To "used" or "not to used" that is the question and Chinesium issue - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-14-2019, 08:33 PM
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I was going to say that sometimes the expensive costs are self inflicted (or when we pay someone who isn't really familiar with these cars).

Losing a wheel causes a lot of expensive collateral damage....

In my case working with the wing mechanic meant my car would need a new strut and sit for about a month....



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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-15-2019, 01:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Barmaley View Post
I guess the flow in my logic was taking for granted a wrong premise: I wrongfully thought that Mercedes makes reliable cars.
Mercedes do make reliable Cars, they just need Proper Maintenance using decent parts

As has been said a million times, stay away from cheap parts, stay away from dross "mechanics", learn how to repair the car safely and properly yourself, buy SDS etc etc etc


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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-15-2019, 09:09 AM
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@Barmaley , allow me to provide another perspective, as the owner of MB's, Hondas, and a Ford.

Like Kajtek1--whom I've actually met, and both he and "Mrs. Kajtek" are very gracious people--I also own a Ford Super Duty truck, a Diesel. Great truck, and I understand why he bought his. The local Stealership told me that the left rear brake "wasn't stopping like it should." Said it would cost $1,100 to repair it. Sounded like a ripoff to me.

I was right. I went online and got a set of pads, brake discs, and reman'd calipers, for $250...yes, that's plural, i. e. for *both* sides. Left and right. Less than two hours later, the job was done for both sides, and I knew it was done right. That includes a brake fluid flush, BTW.

My lady and I between us own two Hondas as well. I just got through overhauling the whole suspension on her car, a 23-year-old Civic. Handles like a dream now. Also replaced the valve stem seals, because the car needed it. I've done a bunch of stuff to that car (cooling system, tires, battery, *all* fluids replaced, etc.).

Our Hondas are very reliable...because I do these things.

Now let's get to Mercedes-Benz. Between her and me, we have four W220's and a W211. The 2003 S430 is Honda-like in its reliability. This car got a very similar treatment as the aforementioned Honda Civic. Whatever needed replacing got replaced. It's quite a list.

The result: I would trust that S430 on any road trip, at any time, of any distance, even with her all alone, going coast-to-coast across the United States...and back. That's about 3,000 miles each way, so 6,000 miles total. We just get in the car and drive at this point--no fuss, no muss.

The same is true of our other Benzes. The E320 CDI is also Honda-reliable, as is Dad's S430. Just get in and drive. The S600 TT does require a bit more attention, but it's far, far from terrible. The project 2000 S500, "her Benz", wouldn't require hardly any attention if it weren't my "test mule" for projects like the new Android head unit.

The commonality here? I maintain my vehicles and keep them in "good repair" in the first place, with good parts. What is "good repair"?

"good repair" (adj): the state of repair in which CowboyT would trust it on a road trip at any time, to any place, without hesitation, without even needing the benefit of roadside-assistance companies or a cell phone; see "pristine mechanical condition".

That's a high standard, indeed. That's how Dad taught me to maintain a vehicle, and that's what I do for every last one of them, the truck included. Yes, I would trust the S600 TT on a coast-to-coast round trip, too. Yep, that car, too.

On all of my vehicles, I use quality parts. HondaPartsNow.com has gotten plenty of my money, as have FCPEuro and MBOemParts.com. The truck got Bilstein shocks a few years ago (it was time). If I do use aftermarket, I get good aftermarket, and I avoid "Chinesium" like the Plague. The Honda got KYB Strut-Pluses and Moog Problem Solver suspension parts. The Benzes have gotten OE or Genuine-MB, since the aftermarket's kind of thin for those cars. Either way, I get good parts that I *know* will last for the next 15 years. Do it right and do it once.

The moral: get your Mercedes-Benz into "good repair", as I have done with all of my vehicles, using good parts, and you will have a luxury car that is "Honda-reliable". My current stable of cars is proof.

As a former neighbor puts it: "It really is cheaper to go First Class."
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2000 S430 (Dad's car, used for special occasions)
2003 S430 (one of two current DD's--second W220 project car, just for fun--decided to keep it after all)
2003 S600 (third w220 project car, the sports car)
2005 E320 CDI (the other current DD--first W211 project car)

Formerly:
2000 S500 (best friend's DD--my first W220 project car, gone to an excellent home--I still maintain it)

Last edited by cowboyt; 04-15-2019 at 09:24 AM.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-15-2019, 09:40 AM
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I spoke to using "cheap" parts above (e. g. "Chinesium"). Now, regarding the issue of used parts:

I will use certain used parts, absolutely. If it's a steering knuckle in good shape, you bet. If it's a wheel that isn't damaged or re-welded, yep. Body panels, yep. Alternator, sure. Exhaust systems in good shape, yes. Transmission, if it's relatively lower mileage, sure; same goes for the engine. AIRmatic valve block, yep, as long as it's lower mileage (matter of fact, I did that on a car--put my rebuilt one on there later, though, so this is now a spare). Arnott air springs, yes...as long as they're Arnott.

Headlight assemblies, generally no; DEPO has proved to be a better value with their new ones.

Suspension parts, no. I would go new on those. "But, the bushings can be pressed out!" Yes, they can...but the control arms also have built-in ball joints in them, and you need those in good shape, too. That includes axles and hub assemblies; best to go new.
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2000 S430 (Dad's car, used for special occasions)
2003 S430 (one of two current DD's--second W220 project car, just for fun--decided to keep it after all)
2003 S600 (third w220 project car, the sports car)
2005 E320 CDI (the other current DD--first W211 project car)

Formerly:
2000 S500 (best friend's DD--my first W220 project car, gone to an excellent home--I still maintain it)
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