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1992 SL500, 2008 C300
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Help!!! I just got my 1992 500SL last October with the hardtop installed. I removed the hardtop the other day, just as the manual instructed. When I hit the switch to raise the top everything was fine until the roof reached the windshield, then stopped. In the owner's manual, there was a highlighted paragraph with instructions to manually pull the roof to the windshield if the latches don't engage by themselves. Since the paragraph was highlighted, I assume the previous owner must have run into this problem. Anyway, that worked and the top finished closing seemingly fine. But, the next day when I went to lower the top, nothing happens except for the red light blinking on the top switch. Any ideas???

Thanks!
 

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'91 300SL(sold) 2000 SL320 Edition '94 E220 T auto
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698 Posts
Hi,
I had problems with my 91 300SL like you the red light blinks annoyingly when it feels something ain't right! I've a feeling the top may well have gone up because ity was happier letting you close it before it deciding to show you something is wrong!

Your best bet is to search this forum for soft top operation threads, The soft top is the only thing on the car which you can read fault codes from without any tools! The system makes the soft top switch flash out fault codes, which correspond to specific problems. There are 30 different codes, so the system is quite specific at telling you what is amiss! Basically if the switch flashes 20 times, code 20 corresponds to a particular fault.

Look at the soft top operation threads here and it explains how to get the codes to flash out. All you will need is a paperclip or perhaps slightly better a wire with two banana plugs.

My problem was ABS brake system related. The front left wheel was not giving a speed signal to the soft top controller, I had a break in a wire to a front ABS sensor. If you're ABS light isn't coming on it will most probably be a switch sticking or something like that.

I'm not a huge expert on the system but if I can help with giving code descriptions PM me.
 

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2007 CLS 550, 1998 Harley Road King, 2011 F-150 EcoBoost, '65 Shelby Cobra
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978 Posts
Yes, a couple ideas to start with. I have the same car.
1. I ALWAYS have to help the soft top latch when it gets to the windshield. That is not an abnormal situation, so don't think you forced something you shouldn't.
2. Most likely, your battery may be a little low. It doesn't take much for the top to decide not to operate as it does sense battery voltage available. The exact same thing as you describe happened to me last week. I had not driven the car for about a week. I turned the ignition on, but did not start the cart. The top would not move and the switch just blinked at me. :confused: I started the car and kept the engine at about 1500 rpm. I activated the switch and the top worked perfectly. :D
 

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'91 300SL(sold) 2000 SL320 Edition '94 E220 T auto
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698 Posts
I also meant to say I always have to pull the top home from inside the car, in fact you've just taught me too that it's OK to have to do that!
 

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2007 CLS 550, 1998 Harley Road King, 2011 F-150 EcoBoost, '65 Shelby Cobra
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978 Posts
Glad I was of some help, Silver50. These wonderful cars are quirky enough to begin with. It is always good to know when somethings are normal.:thumbsup:
 

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Y2K SL500 Silver
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8,660 Posts
As stated, if there is not enough battery to start or complete the soft top cyscle there will be problems. To make sure this doesn't happen have your car running and the battery charging when trying to engage your soft top.
 

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Y2K SL500 Silver
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8,660 Posts
When I combined the Sticky's I was concerned that people would not read them as before and I think that has been happening on a frequent basis so I may need to make some changes at http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r12...ombined-topics-before-posting-new-thread.html

Welcome to the R129Forum and please know that the problem that you are expierencing happens quite often. Please read the blue Sticky at the top of the forum. Especially 'soft top control module'.
 

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Hi All,

Out of all the problems I have had with cars, the roof not workingon my SL took the biscuit.

I spent countless hours phoning people, getting diagnostics/quotes (£2000 was the highest to replace the control unit and hydraulic motors) as the roof didnt work at all and I had to put up and take down manually.

Then I spent 4 hours in the Benzworld forum and found this link. I can confirm that the thread that recommends holding the rev's at 2,500, winding down the windows and putting your right hand in your left coat pocket, then popping the hard top worked!!!!! Not only did it work, but once the hard top was off and I had taken my hand out of my coat pocket I was able to amazingly raise the soft top and the full process was working again!!

I just want to say thank you to the geniuses in this place!! I have no idea why this worked and would love to get an explanation, but even if there isnt one, thank you still!!

I hope to improve my knowledge and return the favour.

Cheers and happy new year
 

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2000 Obsidian Black Metallic Mercedes SL 320 V6
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4,536 Posts
Hi All,

Out of all the problems I have had with cars, the roof not working on my SL took the biscuit.

I spent countless hours phoning people, getting diagnostics/quotes (£2000 was the highest to replace the control unit and hydraulic motors) as the roof didn't work at all and I had to put up and take down manually.

Then I spent 4 hours in the Benzworld forum and found this link. I can confirm that the thread that recommends holding the rev's at 2,500, winding down the windows and putting your right hand in your left coat pocket, then popping the hard top worked!!!!! Not only did it work, but once the hard top was off and I had taken my hand out of my coat pocket I was able to amazingly raise the soft top and the full process was working again!!

I just want to say thank you to the geniuses in this place!! I have no idea why this worked and would love to get an explanation, but even if there isn't one, thank you still!!

I hope to improve my knowledge and return the favor.

Cheers and happy new year
Hi SL Z4K and happy we could help you solve your soft top problem.
For the future tho I'm asking you to update your profile with your car and year and you location to help us help you better.

Good luck.

Cheers.
 

