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Registered
1990 300SE
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275 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I bought my 420SEL about 3 weeks ago now and I'm coming up to the time where it's due for a service. It's currently at 194k miles and I'm going to need to get the engine oil changed very soon. I also need to replace the rear shocks. I did some searching and it seems like Bilstein HDs are everyones' favorites here at Benzworld.

Now, here's my question(s). First, I need to find a reputable place that is honest, and fair in their pricing that I can start going to regularly for any maintenance that I need. Before I bought the Benz, I had an Acura that I always brought to Danny @ Tri-Auto on G street, and was very happy with his work. I would like to find the same for my Mercedes. I did some searching through U.S. - West Recommended Repair Shops section and I came up with a few places that seemed to get good reviews from members.

S&S Inland Star
2357 E. 5th Street
San Bernardino Ca 92410
909-885-6470

Michael and Albert Wang
M.B. Stars
788 Francesca Dr., #1a
Walnut, CA 91789
626-913-0780

Mr MB Motors
5557A Reseda Blvd.
Tarzana, CA 91356
818-708-8086

Maurice's Mercedes Service
947 W. 18th St.
Costa Mesa, Ca.
949 645-0600

I'd like fellow W126 owners to help me out with this one and guide me to a good place.

Currently, I'm looking for an oil change to be done, and looking for rear shocks changed. If possible, I would like to bring my own parts. Can anyone give me advice on what a reasonable price for these services should cost, and where I should go to get them done? Keep in mind my location. Maybe RJ, who also lives in Chino Hills, can chime in?

Thanks a LOT in advance! :thumbsup::bowdown:
 

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Registered
1993 300TE, 1995 E320 Wagon
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1,895 Posts
I'd recommend Mr MB in Tarzana, but that's a heck of a long way for routine maintenance (although there are members who will drive hundreds of miles roundtrip to his shop, if that's any indication of his talents). But I'm sure there must be someone closer to do basic stuff. Kodiakj2 is fairly close to you, and he might have a recommendation
 

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Registered
1989 560SEC
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2,056 Posts
I use Maurice's for my major service, but it's a drive from Chino.

Mike
 

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Registered
1990 300SE
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275 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
With this many strong recommendations from members for Mr MB and Maurice's, I'll keep them in mind for the future big stuff that I may need to have done. And, I'll definitely ring them for a quote on the shocks. Thanks, ElRojo and trooper6. :thumbsup:

But, like ElRojo said, it is a bit of a drive for routine maintenance like a simple oil change. So hopefully, Kodiakj2 will reply soon. :D
 

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Registered
1989 560SEC
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2,056 Posts
With this many strong recommendations from members for Mr MB and Maurice's, I'll keep them in mind for the future big stuff that I may need to have done. And, I'll definitely ring them for a quote on the shocks. Thanks, ElRojo and trooper6. :thumbsup:

But, like ElRojo said, it is a bit of a drive for routine maintenance like a simple oil change. So hopefully, Kodiakj2 will reply soon. :D

Just make sure your sitting down when you get a quote for rear shocks. If you have SLS rear suspension, the shocks are actually hydraulic rams that raise and lower the car. They will be anywhere from $300-$450 per ram + installation. I have replaced mine myself and the job isn't that hard, just messy because of the hydraulic oil. If you're mechanically inclined it's a slam dunk.

Mike
 

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Registered
1990 300SE
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275 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
did you review the recommended mechanics pages?
Yes, And, the 4 names and addresses are the product of my research. I felt that they were the most highly recommended out of those that are within reasonable distance from my location. But, with the W126s, since they are older cars, I thought I would ask for advice here on how these mechanics are with the older models and also see if maybe someone had better recommendations that may be closer to me.



Trooper6, fortunately for me, I have standard shocks and springs all around. So, hopefully that will save me big bucks! I did some searching on DIY shock replacement and I found a couple links, but I'm not too certain. I think there was talking about spring compression and removal of the rear seats? I certainly don't mind getting dirty, but mechanically inclined.. not really, yet!
 

