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W201, W202, W203, W204, W205 Moderator
Amethyst 2001 C320
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1,732 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
In an effort to improve the W202 forum, we're starting a "common problems and their solutions" thread for W202's. Before posting a new thread in the forum with your question, please check here for a solution as well as doing a search. For readability, please post in this forum in the following format:

Problem Description
Problem Cause
Solution (or link to thread with one)
 

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34 Posts
lots of transmission faults, faulty kompressors, and windshield wipers cost a lot to replace...other than than its a beuty...a guy on club202.com has 560,000 on his odometer


[edited by n0alpha]
...this is an example of how NOT to post in this thread. [8D]
 

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'83 380SL
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259 Posts
Problem: Battery may explode (there was a recall issued for this)
Cause: Excessive gas emissions from battery
Solution: Owner to check electrolyte levels regularly.
Note: Mine blew up two weeks after the car was serviced by the dealer under the recall notice ('99 C230K).

Problem: Occasional very Hard downshift from 2nd to 1st at low speed (5mph or so)
Cause: Unkown ( dealer could not duplicate)
Solution: None. Live with it.
 

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1999 C230K
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2 Posts
I have the exact same problem with my '99 C230K (hard downshift from 2nd to first). I read a post somewhere else that it could be a faulty transmission valve controller, but have been unable to corroborate this anywhere else.
 

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'83 380SL
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259 Posts
The problem is that it is really very intermittent, in my case maybe once a month, but always under the same conditions - driving at low speed through my condo parking structure. The car would just make 2nd gear before I had to ease off the gas.

That would lead me to question the source being a faulty part.

I know it sounds like a petty issue, but when this happens, the rear wheels lock up momentarily, sending you lurching forwards.

BTW, to amplify my earlier post re the battery, you can tell whether your car was a part of the recall by the big stickers placed over the original battery maintenance info in your owner's manual.

To be fair, in my case the battery explosion was triggered by me opening my cell-phone as I reached into the trunk to get my things. Nonetheless, my trunk was obviously and abnormally full of explosive gas from the battery. All it needed was a spark..
 

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92 500SL & 96 C280
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30 Posts
Problem Description: Wiper Motor
Problem Cause: Internal plastic gear stripped
Solution: DIY replacement of motor

Old motor gear could've been rebuilt, but replaced with new MB motor. Easy to do and saved at least $400 in dealer costs. Only tricky part is removing the moulding/facia around the wiper (several screws and clips), but easy if you have experience.

Time to do: 1-2 hours
Tools needed: Phillips screwdriver, 10mm socket and ratchet, thin/long flat head screwdriver for hidden clips
Level of difficulty (1-10): 2
 

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92 500SL & 96 C280
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30 Posts
Problem Description: 3rd Brake Light Bulb Failure
Problem Cause: Condensation / Dirty Bulb Socket
Solution: Clean socket/bulb connectors with wire/pipe brush or sandpaper

Dealer changed the bulb ($15ea) several times and then recommended replacing the socket at a cost of $100. Turns out the connectors were dirty/slightly corroded and weren't making proper contact with the bulb.

Time to do: 5-15 minutes
Tools needed: thin wire/pipe brush, pic or long nose pliers to adjust/bend bulb socket connectors
Level of difficutly (1-10): 0
 

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2009 C300
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70 Posts
C230Kto380SL - 10/23/2005 6:17 AM

Problem: Battery may explode (there was a recall issued for this)
Cause: Excessive gas emissions from battery
Solution: Owner to check electrolyte levels regularly.
Note: Mine blew up two weeks after the car was serviced by the dealer under the recall notice ('99 C230K).

Problem: Occasional very Hard downshift from 2nd to 1st at low speed (5mph or so)
Cause: Unkown ( dealer could not duplicate)
Solution: None. Live with it.
Did it blow your whole rear end and was it under insurance. If it does blow will a dealer fix the damage.
 

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1999 C230 Kompressor
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20 Posts
Hard downshift from 2nd to 1st.
I have a 1999 C230 Kompressor with the learning automatic transmission. I was able to solve the clunk downshift from 2nd to 1st by replacing the front flex disc.
 

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2003 S430 Sport Edition
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1,326 Posts
According to my MB Dealer. Another common problems among the W202 is the Damper Pulley which located near the crankshaft. These would the first thing that might break. I had mine changed two years ago after it broke a made a hole in the crankcase and my oil pan. The rubber which keeps the crankshaft in place came of and there was a screaming sound coming from the engine. Since the rubber seal was not there, the damper was leaning downwards. The fanbelt was scratching the engine blok.



Eddie
 

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1999 C 280 Sport
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109 Posts
c230nola - 11/15/2005 1:18 AM

I have the exact same problem with my '99 C230K (hard downshift from 2nd to first). I read a post somewhere else that it could be a faulty transmission valve controller, but have been unable to this anywhere else.
I will corroborate this. I have had the same issue troubleshooted 2 times. First they replaced the TCU and then the valve, pretty much fixed the issue. So I will properly post this.

