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1997 S500
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10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

First post, I am a total newb to Mercedes and obviously the W140. That being said I am currently (and most likely forever) a rabid fan of this exquisite piece of machinery. I picked up this car sight unseen at an online estate sale in Scottsdale AZ. They had an online walk through of the house (owner passed away) and the entire place and furnishings were immaculate, on a lark I bid on the Mercedes knowing it had low miles and figured the owner had taken great care of it... He did.

I had a 2015 Audi A5 and I was sick of watching the depreciation on it, decided to flip gears and go another route, bought the S500 and immediately sold the A5, so far it's the best decision I've ever made.

Purchased new and traded in to a dealership in Nebraska in 1999, then purchased by the guy I ended up getting it from 2 months ago who moved it to AZ where it's been ever since. I chatted with his family when I picked it up and they said it was his baby and that he would not let people get into the car if they were wearing Levi's. :laugh

Couple of minor issues that I will ask about as time goes on but cruising at 125 MPH through the desert on it's way home was a transcendent moment for me, Im hooked.

Grew up in an auto body shop that my father owned, I like playing with cars, here is a project I have that is ongoing (taking an extended break at the moment) at The Samba.

https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=338895
 

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Welcome to BW

As an owner of a low mileage car too, I must say that there are (likely) some hidden flaws in such a sleeping beauty.
Despite the great the condition your S500 seems to be in, you should plan on undertaking some work on it before another 125 mph run on the highway.

Change ALL fluids and carefully inspect suspension/tires/brakes. Check engine and transmission mounts.
If your car has SLS, looking at the pictures you provided, one could argue that your rear is sitting a bit low, and this is something that may need attention.

There are some common issues with the w140, especially now when even the newest ones are over 18 years old, and the archives will be very helpful in narrowing them down.

Enjoy your new ride!

Steve
 

· Registered
1997 S500
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10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As an owner of a low mileage car too, I must say that there are (likely) some hidden flaws in such a sleeping beauty.
Despite the great the condition your S500 seems to be in, you should plan on undertaking some work on it before another 125 mph run on the highway.

Change ALL fluids and carefully inspect suspension/tires/brakes. Check engine and transmission mounts.
If your car has SLS, looking at the pictures you provided, one could argue that your rear is sitting a bit low, and this is something that may need attention.

Steve
Yeah, I get that, it was just super difficult to hold her back, she WANTED to run! :wink Thanks for the info, I will post some better picks and interior as well. I'm not a mechanic so I'll have to find someone in my state that can do that work.

Cheers and thanks for the welcome.
 

· Moderator
93 SL500, 95 SL320, 96 S320, 98 S500, 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon & A little 91 5.0 FORD Mustang
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9,056 Posts
Welcome to Bensworld buddy, but like Steve said. Address those old fluids, but address these parts on a 20 year old car that can stop your engine in under 1minute on the highway.. Replace this heater tee with a actual Mercedes Part, or Rien tee.. No other aftermarket, or ebay/craiglist deal, orrrr used one...

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1320788-evil-lurks-under-hood-really-devil.html

http://www.autohausaz.com/pn/1408301696

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1719760-another-coolant-fitting-breaks.html

It is all about the cooling system... This tee should be changed every 70k through 80k at 90k to 100kmiles you risk of the tee is breaking. Mine broke at 100k. Change the overflow tank cap, flush your cooling system with distilled water only, and change that radiator drain valve too. Change those rear and front hoses..

Enjoy your ride..

Martin
 

· Registered
1997 S500
Joined
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10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Welcome to Bensworld buddy, but like Steve said. Address those old fluids, but address these parts on a 20 year old car that can stop your engine in under 1minute on the highway.. Replace this heater tee with a actual Mercedes Part, or Rien tee.. No other aftermarket, or ebay/craiglist deal, orrrr used one...

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1320788-evil-lurks-under-hood-really-devil.html

http://www.autohausaz.com/pn/1408301696

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1719760-another-coolant-fitting-breaks.html

It is all about the cooling system... This tee should be changed every 70k through 80k at 90k to 100kmiles you risk of the tee is breaking. Mine broke at 100k. Change the overflow tank cap, flush your cooling system with distilled water only, and change that radiator drain valve too. Change those rear and front hoses..

Enjoy your ride..

Martin

Whoa.

Can I just say thank you? After reading that entire thread I've ordered the T but it won't get here before I am headed to Bend OR. on Thursday, I will get all the fluids replaced before I go and be watching gauges like a hawk, also nothing over 85 mph as per "the Troll".

Thanks again Martin and Steve, sooo happy I decided to join the forum, I've got a lot to learn and that's always exciting. :smile
 

· Moderator
93 SL500, 95 SL320, 96 S320, 98 S500, 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon & A little 91 5.0 FORD Mustang
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9,056 Posts
Whoa.

Can I just say thank you? After reading that entire thread I've ordered the T but it won't get here before I am headed to Bend OR. on Thursday, I will get all the fluids replaced before I go and be watching gauges like a hawk, also nothing over 85 mph as per "the Troll".

Thanks again Martin and Steve, sooo happy I decided to join the forum, I've got a lot to learn and that's always exciting. :smile
You are welcome

Sadly I will say. You will still over heat and kill the engine as these measure water temperature not air temperature, and by time the water runs out the gauge will follow minute later, so what do you do???? When the engine is cold in the morning. Drain about a gallon of coolant onto a clean bucket(so you can re use it), and see if your low coolant light comes on before you make the trip. If it works, and lights up you are in business. If it does not light up, the connector plug on the overflow tank could be not connected, or the float switch on the overflow tank is no good...


It is the defect with these cars that can ruin your whole day...

