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Old 04-21-2008, 04:10 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 5
Mercedes repair service at Phil Smart?

What do you think about the repair services you had done at Phil Smart Mercedes in Seattle? I recently had them do some work on my 96 E300 diesel since I wanted someone that was knowledgeble and wanted it to come out w/o problems.

After picking the car up and leaving, I turned on the radio and guess what, the radio was locked up. I did not have the radio on hand, so I had to call Phil Smart and get the code. Then to make matters worse, when I got home, the central locking system quit working. The radio and alarm keyless system worked fine when I dropped it off, all these problems occurred after I picked up the vehicle.

I got the keyless system to work again by disconnecting the battery and hooking it back up, only thing I could guess what happened is they shorted something. Just frustrates me that they didn't bother to check to make sure it was working due to them creating the problems. I don't think I will ever use them again. Might try Barrier, but would like to get some other people's advice on any recommended MB dealers.

I love my E300, but would like to find someone that is knowledgeable in these cars.

Thanks for everyone's help!

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Old 04-22-2008, 12:42 AM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,061
as I don't live in your area I cannot make a recommendation. however, I have been around the world three times on a transmission deal and I can offer this advise. Start by checking the better business bureau for any complaints. Second, ask for three references of customers they have done work for. Third, ask if they have ANY FORMAL TRAINING/Certification on Mercedes-Benz automobiles. ASE certification isn't enough, have they been to school on Mercedes-Benz automobiles? Do they replace parts with OEM Mercedes parts (updated) or do they pry parts off a junker in the back and slap them on the car. Do they have the computer software to diagnose the newer mercedes benz models? There are a lot of people more than willing to take your money, be careful who you give it to.
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Old 04-22-2008, 12:59 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 594
I brought my 99 E320 in to PS/Pike Street to get my changer to work. It had
ceased being recognized by the head unit. After 30 mins, they kind of shrugged
and said they really weren't sure the cause. I took it home, scoured the various
MB sites, disconnected the battery for about 30 mins and powered back up.
Problem solved.

Another time, I brought car to PS/Airport Way because the courtesy open/close
of the sunroof failed to function...though the windows operated via Smartkey.
They said that the roof was designed that way because my car wasn't equipped
with courtesy closure for the roof....only the side windows.

Bull's all or nothing. MB never designed the courtesy feature to be
a la carte. I went home, disconnected the battery overnight, then reconnected
the next morning. Courtesy feature for windows and roof restored.

I have a 00 E320 and when coming to a stop, the transmission would down-
shift and next lower gear would grab suddenly, causing your head to snap
forward. Car was in Airport Way shop for a week. Fortunately, car was
Starmarked and within several weeks (i had use of the car as parts were
ordered), I received a news transmission.

I live 2 miles from Phil Smart Airport Way location. I've not taken the car in
for 2+ years now, having learned how to perform Schedule A and B chores
myself (including resetting FSS alerts/reminders). Will be getting laptop
docking software via OBDII port next month.

Have swapped out the springs, shocks, fluids. I'm reluctant to bring the cars
in to PS since I can carry out the basic tasks and maintenance required.

Seattle area libraries have free access to online Alldata and Chiltons services.
You can view/dowload nearly all the technical service bulletins for free to your
USB thumbdrive...including how-to diagrams, schematics, etc.
-- raymond~
47 34'N 122 18'W
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:12 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1
I have been there once. Won't go back. Asked for specific
work to be done. I was assured that they could do what I wanted.Drove 2 and 1/2 hours each way to Pike St.
shop. Got home and found that they didn't do anything I requested.
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Old 04-22-2008, 03:26 PM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,061
it's the the 'ole IF YOU WANT A JOB DONE RIGHT, DO IT YOURSELF state of mind. however, not everyone has the necessary mechanical or electrical skills to perform the repair. that's when the BBB background check, three references, Completion of Mercedes Benz training (past and present, are their certifications on MB CURRENT??), etc. This is called due diligence and the concept of "Caveat Emptor" is a principal we should all live by.

by accident, I ran into someone who had spent twenty plus years in the transmission business. After he shared with me some stories on how some transmission shops operate, I had to step back and take a stiff drink.

Let's just say I became more educated as to WHAT questions to ask of a repair shop. or, I can screw the car up for half the price and at least have some fun doing it!!
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Old 04-22-2008, 10:58 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Seattle
Posts: 1,971
They seem as good as any other Mercedes dealer. Look at it this way, they have a lot of people standing around on carpeting in the high rent district of Seattle. If you had a business in that area with lots of employees standing around on carpeting, what would you have to charge? In my experience they were better than Barrier and their parts prices cheaper. Also keep in mind that the main strategy of any dealer is to praise the vehicle until you buy it and then bad mouth it the day it goes off warranty. IMHO nobody can touch Toyota for bad dealer service. They are in a class by themselves.
1998 C230 330,000 miles (currently dead of second failed EIS, yours will fail too, turning you into the dealer's personal human cash machine)
1988 F150 144,000 miles (leaks all the colors of the rainbow)
Previous stars: 1981 Brava 210,000 miles, 1978 128 150,000 miles, 1977 B200 Van 175,000 miles, 1972 Vega (great, if rusty, car), 1972 Celica, 1986.5 Supra
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Old 04-23-2008, 04:55 AM
Bob G's Avatar
Bob G
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Long Beach ,California
Posts: 276
I had a good experience with MR. MB Motors in Tarzana, California. Even though the car looked like it was craps and not taken care of I got the respect and service I needed. The Alternator and shift bushing were replaces with an oil & filter service . total bill was $400.00
Then this Tuesday I spent 10 hours detailing the old Benz so next visit will commmand some better attention. I recommend if you can always wash the car before you bring it in for service. Some mechanics figure if the car is not cosmeticly taken care of why should they do their best.
I was very impressed with the owner Enrique and though he is out of the way I think the drive is worth the good work he does.
Bob Geco
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Old 06-21-2008, 03:47 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2
I'm a little late to the thread but Phil Smart Mecedes are crooks...

I bought my 320CLK there and had the first three services there. Turns out, even though I asked for synthetic oil during changes and was charged for synthetic, they were really using conventional (according to whichever mechanic was filling out my service booklet.) I guess I should've been paying closer attention.

I highly recommend The Mercedes Garage in Bellevue.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:37 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: seattle
Posts: 38
I took my cars to the new owners. They are CRAP. They have no knowledge of a car over 15 years old and no clue how to swing a wrench unless a computer tells them what to do. I suspect that they share technicians with their Honda and Toyota shops next door.


2002 s430 - Victor, a Stately & well tailored chap
1974 450sl - Frosch - Two tone green
1986 SDL - Polei

retired models-
1976 300D - Blei Vanst - it looks silvery
1972 220D - Gump - She was green, simple and ran
1995 E300D - Gave her life to save me against a Dame in a SUV
POS 1987 SDL - Beware Nigerian Scammers
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