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Mercedes E320 1999
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
my defective bulb warning comes on from time to time when i switch on headlights; took a walk around and all seem to be working .

would the SDS find the source of the problem or is there an easy way to determine what area is giving a false warning
 

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1994 E320 Wagon,1999 E320 Wagon,2000 E 320 Wagon, MGB Track/Rally, ,1988 300E ,more....
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6,019 Posts
FOLLOW

THE DETECTIVE PROCEDURE IN THE DIY SECTION.
MOST LIKELY NOT A FALSE warning.
Probably a licence plate lamp. There are 2;)
 

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'01-E320 & 02-ST2
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31,633 Posts
If it's only sometimes it comes on, then it may be a bad rear socket or headlamp connector, those are both occasional troublemakers. However, start with the sticky procedure and work your way through it.
 

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Premium Member
1999 E430
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64 Posts
Occasionally humidity gets past the gasket and a small amount of corrosion can form in the light socket slightly altering the system resistance and triggering the bulb warning.
 

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1999 E300 Turbodiesel
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463 Posts
If it's only sometimes it comes on, then it may be a bad rear socket or headlamp connector, those are both occasional troublemakers. However, start with the sticky procedure and work your way through it.
Very frustrating, followed the STICKIES to the letter, got down to---turn headlight switch bla bla bla and the lamp defective came on---walked around the car----all lights on---continued with the test, because there is a stacked file indicating more than one fault. Pulled the switch out one notch and both fog lamps do not come on. I suspect thats the second defect.

Once again -----what's the first issue--all lights came on----HELP
 

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W210 Moderator
99 E320
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4,985 Posts
invariably, folks will say they've verified that all the lights were functioning
but in nearly all instances, they've missed one. so here is a checklist

(2) low beam bulbs
(2) high beam bulbs
(2) city light bulbs (below high bulbs)
(2) fog light bulbs
(2) corner bulbs (on side of front fenders)
(2) brake bulbs (dual filament. activate brake and verify both sides)
(1) high brake light in rear window
(2) rear running/tail lights (shares dual filament as above)
(2) reverse lights
(2) rear license bulbs (be sure you verify both. many miss one)

If you've verified each of these bulbs to be intact, you may have a bad ground,
using a non-spec bulb, using LED bulb...
 

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Mercedes E320 1999
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
do the cabin lights count? now that you mentioned it lord, one of the license plate bulbs were being cleaned a few weeks ago and one end of the base broke loose from the glass part; it was lighting up so i still used it . wonder if that could be an intermittent culprit

my rear clusters are all shiny clean , no corrosion
 

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1994 E320 Wagon,1999 E320 Wagon,2000 E 320 Wagon, MGB Track/Rally, ,1988 300E ,more....
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6,019 Posts
You clean

licence plate bulbs?
Hats off to you,I thought I was a fanatic:D






probably the culprit:)
 

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1999 E300 Turbodiesel
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463 Posts
invariably, folks will say they've verified that all the lights were functioning
but in nearly all instances, they've missed one. so here is a checklist

(2) low beam bulbs
(2) high beam bulbs
(2) city light bulbs (below high bulbs)
(2) fog light bulbs
(2) corner bulbs (on side of front fenders)
(1) center brake light array
(2) brake bulbs (dual filament. activate brake and verify both sides)
(2) rear running/tail lights (shares dual filament as above)
(2) reverse lights
(2) rear license bulbs (be sure you verify both. many miss one)
I think that the key word here is INVARIABLY and in my case that holds true. This coupled with my total lack of undestanding of my cars lighting functions created my frustration. When it was all said and done, yes I walked around the car and everything that was lit was lit. What I forgot about is what should have been lit. I my case it is the so called STANDING LIGHTS AKA CITY LIGHTS that are located in the high beam, both were out along with two fog lights.

Thanks greg and raymond for your patience!!!
 