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Slightly creased
2015 ML 400 x 2
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16,613 Posts
if you have standard springs/shocks in the rear, yes the seat needs to be removed but the springs do not - it would be one of the easier maintenance jobs to do.
 

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'84 500 SEC Euro 040 black Lorinser 2005 sl500
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2,516 Posts
In all honesty, for just an oil change and maybe swap in some shocks I would use the closet reputable shop to you. I have heard very good things about the guys in Walnut (your second listing of shops) and I believe they allow you to bring your own parts.

When I lived closer to Mr MB Motors in Tarzana I would purposefully go in for an oil change and pay his slightly higher prices just so that Enrique or Carlos would walk the entire underside of the car and offer their suggestions on what should be done soon to the car or what could wait. They never hesitated to give this evaluation even though they knew I would do some of the smaller jobs myself and save the more complex things for them to handle.

Just remember that part of what a shop brings in as revenue is in parts markup and will not install parts that you bring in. Besides, most parts that I would buy retail cost more to me than what Mr MB Motors would buy wholesale and then mark them up slightly to make a profit. Plus it is just plain easier to have the mechanic do the diagnosis, parts ordering and install from start to finish rather than me guessing what it needed then buy parts and bring them in.

Just to recap, any shop can do a decent oil change and swap out shocks. Besides, you may be able to build a decent relationship with a shop close to home such as the guys in Walnut where you will get decent work at a fair price by being a repeat customer, so why not give them a go. If you don't get a good vibe from them on an oil change job, move on to the next one until you like the service you get. Can't hurt to shop around for the small jobs so you can trust some one you like for the big stuff later.
 

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Registered
1990 300SE
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275 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Wow, that is one helpful pdf file, 420 SE! I have saved it for future reference. :D


Kodiakj2, thanks for the solid advice! I will probably be going to M.B. Stars for the oil change and then decide whether I will stick to them after that, as per your advice. Thank you, everyone! Loving the Benzworld community. :thumbsup:
 

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Registered
1984 500SEC AMG 5.4L "Das Model"
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573 Posts
You know you should get into the habit of doing as much of the work as possible. You will save a lot of money, of course save the more complicated jobs for a mechanic. I just changed the oil on my 300SD and it was the easiest oil change I've ever done, my mechanic charges $74 for this!
 

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Y2K SL500 Silver
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8,660 Posts
I know this is an old thread but I happened upon it and thought I would put in my two cents. If you want to use your own parts M.B. Stars does excellent work. I live in Costa Mesa and many people rave about Maurice and I have been to his shop but not as impressed as I have been with The Wang Brothers. They both have 20 years plus working at Dealerships then there own 3 lift shop.

Let's put it this way, I drive from Costa Mesa to Walnut and they have changed out my entire suspension on my 2000 SL with H&R Springs, Bilstein HD's, strut mounts, etc.

I've also had them R&R my OE brakes in order to get rid of that ugly black brake dust to Akebono ceramic brakes, rotors, and custom SS brake lines when I did my brake oil change.

Most recently they did a 722.6 trans oil change, crankshaft and camshaft position sensors R&R.

I have NEVER had to go back for them to fix something that they did not complete, forgot to do, or otherwise made a mistake on. As you can tell I have nothing but the highest regard for the quality of work that they do and fair prices that they charge for labor.

And I will tell you that I am ANAL about my car and that's why I trust these guys soooo much but I am proactive and plan ahead by buying my parts online usually from autohausaz.com or parts.com. It just depends on my needs.

Michael and Albert Wang
M.B. Stars
788 Francesca Dr., #1a
Walnut, CA 91789
626-913-0780

Maurice's Mercedes Service
947 W. 18th St.
Costa Mesa, Ca.
949 645-0600
 
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