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2001 ml430 744 silver
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150 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My wife was driving the ml430 today and suddenly an extremely loud banging is coming from underneath the front passenger seat! If you tried to speed up it would get horribly worse. It actually sounded as though someone was trying to ram a sledge hammer through the floor . I could drive the vehicle at 5 mph and not hear anything, smooth as silk. Above 5 mph. BANG BANG BANG!! All fluids have been maintained, I treat this car like a baby. It does have 110,000 mile though.
I looked under the car and nothing seemed to be damaged or out of place.
It almost seemed as though the car was going to rip it self to shreds over 5 mph!
Coould it be the transfer case dying?
No idiot lights on the dash came on.

ANyone have any ideas?
I have it under Extended Warranty so I should be good with the repairs.
I had it towed to my indy tonight.
We'll find out tomorrow hopefully.
 

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Premium Member
2006 E55: 1999 ML430; 2002 E430 4matic; 1988 190E 2.3; 1993 XL883
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301 Posts
If it's right under the seat, grab the torsion bar and try moving that to see if it's loose.
 

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It was fun while it lasted
2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC RIP, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
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11,148 Posts
Better check your center bearing/cv joint on your rear drive shaft.
 

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46 Posts
My wife was driving the ml430 today and suddenly an extremely loud banging is coming from underneath the front passenger seat! If you tried to speed up it would get horribly worse. It actually sounded as though someone was trying to ram a sledge hammer through the floor . I could drive the vehicle at 5 mph and not hear anything, smooth as silk. Above 5 mph. BANG BANG BANG!! All fluids have been maintained, I treat this car like a baby. It does have 110,000 mile though.
I looked under the car and nothing seemed to be damaged or out of place.
It almost seemed as though the car was going to rip it self to shreds over 5 mph!
Coould it be the transfer case dying?
No idiot lights on the dash came on.

ANyone have any ideas?
I have it under Extended Warranty so I should be good with the repairs.
I had it towed to my indy tonight.
We'll find out tomorrow hopefully.
I had the center bearing go out on my ML430 and it started to sound like that as well. Also check the heat shields to see if they're loose. I had one come loose and it sounded like that truck would fall apart as well. Let us know what you find out.
 

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2002 ML500 Silver
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76 Posts
+1 for the center shaft bearing, mine failed and lots of crunching commenced.

I also had a loud banging one morning and stopped the car and looked underneath and found nothing. I proceeded to drive back home and most of dead squirrel came flying out and it stopped. I guess it was caught in something and was swinging around, making the racket.
 

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1997 W210 E320, 1999 W163 ML430, 2002 W203 C240
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761 Posts
+1 for the center shaft bearing, mine failed and lots of crunching commenced.

I also had a loud banging one morning and stopped the car and looked underneath and found nothing. I proceeded to drive back home and most of dead squirrel came flying out and it stopped. I guess it was caught in something and was swinging around, making the racket.
HAHAAHAHAHAHA.. Now that is some funny [email protected]#T.
 

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2001 ml430 744 silver
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150 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
suggestions

Well it was the driveshaft bearing support. NOT covered under my extended waranty.
Is this something i can do myself. they want `$700 to do the job.
i usually change the oil , and oil filter, brakes, rotors and electrical parts. i am not afraid to
get dirty. I have ramps and many tools. do i need any special tools to do this job?
i also have a full machine shop at my disposal.

What do you suggest?
 

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Premium Member
02 ML320 06 ML500
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17,105 Posts
Well it was the driveshaft bearing support. NOT covered under my extended waranty.
Is this something i can do myself. they want `$700 to do the job.
i usually change the oil , and oil filter, brakes, rotors and electrical parts. i am not afraid to
get dirty. I have ramps and many tools. do i need any special tools to do this job?
i also have a full machine shop at my disposal.

What do you suggest?
If you have the tools and the machine shop then you are halfway there. Go to the dealer and purchase the Center Bearing repair kit (163 410 00 10). It comes with the center bearing, the U-joint and bolts and nuts and washer.

Remove the drive shaft, make marks on both halves of the drive shaft to retain balancing on reassembly, press out the U-joint and then remove/install the old and new support bearing, and then install the new U-joint.
 

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It was fun while it lasted
2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC RIP, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
Joined
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11,148 Posts
Well it was the driveshaft bearing support. NOT covered under my extended waranty.
Is this something i can do myself. they want `$700 to do the job.
i usually change the oil , and oil filter, brakes, rotors and electrical parts. i am not afraid to
get dirty. I have ramps and many tools. do i need any special tools to do this job?
i also have a full machine shop at my disposal.

