Mercedes W203 Timing Gear Replacement

dyllindd

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Nov 9, 2012
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192
Good Day Everyone.

I currently have a 2004 Mercedes C180k with 105000km on the clock. Last night while driving home the check engine light went on and I took the car to Mercedes Benz Northcliff this morning for a diagnostics test. It returned the cam gear as the culprit and while Mercedes says the light can come back in a month or even a year, they quote almost R50k to fix it. Can you guys recommend any spesialists to do the job or should I be looking for a new car?
 

Rickster

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Jul 31, 2012
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My dad is a german car specialist, how far are you willing to travel?
 

Nangi

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Jul 28, 2012
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477
Good Day Everyone.

I currently have a 2004 Mercedes C180k with 105000km on the clock. Last night while driving home the check engine light went on and I took the car to Mercedes Benz Northcliff this morning for a diagnostics test. It returned the cam gear as the culprit and while Mercedes says the light can come back in a month or even a year, they quote almost R50k to fix it. Can you guys recommend any spesialists to do the job or should I be looking for a new car?
R50k and not even Mercedes can guarantee their work for at least a year? Sell it.
 

muazzamb

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Jan 17, 2012
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398
You will have to change the cam gears (2 of these) and the timing chain itself. There are a few sellers on gumtree and seems the parts will be anything from 9k to 12k if you shop around properly. I am not sure how many hours labour it would take to complete the job. Goodluck.
 

dabean

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Feb 24, 2004
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I had to have mine replaced this October ('09 W204 C200K). Dealers quoted around R30K I think, had it done at an independent (Kundendienste in Bloem) for just under R16K.

merc.PNG
 

Myrrdin

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Feb 3, 2004
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1,513
Good Day Everyone.

I currently have a 2004 Mercedes C180k with 105000km on the clock. Last night while driving home the check engine light went on and I took the car to Mercedes Benz Northcliff this morning for a diagnostics test. It returned the cam gear as the culprit and while Mercedes says the light can come back in a month or even a year, they quote almost R50k to fix it. Can you guys recommend any spesialists to do the job or should I be looking for a new car?
I did this on mine last year. It is actually a known problem. See here http://www.mercedesmedic.com/check-my-mercedes-benz-for-balance-shaft-issue-by-vin-m272273/ for description and a nice pdf which describes and instructs the mechanic.

It was actually a manufacturing issue so any replacement whould fix the problem permanently.
This was posted on another forum in 2012.
W203 models with engine number starting in 271 all suffer from premature cam chain wear problem. It is not only my opinion, but that of all reputable MB technicians in my part of the world that this particular part of the 271 engine has not been developed to usually high MB standards. As an independent dealer, I try to avoid the 271 motor W203 models at all cost despite these models' popularity.

The cam chain on these model engines (271) is similar looking to a bicycle chain. It is thinner and lighter than most other engines of comparable capacity and output. Compared to the previous generation W203 Kompressor engine model 111, it makes the 271 chain look dwarfed. The 111 motor cam chain is a proper power transmission item that looks like two motorcycle drive chains stuck together. This is called a metric double roller chain. They outlast any other moving part of an internal combustion engine.

In the 271 MB engine however, the cam chain starts stretching from the day the engine is assembled in the factory. This is similar to any application of a light weight single roller transmission chain. With chain stretch/wear there is the accompanying wear on the chain sprockets. The sprockets suffering most in the 271 motor are the two small camshaft sprockets. Enough wear will eventually cause the chain to slip over the sprocket teeth causing cam timing issues and resultant bending of valves.

Early signs of this issue on the 271 motor W203 models is an engine management light coming on at times and later staying on. This will be accompanied with rough idle/running, loss of power and increased fuel economy.

