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Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sat 02 Sep, 2017 11:44 pm
by Ivanerrol
A story that will grow in the telling.
The W204 C280 has front end noises. Clunking and grinding
41,000 kilometers. 2009 build date.

The 204 front suspensions have two lower control arms, Macpherson struts and a sway bar with link ends.
My car being a six cylinder comes with 17 inch staggered sports wheels with low profile tyres.

When buying this car the P.O. was at pains during the test drive to show off the Harmon Kardon audio system. probably to distract me from the noise that the front suspension was making - more fool me. :whistle:

Isolation so far.
Suspecting tyre noise I swapped the 17 inch wheels and tyres for the Continentals Contact 2's I have on the W210 - the W210 tyres being very quiet.
The W204 tyres went onto the W210 - they're Continental Sports contact 5's very good tyres and very quiet.
So - not the tyres and wheels.

Sway bar links and sway bar bushings. Overseas experience has shown that the links are a source of noise.
I have removed the links and bought new OEM ones.
Driving around without the swaybar being connected at all.
The clunking sound seems to have diminished but not entirely gone away.

Tomorrow I will inspect and if necessary replace the wheel bearings. Overseas experience has shown that there is a slight design flaw in the ABS sensor seal that lets moisture into the rear bearing and resultant rust is an issue.
We will see.
There's a TSB for this but no recall - in Australia.

While at the stealership this morning, the parts guy informed me that the McPherson strut top mounts have been redesigned.
I suspect that this maybe an issue in my car. The original design failing prematurely.
There's also a TSB for this issue - no recall in Australia. Replaced if car under warranty. Car out of warranty - owners pay.

To be continued.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Wed 06 Sep, 2017 1:00 pm
by Bartman4800
I am not familiar with this model. But I had a 99 Camry V6 before. I replaced the front MC pherson struts and then got a groaning noise going over speed humps. My local auto-one employs real mechanics, and one of them suggested soaking the top mount with inox.
It worked for 2 years until my girlfriend totalled the car...

Bart

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 15 Sep, 2017 5:08 pm
by dturner44
My 2010 C250 CGI had front suspension knocks at approx. 35,000 Ks. It was caused by faulty valves in the front struts. This model has Agility Control suspension which senses different road conditions and adjusts the suspension damping accordingly. The valves were known to be faulty but MB didn't do a recall, however I believe that if you complained whilst under warranty they did replace the front struts. I had my struts (with redesigned valving) replaced under a used car warranty when I bought the vehicle, problem fixed. You should check if the 2009 model has the same suspension.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 15 Sep, 2017 9:55 pm
by Ivanerrol
dturner44 wrote:
Fri 15 Sep, 2017 5:08 pm
My 2010 C250 CGI had front suspension knocks at approx. 35,000 Ks. It was caused by faulty valves in the front struts. This model has Agility Control suspension which senses different road conditions and adjusts the suspension damping accordingly. The valves were known to be faulty but MB didn't do a recall, however I believe that if you complained whilst under warranty they did replace the front struts. I had my struts (with redesigned valving) replaced under a used car warranty when I bought the vehicle, problem fixed. You should check if the 2009 model has the same suspension.
My car does have Agility Control with a switch setting :whistle:
Probably just another under engineered addition. :Doh:

I'll check this out. Thanks for the tip DTurner.

Meanwhile.
I changed the drivers side front wheel bearing. Not only were the bearings scored but the hub also. New Hub required $$$$$$
And then there's the axle spindle.
bearing 02.JPG
Note that metal failure. It's not just rust.
I showed this to the guys down the local stealership. This spindle should have never made it onto the car - which begs the question - quality control :wave:

I'm up for a new axle/spindle stub - Stealership cost $1000.00 incl GST.

Another under engineered issue. MB changed the position of the ABS sensor. original W204's came with ABS sensors with faulty sealing.
The faulty sealing let water ingress to the rear bearing on the front wheels causing them to rust out.
There's a TSB on this. New type seal should be changed at service time.

The stealership guys gave me a new seal for the ABS sensor - before I put the new bearing hub on.

Changing the wheel bearing made a big difference to the rumbling noise situation.

Tip from old mechanic.

To find suspension noises.

Grab hold of the spring.

Rotate the wheel - if you can feel the rumbling sensation through the spring you know your bearings are suspect.

Get a mate to use a pry bar and test each LCA and ball joint. You will feel faulty issues through the spring.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sun 10 Dec, 2017 2:08 pm
by stefcep
Have you fixed all of this Errol?

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sun 10 Dec, 2017 3:24 pm
by Ivanerrol
stefcep wrote:
Sun 10 Dec, 2017 2:08 pm
Have you fixed all of this Errol?
Not yet.
I'm contemplating the W204's future.

