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  #1  
Old 09-09-2012, 01:25 PM
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WILL ONLY START IN NEUTRAL!!

I have a '95 300D that will only start in neutral. I'm figuring the sensor is bad that tells it its in park. Where is this sensor located and is it an easy fix? Thanks for the help.
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Old 09-09-2012, 01:32 PM
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Does wiggling the shifter help? Will it start in gear? The neutral safety switch is located on the transmission, left side, external to the transmission. Remove the rear belly pan for access. Check the wiring to the switch, the 1995 models featured disintegrating insulation. The switch should be removable but I have not done the job myself -- we need to hear from someone with better experience. You might be able to take the switch apart and find it's just some corroded switch contacts that can be cleaned up.

Jeremy
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"Buster" in the '95

Our all-biodiesel family
1995 E300D (W124) . .239,000 miles My car
1996 E300D (W210) . .313,000 miles Wife's car
Santa Rosa population 170,685 (2012)
Total. . . . . . . . . . . . 722,685
"Oh lord won't you buy me a Mercedes Benz."
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Old 09-09-2012, 02:54 PM
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The same sensor completes the circuit in P and N. Before messing with the NSS, make sure the rod between the shift lever and transmission has intact bushings at both ends. Sometimes you find part of a bushing, sometimes nothing's left. There's also an adjustment to be made on the NSS. You can use a continuity tester to set it in the middle of it's contact range or have someone check the reverse lights as you guess the middle of the range with the transmission in R. Yes, it's also the reverse light switch. The rod itself if adjustable for length. But start with the bushings!

Sixto
87 300D
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:37 AM
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Thanks for the info.
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:26 AM
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I had an intermittent no-start situation a couple months ago. I was told several things by several seemingly knowledgable people: ignition switch, neutral safety switch, bad starter, etc. Turns out, my floppy shifter was to blame. Couple of bushings later, I haven't had that no-start situation since.

I've developed the philosophy of fixing the easiest likely problems first and working my way towards the hardest. Doesn't always resolve itself the first try, but in this case, it did!
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benzo5000 View Post
I have a '95 300D that will only start in neutral. I'm figuring the sensor is bad that tells it its in park. Where is this sensor located and is it an easy fix? Thanks for the help.
I had a similar issue for ages, new bushings didnt help, then I narrowed it down to the point that it only happened if I tried to start a hot engine if I was using the A/C previously.

The problem was the A/C drain on the driver side of the transmission, It had disintegrated and there was nothing left of it hanging downwards, condensate would drip into the switch..

Fixed with some new piping that hangs downwards till the bottom of the transmission - i later saw that the WIS also shows the driver side drain pipe as hanging downwards and the passenger side as a stub only. (made sense now)
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1995 E300D - The original humming machine (consumed by Flood 2017)
2000 E320 - The evolution (consumed by flood 2017)
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  #7  
Old 09-10-2012, 06:43 PM
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Make sure nothing is lodged in between the selector and the final park position.

I've had this happen before...
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  #8  
Old 09-11-2012, 03:29 AM
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Thanks, I'll have a look
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  #9  
Old 09-11-2012, 11:10 AM
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Drain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zulfiqar View Post
I had a similar issue for ages, new bushings didnt help, then I narrowed it down to the point that it only happened if I tried to start a hot engine if I was using the A/C previously.

The problem was the A/C drain on the driver side of the transmission, It had disintegrated and there was nothing left of it hanging downwards, condensate would drip into the switch..

Fixed with some new piping that hangs downwards till the bottom of the transmission - i later saw that the WIS also shows the driver side drain pipe as hanging downwards and the passenger side as a stub only. (made sense now)
An interesting fix -- thanks. I just looked at my '95 E300, my a/c drain pipes are complete and undamaged, basically a piece of foam tuning with a coiled spring to keep the tubing open. The tubing extends a few inches down from the transmission hump and almost seems as if it was placed so it would drip on the neutral safety switch. I need to figure out how to extend the tubing -- it's difficult to access and I'd rather not have to pull the transmission.

Jeremy
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"Buster" in the '95

Our all-biodiesel family
1995 E300D (W124) . .239,000 miles My car
1996 E300D (W210) . .313,000 miles Wife's car
Santa Rosa population 170,685 (2012)
Total. . . . . . . . . . . . 722,685
"Oh lord won't you buy me a Mercedes Benz."
-- Janis Joplin, October 1, 1970
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Old 09-11-2012, 11:50 AM
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If you look at the FSM to clear the drains - you will see that one tube is shown literally hanging near the upper edge of the trans pan. I used some foam tube I found in the recycle bin at work when I was dumping a printer. It was just the right width.
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1995 E300D - The original humming machine (consumed by Flood 2017)
2000 E320 - The evolution (consumed by flood 2017)
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