Last post on Apr 04, 2011 at 2:02 PM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz C-Class
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Hatchback, Sedan, Wagon
#621 of 886 Re: 2002 C230K Worth it? [greenbox]
Oct 19, 2006 (8:24 am)
)) "...my C240 doesn't even have a dipstick. And changing oil is a real chore. Have you noticed that it uses 8.5 quarts of synthetic oil? Also, the filter element costs $20. And you can't just drain the oil through the plug like a sensible car, unless you happen to own a hoist or other means of getting it off the ground while still keeping it level..." ((
Permit a non-Mercedes owner a couple routine service observations. Whoever at Daimler-Benz made the decision to delete dipsticks on Mercedes automobile engines should be incarcerated as a criminally insane felon. I understand there's an oil level dash display. In reading several pages of these posts, I also understand Mercedes electronics have been known to behave less than reliably... Like Ronald Reagan said during negotiations over nuclear disarmament, "Trust, but verify." (I'm also aware that the average motorist these days wouldn't be caught dead pulling a dipstick to measure the level of oil in the sump - and that includes Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, and Yugo owners, too... Still, that's no excuse to justify deleting a proven device to check on the health of a fine motor.) 8.5 quarts of 229.5 full synthetic motor oil and a $20.00 oil filter is a pricey proposition, alright, but remember the oil change intervals on these engines is 13,000 miles (10,000 miles for AMG hotties). That $20.00 synthetic polyester fleece media oil filter is designed to trap particulates down to five microns. Most commercial automotive oil filters do good to filter some particulates down to the 15 micron level - and at that are only expected to remain in service for 7,500 miles under normal operating conditions. The new Hyundai lambda V6 motors have that interval and their new top-mounted, conventional paper media oil filter cartridges are often sold by dealership parts departments for $15.00 - $18.00 each. $20.00 for a filter that can filter smaller abrasives, and for nearly twice as long, suddenly doesn't seem too far out of line, does it? True - Hyundai's motor doesn't take 8.5 quarts. It merely takes a miserly 7 quarts give or take a couple of tenths. Finally, I'm not aware of a car made that changing the oil isn't made an easy job of with a $30.00 set of drive-up "Rhino Ramps" from WalMart. For those who would rather not crawl under their Mercedes cars to drain motor oil, do a search of oil "extractors" - essentially a cigarette lighter powered pump that has a long, thin tube inserted wherever dealership personnel insert their own extractor-like equipment to draw the crankcase oil out with. These home versions often sell for under $30.00 and virtually elliminate mess. (about the same cost as a set of Rhino Ramps - which won't be needed when an extractor is used) Once powered, they'll empty the sump in about a minute and a half - and at that better than gravity draining through the oil pan's drain plug hole. Using a common 3-gallon plastic gasoline container will safely hold all the old oil for delivery to any autoparts store that sells motor oil. (They have to accept used motor oil by federal law. The cost of unit motor oil already includes the disposal fee.) Top-mounted oil filters are also mess-free compared to screw-on/screw-off/screw-up oil filters - just have an empty can ready to catch the drips as you lift the old cartridge free of its housing. Doing your own oil and oil filter service is not rocket science, and it carries with it the satisfaction of knowing it was done right and what went into your engine's sump. (Do any of you think Mercedes dealership service department managers put their best techs on the mundane stuff such as oil changes? Really?)
#622 of 886 Re: 2002 C230K Worth it? [ray_h1]
Oct 21, 2006 (4:24 am)
As you say, you're a non-owner. One can't drain the oil through the plug on a C-240 by putting it up on ramps. It has to be level in order for it to drain properly. Putting it on ramps creates valleys in the oil pan. I had the idea of jacking it up with a floor jack, pulling the plug and draining what I could then letting it back down to drain the rest and jacking it up again to replace the plug. Of course one has to remove two "plastic" panels under the engine compartment to even get at the plug. However I couldn't budge the plug even after spraying it with WD-40, squirting it with Liquid Wrench and putting an 18 inch extension on my wrench handle. So I bough a Topsider... a syphon used for marine engines. This works but it takes about an hour to get the whole 8.5 quarts out and one has to measure the used oil to make sure one gets it all. As you say, one gets the satisfaction of knowing it was done REASONABLY right because the last oil change I had at a dealership under the free service period they shorted me a quart of oil. It was hard to determine that they'd done this as the electronic oil-readout was undecided between "Oil OK" and "Add 1 Quart." MB electronics are famously inaccurate so I couldn't be sure if I really should add one quart and didn't want to put in too much. I had to go to another dealership which probably used a generic dipstick to determine that I was short one quart. They generously provided the missing quart for free but it took me half a day to deal with the situation and I had to drive around for over 1000 miles before I could get to a dealership wondering if I had too little oil.