(a) Needs new front knuckles and axle spindles - both sides.
(b) Needs new wheel bearing hub and bearings one side front.
(c) Needs new strut mounts - they're roller type plus the fixings to hold everything together.
(d) Needs front torque bars both sides
(e) Needs new front brake shield back mounts which contain revised water seals
(f) Engine has a misfire when cold
(g) Rear lights require new circuit boards and rewiring - a very labor intensive job
(h) Transmission clunks at highway speed when lifting off the accelerator and then putting your foot down again (suspect software issue)
(j) Alarm has come up indicating Service C required.

Car has 42,000 kms on it.

The stealership costs to fix all of the above is more than the price I just paid for a 2004 W211 with 84,000ks on it.
If I do all that work myself using a combination of imported and local sourced parts this will still be 60% of the stealers cost.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sun 10 Dec, 2017 6:32 pm
by Tony From West Oz
The "modern" Mercedes Benz are just like the rest of the car world - Throw away cars.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Mon 11 Dec, 2017 6:24 pm
by stefcep
that's really disappointing that a car with so few Km's can have those sorts of issues.

Last month cousin just dropped over $100k on a new 2017 AMG C43. He had an older CLK, and said the new ones aren't made the same. He wondered if the buyer of the CLK would sell it back to him....

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Thu 14 Dec, 2017 7:19 pm
by newMercowner69
If you need new bearings let me know,
I can supply cheaper than "stealership",
Also can possibly supply the strut mount bearings.BTW/fyi BEWARE of cheap inferior Chinese made copies of the GENUINE, O.E.M. MB wheel bearings which are FAG brand,
Have been since the very 1st model.EXCEPT for needle roller & idler/tensioner bearings &clutch &auto electrical bearings they're INA & NSK respectively,
Because the starter motor&alternator&A/C are Bosch & jap compressors ,
Bosch use jap bearings in there auto electrical components.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Mon 22 Jan, 2018 8:25 pm
by Ivanerrol
After having someone who came around to check out the W204 for sale and who quickly sussed out the noisy front end, I decided it was time to really find out where the noise was coming from.

It's the brake pads vibrating. :banghead: :banghead: :banghead:
You can turn the rotor back and forward and rock the rotor side to side and hear a distinct clunk as well as feel the clunking on the coil over spring.

Now to figure out how to stop the noise. Brake squeal paste doesn't do the job.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Tue 23 Jan, 2018 8:20 pm
by Ivanerrol
Went down to the local stealers to get some brake pad hardware - springs.
Had to buy the whole kit - pads and springs. Was only $20.00 more than the Zimmerman's I had in.

Spent 6 hours changing the Pads. - Carefully. Adjusted the wheel bearings while I was there.

The Mercedes Pads come with special MB grease to lubricate all mating metal parts. Used sparingly.

After completion - went for a test drive. 80% of the noise is gone. :bounce:
There is still some issue with the struts or control arm rubbers - clunks over bumps.

Road noise is much reduced. Which goes to show. There must be some lacking design here. road and tyre noise transmitted through the brake and wheel bearing hardware into the suspension. There's obviously not enough noise insulation from the struts and control arm rubbers.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Wed 28 Feb, 2018 8:10 pm
by Ivanerrol
Clunking is still apparent.
Checked the upper and lower control arm ball joints - all noisy. Problem with cars sitting around for years not being driven :whistle:
Went down to the local stealers to check prices - $2,500 for the four arms plus bolts. :bs:

On line local Lemforders (OEM) - $830 delivered.

Something to do over the weekend :whistle:
I need to take this car to Qld next week.

Ran the scanner over the engine. Left bank of cylinders running slightly rich. Pulled the left bank spark plugs - gummed up. Spark plugs are double platinum - supposed to last 100.000ks.
Hopefully it needs a good run with some injector cleaner through it.
I’ve only done 4K in this car in the past 8 months - mostly city stop start. Economy is worse than my E classes.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 02 Mar, 2018 9:06 pm
by DBW124
I was going to ask what the accumulated fuel consumption figure on your C280 was.

Going by official consumption figures, the W-211 with the M-272 uses more fuel than with the M-112 even when comparing the E280 (3.0) with the earlier E320.

Your C280 (officially) also uses more fuel than the updated C300 with the 3.5 litre (which seems to have lost 15 Kw from when installed in the E-Class).

PS. Still waiting for pics of the latest addition to the fleet.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sat 03 Mar, 2018 9:31 am
by Ivanerrol
Have just changed both set of control arms on both sides.
Back and forth to Total tools to buy
(A) breaker bar that fits the Torx bits
(B) proper ball joint separator.
(C) 21mm spanner (who has one of them in their kit?)

Both front control arms were not original?? Production stamp on them is later than my car. Don’t know who changed them before but genuine MB parts albeit W203 arms.
Whoever changed these arms did a lousy job. The ball joint bolt nut on one side was cross threaded. Not done up tightly - ball joint was loose in position - ergo causing the clunking.
I did the nut and ball joint just fell out of its position - didn’t need separator. :whistle:

This is a straight forward job. However needs the appropriate tools. And is time consuming.

This morning off to have the car aligned on the Hunter machine. $45.00 at Continental tyre agent.


