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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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Front Brakes, 1994 E320, questions

Hey all,

In need of brakes on the '94 e320 wagon. Have a few questions, trying to decide to DIY or Pay the Man. Here's the facts: I moved recently from Knoxville where I had a great MB indy shop, trusted implicitly to Cincinnati, have a couple referrals for local shops but no warm-fuzzies yet. Thus the questions here for confirmation. Also, brakes are only part of what this car will be needing in the near future, but brakes are top o'the list. That little indicator lamp on the dash that comes on with every step of the pedal does a good job of making you feel guilty and is hard to ignore!

Have called 2 indy-shops in the area, one is pretty much MB only and the other is a well-known "german" shop. Have asked for price estimates for front brakes, engine mounts and AC compressor (ouch, I know it's the compressor, had some dye added last Fall and Evap is OK-for now). Seen a range of $1225 for compressor and $500 for brakes to $1550 for compressor and $600 brakes. $350 mounts both. Both brake estimates are for new rotors, and was told by the $600 shop that when do new rotors MB recommends repacking bearings and new grease seals, thus quite a bit of labor. Can y'all confirm for me if this is necessary and on the MB list or am I being "upsold" here? Even with repacking bearing, seems darn pricey to me at $500-600.

I have done front disc brakes before at home, but only domestic, GM and Ford. I don't plan on doing my own AC compressor nor probably the motor mounts, but am considering the brakes to help ease the pain of the other jobs. I'm sure I can find the step/by/step somewhere, but will I get in over my head for some reason here? Even if I'm due for rotors/repacking, I'm tempted to put new pads on to buy me 6 mos/6-8k miles for now and delay the shop bill now when I know I need the other work. Any opinions on that? And if I do so, locally available pads, like the Axxis semi-metallic or 'premium organic' available at Auto Zone, OK to use short term?

Thanks for any replies, just trying to keep costs down or the trusty wagon may be on the eBay auction block...Good thing I love the car and body is solid as a rock

Geoff.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 10:56 PM
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Hi Geoff,

My '94 E420 is the easiest car I've ever done brakes on. You will find lots of views on pads and rotors... My pref is OEM pads and rotors, they give consistant performance at all temps, with no issues other than brake dust.

Rotors are attached to the hub with a 5mm allen head bolt, and two roll pins. Once you remove the pads ( tap out the pins) and the caliper (19mm body) rotor pops off without touching the bearings.. So... repack at whatever your comfort interval is.

Search this form for brake tips, there are several more detailed posts. But truly is an easy car to do front brakes on.

Enjoy!
Bryan
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 11:42 PM
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Autozone = no good for me. The cheap pads will wear the rotors even worse. They tend to be made of a harder material. If you want to just stick pads on it for now make sure the rotors are still in spec. and that the rotors don't have a horrible lip. OEM or higher quality pads don't cost much more and would be wise if you're going to do a "temporarily permanent" brake job.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 05:17 AM
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Geoff,
Brakes are very easy to work on. You can buy top of the line Zimmermann cross drilled rotors (the only ones I did not warp) and Pagid OEM pads for about $275. You can also get cheaper rotors and the whole job will cost about $200 to $250.
As far as bearings go, I had my local MB dealer repack both front bearings for $60 when the car had about 160K miles. Be careful with some indie shops as they charge as much as the dealers do and the quality of work may be questionable.
Good luck!

Sergio
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 05:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for replies so far...so the Pagid / OEM pads would need to be purchased at local dealer I assume? I'm sure there are online options, but this is gonna be a Today or Saturday project if I do it...

Also, what I gather from a couple post's above is that I don't really 'need' to repack the bearings when getting new rotors? Bryan, not sure I have a comfort level, but as long as the seals are not leaking and everything is smooth makes sense that it could be put off.
And Sergio, good point, I have not called a dealer for same estimates, will do so. Do you know if your repack at 160k the first for that car?

Thanks again!

Last edited by 2005x; 04-03-2008 at 06:17 AM.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
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any links to good step/by/step?

I'm off to dealer over lunch to get pads and rotors, same price or less than Autozone to mu surprise. So, I have a project for later today. Anyone have a link to good directions w/ photos if possible?? I searched a little here, but so far found only pads, not removing the calipers and rotors.

Thanks again, Geoff.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
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Bump, any links to full brake r/r with rotors too?? The wiki-link I have is pads only, does not go into pulling the callipers, rotors.

Thanks, GP.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 05:46 PM
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Brakes for 94 E420(front pads) $67 at the dealer and the rotors I belif are $80.Make shure you flush the brake fluid when you do the rest, exsept if is not changed resently.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-04-2008, 05:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2005x View Post
Thanks for replies so far...so the Pagid / OEM pads would need to be purchased at local dealer I assume? I'm sure there are online options, but this is gonna be a Today or Saturday project if I do it...

Also, what I gather from a couple post's above is that I don't really 'need' to repack the bearings when getting new rotors? Bryan, not sure I have a comfort level, but as long as the seals are not leaking and everything is smooth makes sense that it could be put off.
And Sergio, good point, I have not called a dealer for same estimates, will do so. Do you know if your repack at 160k the first for that car?

Thanks again!
I bought the car with 115K miles and I doubt that the previous owner had the bearings repacked so it's most likely it was the first time at 160K but I can't be sure.

Sergio
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'95 E320 SE (gone)
'99 ML430 (gone)
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-04-2008, 06:28 AM Thread Starter
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Got the rotor off, eventually

OK, so from some previous posters that let on they loosened the wrong bolts, I figured I was looking at them also. (allen head rather than the hex-bolts)

So, I found the 19mm bolts and even with PB blaster those things were a bear. I even got an impact wrench on them, finally got them, but had to go back and forth between 3/4 air impact and 19mm socket, did a little 'rounding' on the bolt heads, wonder if the dealer stocks these bolts? Went back on OK, but may want to change them before they sit for a year or they may never come back off next time...
Anyway, after 3 hours, got one side done, learning curve. Will do other side tonite, soaking in blaster all nite may help some.

Geoff.
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