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2002 ML320
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23 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My '02 ML320 has the clearcoat peeling off of both curved rear corner plastic pieces between the rear quarter windows and the rear hatch. I got a quote from my M-B dealer who wants $100 for each piece-not installed. Anyone familiar with this problem? The parts guy knew the # right off the top of his head, which tells me that I am not the first guy to come in for this issue. Looking for a better price and also, how do I get the pieces removed and reinstalled. I am assuming that some form of double stick tape/adhesive holds these on.

Thanks in advance for any assistance...


LarryU
 

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SL600 ML55 AMG
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447 Posts
My pieces were also in bad shape. I bit the bullet and ordered them for $100 per. Johnhef from here on the forums installed them. He took a piece of heavy gauge wire and slid it behind the pieces to remove them. Installed the new ones with adhesive and it looks great! The truck now looks new again.
 

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1999 E55, 2001 E320, 1990 560 SEC, 2004 ML350, 2001 ML55, 1995 S500, 1998 SL500, 2010 E550 Sport zoo
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7,035 Posts
Replace or re-spray, whatever is cheaper and easier for you..

Common issue..either dealer parts at $100 ea (you "might" find small discount on-line, maybe) .. or if you have a dependable body guy they are a easy re-spray.

Cheapest would be a DIY respray, a job that has been done by other members here. Remove from the car, light refinishing and aerosol re-spray, do a board search under "rear pillars" or alternate name calling (A pillars ?) and find earlier posts with photo's.

On the rear pillars, what my body guy sez is they use sturdy nylon fishing line to get behind the piece across the top, and then pull the nylon fishing line down on both sides to cut thru the double row of mastic adhesive.

Hope that helps !
 

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ml500 w163 2002
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456 Posts
Same here, one post peeled, but not the other.
the part that peels is the part most exposed to the sun and heat. I believe it is not UV protected coating and that is what causes the problem. I have a driveway i used to park my car in when every morning for 5 hours the sun would shine from a particular angle where it hits the driver's side one. I switched the parking spaces so the angle of the car was on the other side and sure enough the other side started peeling.

I had my friend with a body shop paint these black to match the rear tinted windows, it looks 10x's much better and has nothing to peel anymore.
 

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2007 ML 500, 2008 ML 550, 2011 ML 63 AMG
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363 Posts
the part that peels is the part most exposed to the sun and heat. I believe it is not UV protected coating and that is what causes the problem.
My body shop guy thought that too, except the car has been stored inside since new, night and day. In may case it is just a small area too, about 3" x 5" and right on the bend itself smack dab in the center of the piece, not anywhere near an edge.

It seems to be some sort of adhesion problems similar to GM's notorious peeling roofs.
 

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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
My '02 ML320 has the clearcoat peeling off of both curved rear corner plastic pieces between the rear quarter windows and the rear hatch. I got a quote from my M-B dealer who wants $100 for each piece-not installed. Anyone familiar with this problem? The parts guy knew the # right off the top of his head, which tells me that I am not the first guy to come in for this issue. Looking for a better price and also, how do I get the pieces removed and reinstalled. I am assuming that some form of double stick tape/adhesive holds these on.

Thanks in advance for any assistance...


LarryU
A 'temporary' fix that can be repeated would be to take fine steel wool and work them down. After removing all the clear you can, you can get black KIWI shoe polish and rub it on them. It's just like black wax. After you rub it on, you can buff it to a shine. It lasts quite a while. It definitely beats the $200.00 option. You can eventually spray them once you are sure the clear is all gone. If any clear is still on them, it will peel again, but it's better than driving it around looking like that. They look terrible. BTW, the black KIWI shoe polish works great on the door handles if they're hazy looking. I keep a can in my garage for both ML's.

For those who have 98,99 and 2000 ML's. Those are MOLDED black plastic and will not peel. But, they crack in half in the middle. Probably why they went to a different plastic.
 

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2001 Ml-320 sport
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45 Posts
yea. i got the same problem, and i am just thinking of having it repainted to my body color. this is definitely the worst part of my ML and i hate it. but just look at it from a different angle, and you'd start to smile again. :)
 

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2002 ML 500, 1994 Ford Explorer donated to Doctors without Borders
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2,126 Posts
I Repainted mine

Both of mine were really horrible looking. They were peeling like crazy. I used a sander and 400 grit sand paper to remove the clear coat and repainted using Rustoleum high gloss. I love them now.

