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Old 01-22-2002, 11:40 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 115
300E electrical problem

Hello All,

Just notice that when I have the door open (vehicle stopped, engine off) the overhead light gets dimmer and brighter in direct correlation with the seatbelt warning sign flashing on and off. I just replaced the battery with a 49-82 (big, new; lots of cold cranking amps), but the alternator is 200,000 miles old. Any ideas? Is this normal?


'88 300E 265K
'91 300TE 155K
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Old 01-23-2002, 09:36 AM
Zeus's Avatar
Moderating, Eh?
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,774
Had a similar problem, except my interior lights would flicker somewhat and dim gradually. It was worn brushes in my alternator. Cheap and a 5 minute installation for new ones. Works perfectly now. I'd test to see if your alternator is charging properly. There's plenty of info on how to do so in the archives here. Good luck!
2007 E550 4Matic - 61,000 Km - Iridium Silver, black leather, Sport package, Premium 2 package
2007 GL450 4Matic - 62,000 Km - Obsidian Black Metallic, black leather, all options
1998 E430 - sold
1989 300E - 333,000 Km - sold
1977 280E - sold
1971 250 - retired

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Old 01-23-2002, 05:40 PM
dpetryk's Avatar
Electrons can do anything
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 1,071
That sounds normal. All 3 of my cars do it. The dimming is not significant, but noticable.
I got too many cars!! Insurance eats me alive. Dave

78 Corvette Stingray - 3k
82 242 Turbo Volvo - Manual - 270k
86 300e 5 speed manual - 210k
87 420sel - 240k
89 560sl - 78k
91 420sel - 205k
91 560sel - 85k
94 GMC Suburban - 90k
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00 GMC Silverado 1 ton 30k
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Old 01-23-2002, 05:47 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 115
Guess I'll leave it be.


'88 300E 265K
'91 300TE 155K
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Old 01-23-2002, 11:29 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 412
I have a flickering problem that just started today. The flickering was very noticable. The headlights and dash lights had the appearance of a highway patrol when the headlights flash off and on. I'm pretty sure its the alternator as it only does it when the engine is running and seems to speed up with engine speed. It didn't do it the last time I drove it two days ago.
I had the sme problem before that the lights would flicker as was solved by replacing the alternator. The alternator was charging steady at around 14 volts so I was puzzled. I was told the diodes go bad as cause spikes that are not detected by a voltmeter but show up as other symptons as flickering lights.
I will keepyou posted.
1990 190E 2.6
1996 Grand Voyager 3.3
1985 Mustang GT 5.0 5 SPD
1982 Suzuki GS 750T
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