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  #1  
Old 09-24-2002, 01:39 PM
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Location: fort worth
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how long do control arms and bushings last?

I have an 87 300E with 307k miles. Someone suggested replacing the lower control arms, ball joints, and bushings. I have owned the car since 60k and do not remember doing it. Are there signs or symptoms I should look for?
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  #2  
Old 09-24-2002, 03:05 PM
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Check the rubber bushings...

you should be able to see damage to the bushings. How does you car ride? Noises? Vibration?
If you had your car since 60K you probably will not notice the difference, as the deterioration of the suspension system is a slow process. Drive another 300E (from a friend, a mechanic or MB meet) and compare the difference.
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  #3  
Old 09-24-2002, 10:43 PM
Bud
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lizem100,
Pardon me for changing the subject but 307K is an awful lot of miles for a gasoline engine. Can you tell us about repairs and maintenance on your car?

Any major problems? Kind of oil service? Things to be aware of?

Thanks in advance.

Bud Cook
1991 300E w/54K on the clock.
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  #4  
Old 09-24-2002, 11:48 PM
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1) took it to local shop (Lone Star Bavarian)which very kindly put it on a rack. control arms fine slight wear on some bushings. Dust boots shot on Bilsteins(replaced earlier.) No maint needed

2)longevity-perhaps several reasons a) religious oil changes b)reasonable oil eg. castrol, then castrol syntec for years, now Delo or Delvac (1$ qt at costco in bulk.) c) religious maintenance d)avoidance of useless acceleration-smooth driving

3) signif maint a)resealed trans at 220k b) new AC parts once c) valve guides 200k d)climate control fouled twice e) climate control doors -expensive had to pull dash. earlier ac blower
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  #5  
Old 09-26-2002, 05:39 PM
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Just for the record:
At 180k, the rear control arm bushing on the right side was shot.
The other 3 were actually ok for whatever reason, but I replaced them all at once.
Balljoints seem due for replacement around 100k in my region.
Perhaps the roadsalt is a factor.

The control arm itself should not wear out- no moving parts.

Best of luck
Hope I can make it to 307k too!
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Last edited by csnow; 09-27-2002 at 10:53 AM.
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  #6  
Old 09-26-2002, 07:47 PM
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I have heard that they last a little over 100k miles. I had mine replaced at 105k on my 95 C280.
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  #7  
Old 09-26-2002, 11:21 PM
TANK
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I just had my lwer ctrl arm bushings replaced, 134k on odometer now. I had a vibration and read one of the other threads about these bushings causing problems. Mine is on a lift right now haveing other maint done also, I will let you guys know if there's any improvement.
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  #8  
Old 09-27-2002, 12:54 PM
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Control arms should theoretically never wear out (just the bushings and ball joints), but do some homework on parts prices if you can. When I did the front end on my 201, I went with new control arms because it was actually cheaper to buy new ones with bushings and ball joints already pressed in, than it was to buy the bushings and ball joints separately, and have them pressed into my existing control arms. (wow was that a run-on sentence!)

BTW, the old bushings were not visibly worn, but the new bushings made the car ride really smooth.

Jeff Pierce
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  #9  
Old 10-09-2002, 09:02 PM
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I have a complaint about my 300SL. There is entirely too much road feel transmitted to the steering wheel. I think I can tell when I run over a stone!

I have replaced both front shocks with their mounts and the steering damper. The wheel bearings and steering linkage are tight with no play to speak of. All four tires were recently balanced at the dealer.

Getting to my main point, I went by the dealer today with the above complaint. He suggested the front control arm bushings may be shot. According to him it is not uncommon for these to require replacement on a car with 115K miles. And he added that bad bushings can visually appear just great from the outside.

And I asked about the lower ball joints. He said these require replacement far less frequently.
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Old 10-09-2002, 09:02 PM
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