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All problems listed for the past 7 years of ownership

9008 Views 49 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  lcmlee
I've owned my W140 since 1996 when she was just 2 years old.

I thought it would be useful to list all the problems I've EVER had with her for the duration of my ownership. If anyone wants specific details on a repair, just ask via a posting. [;)]

Hope you guys find this useful

Format as follows Problem – Resolution – Who fixed the fault

Rear Headrests not reclining - New switch - DIY
Failed Lumbar Support - Vacuum leak by ZF pump - DIY
Air Con failure - Leak at intake pipe - new intake pipe - Shop
Sunroof Sticking - ongoing - TBA
Rear passenger window sticking - ongoing - TBA
Front door locks sticking - rebuilt front locks twice with new rollers - Removal/fit DIY rebuild Shop
Rear boot lid lock failing - Cleanout and lubricate - DIY
Mirrors not folding - New Switch - Dealer
Rear Centre vents position handles broken - ongoing - TBA
Gear selector light failure - New bulb - DIY
Dashboard lights (fuel gauge/ mileage recorder) - New bulbs - DIY
Dash lights on headlamp on/off cluster - New bulb - DIY
Central lock failure - New ZF Pump - DIY
Water leak - New Water Pump - Shop
Transmission flaring between gears - Transmission Overhaul - Shop
Rear Brake Caliper grinding - New rear caliper + New rear discs (rotors) - DIY
Oil leak at front of Engine - Front gasket of M104 engine - Shop
Squeaking engine drive belt - New belt + tension set - Shop
Drive shaft linkage worn - New linkage fitted - Shop
Ventilation blower motor failure - New motor fitted - Dealer
Ventilation blower squeaking at low speed - ongoing - TBA
Rear speaker buzzing - New rear speakers - DIY
electric aerial stuck down - New aerial - DIY
ABS light on following battery install - Reset ABS light - Dealer
Worn (perished sheathing) ignition leads - New engine wiring harness - Shop
ABS light on following perished ignition leads - Reset ABS light - Shop
Headlamp wiper failure on right lamp - ongoing - TBA
Breakup in lamination on rear glass - ongoing - TBA
Rear screen elements partially working - ongoing -TBA
Centre console roller jammed - forced back into tracks - DIY
Loose Bonnet Star Emblem - New Emblem fitted - DIY
Jump Wiper arm not jumping at screen corners - ongoing - TBA
Pulling to the left - Retracking - shop
Snapped drivers door check-strap (door jam) - New check strap fitted - Dealer

If any more spring to mind I'll update the list

I'll glady help anyone with problems. I'll describe the repair as I carried it out. All repairs are at your own risk and down to your own competency.
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S280 Dash Lights and Auto Trans Flaring

Thanks w140Gill for the detailed explanation for pulling out the dash unit. Unfortunately, my 1995/96 S280 seems very reluctant to let it pop out! I removed the bottom carpet panel and have tried pushing the unit forward, but it appears to be holdig on something in the middle. I must be missing something and am worried that if I try excessive force something expensive is going to break.

Any clues?

I also hade a look at trying to replace the back lights on the central vent wheels. I suspect the only way is to remove the heater control unit below, or go in through the glove box.

I saw from your listing that you had transmission 'flaring'. I think I have the same symptoms, although not so extreme. In 2nd and 3rd, the revs sometimes increase by an extra 500rpm before engaging gear. Happens in drive and when using the gear selector manually. Problem occurs more frequently when in stop/start traffic. Is this the first stage of transmission failure? I have had it serviced and adjusted, but this only had a slight beneficial effect.

Apart from these problems, plus only getting cold air from the rear central vents, the car is a dream to drive. Car was imported from Singapore to New Zealand if that is relevant.

Any help appreciated.
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Gear shift selector light 1995 S280

The gear selector bulb is a little more complex.
You will need the following tools:
(1) A selection (because I cant remember the size) of torx screwdriver bits (I think its either T10,T15 or T20)
(2) A 1/4" mini ratchet bit
(3) A 'L' bend Allen key that fits into the 1/4" ratchet on the side that would normally fit the ratchet handle.
(4) A small phillips (crosshead) screwdriver bit.
(5) flat tip screwdriver

Open the ash tray and remove the inner with the release catch.
Look into the opening and you will see a small phillips screw holding on the wood panel on the cover of the ashtray. Insert the phillips bit into the 1/4" bit and use the allen key in the other end to 'frig' yourself a custom tool to get into the hole.
Undo the screw and the ashtray comes away. Keep the compression washer thats under the screw safe.
Feel in the opening where the ashtray resided for 2 torx headed bolts. There is one either side. These hold the wood around the gear and window switches in place.
Undo these bolts using your 'frigged' tool fitted with the right size torx bit.
Remove the surrounding plastic from the gear selector panel. This comes out upward. Use a flat screwdriver if necessary - mind the wood!.
The Wood panel is now loose from the gear selector. Lift upward starting from the ashtray end and carefully unclip the wiring from all the switches.
The Gear selector mechanism is now exposed. The bulb is the same variety as the dashboard, twist in type. It resides either on the side or under the top panel where the numbering is. Carefully unclip the top panel and replace the bulb.

As before refit is reverse of removal.

Hi Gill,

Long time. I still have the S280. 230,000km and still going strong.

I tried ot follow your instructions for changing the gear selector bulb and ran into a problem. The wood panel on mine is L shaped, going from the top of the gear box tunnel up, around and up with with ash tray, radio and heater controls. Is this different to your pre-95 model?

Undoing the two screws after taking of the ash tray coever did nothing. The wood panel is still fix. Frustratingly, I can get the bulb holder off, but cannot get it out between the wood trim and the ash tray. If only I could undo and remove the ash tray assembly.

I did see a small square screw up at the back of the ashtray housing, but I do not have one that small.

Any help much appreciated.

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