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Hi. New member although I have been visiting this forum for a while. I have a 2006 C230 Sport. The car won't start when the key is turned to the start position. The column does unlock. So the problem started when the wife got into the car and the alarm went off. She stopped the alarm by pressing the keys on the remote. The car started normally and she drove the car to work. When she was leaving work and tried to start the car, the key would not turn. I was able to get the key to turn only after trying many times. When the key is turned to the start position the starter does not engage and no dash lights come on. The dash will remain blank but if the lights are turned on the mileage shows on the cluster. The steering wheel unlocks as well as the gear shift lever. When the key is left in the ON position the radio works but nothing else turns on. The key remote will operate the locks and trunk, but some times the car does not lock or unlock when the buttons are pressed. I connected a scanner to the OBD2 port and there is no communication with any of the systems except for the SRS system. The SRS system is reports OK, except it says the driver side air bag squib 1 and 2 are open. This car recently had the driver side airbag replaced by Mercedes. I put in a new battery and no change. Any idea whats failed?
 

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New: 2005 w211 E270 132kw; Old: 2001, w203, C220 105kw
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Hi,
i won't say this is the reason for sure, but i suspect your new battery was not being charged. Which can mean that alternator needs servicing.
Furthermore, i would check keyfob batteries just in case.

Do you hear a clicking noise when you try to start the car? Like, you turn the keyfob fully to the right and you hear click or nothing at all?
Usually, that click means the starter is good but battery power is insufficient.

So, check your battery first then the rest. It's new i know but if it wasn't being charged it's good as a dead one.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi,
i won't say this is the reason for sure, but i suspect your new battery was not being charged. Which can mean that alternator needs servicing.
Furthermore, i would check keyfob batteries just in case.

Do you hear a clicking noise when you try to start the car? Like, you turn the keyfob fully to the right and you hear click or nothing at all?
Usually, that click means the starter is good but battery power is insufficient.

So, check your battery first then the rest. It's new i know but if it wasn't being charged it's good as a dead one.
It does not make any sound or clicks when you turn the key. Its not even trying to start. The dash does not show the shifter's position so the instrument cluster is not being updated via the data bus. I charged the battery with a battery charger before I installed it and again after it was installed. It looks like there is no communication with any of the modules since the scanner only can read the SRS airbag system.
 

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New: 2005 w211 E270 132kw; Old: 2001, w203, C220 105kw
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Okay, in that case, you need an expert to locate the problem. Here everything will be "guesswork".
If you like experimenting and looking for a problem on your own you can start with inspecting ECU (Engine Control Unit), in my W203 it's located under the hood in the right corner when you face the engine from the front (left drivers side).
Maybe there is some moisture or corrosion on electrical contacts in the box which holds ECU...

Or something else gone bad, as i said from people's opinion side it will be guesswork which might work.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Okay, in that case, you need an expert to locate the problem. Here everything will be "guesswork".
If you like experimenting and looking for a problem on your own you can start with inspecting ECU (Engine Control Unit), in my W203 it's located under the hood in the right corner when you face the engine from the front (left drivers side).
Maybe there is some moisture or corrosion on electrical contacts in the box which holds ECU...

Or something else gone bad, as i said from people's opinion side it will be guesswork which might work.
There must be some experts here that can help with this or someone that has had the same problem and fixed it. The car, even though it is in very good condition is not in my opinion, worth bringing it to a dealer and having them charge me thousands to fix it. I will only bring to them as a last resort.
 

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Hi. New member although I have been visiting this forum for a while. I have a 2006 C230 Sport. The car won't start when the key is turned to the start position. The column does unlock. So the problem started when the wife got into the car and the alarm went off. She stopped the alarm by pressing the keys on the remote. The car started normally and she drove the car to work. When she was leaving work and tried to start the car, the key would not turn. I was able to get the key to turn only after trying many times. When the key is turned to the start position the starter does not engage and no dash lights come on. The dash will remain blank but if the lights are turned on the mileage shows on the cluster. The steering wheel unlocks as well as the gear shift lever. When the key is left in the ON position the radio works but nothing else turns on. The key remote will operate the locks and trunk, but some times the car does not lock or unlock when the buttons are pressed. I connected a scanner to the OBD2 port and there is no communication with any of the systems except for the SRS system. The SRS system is reports OK, except it says the driver side air bag squib 1 and 2 are open. This car recently had the driver side airbag replaced by Mercedes. I put in a new battery and no change. Any idea whats failed?
Disconnect the battery for 5 minutes then reconnect it. Try after that.
 

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Check voltage and report back. You should see 12.6v at rest, no less than 11v when cranking, and 14v at idle.
 

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Why did you have to charge the 'new ' battery ?
Is it brand new from the shop ? or is it a new to the car ,,,old battery ?
Have you tried using your spare key ?
If the batteries in the car and the keys really are good ,,,but it still won't start ,,,have the alarm checked .
 

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Check voltage and report back. You should see 12.6v at rest, no less than 11v when cranking, and 14v at idle.
Yes, and even 11v can be insufficient sometimes, i saw it myself when attempting to start, the voltage will drop to 9.5 or something like that.
 

