2003 S430 - Wont Come Out of Park - hasn't been in park for 3 weeks... - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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#1 (permalink) Old 03-27-2010, 07:53 PM
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Exclamation 2003 S430 - Wont Come Out of Park - hasn't been in park for 3 weeks...

Hi Everyone,

I'm new to this forum and I have a problem I think you guys will be able to help me out with. Its a 2003 S430 with 56,000 miles. I am the original owner.

About a month ago, a buddy wanted to take my car for a drive, and started the car normally. When he was putting the car into "R", I think I noticed his foot wasn't on the brake and he put the car into reverse with a reasonable amount of force. I didnt think it was a big deal at the time, and thought nothing of it. The next day, while I was trying to get out of park and my foot was on the brake, I noticed I had to pull a bit harder than usual. Again, thought nothing of it and continued on my way. By 2 days, I literally had to put full force on the gear shift to get out of park. I took the car in to my local Mercedes mechanic, and he told me the fix would be about $1200. He didnt give me any details as to the parts break down and labor charge, but I'm assuming, based on what I've read about the issue in these forums, that its a $1,000 part and $300 for labor.

Anywho, I was hesitant there as I know he is a rip off mechanic, and thought he was doing more than what was needed. He's ripped off a few of my friends before, so I asked him what a workaround is. Basically, ive been doing this for a month:

1) Leave the car in neutral when I want to park somewhere and put the parking break to the max.
2) Taken the mechanical key out of the keyfob to use to lock/unlock drivers door.
3) When I want to leave the car, I press the lock button on the dash. That locks all the doors except for the drivers, which I lock with the mechanical key.
4) I realize the key is in the ignition all the time, which is why I got a club and sun shield screen to put around the steering wheel so no one can see the key is on the car.

Its been working for now, but its getting annoying and I think the car is gonna give me other issues long-term if it stays like this. Ive read alot around this forum, and read somewhere that someone with an S55 took apart his transmission box and took out a plastic piece that makes the car need to push on the brake before changing gears. Im not concerned about the fact that the car will change gears just by pulling on the lever, as I have no small children. Im wondering what the procedure is or even if you think it will help me in the first place. Has anyone tried this before or fixed the wont come out of park issue some other way? Any suggestions would be great. Thanks for reading this long thing and your feedback is greatly appreciated!

P.S. If none of that is going to work, I would be forced to change the part everyone is mentioning, but would like to order it myself. A part name or number would be great.

Thanks Again
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#2 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 03:49 AM
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You have obviously done some reading, but didn't do enough searching. See http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w220...ols-heres.html - and post 24 in the thread has a link to parts sources.

Taking the broken part out will avoid the procedure you're using now; but replacing it (especially with a metal one) will maintain the safety feature.

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Last edited by Skylaw; 03-28-2010 at 03:52 AM.
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#3 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 05:45 AM
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And a little more info...


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#4 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 05:54 AM
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Nice post Skylaw, and yes he must change the complete ESM unit.

ERIC.

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#5 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by eric242340 View Post
Nice post Skylaw, and yes he must change the complete ESM unit.
You really don't need to replace the entire shifter unit, just the broken piece of plastic. If you swap out the shifter, it needs to be programmed. And worse, you are back to where you were with the plastic part lurking to create the same problem once more.

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#6 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 11:02 AM
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Smile Won't come out of Park

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric242340 View Post
Nice post Skylaw, and yes he must change the complete ESM unit.
Did not have to change the entire unit, like in the link to the video they put in the new and better part. I was very upset when my 05 S55 would not come out of park. Luckily I found a shop who new of the 4mercedes.com and got the part. $500 with labor instead of $1500 at MB. I m blessed to have that place near me in S Fla.
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#7 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by sleibo248 View Post
Did not have to change the entire unit, like in the link to the video they put in the new and better part. I was very upset when my 05 S55 would not come out of park. Luckily I found a shop who new of the 4mercedes.com and got the part. $500 with labor instead of $1500 at MB. I m blessed to have that place near me in S Fla.
Have you been to 4mercedes? I plan to dropping in to see what they have. I'm in West Palm.

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#8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 09:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylaw View Post
You have obviously done some reading, but didn't do enough searching. See http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w220...ols-heres.html - and post 24 in the thread has a link to parts sources.

Taking the broken part out will avoid the procedure you're using now; but replacing it (especially with a metal one) will maintain the safety feature.

Thanks Skylaw, that was exactly what I was looking for. I think I'm gonna remove the piece and not replace it with anything... aluminum or not I still have a bad feeling about it. So I wont run into any other issues by removing it and not replacing it? Like some light on the dash?
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#9 (permalink) Old 03-28-2010, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sleibo248 View Post
Did not have to change the entire unit, like in the link to the video they put in the new and better part. I was very upset when my 05 S55 would not come out of park. Luckily I found a shop who new of the 4mercedes.com and got the part. $500 with labor instead of $1500 at MB. I m blessed to have that place near me in S Fla.
You are indeed a lucky chap, congratulations

ERIC.

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- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill.

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second ... if there is one."
- Winston Churchill, in response.
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#10 (permalink) Old 03-29-2010, 07:26 AM
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I had this problem before. But I would bang on the shifter area a few times then everything was ok. I assumed the part was failing and would have to do something soon. Well that time was this past Friday. Thanks to the outstanding write up... Brought the laptop to the garage, invited a friend over and we did it. We removed the center casing and pulled the shifter out a few screws removed and took the part out the shifter. I will replace the part later. May upgrade my membership, this saved me big bucks. Thanks again
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