2002 C230 Delay/Hesitation when accelerating from stop - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-04-2018, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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2002 C230 Delay/Hesitation when accelerating from stop

Hello,

I have a 2002 C230 with 91K miles and is a fun car to drive. Every once in a while, the vehicle would experience a hesitation or delay (1-2 seconds) when accelerating from zero speed. When it finally responds, it would jerk forward because of the position of the throttle pedal. The vehicle otherwise drive great and switch gear smoothly and flawlessly.

Mercedes recently replaced a list of items on vehicle as part of 'consequential damage' under SB-2009100001 (CAM shaft adjustment solenoid) including the following:
Engine Wiring Harness
M.E. Control Unit (ECU?)
MAF Sensor
CAM SHAFT Sensor
CAM Shaft adjustment solenoid
O2 Sensors (upstream)

Unfortunately, this subtle problem is still there after the repair (it was there before the repair) and recently raised its head again one time last week. Its kind of annoying (and potentially safety concern) when the vehicle is not responding to the throttle command. I checked with an OBD-II reader and see no code. I would think if there is a failure mode with throttle pedal, it should warrant a code from MB safety case stand point of OBD-II for fault isolation but it didn't.

Like to check if others experienced this issue and can provide pointers on how to troubleshoot given a lot of new parts are in the vehicle since July last year. Is this a known issue and is this part of a recall or have a TSB around it?

Thanks,
Martin
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-04-2018, 11:04 AM
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It could be an issue with the drive-by-wire throttle system. One thing you can try is to resync it:

1. Make sure everything in the car is turned off and closed.
2. Turn the key to position 2 so all the dash lights are illuminated.
3. Press the accelerator fully to the floor, depressing the "kick-down" button.
4. Hold he pedal for 5 seconds and continue to hold it down.
5. Turn the ignition switch back one click to position 1.
6. Release the accelerator pedal, but leave the key in position 1.
7. Sit quietly and wait for about two minutes - do NOT open or turn anything on.
8. Listen for a "click" or "ping" noise form the dash.
9. Start the engine and drive the car for at least five minutes.

If this seems to but only temporarily, then you could have either a bad accelerator pedal assembly or throttle body. Replacing the pedal is easy and fairly inexpensive (under $200 for the part). if it's the throttle body, sometimes cleaning it works.

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-04-2018, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Rodney,

Thanks for your quick reply and the suggestion. I would say the problem is quite sporadic and random at this point. About 2-3 times a year but the car only drive 2k miles every year mostly in local traffic.

Before all the fixes Mercedes put in for SB-2009100001, I suspected it was the oil in the harness causing it since I can physically see oil in the ECU electrical connector and oil dripping out of the ECU. I checked again last week after the delay/hesitation incident and everything is very clean with no trace of oil. So, I ruled that out.

What is the difference between the accelerator pedal assembly and throttle body?

Thanks,
Martin
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 03-04-2018, 01:33 PM
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I would think the accelerator pedal assembly would be self-explanatory - it's the "gas pedal". The throttle body is the physical butterfly that control the air intake ratio on the engine, like an old carburetor. However, I did just notice you have a supercharged engine, so I think that instead of a throttle body, it uses an actuator within the forced-air induction system. Still, the resync will make sure the physical "gas pedal" position is correctly mapped to what the ECU expects. If that does not help, then you'll likely need to find a good shop that can plug in and monitor what is happening when this problem occurs. Also, even though the MIL is not illuminated, there may be stored codes that should be checked.

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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Rodney,

I tried the resync you suggested. Other than not getting the "click" or "ping" noise form the dash, everything proceeded well. I haven't seen the startup hesitation since the last post.

I did experience one time the vehicle acted up when I was driving it. When I pressed on the gas pedal, the engine RPM gauge would show RPM capped at a little bit above 2000 RPM and car did not seem to respond to throttle (maybe due to engine RPM capped at 2000 RPM). Its kind of strange and persisted the whole 15-20 minutes I drive to work. After work, I drove the vehicle again and everything seems to be back to normal. Its almost like the key cycle resolve the situation.

With the additional situation like that, would that help pinpoint what the problem may be?


As mentioned previously, Mercedes recently replaced a list of items on vehicle as part of 'consequential damage' under SB-2009100001 (CAM shaft adjustment solenoid) including the following:
Engine Wiring Harness
M.E. Control Unit (ECU?)
MAF Sensor
CAM SHAFT Sensor
CAM Shaft adjustment solenoid
O2 Sensors (upstream)

Engine air filter is pretty new. I think I have the original spark plugs and thinking that would be my next thing to try or do a transmission fluid flush/change. Would that make sense.

Thansk
Martin
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-14-2018, 08:35 AM
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Is your transmission set to S or W?

I think I’ve experienced that as well. I don’t routinely use the second half of the pedal travel. Sometimes when I do it feels like I caught the car sleeping. My display fades as the day goes on so I can’t see if it’s on S or W. I toggle that switch a lot which might be a problem itself.

Sixto
98 E320s sedan and wagon
02 C320 wagon
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-14-2018, 05:39 PM
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The engine RPM being limited sounds like limp mode. If it did that, there should be codes stored, even if the MIL is not illuminated.

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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-14-2018, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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I usually run the vehicle on the N setting and hardly touch that setting. Are you saying one setting could be more prone to this problem and that has something to do with amount of throttle depressed?

Funny you mentioned about the display...I have the same problem! In my case, it seems to be temperature related. Display is fine at the start of the day when car is in garage. If car sits in the sun for a few hours, the display would be quite faded.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-14-2018, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Just went out and checked and see no code in the ECU. It could be because I have done enough drive cycles that the code cleared by itself. I didn't remember if I did check code as soon as the problem happened but will do so next time.

Are there many conditions that will keep vehicle in limp mode?

Given the elusive nature of the problem, I am thinking to do the following one at a time (not all at the same time)
- Replace all Spark plugs (original from 2002)
- Change transmission fluid (it has been many years since the last change as I only put like 2500 miles a year on it)
- Check throttle pedal harness (I don't know if that can be easily done) or have someone check the throttle assembly given the previous SB-2009100001 (CAM shaft adjustment solenoid) issue with oil in harness situation. Throttle being lower in the vehicle than the engine/ECU...maybe some oil get to the harness as I definitely see oil in the ECU. I imagine the throttle signal goes to ECU as well.
- fuel filter problem

In what order would it make sense given the symptoms?
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-15-2018, 06:42 PM
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Transmission problem can put it in limp mode, and that would not had a code int he ECU - you;d have to scan the TCU with an appropriate tool to get those codes.

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