Although this particular issue with the 271 engine is relatively easy to repair, it is extremely costly due to radically over priced parts required from MB agents. No pirate replacements parts are yet available.*

It is vital to successful repair to understand that all parts related to the cam chain in 271 motors require replacement. As a minimum requirement this involves the chain and two cam sprockets provided no valves have yet been bent.*

Typical cost in South-Africa = R25,000 - R35,000 (£2500 - £3500). This equates to approx one third to half of vehicle value.*

Expect this cam chain wear problem to manifest from 80,000kms in vehicles that were driven enthusiastically. Well maintained engines subjected to normal driving conditions last longer, but generally do no better than 140,000kms.*
I paid R43000 for this repair last year October. Let them replace everything and dont rely on visual inspection. The whole assembly was not as rigurously made as it is now. On that first web site is also a nice link to website which will decode your vin number and give you manufacturing date of your vehicle and lots of other interesting info.
 

dyllindd

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Joined
Nov 9, 2012
Messages
192
I did this on mine last year. It is actually a known problem. See here http://www.mercedesmedic.com/check-my-mercedes-benz-for-balance-shaft-issue-by-vin-m272273/ for description and a nice pdf which describes and instructs the mechanic.

It was actually a manufacturing issue so any replacement whould fix the problem permanently.
This was posted on another forum in 2012.


I paid R43000 for this repair last year October. Let them replace everything and dont rely on visual inspection. The whole assembly was not as rigurously made as it is now. On that first web site is also a nice link to website which will decode your vin number and give you manufacturing date of your vehicle and lots of other interesting info.
Believe me, I would love to have the job done by Mercedes Benz but I simply dont have that amount of spare cash lying around.
 

dabean

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Feb 24, 2004
Messages
1,484
It's a double overhead cam, so one gear on the intake side and one on the exhaust side.

I was wrong about the dealer quote sorry, that was for the EIS problem I had in June (fixed for R10K odd). Never bothered to see what they charge for the timing chain/gears.
 

dyllindd

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Nov 9, 2012
Messages
192
Independent Specialist quoted me R22,000 for the entire job. He is an ex Mercedes mechanic and has all the proper tools and diagnostic machines and software to complete the job.

I do have an afternarket warranty on the vehicle but the places they approved for me to take the vehicle to all look a bit dodge to me.
 

Claymore

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Jan 20, 2004
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I can recommend an independent Mercedes specialist in Northcliff.
 

dyllindd

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Nov 9, 2012
Messages
192
Hey Guys,

I am happy to report that all is well with the Mercedes now. Took the car to Richard at Edmondson Motors in Randburg (Mercedes Specialist). Turns out it was a few pipes and valves going from the supercharger to the engine. All replaced. Total came to R3000. Richard is very professional and he even has the proper Mercedes diagnostic equipment. I will definitely take my car there again.
 

muazzamb

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Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
398
Hey Guys,

I am happy to report that all is well with the Mercedes now. Took the car to Richard at Edmondson Motors in Randburg (Mercedes Specialist). Turns out it was a few pipes and valves going from the supercharger to the engine. All replaced. Total came to R3000. Richard is very professional and he even has the proper Mercedes diagnostic equipment. I will definitely take my car there again.
What was his diagnosis on the chain and cams? Yes the valves and pipes do need replacing at some point. I did mine at 135km.
 

Claymore

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2004
Messages
7,500
Hey Guys,

I am happy to report that all is well with the Mercedes now. Took the car to Richard at Edmondson Motors in Randburg (Mercedes Specialist). Turns out it was a few pipes and valves going from the supercharger to the engine. All replaced. Total came to R3000. Richard is very professional and he even has the proper Mercedes diagnostic equipment. I will definitely take my car there again.
He's my specialist. :) A genius on Mercs.
 

sicelo.m

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Joined
May 4, 2011
Messages
229
Where is Edmondson Motors? Website or street name would be helpful. in need of some diagnostic output and advice for my older Merc (W202)
 

THE_STIG_ZA

Active Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
31
Hey Guys,

I am happy to report that all is well with the Mercedes now. Took the car to Richard at Edmondson Motors in Randburg (Mercedes Specialist). Turns out it was a few pipes and valves going from the supercharger to the engine. All replaced. Total came to R3000. Richard is very professional and he even has the proper Mercedes diagnostic equipment. I will definitely take my car there again.
Ah yes these pipes, well known cause of problems(rough idle, check engine light etc...).

Had them replaced on my 203 last week, car has 160k on it and cam still perfect according to the garage.
 

dyllindd

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Joined
Nov 9, 2012
Messages
192
Where is Edmondson Motors? Website or street name would be helpful. in need of some diagnostic output and advice for my older Merc (W202)
He works from his home. PM me and I'll send you his contact details.
 
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