic. Those were under $300 installed.

You can also check this DIY: http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w210...-part-1-a.html although this was pipes and everything.

Re: the 02 sensors, you're getting close to the point in mileage where you start to think about them failing. Personally -- since they are a DIY item -- I would wait until they actually fail and send dtcs to the computer, and then the CEL will come on. They're not cheap either (and there are four of them!) so that's part of the reason I'd wait.

While I'm talking about personally, I would go for the aftermarket weld-in units, assuming that the pipes are otherwise okay.

Take care and enjoy the ride,
Greg
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Old 09-17-2007, 04:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Jay, here's the post on the Magnaflow cats...

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w210...ts-photos.html
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Old 09-17-2007, 06:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Date registered: Nov 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregs210
Hi, Jay.

When you have a chance please fill out your online profile re: car and location.

I take it your car is more than 8 years old? You're just barely under the mileage limit (I'm just over...)

On the cats, there are several aftermarket ones, so long as your pipes are good they can just be welded in. I think Magnaflow makes some, if you search around you'll find several posts on the topic. Those were under $300 installed.

You can also check this DIY: http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w210...-part-1-a.html although this was pipes and everything.

Re: the 02 sensors, you're getting close to the point in mileage where you start to think about them failing. Personally -- since they are a DIY item -- I would wait until they actually fail and send dtcs to the computer, and then the CEL will come on. They're not cheap either (and there are four of them!) so that's part of the reason I'd wait.

While I'm talking about personally, I would go for the aftermarket weld-in units, assuming that the pipes are otherwise okay.

Take care and enjoy the ride,
Greg
Thanks!

This saved the day.

The pipes are fine. The look pretty much identical to the ones in the photos in the thread.

This sounds like the solution i'm looking for.

I could go the DIY thing, but i'm no master welder and $300 is definitely within my range.

So, I can just go to Maaco or whatever with the two cats and they'll hook it up?
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Old 09-17-2007, 06:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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jay

just curious did you get a price to replace them from a dealer yet
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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from Race Parts - Auto Parts - Car Parts - The Internet Racepages - RacePages.Com
make sure you check out why the cats failed,rule out oil blow by,etc.,cats last a long time,sometimes they fail,sometimes other faulty parts cause them to go bad.
and yes any good muffler shop can splice them in.

"GOT CODES?"
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Old 09-17-2007, 11:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joesnextoy
jay

just curious did you get a price to replace them from a dealer yet
Yes, even MORE expensive.

Likely around $3500.

At a car of it's age, even with decent mileage (which I'm putting nothing on, really), I simply cannot justify spending that much money on repairing it.

Besides, the rest of the car (exterior, interior and engine) is FLAWLESS.

Garaged it's entire life, almost entirely in Beverly Hills, then the last two years (I think) in Chicago. I'd have to check with CarFax on the exact amount of time here.

Anyway, I love the thing, but my idea was to sell it about six months from now for $14-15K (which is what a number of them are still going for) as a downpayment on a R230 SL500, which is what I really wanted in the first place, and are beginning to approach the $40K range for the 2003's.

Hopefully, my plan is still possible with this repair.

We'll see.

Last edited by Jay_R; 09-17-2007 at 11:55 PM.
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Old 09-17-2007, 11:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Date registered: Nov 2006
Vehicle: 1998 W210 E430
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohlord
from Race Parts - Auto Parts - Car Parts - The Internet Racepages - RacePages.Com
make sure you check out why the cats failed,rule out oil blow by,etc.,cats last a long time,sometimes they fail,sometimes other faulty parts cause them to go bad.
and yes any good muffler shop can splice them in.

"GOT CODES?"
Actually, I'm pretty sure the reason it broke is due to a series of HUGE speed bumps recently placed in the garage I use. They're about two inches with absolutely no slope/grade to the peak (they are of some hard plastic and literally jut from the ground upwards) and the problem seems to have begun fairly soon after they were placed. Obviously, I drive as slow as possible over it, but at such a distance it creates a physical 'drop' every time I cross that, and that affects parts, especially closer to the ground.

And, before you say it, I would actually threaten with taking them to small claims court or even sue them for the cost of the $3200-3500 and get it properly repaired, but there's no way to prove that it is the speed bump over the age of the vehicle. Even from this forum, I know there's a tendency for them to fail around 80K miles. I'm not going to even waste my breath on it.
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Old 09-18-2007, 07:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Probably

not the speed bumps.Splice in universals.You bought the car on ebay?Paid to much?Right now it is worth about $8700 tops,in 6 months lucky if you get $8200,so you better be planning to save a bigger down payment,or driving the 430 for several more years.

Show me a 1998 430 that sold for 14-15k this year ,to anybody except someone that fell in love with it on sight,on ebay or at a dealer, and did not do their homework on the real value of the car.
"GOT RESEARCH?"

Last edited by ohlord; 09-18-2007 at 07:43 AM.
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Old 09-18-2007, 08:02 AM   #10 (permalink)
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dont be jealous, but i am bringing my car in to replace a cat. converter tommorow at the dealer for free. wonder what they would give me as a loaner.
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