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Mercedes E320 1999
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
ok ohlord, the parts guy at Benz walked through the checklist and no error came up ; went home and replaced the 2 license plate bulbs so they are new with non broken bases.. then the error pops up again . now what
 

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W210 Moderator
99 E320
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4,985 Posts
ossat, it has got to be one of the bulbs on the list itemized earlier. the only
thing I can think of that would defy this is if somewhere along the way,
someone saw fit to perform an LED mod.

can you confirm that all the exterior bulbs are std issue, incandescent bulbs
of the proper model?

how long ago did the malfunction msg begin? did this coincide with any other
changes made to the car?
 

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Mercedes E320 1999
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
ossat, it has got to be one of the bulbs on the list itemized earlier. the only
thing I can think of that would defy this is if somewhere along the way,
someone saw fit to perform an LED mod.

can you confirm that all the exterior bulbs are std issue, incandescent bulbs
of the proper model?

how long ago did the malfunction msg begin? did this coincide with any other
changes made to the car?
the warning came up a few weeks ago soon after I broke that licence bulb but that was replaced today. all bulbs seem to be standard issue , non LED

if I recheck all bulbs and all are working how would I check the sockets and is it possible to be a wire leading to the socket
 

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E320 4matic, W210
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7 Posts
I have a slightly worse problem now.
Recently I had water leaking inside the car through the windshield. After that I have the following behavior.
When I start the engine, I immediately receive the lamp defect notification. Without touching the brake pedal or switching any lights on. In addition, the fuse for the front right xenon lamp get blown out from time to time.
Also, the rear parktronic indicator is on all the time - together with the front ones. It should come on only when the lever is in R. The rearing light works fine though - it comes on when it should.
The anti-glare mirrors dont work.
The rain sensor works but the behavior is somewhat different from previous.
I have changed the light switch unit with the fuse box. Mine had visible signs of water damage to it, but this has changed nothing. I still have the same problems.
I have also changed the roof lamp unit which acted bad too. But this has no effect on the light defect issue.
So I have a bunch of questions.
Any ideas?

Is there anything else near the windscreen that could get damaged by water?
 

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1999 300 TD
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60 Posts
Thanks for posting this question. I didn't even think to look in the stickies for this... I've had the defective bulb warning come on a couple of times, I've looked at the headlights and said, "huh?".

I love this forum. One day I'll be able to answer some questions :)
 

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E320 4matic, W210
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7 Posts
So, I guess I'll answer it myself since no one seems to know the system so well.

The unit that controls the light bulbs is located under the bonnet next to the fuse box there. It is a two component unit with OEM codes 019 545 56 32 and 002 545 19 01.

http://images2.carpartsdiscount.com/auto/archive/pictures/54405/600/1/P/6E355EA/mercedes_e300_1998_relay_oem_019_545_56_32_195455632.jpg

http://thumbs3.ebaystatic.com/m/mvE1X_ABvJszlqzAPS220tA/140.jpg

So far we have come the easiest way and replaced both. That works but I will soon know which of the units is the true culprit.
 

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'00 E430 Sport -
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12 Posts
i have an 00 e430 just did LED lights on the exterior, lisence plate LED's, corner LED's and LED cabin lights and i threw the lamp failure message too so its normal
 

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103 Posts
I actually have two (rear) lights bad sockets, which leads to having multiple warning messages throughout the ride.

My question is the following : is it possible to disable the "lamp failure message" from the dash and/or the "warning" message sound ?
 

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88 560SL - 01 C240 - 02 W210 4matic Wagon - W212 4matic wagon
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1,090 Posts
Replace the sockets -- about $10 each ...... I bought mine at Autohauz.

Had two replace both of them on the wagon -- one just last week.

I tried to clean them many times .. but it odes not last
 

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103 Posts
Replace the sockets -- about $10 each ...... I bought mine at Autohauz.

Had two replace both of them on the wagon -- one just last week.

I tried to clean them many times .. but it odes not last
Hey man,

Thanks for the tip.

I actually did try and replace the sockets, but what the guy at Benz told me is that the metallic rim (on the light unit) which holds the sockets is loose.

Apparently it requires replacing the whole light unit since there are no spare parts for this...

So in the meanwhile, how can I disable that sound ?
 
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