By the way, my service manager (who is privately as disgusted with the current crop of c-Classes as I am) tells me that the C-Classes sold in Europe have dipsticks but MB has decided that Americans prefer bells and whistles. As I said in one of my (unanswered) letters to the president of MB-USA "If my $12,000 Nissan Sentra can have a dipstick why can't my $30,000 C-240 have one? A dipstick never breaks down and never gives a false reading." If I'd known that there was no dipstick before I bought this car I wouldn't have bought it. And you can believe me that changing the oil is only the tip of the iceburg when it comes to C-240 problems.
#623 of 886 Re: 2002 C230K Worth it? [mezeca]
Oct 21, 2006 (4:48 am)
Yes, I know about the electronic oil check in the instrument cluster. If you've owned your MB very long you'll know that the electronic read-outs are notoriously unreliable. And yes, I know about the plug. Please read my post #622 for my adventures in that area.
But you're completely wrong about Nissans. The oil plug is right at the bottom of the pan where it belongs. I owned 1987 and 1989 Nissans that I could do the whole oil change without even putting them on ramps. Newer Nissans have the fuel injectors over the oil filter one has to put the car on ramps to get at the filter but the plug is easy to get at.
#624 of 886 Re: 2002 C230K Worth it? [greenbox]
Oct 23, 2006 (3:19 pm)
Actually, the electronic oil level sensor is very reliable.
And yes, I have 132k + on my 97 c280, and 25k on my 04 c230. When the I change the oil on my c230, it is as simple as my c280. But, one must remember, that synthetic oil expands when it heats up, unlike conventional oil, so to properly and accurately check the oil level, the engine must be hot.
So are you trying to imply that MB purposely tightened the drain plug so tight so you couldn't service it. Has the car ever been to Jiffy Lube(or similar)? Those guys are famous for overtightening drain plugs. Also, I don't what "valleys" you're referring to but they don't exist in the oil pan to stop oil from leaving it.
Also, it's not the drain plug on the Japanese cars that is hard to get to, it's the filter. The 89 Accord had it buried under the intake manifold, as do many other cars.
Oct 24, 2006 (5:34 am)
The oil on my c240 is sooo easy to change. I jack up the car and dump the oil. Make sure the engine is warm and all of the oil will come out. The filter is so easy to change. You dont have to take apart everything under the hood to get to it.
The reason for no dipstick is because your fellow americans were a focus group for MB and said they they like bells and whistles more than having a dip stick. So MB listened to them and used an electronic way of measuring the oil. It is reliable but don't blame MB. They were listening to their American customers and gave them what they wanted.
#626 of 886 Re: 2004 c230k [badbenz1]
Oct 24, 2006 (6:28 pm)
Are you the same person as on ebay? If so contact me at ackzackcox.net about the rims.
#627 of 886 tight steering on 2005 C230
Oct 29, 2006 (4:15 pm)
Is it possible to adjust the steering to be a little bit looser? I have driven the 2005 C230 Kompressor for over 1 year and still don't feel comfortable with the tight steering.
#628 of 886 Re: tight steering on 2005 C230 [jason18]
Oct 30, 2006 (6:28 am)
You can not make it looser. It is a supercharged sport sedan, not a station wagon.
#629 of 886 Re: 2002 C230K Worth it? [mezeca]
Nov 03, 2006 (6:45 pm)
No, the car has never been to jiffy lube. Then plug was just too tight right from the factory, or maybe it had corroded. I doubt that MB did that on purpose as they more or less assume that one will bring it to a dealership for an oil change.
As for the valleys, my sympathetic service manager told about them when I first talked about changing the oil myself. When I put the car up on ramps and removed the shrouding under the engine compartment I could see what he meant. The center of the oil pan is lower than the edges of the oil reservoir. When the car is at an angle some of the oil would be trapped in a "valley" and not drain completely. Have you actually measured how much oil you get out when you drain yours? There's supposed to be 8.5 quarts in there and it doesn't all fit in that little pan. That's where the reservoir comes in.
Back to the original question of whether the C240 is worth it, mine just spent 9 days in the dealership while they tracked down a problem with the fuel pump. They replaced the pump and a practically new fuel filter that they'd installed only a few months ago. The car drove fine... for 41 miles. Then it stopped dead and had to be towed back to the dealership. Shows all the symptoms of fuel pump failure, but it's Friday night and I won't know till Monday.
I've spent almost $5000 on repairs for this car since it came out of warranty and there was plenty of repair work done under the warranty. That's to say nothing of the time I've spent in the waiting rooms of six dealerships in five states. Is it worth it? Not bloody likely!
#630 of 886 Fault code PO170
Nov 04, 2006 (3:44 pm)
Kinda a cross post but does anyone know if a Fault code PO170 is strictly related to the Air Mass Flow Sensor OR could it also be a gas cap issue?
Thanks for any response.