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  #1  
Old 09-29-2002, 03:33 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Chicago Area
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e320 center vent control lamp replacement

I have a 95 E320 (the one with an air-bag where the glove compartment used to be). The lamp which lights the center rotary vent control is burned-out. (I know how to remove the vents on the left and right sides - the four little clips in each vent)

But the center vent can only be removed after gaining access to a screw on the RH side of the vent, and access is blocked by the air-bag. So here is the question. Do I have to remove the air-bag to gain access to this screw?

Thanks
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Tom Latos
2002 E320
1995 E320 Sold at 288kmiles
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  #2  
Old 09-30-2002, 12:22 PM
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This may not apply, as I have the 92 400e. If you look under the dash (head under airbag, looking up), you may see a hole (roughly centered) with a screw deep in it. Undo and remove that screw (very long) and slide airbag rearward. Unplug airbag (pinch out plug carefully).

I just did this same job. While you are in there, save yourself the repetition and change the passenger side vent control bulb as well. With the airbag out, reach around and unplug the bulb.
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Peter
1985 300TD 4-speed 212K
1992 400E 343K
2001 E320 72K
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  #3  
Old 09-30-2002, 05:08 PM
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THanks for the advice Peter. I have already been looking around under the dash at the air bag location, and I also have a screw in a deep hole.

I can conclude from your post that it is only possible to relamp the center vent control if you remove the air bag. What a great MB design feature!

I already did my passenger side lamp. It's straightforward just by removing the vent with the four little spring clips.
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Tom Latos
2002 E320
1995 E320 Sold at 288kmiles
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  #4  
Old 09-30-2002, 09:36 PM
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That screw does seem like overkill, since the center vent has clips as well. I should have left the screw out.

By the way, be careful with the allen screw that ties the knob in to the vent flap (assuming they are similar between our cars) It is metal screw into a plastic piece: you cannot judge overtightening! I popped thru the back of mine. Snug it until the movement feels okay, or count your turns out, and stay close to that number.

I have what I hope is the replacement part coming, but my tech is worried I have to buy the whole vent. You are forewarned.
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Peter
1985 300TD 4-speed 212K
1992 400E 343K
2001 E320 72K
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  #5  
Old 09-30-2002, 09:48 PM
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MB engineering

My guess is that the airbag design and position were an afterthought for the existing models. It needed to fit in the glovebox space. Period. No one considered that little screw. I assume when they designed the later models, they put in gloveboxes and put the airbag more out of the way.

It actually isn't a tough job to get the airbag out. One screw, and you're good. Just don't jimmy that plug on the back. One of the easier jobs I have done. Try changing that serpentine belt on a warm engine!

If that job can be done without removing the airbag, my tech didn't know it. And those guys don't take the long way unless they have to.
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Peter
1985 300TD 4-speed 212K
1992 400E 343K
2001 E320 72K
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  #6  
Old 10-01-2002, 06:47 AM
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Peter,

Thanks for this advice. I am good to go now, and the CD has a pretty good set of directions for removal of the air bag.
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Tom Latos
2002 E320
1995 E320 Sold at 288kmiles
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