Here are the pics.


Before


They looked much worse than this right after washing. For some reason, the peeling part turned white! :eek


During sanding...


All done!


Finale!


One word of caution... Be sure the protect your paint with enough covering... It was windier than I figured and I noticed later that I had gotten spray on the side of my truck. I used 91% Isopropyl alcohol, being very careful to rub no more than necessary and it took off the specks.
 

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Black 2005 ML350 (W163), Black 2007 C230 Sport (W203)
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82 Posts
Thanks All for the help on this. Glad to hear I'm not alone on this!
No.. not at all. Same thing happened to my 05 ML it is very common hear in South Florida.. im guessing it is caused by the sun and acid rain. A buddy of mine who works at the local benz dealer says he sees 163s go into the dealer almost every day with the same problem. He recomended a have them replace as they would most likely chip again if I had them painted. I got the idea to have them covered in black UV coated vinyl.. no need to remove them, no risk of spraying your car if painted without removing, no risk of them chiping again and only cost $5.00. :thumbsup:
 

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Black 2005 ML350 (W163), Black 2007 C230 Sport (W203)
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82 Posts
Thanks All for the help on this. Glad to hear I'm not alone on this!
No.. not at all. Same thing happened to my 05 ML it is very common hear in South Florida.. im guessing it is caused by the sun and acid rain. A buddy of mine who works at the local benz dealer says he sees 163s go into the dealer almost every day with the same problem. He recomended a have them replace as they would most likely chip again if I had them painted. I got the idea to have them covered in black UV coated vinyl.. no need to remove them, no risk of spraying your car if painted without removing, no risk of them chiping again and only cost $5.00. :thumbsup:
 

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2000 ML430 SOLD, 2007 BMW 328i Coupe, 2014 BMW i3, 2019 Honda Odyssey
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2,982 Posts
Amazingly, mine haven't peeled or faded- but one of them cracked in half. Now I might have to replace both if I want them to look even.
 

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2013 C250
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7,273 Posts
I see a lot of the old ML's in Northern California with the black corner piece peeling.
 

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2002 ML 320, 2004 Audi Avant A4
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212 Posts
No.. not at all. Same thing happened to my 05 ML it is very common hear in South Florida.. im guessing it is caused by the sun and acid rain. A buddy of mine who works at the local benz dealer says he sees 163s go into the dealer almost every day with the same problem. He recomended a have them replace as they would most likely chip again if I had them painted. I got the idea to have them covered in black UV coated vinyl.. no need to remove them, no risk of spraying your car if painted without removing, no risk of them chiping again and only cost $5.00. :thumbsup:
Yeah Im in the same boat as the rest. Mine have almost completely peeled and now they just look dull. I recently waxed the truck and figured to wax the pillars as well and they looked much better. Granted this isn't a fix but it was noticeably better.

What and where would one find this UV coated vinyl you speak of?
 

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1999 E55, 2001 E320, 1990 560 SEC, 2004 ML350, 2001 ML55, 1995 S500, 1998 SL500, 2010 E550 Sport zoo
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7,035 Posts
Call Tower Paint and ask them for their recommendation

Tower Paint always seems to help when I get stuck... my body shop is doing a sand down, base coat, then a "new UV resistant clear cost".

Tower Pain probably could recommend either a 1-step, or 2-step (base and clear) spray combination.

Call them (800) 779-6520 Central Time

Tower Paint Refinishing Projects
 

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95 E320 (Sold, known as Hi Ho)..1990 300E (sold, known as "the Chariot"..Current
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160 Posts
Anyone have used peeling Pillar Trim for sale??

For those who have had their pillar trim replaced, does anyone have the old part I can buy?

My father-in-law's 01 ML320 lost the trim piece on the driver's side, and the pass side piece is of course peeling...

I would like to buy a used peeling trim piece for driver's side, glue it on, then sand and re-spray both sides.

thx
Tomer
SF Bay Area
 

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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
Both of mine were really horrible looking. They were peeling like crazy. I used a sander and 400 grit sand paper to remove the clear coat and repainted using Rustoleum high gloss. I love them now.

One word of caution... Be sure the protect your paint with enough covering... It was windier than I figured and I noticed later that I had gotten spray on the side of my truck. I used 91% Isopropyl alcohol, being very careful to rub no more than necessary and it took off the specks.
Great post with excellent pictures. How's the Rustoleum holding up?
 
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