Do not flush out your transmission, nor drain the torque converter because you may get this wonderful surprise... of post 4

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/2212618-722-6-slip-shudder-d-r.html

These are great cars, and just a little house keeping must be done a specific way..

Martin
 

· Registered
1997 S500
Joined
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10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You are welcome

Sadly I will say. You will still over heat and kill the engine as these measure water temperature not air temperature, and by time the water runs out the gauge will follow minute later, so what do you do???? When the engine is cold in the morning. Drain about a gallon of coolant onto a clean bucket(so you can re use it), and see if your low coolant light comes on before you make the trip. If it works, and lights up you are in business. If it does not light up, the connector plug on the overflow tank could be not connected, or the float switch on the overflow tank is no good...


It is the defect with these cars that can ruin your whole day...

Do not flush out your transmission, nor drain the torque converter because you may get this wonderful surprise... of post 4

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/2212618-722-6-slip-shudder-d-r.html

These are great cars, and just a little house keeping must be done a specific way..

Martin
Uh... After reading the catastrophic collapse of Joe-Trojan's transmission I now feel like a Hobbit who has stumbled upon a counsel of Elves and Wizards. Humbled, chastened and a little frightened... oh well, such is life. Thanks for the welcome Joe-Trojan, :notworthy:
 

· Premium Member
'97 CL600
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3,256 Posts
slafa, to set your mind at a little ease, I too bought a '97 S600 coupe (46K) last year. Had the tee ordered BEFORE I even had the car in my garage. Just out of curiosity we changed the tee then put the old one in a vice and attacked it with a hammer. While an earlier tee ( different year and model) had shattered on me, I couldn't get this one to budge. I had to assume at least on the 120 engine that they changed the plastic compound that made up the fitting. However, while we couldn't dent the plastic fitting, the hoses connected to it were mushy crap and were ready to go!
And welcome to the forum. My wife and I hit 3-4 of your National Parks/Monuments in 2014. You guys really lucked out in the "scenery" department. However, one thing was clear to me that I was the only Mercedes to be seen since leaving Seattle! Make sure everything is maintained perfectly with all new hoses, fluids and other normal maintenance items. You don't want a "CE" light in the middle of Capital Reef!
Anziani
 

· Registered
1997 S500
Joined
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10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
slafa, to set your mind at a little ease, I too bought a '97 S600 coupe (46K) last year. Had the tee ordered BEFORE I even had the car in my garage. Just out of curiosity we changed the tee then put the old one in a vice and attacked it with a hammer. While an earlier tee ( different year and model) had shattered on me, I couldn't get this one to budge. I had to assume at least on the 120 engine that they changed the plastic compound that made up the fitting. However, while we couldn't dent the plastic fitting, the hoses connected to it were mushy crap and were ready to go!
And welcome to the forum. My wife and I hit 3-4 of your National Parks/Monuments in 2014. You guys really lucked out in the "scenery" department. However, one thing was clear to me that I was the only Mercedes to be seen since leaving Seattle! Make sure everything is maintained perfectly with all new hoses, fluids and other normal maintenance items. You don't want a "CE" light in the middle of Capital Reef!
Anziani
Thank you for that, first off for some reason I couldn't post for the last couple of days, I got ahold of Teutone and he seems to have sorted it out for me. I wrote a couple of long winded posts but they are gone for good, most likely for the best.

There aren't many Mercedes in Utah, I think that frugal pioneer stock sees Mercedes as an overpriced luxury item instead of a sound vehicular investment, if you are buying new from a dealer then I believe they are onto something but wtf do I know?

Utah is an amazingly beautiful place and where I live slightly off grid there are stunning curvaceous roads where you can drive at whatever speed and rarely see another vehicle. I really enjoy just cruising around in this car, I wander up to the windows of my building just to look at it occasionally, it's a bit weird.

Well, a little packing and I am off on this trip to Bend OR. I put in an offer on a shop yesterday and we are still haggling back and forth, I don't have a garage as I live in an old JC Penney's building and I have multiple vehicles, trailers and such so I need a place to store and work on stuff, part of why my other project has stalled. Here are some pics of the building 2400 sq ft shop with an attached 3 bedroom 2 bath apartment, we are only a couple thousand part in negotiations so I think we will have a deal done today.
 

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1997 S500
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
slafa, to set your mind at a little ease, I too bought a '97 S600 coupe (46K) last year. Had the tee ordered BEFORE I even had the car in my garage.
Anziani
This is a test, I have somehow been locked out of the forum, Horst has been trying to help but to no avail, lets see if it works now...
 

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· Registered
1997 S500
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hello,
Looks like I'm back in after some login issues, my trip to Bend Oregon from Utah was great in the S500, shocking how it almost drives itself and how comfortable and enjoyable a 12 hour drive can be. While there I made the mistake of going through a drive through car wash and ripping my side views off... not totally but they are hanging, it's obviously happened before because there is some kind of foam/glue residue everywhere in the driver side housing.

Yesterday the soft close went out on the driver side door as well.

If someone can point me in the direction of some threads on these issues (oh and the dash light that says a light is out stays on all the time and the glove compartment almost has to be pry'd open as well) I would certainly appreciate it. I know this is newb bullshit but I am having a challenge navigating in here to find what I'm looking for, it's going to take me some real time commitment to figure out how to find what I'm after in here.

Thanks, Steve
 

· Premium Member
'97 CL600
Joined
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3,256 Posts
Steve, did you check the third brake light in the rear window? This usually is the culprit in the "bulb is out" game. As for the glove box, mine is not easy to open either but if I use two hands, one to push the button and the ohter to pull.bang on the dash it works. The REAL answer is to get to the cable and adjust it. Try the "search" feature and see if you can find the correct answer.
Since I rarely open the glove box, my push/bang procedure is all I need.
Anziani
 
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