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S 500 2004 SEDAN
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5 Posts
Help!!! I just got my 1992 500SL last October with the hardtop installed. I removed the hardtop the other day, just as the manual instructed. When I hit the switch to raise the top everything was fine until the roof reached the windshield, then stopped. In the owner's manual, there was a highlighted paragraph with instructions to manually pull the roof to the windshield if the latches don't engage by themselves. Since the paragraph was highlighted, I assume the previous owner must have run into this problem. Anyway, that worked and the top finished closing seemingly fine. But, the next day when I went to lower the top, nothing happens except for the red light blinking on the top switch. Any ideas???

Thanks!
Unless your battery is completely drained the soft-top mechanism should complete the entire cycle.

I was also the proud owner of Mercedes version of the “Money Pit”; the 1992 500SL, and most of the problems were related to hydraulic fluid leaks from the windshield latches, and progressively the entire system required periodic solenoid replacements and eventually the Master Hydraulic Pump under the spare tire went south. There are other issues with the Master computer that orchestrates the process. I would have personally been happier with the simple 560SL manual labor format. I was eventually quoted $8,000 to replace the entire system.:cool:
 

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2007 CLS 550, 1998 Harley Road King, 2011 F-150 EcoBoost, '65 Shelby Cobra
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978 Posts
Not so, NIKKILOSADA. The top system is VERY sensitive to voltage. Many of us have found that out either after spending $$$ with no effect or out of frustration:crybaby2:. I have a good pump, new windshield latch cylinders and no rear cylinder leaks.

However, I NEVER operate the soft top or take the hard top on or off without the engine at least running. 1500 rpm is better as the soft top will operate much faster.
 

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Greek God of the R129
SL500-500SEL-190E
Joined
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8,560 Posts
Hi All,

Out of all the problems I have had with cars, the roof not workingon my SL took the biscuit.

I spent countless hours phoning people, getting diagnostics/quotes (£2000 was the highest to replace the control unit and hydraulic motors) as the roof didnt work at all and I had to put up and take down manually.

Then I spent 4 hours in the Benzworld forum and found this link. I can confirm that the thread that recommends holding the rev's at 2,500, winding down the windows and putting your right hand in your left coat pocket, then popping the hard top worked!!!!! Not only did it work, but once the hard top was off and I had taken my hand out of my coat pocket I was able to amazingly raise the soft top and the full process was working again!!

I just want to say thank you to the geniuses in this place!! I have no idea why this worked and would love to get an explanation, but even if there isnt one, thank you still!!

I hope to improve my knowledge and return the favour.

Cheers and happy new year
Welcome aboard.
Many times relays need a little tickle of electricity to wake up, or a little tap.
Maybe that did it.

Now about the pocket trick..................
HMMMMM.
I used to use something like that long time a go on my girlfriends, it didn't work all the time but many times it did.
Very happy.
Oh, it works on the soft and the hard.

Regards.
aam.
 

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Banned
Y2K SL500 Silver
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8,660 Posts
However, I NEVER operate the soft top or take the hard top on or off without the engine at least running. 1500 rpm is better as the soft top will operate much faster.
I definately have the car out of the garage and the engine running whenever I raise or lower the RST-roadster soft top.
Just a smart way to go.
 

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1995 SL500
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169 Posts
Error in link

When I combined the Sticky's I was concerned that people would not read them as before and I think that has been happening on a frequent basis so I may need to make some changes at http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r12...ombined-topics-before-posting-new-thread.html

Welcome to the R129Forum and please know that the problem that you are expierencing happens quite often. Please read the blue Sticky at the top of the forum. Especially 'soft top control module'.
Lynn: Hyper link does not work.
 

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3 Posts
Hey there have a 1991 500SL and I am also having a problem with the soft top, and the chime indicator........ the darn thing just chimes all the time no matter what...... my switch doesnt work or blink at all for that matter soo getting some kind of code off it is not possible..... my fluid level is fine, fueses are fine, overload protection relay is fine, everything seems fine thought the top and the soft top switch does nothing.....I need some serious help with this buzzer thing.... its driving me CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Greek God of the R129
SL500-500SEL-190E
Joined
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8,560 Posts
Hey there have a 1991 500SL and I am also having a problem with the soft top, and the chime indicator........ the darn thing just chimes all the time no matter what...... my switch doesnt work or blink at all for that matter soo getting some kind of code off it is not possible..... my fluid level is fine, fueses are fine, overload protection relay is fine, everything seems fine thought the top and the soft top switch does nothing.....I need some serious help with this buzzer thing.... its driving me CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!

Check your ign. switch, could be broken.
Chime goes on when lights, key, door, back of the seat switch is not latched etc.

Regards.
aam.
 

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Banned
Y2K SL500 Silver
Joined
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8,660 Posts
Check your ign. switch, could be broken.
Chime goes on when lights, key, door, back of the seat switch is not latched etc.

Regards.
aam.
It could be any one of the many RST 'limit switches'. Please see the attached PDF.

I believe you are going to need to clear ALL of your codes several times then let the car deliver a code that will tell you which limit switch it is. After that you can use a Ohm meter to check that switch for the DTC.

All the information that you need to determine what the DTC's are and how to build a code reader can be found at the bottom of the second Blue Sticky under the 'Ultimate Soft Top Controller...'
 

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oK, SOOOO i checked for codes, and found NOTHING,,,, charged the battery, made sure every connection on the seats, and convertible top are making good contact, checked hydrolic fluid level.... Dinger is still bonging away, the roll bar switch does NOTHING at all, and I just installed a new Soft Top control switch, and still NOTHING the light doesnt illuminate on the witch either......... WTF...!
 

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Greek God of the R129
SL500-500SEL-190E
Joined
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8,560 Posts
Disconnect the damn thing.
Fix it when you can.
Roll bar is dead.
New switch.
That is the area of your problem you have to work.
Fuses? connectors?
Is your top working?

Regards.
aam.
 
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