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Hi. New member although I have been visiting this forum for a while. I have a 2006 C230 Sport. The car won't start when the key is turned to the start position. The column does unlock. So the problem started when the wife got into the car and the alarm went off. She stopped the alarm by pressing the keys on the remote. The car started normally and she drove the car to work. When she was leaving work and tried to start the car, the key would not turn. I was able to get the key to turn only after trying many times. When the key is turned to the start position the starter does not engage and no dash lights come on. The dash will remain blank but if the lights are turned on the mileage shows on the cluster. The steering wheel unlocks as well as the gear shift lever. When the key is left in the ON position the radio works but nothing else turns on. The key remote will operate the locks and trunk, but some times the car does not lock or unlock when the buttons are pressed. I connected a scanner to the OBD2 port and there is no communication with any of the systems except for the SRS system. The SRS system is reports OK, except it says the driver side air bag squib 1 and 2 are open. This car recently had the driver side airbag replaced by Mercedes. I put in a new battery and no change. Any idea whats failed?
Does the car sometimes ask you to remove the key once you insert in the ignition?

Have you done a routine check of the fuses to see if anything is blown? You may also want to isolate the car to just the critical systems, can you access the fuse chart? I guess they're abundant online.





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Discussion Starter #11
I'll try to answer all. The car does not run and the key only turns to the on or start position intermittently. When the key is on the instrument cluster is blank and only the mileage is displayed. Nothing else is displayed. I changed the battery out with a new one I had laying round. It was fully charged and read 12.6 volts. I changed the battery out because the car recently had the driver's side airbag replaced by Mercedes. When they checked the car they said the battery was low and should be replaced. Even with the "bad" battery the car started fine before this problem. When I checked it, it was low on electrolytes. I added distilled water and charged it. It seemed to be OK. I just downloaded the fuse and relay PDFs I found here. So I'll be able to check this sometime during the week. In NJ rain for the next two days then snow so I won't be able to check anything until the weekend. The question I need answered is if the key is turned to the on position should the ECM and other computers be up and running even if the security system says key is wrong. Right now there is no communication with the ECM, trans controller, or ABS computer with the key on. The SRS controller is alive and I can read it with my scanner. The others have no communication. There is a code that says squib 1 and 2 high resistance.
 

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I'll try to answer all. The car does not run and the key only turns to the on or start position intermittently. When the key is on the instrument cluster is blank and only the mileage is displayed. Nothing else is displayed. I changed the battery out with a new one I had laying round. It was fully charged and read 12.6 volts. I changed the battery out because the car recently had the driver's side airbag replaced by Mercedes. When they checked the car they said the battery was low and should be replaced. Even with the "bad" battery the car started fine before this problem. When I checked it, it was low on electrolytes. I added distilled water and charged it. It seemed to be OK. I just downloaded the fuse and relay PDFs I found here. So I'll be able to check this sometime during the week. In NJ rain for the next two days then snow so I won't be able to check anything until the weekend. The question I need answered is if the key is turned to the on position should the ECM and other computers be up and running even if the security system says key is wrong. Right now there is no communication with the ECM, trans controller, or ABS computer with the key on. The SRS controller is alive and I can read it with my scanner. The others have no communication. There is a code that says squib 1 and 2 high resistance.
I do believe that if the key turns to the on position the systems should be alive and available for reading... But start will not be possible. Someone else may also confirm this...

But here's the thing, if the ignition system is faulty then the key may turn but the 'on' signal or one or more messages are not sent on the CAN and most things stay dead... But further testing and opinion is required... I'm only quite sure due to its striking similarity to what I have experienced.

You can have someone help you with this:

Get a good insulated cable and connect to battery positive post, slice small cut into starter cable (purple) I guess, let someone turn the key to start engine position while you touch the exposed area on the purple wire (careful!). If it doesn't start then you have to track down issues with the start circuit and DAS. If it starts, it's still DAS related but may just require very experienced electrical troubleshooting... Or could also be a bad Front SAM...



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Discussion Starter #13
When to try and start car today. Remote control worked on opening and closing the doors locks. I verified that when the key was inserted the remote buttons did not work anymore. However soon after that the remote stopped working even though the red light is flashing on the remote and now the alarm goes off every time I get into the car. Two new questions. does the horn work when there is no key in the ignition and the ignition is off. does the radio turn on even though there's no key in the ignition if you press the power button. My horn is not working and I can turn the radio on by just pressing the power button.
 

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It is normal behavior for the horn to not work, and to be able to turn on the radio with the ignition off.
 

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You should not be able to turn on the radio without power to the vehicle. If you can, this indicates there has been some connection established to the constant power source within the vehicle, which is most likely draining the battery, which also can explain many of the issues you are experiencing, as I just was experiencing the same ones a few days ago. What brand battery are you using in the vehicle also? Just because they are the same size and type does not always mean they hold the equivalent charge capacity the car needs.
 

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You should not be able to turn on the radio without power to the vehicle. If you can, this indicates there has been some connection established to the constant power source within the vehicle, which is most likely draining the battery, which also can explain many of the issues you are experiencing
That is incorrect. The radio in the W203 (and most all modern MBZ vehicles) is powered only by a constant 12v power source. There is no "switched" power source for the radio. Instead, to have the radio turn on and off with the ignition, it uses CAN bus signals. Because of this, a feature of the radio is that you can switch it on by pressing its power button even with the the ignition off. The radio will operate for about 10 minutes and switch itself off to conserve the vehicle battery.
 
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