Petrol consumption on this M272 280 engine. Took it from Melbourne to Corowa return - computer indicated around 9 litres per 100. Too much.
My W210 M112 E240 averaged between 7 & 8 litres per 100 on a Melbourne - Noosa return trip.

The W211 M112 E240 computer indicates better fuel economy than the M272 C280 around town.

I’m just about to take the C280 to Noosa. I’ll report back on the indicated computer consumption.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sat 03 Mar, 2018 6:06 pm
by T-Modell
Ivanerrol wrote:
Sat 03 Mar, 2018 9:31 am
... I’ll report back on the indicated computer consumption.
Hi,
don't rely on those computers, write down the amount of fuel you fill up. In my W211 the computer resets at every 100,000kms. I write down ALL fuel bills and in the first and second 100,000 kms, the deviation was more than 0.5 litres/100km, actually the car took more. I guess that's important for marketing reasons to show less on the computer.

Of course you have to do this on more than one refill as this is not accurate.
Thomas

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Mon 05 Mar, 2018 8:37 pm
by Ivanerrol
Now on the road to Noosa. Suspension seems to be sorted - quite quiet on NSW part of Hume.

Noting the rainstorms in NSW and QLD, I decided to Change the wipers. Being fearful of the price a the stealership I went off to the local stooper cheap - $40.00 each side for generic brand. Bought them and took them home to fit - they didn’t even though the SCA computer said they did.Refund revived. Went over to Repco - they had some Bosch type for $42.00 each - didn’t fit even though their computer said they were the right ones for a W204. :Doh:

With apprehension I went down to the stealers. $77.00 for a pair of OEM ones with. Mercedes stamp on it.

Wise to check first - next time. :whistle:

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Thu 08 Mar, 2018 11:58 pm
by Ivanerrol
So.
I've driven the W204 from Melbourne to Noosa.
1934km's @ 7.5 litres per 100km according to computer.

Need to tighten up the ball joints.

Worse. Engine was acting up - a bit rough under acceleration. Today it failed to start under crank. :bs: - Bollocks. third go and engine started.

Lucky I bought the handy iCarsoft MBII scanner with me. Hooked it up. Failing Crank Hall sensor fault code :wall:

I'll need to source one and install it before returning to Melbourne - don't want to be stuck by the road with a failed CPS. :whistle:

This car has now just 46,000km's on the clock. Failed ball joints and now failed CPS. :Doh:

VIP passengers report. We should have come up in the W210 or W211. It's impossible to sleep in the W204 :dontknow:

Road report.
It's now dual highway from Melbourne to Grafton except for that little bit of Pennant Hills road in the Thornleigh area and a few K's between Port McQuarrie and Grafton. Grafton to Ballina is Bollocks - almost roadworks the whole way. The bypassing of Macksville has taken 15 - 20 minutes off the journey.
Woodburn and Broadwater should have been bypassed years ago. The road through those towns is a disgrace.

The Family Hotel at Gundagai has great Pub Grub.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 09 Mar, 2018 7:08 pm
by DBW124
Mid 7s over 2000 kms seems good. Even allowing for 10% error (unlikely to be that far out), still much better than my E280 would get.

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 09 Mar, 2018 7:52 pm
by Ivanerrol
DBW124 wrote:
Fri 09 Mar, 2018 7:08 pm
Mid 7s over 2000 kms seems good. Even allowing for 10% error (unlikely to be that far out), still much better than my E280 would get.
Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if your M104 achieved the low 8's even high 7's on the same journey.
It's mostly cruise control 110KPH on double highway to Grafton.
I filled up in Grafon and drove to Noosa - I'm still driving around on that Grafton petrol. The computer indicated 7.0 per 100 between Grafton and Noosa - more 100kph in that section.

My W202 M11 was surprisingly frugal on a trip.

I have a CPS arriving by express post from Melbourne tomorrow morning. The local stealership didn't have one, none in Brizvegas - had to come from Melbourne.
Local Stealership cost : $155.00 plus GST. . :banghead: U.S. Stealership cost : $US35.00 FCP Euro cost $US24.00

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Fri 09 Mar, 2018 8:34 pm
by gazman
Yep it seem's at aussie stealerships it's byo lube of your choice and bend over

Re: Ivanerrols W204 front end issue

Posted: Sat 30 Jun, 2018 6:51 am
by DBW124
Ivanerrol wrote:
Fri 09 Mar, 2018 7:52 pm
DBW124 wrote:
Fri 09 Mar, 2018 7:08 pm
Mid 7s over 2000 kms seems good. Even allowing for 10% error (unlikely to be that far out), still much better than my E280 would get.
Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if your M104 achieved the low 8's even high 7's on the same journey.
It's mostly cruise control 110KPH on double highway to Grafton.
I filled up in Grafon and drove to Noosa - I'm still driving around on that Grafton petrol. The computer indicated 7.0 per 100 between Grafton and Noosa - more 100kph in that section.....

I've recorded high 7s once during the nine years I've had the car.

I'm relocating to Brisbane next week. The car will be fully loaded so not expecting the best.