What do you suggest?
What???? $700? I had the entire job done on both shafts for $125.00 plus parts, 2 years ago on my ML430. Do you know that the part numbers on the U-Joints matched up to the same ones on a Jeep Grand Cherokee? The dealer wanted $75.00 each for the u-joints and the drive shaft shop charged me $15.00 each. Wow.
 

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46 Posts
Well it was the driveshaft bearing support. NOT covered under my extended waranty.
Is this something i can do myself. they want `$700 to do the job.
i usually change the oil , and oil filter, brakes, rotors and electrical parts. i am not afraid to
get dirty. I have ramps and many tools. do i need any special tools to do this job?
i also have a full machine shop at my disposal.

What do you suggest?
Here's a link to where you can get the bearing. The MB dealer will charge $250-300 for the same part. I had mine replaced and only paid around $300 total w/parts & labor. You will have to look at your drive shafts and see how much wear the bad bearing has put on the shafts. They are expensive to replace. If they are worn down to much, you'll have to replace them or have them repaired. If you don't, you'll still get a slight vibration while at speed.

eBay Motors: Mercedes W163 ML270 ML320 Driveshaft Support Bearing (item 120264814287 end time Jun-01-08 09:35:35 PDT)
 

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2001 ml430 744 silver
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150 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Well, I broke down and let the indy repair the support. I was able to get them down to $660 total. But then they tell me that there is a slight vibration at 18-20 mph then it goes away immediately. I drove the vehicle for a little while and could swear it was that way before this incident. BUT
I gave my wife the vehicle to drive today,without telling her of the vibration issue. She is the daily driver of the vehicle and I wanted to see if she noticed the vibration She did notice it immediatley. It really is extremely slight. I will be damned if I go back to that indy. They were not nice and when I pushed them on why they didn't take the drive shaft off when THEY notice the vibration, well they couldn't be bothered to even look me in the eye and give an answer. If something's not right don't you investigate?

Is there any danger in living with the vibration?
If it get's worse, of course I will cough up the bucks and have it fixed.

Opinions anyone?
 

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Well, I broke down and let the indy repair the support. I was able to get them down to $660 total. But then they tell me that there is a slight vibration at 18-20 mph then it goes away immediately. I drove the vehicle for a little while and could swear it was that way before this incident. BUT
I gave my wife the vehicle to drive today,without telling her of the vibration issue. She is the daily driver of the vehicle and I wanted to see if she noticed the vibration She did notice it immediatley. It really is extremely slight. I will be damned if I go back to that indy. They were not nice and when I pushed them on why they didn't take the drive shaft off when THEY notice the vibration, well they couldn't be bothered to even look me in the eye and give an answer. If something's not right don't you investigate?

Is there any danger in living with the vibration?
If it get's worse, of course I will cough up the bucks and have it fixed.

Opinions anyone?
I would think that there is a danger in the vibration. The drivetrain is supposed to run vabration free and the more you drive the worse it will get...until you have a major problem that could do more damage to your drivetrain.

The dealer had to pull off the driveshafts to pull off the bad bearing. I watched my shop do the work and both the front and rear had to come out to install the new one. I would take your ML back and have them fix the problem at no cost to you.

I used to work for a car dealership and I can tell you this...if you go directly to the General Manager and talk to him/her...you'll get a quicker resolution to your vibration problem. I hope this helps.
 

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2001 ml430 744 silver
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150 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Am I Right Or Wrong?

When they pull the drive-shaft off they should be able to tell if it is bad or not by inspection. The indy shop put the bad drive shaft back on (after changing the support bearing) and now want me pay the labor to remove and replace it.

I don't mind paying purely for the replacement part.

Let me know if I should continue to argue with them.
Thanks
 

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Premium Member
02 ML320 06 ML500
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17,105 Posts
When they pull the drive-shaft off they should be able to tell if it is bad or not by inspection. The indy shop put the bad drive shaft back on (after changing the support bearing) and now want me pay the labor to remove and replace it.

I don't mind paying purely for the replacement part.

Let me know if I should continue to argue with them.
Thanks
I can understand your concern, but from reading your posts, by your own admission the slight vibration was present before the center bearing needed replacement. That vibration could have caused the center bearing to go bad and you should have told the mechanic of it before the job was started.

Being that you didn't, it seems that the mech. performed what he was supposed to do, replace the center bearing, which was faulty. The reason for the vibration could be a slight bend in the drive shaft, but if it is not visibly evident, then how could he be held responsible. Remember the fact that you did not go to the mechanic for a vibration, and he suggested that the center bearing be replaced. If after replacing it you still had the same vibration, then all would agree that the problem was not repaired. But this was not the case.
 

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It was fun while it lasted
2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC RIP, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
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11,148 Posts
A good competent machine shop could straighten and balance your drive shaft. Try to find one.
 
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