Problem: EXTREMELY hard downshift into 1st gear, crappy, sometimes delayed shifting of tranny when warming up, and just general rough shifting as well.

Description: Car will shift REALLY hard into 1st at times, delayed sort of tranny slipping shifts when warming up, and general rough shifting at times.

Solution: Either the Transmission Control Unit or a valve in the transmission. The TCU applies to the 722.6 transmission only and the valve applies to all years (my 95 confimred this).
 

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28 Posts
Problem Description: Dash Removal, Vacuum Leak, and Center Vents not operating properly.
Problem Cause: Vacuum Leak from Billows behind Dashboard.
Solution: DIY replacement of Billows by vacuum testing and removal of dashboard.
With this post

Constant problem of center vents not blowing air out of them, and 3rd gear cold start not shifting.

Time to do: 2 hours or 1-2 days

Tools needed:
Torx 27 (For Removing Airbag)
1/8” Allen-key style hex socket (For Removing Steering Wheel)
-Preferably the Mercedes Benz dealer tool
-Also, some sort of breaker bar to loosen it.
Smallish sized Flat Head Screwdriver
Medium sized Flat Head Screwdriver
Medium sized Phillips Screwdriver
Preferably a 90 degree head screwdriver
Needle Nose Pliers
Magnet tool
Large and Small sized Socket Set.
-using mainly 8mm sockets.
Stereo removal keys
-Preferably the Mercedes Benz dealer tool,
-Can be substituted for whatever item you can fashion.
Vacuum Test Pump (if testing for vacuum leak)
-Can be found at AutoZone. Highly Highly recommended!!!

Level of difficulty (1-10): 7
 

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23 Posts
crazykittycat said:
Our door locks used to work, but now only the front doors will lock with the key and everything will unlock with the key. any suggestions? Is there a fuse. Thanks for any help you can give.
All the door locks on most mercedes are controlled by vacuum. You have vacuum motor all over the car including gas cap door release, door locks, AC vent flaps.

You may have a faulty vacuum motor(s) or vacuum leak somewhere in the system. On most w202 the vacuum tank is behind the right front fender( this holds vacuum to opporate these systems when the engine is off, since the engine is the primary source of vaccum) . There is also a auxillary vaccum pump in the trunk behind the right side brake light. You can actually hear it “whirrrring” when you lock and unlock your doors.
 

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Car will not start......

Description:

You drive to the store, and go in, come out and the car cranks, but will not start. You let the car sit for a while and the car starts up. Normally you will not get a CEL.....

Problem:

Could very well be the Crankshaft Position Sensor

If you go to the dealership to correct this, be prepared to fork out 3 hours of labor to include a one hour diagnostic fee. Plus about 120.00 for the part.

You can get the part from autohausaz for around 80.00 and do it yourself.

P/N 0261210170 (autohausaz.com) single notch
P/N 0261210141 (autohausaz.com) double notch

You'll have to pull your out to verify which one your car has...my 99 C43 had the single notch.

You can search this forum for the location and instructions to DIY...
 

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2001 E320; 2002 ML500
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1,982 Posts
On my ML430 I got codes P0170 and P0172 (I believe) and it was an air mass sensor.

Sergio
 

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'11 C300
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423 Posts
Wife just turned over 75,000 miles on her '97 C280 and we just had it serviced at the dealer. Purchased new this car has been exceptional. Two problems that were out of the ordinary:

Problem Description - Faulty fuel level sensor in gas tank when new
Problem Cause - defective part
Solution (or link to thread with one) - replaced under warranty

Problem Description - MAF sensor went around 50,000 miles
Problem Cause - unknown
Solution (or link to thread with one) - replaced with new one - $$$
 

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2006 CLS500 - Iridium Silver w/ AMG Sportline
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232 Posts
Curacao said:
According to my MB Dealer. Another common problems among the W202 is the Damper Pulley which located near the crankshaft. These would the first thing that might break. I had mine changed two years ago after it broke a made a hole in the crankcase and my oil pan. The rubber which keeps the crankshaft in place came of and there was a screaming sound coming from the engine. Since the rubber seal was not there, the damper was leaning downwards. The fanbelt was scratching the engine blok.



Eddie
+1

Mine exploded, causing of 2k damage to the car.
 

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C200 Starting problem

Hi Guys
New to this excellent forum,sorry to be boring but I have a mint 63000 one owner 1999 C200 Esprit but developed a starting problem which started like this.

When I started the car I had no acceleration turn the car off and try again and it was ok but when driving it would start missing sometimes.

It then developed into when I tried to start the car I just had a loud clicking sound.

Next thing was nothing except the main fan in the engine compartment would spin very fast.

I then took the car to an independant Merc repairer and He could not even get into the ECU with his diagnostics.

End of story (MAIN STEALERS) had to have a new ECU fitted £1700.00 in the end.

The car is working fine now fingers crossed but thought this may be of some use on the forum.

Cheers guys

Norman :thumbsup:
 
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