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Old 10-14-2002, 04:30 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: New York, tristate area
Posts: 38
Question Should this be a recall?

I posted a few weeks ago about a "thumping" coming the engine compartment of my 98' ML320. (47K)
Obviously this is never a good thing.
Turns out that my Harmonic Balancer split apart.
I was lucky, the balancer did'nt chew through the timing chain cover. It was a minor fix that had the potential to turn into a major/costly operation. $$$$
Apparently (according to this board) there is a high rate of failure of the Harmonic Balancers on newer V6 and V8 engines.
This "stinks" of poor design.
Is it because it's an American built Mercedes?
Who's to blame, and is it a design issue?
Why is this not a recall?
Lots of questions, no answers.
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Old 10-14-2002, 04:36 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
It should be a recall, but it ain't. We can thank the good customer service of Daimler-Chrysler for this.

This failure is common on the early 1998 models, so yours must be one of them. It is a design failure. After 1998, the problem was fixed.

A co-worker's harmonic balancer failed on her '98 C280, and it broke on the freeway, and needed a complete engine rebuild. The engine had to removed from the vehicle to be rebuilt by the dealer. Wasn't covered under any warranty, goodwill or otherwise.

We can include this harmonic balancer weakness along with some of the other fatal flaws that should've been recalled on this and other MB vehicles, like the head gaskets on the M104 engines, the engine wiring harness debacle on '93-'95 M104's and M119's....
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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Old 10-14-2002, 08:46 PM
hill's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Northern Calif Sacramento
Posts: 736
I took a quick look around

I took a quick look around and I didn't even see a service bulletin. Bummer
Happy Benzing
Darryl, Hill
2005 SL55 AMG Kleemanized
1984 500 SEC
1967 W113 California Coupe
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Old 10-23-2002, 02:15 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 55
Mercedes really needs a overhaul in their quality control dept.

hi all,
I am new to this forum. Regarding the harmonic balancer issue, I had read the same thing happened to couple others in other Benz forums. Sadly is that no one in this forum or in other forum report the incident to the department of transportation to make it a safety hazard, hopefully establishing a recall case. That's why this problem never appears in the service bulliten. I would urge you guys who encounter this problem to report it. So if Mercedes Customer Service is unwilling to listen to us owners, we'll find other ways to make them listen.
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Old 10-23-2002, 06:53 AM
Kuan's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: At the Birkebeiner
Posts: 3,811
Normally it occurs in hot weather. This is a known problem. There should be a way to get your money back.

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