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2004 SL55
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169 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I found two simple solutions for the sticky knob/button problem. I tried both rubbing alcohol and silicone tire gel. Both worked and the knob/buttons look new. You need a texture cloth or sock and just keep rubbing until the goo gets transferred to the cloth. Be careful not to get the silicone or alcohol into the HU or vent mechanisms. No clue why the knobs and buttons needed the crappy coating to begin with.
 

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930 Posts
try taking them off and cleaning with alcohol or wax remover or such then paint black, this will put a sealed coating on them
 

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The good news is: replacements do exist. I called a Mercedes dealer (Surrey, BC), and without knowing whether my radio is a Becker or Alpine version, he ordered both knobs. The Becker was $9 and the Alpine $14. I only have to buy whichever fits. Small price to pay.

Do you know how to remove the old knob I will paint it with a flat laquer even though it is being replaced. I'm assuming that you just pull it off?
 

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2003 SL500
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18 Posts
Sticky Hazard and Lock Buttons

We're proud new owners of a 2003 SL500. Beautiful car! And our first German car, ever.

It's beautiful, but suffers from sticky hazard and lock/unlock buttons which are mounted in the center of the dash.

Is this a common problem? If yes, what causes this?

What can be done as a remedy? Can the existing buttons be restored? Or is it best to just replace them?

I did a search on the topic and saw this thread, but not much else.

Mark Edmondson
Dallas, Texas
 

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2011 SL550, 1966 230SL, 1994 Acura NSX, 2016 Acura RDX, 2011 Harley Superglide
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17 Posts
I had mine replaced before I took delivery of my 2011 last year.
Be very careful using any cleaner / solvent on the buttons.

I learned the hard way on my 2006 CL500. I ended up replacing the headlight switch surround. Turned out to be less than $20 for the part and an easy fix.

The dealer told me plain HOT water will clean the buttons without making the problem worse but do not rub aggressively.

Good luck

Norm
 

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2007 E350 Sport, 2007 SL550
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378 Posts
Mark: Congratulations on your SL. FWIW: I used isopropyl alcohol ... not rubbing alcohol ... and a shop rag to remove the sticky stuff on my car's center control buttons. The goo came right off.
 

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Coupe/Convertible Forums Moderator
CURRENT: 2011 SL550, 2011 C300 FORMER: ML350, CLK550 Cabriolet, C240, ML320, 300TD
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19,441 Posts
Instead of using hard plastic surfaces, MBZ likes to us a soft-touch coating on buttons and other parts. After years of environmental exposure, that coating deteriorates and gets sticky. As mentioned above, It can be removed with various solvents. Non-acetone fingernail polish remover on a microfiber cloth works. The problem is that while some parts are black plastic with this coating added on top, some are white and the coating gives them their color, so you may not like the results.

You can buy a new set of those switches. The part number is A2308213451 plus the color code (need VIN to determine that).:

https://www.genuinemercedesparts.com/oem-parts/mercedes-benz-hazard-switch-23082134519116/?c=Zz1lbGVjdHJpY2FsJnM9c3dpdGNoZXMmaT01NzYxNDI1NSZyPTYmYT1tZXJjZWRlcy1iZW56Jm89c2w1MDAmeT0yMDA0JnQ9YmFzZSZlPTUtMGwtdjgtZ2Fz
 

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2003 SL500
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Thanks guys!

It has a Stone (tan) interior, with buttons to match.

To clarify: The solvents you mention can be used, but if the buttons are not black, there's a chance of discoloration.

Perhaps I'll try cleaning them, and if that fails, replace them.

Any tricks to removing them? Do they just pull off?
 

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Coupe/Convertible Forums Moderator
CURRENT: 2011 SL550, 2011 C300 FORMER: ML350, CLK550 Cabriolet, C240, ML320, 300TD
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2007 E350 Sport, 2007 SL550
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378 Posts
I have another question about sticky items in MB interiors: On both my wife's W211 and on my R230, the black panel behind the selector knob for headlight and driving lights is sticky ... or tacky. Has anyone tried removing the stickum from this panel and, if so, how, and what were your results?

I haven't yet tried hitting the panels with a bit of alcohol for rear the labeling might come off with the stickum. Anybody else tried cleaning up this black panel?
 

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Coupe/Convertible Forums Moderator
CURRENT: 2011 SL550, 2011 C300 FORMER: ML350, CLK550 Cabriolet, C240, ML320, 300TD
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19,441 Posts

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Coupe/Convertible Forums Moderator
CURRENT: 2011 SL550, 2011 C300 FORMER: ML350, CLK550 Cabriolet, C240, ML320, 300TD
Joined
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19,441 Posts
I have another question about sticky items in MB interiors: On both my wife's W211 and on my R230, the black panel behind the selector knob for headlight and driving lights is sticky ... or tacky. Has anyone tried removing the stickum from this panel and, if so, how, and what were your results?

I haven't yet tried hitting the panels with a bit of alcohol for rear the labeling might come off with the stickum. Anybody else tried cleaning up this black panel?
My W203 C240 had soft-touch coating on the AC control knobs. I removed it with non-acetone fingernail polish remover and was left with a nice silky black plastic. On my W209 CLK550, the panel between the center vent nozzles and the center console cupholder had soft-touch coatings. I did the same and it was nice black plastic underneath and even the backlit indicators for the vent controls remained white and functional on that panel.
 
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