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  #1  
Old 08-28-2000, 04:29 AM
Hisham
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Folks,

Car: '78 W116 280SE Euro

Yesterday, after a combined freeway/city drive in 90 degree weather (including a 40 min. stop with engine and A/C on), I turned off the motor upon arriving at my mum's house. I started the car a minute later and ... ...NOTHING happened. No sound, no click, no nothing on the starter.

I went back in for a drink(s)to drown my sorrows and to contemplate potential hassles to come. After about an hour...on a hunch (hunches work when you're in a "4th down and 20 on your own 10 yard line" kinda situation)...I turned on the ignition AND lo and behold....the M110 DOHC I6 motor ROOAARRED to life...(First Down!). :p

Benz aficionados out there, what went wrong and then corrected itself? Is this a classic "hot starter" syndrome or are there gremlins in there that tend to appear on hot days (which we have lots of here)?

What can be done to rectify this affliction?

Thanks

Hisham
'78 W116 280SE
'95 BMW325is
'84 Volvo 240GLM
'95 Proton Wira 1.6XLi



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  #2  
Old 08-28-2000, 07:45 AM
LarryBible
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Most likely the problem is the starter solenoid. I'm not familiar with your model, but I would expect the starter is very similar to the other Benz starters. These are very similar in configuration to the GM starter that has been plagued with "hot no start" problems for about 45 years.

If you can find a starter solenoid, replacing it will probably make your problems go away. If you can't, find a Bosch certified remanufactured starter and watch your problems go away for many years.

Good luck,

------------------
Larry Bible
'84 Euro 240D, 523K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #3  
Old 08-28-2000, 10:38 AM
Q Q is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 839
In a pinch, doesn't whacking it with a blunt object usually coax it?
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  #4  
Old 08-28-2000, 11:55 AM
LarryBible
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Q,

This is one of the temporary remedies I've seen. Others are a bucket of water, a starter relay in the circuit to give it a better connection, but these are usually "get you home" type remedies.

Good luck,
Larry
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  #5  
Old 08-28-2000, 10:09 PM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Suwanee, GA, USA
Posts: 4,712
I had the exact thing happen to my G-wagen. It turned out to be a faulty connection at the solenoid. The wire connector has some corrosion on it. I repaired it and all was well.

If the connections are OK, you should replace with a rebuilt unit from Bosch.

------------------
Benzmac:
Donnie Drummonds
300E
ASE CERTIFIED MASTER AUTO TECHNICIAN
SERVICE MANAGER FOR 14 BAY FACILITY
MERCEDES SPECIALIST 8 YRS
PARTNER IN MERCEDESSHOP.COM
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  #6  
Old 08-31-2000, 12:32 PM
Hisham
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Hi Larry, Benzmac and Q,

Thanks for the feedback.

I tend to think that the culprit is not the starter itself, but rather the circuit that triggers the solenoid. This is probably due to increased resistance within the circuit caused by natural decay of the wires, a process exarcebated by 22 years exposure to our eternal summer climate. Hence, all you need is some serious driving in 95 degree weather to trigger the circuit failure.

A couple of members suggested off-Forum that I should run a separate circuit from a 12 volt source (either battery or switched)and mount a "momentary" switch under the dash.

Is this practical and what is the procedure to set-up this bypass connection?

Thanks

Hisham


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  #7  
Old 09-01-2000, 07:42 AM
LarryBible
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I would follow Benzmac's advice to fix it right, fix it for good and not modify your Benz.

Check all the wiring and replace the starter with a certified Bosch rebuilt. I have tried other starters and alternators, and have found it to be false economy to buy anything else.

Good luck,

------------------
Larry Bible
'84 Euro 240D, 523K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #8  
Old 09-01-2000, 03:20 PM
MikeTangas's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
Automatic or stick? If an auto another possible cause, the shift linkage bushings. If worn enough, they can cause the shift lever to disengage the safety switch. Result, nothing, no sound no click no anything when you turn the key. When you went out to try after an hour, maybe you had bumped the shift lever enough to engage, resulting in a start. If it happens again, try lifting/pushing the lever all the way to park and hold it there while turning the key.

------------------
Mike Tangas
73 280 SEL 4.5
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  #9  
Old 09-02-2000, 02:29 AM
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Location: Los Angeles, Calif, USA
Posts: 521
Running a wire with a "momentary" switch under the dash creates a chance for crashing the car. Here is what happen. One hot day afternoon after shopping, you jump in the car to go home and try to start the car. You turn the key and the starter makes no noise. You remember the monentary switch under the dash. You turn the key to "on" and press the monentary switch. Car starts and moves forward crashing to car parked in front of you. Reason: The automatic tranny was still in D when you pressed the monentary switch.

Two of my cars have a wire going into the starter solenoid. The other end of the wire is connected to a lamp instead of a monentary switch. If the starter is not engaging, the lamp will tell me if the problem is in the starter or the electrical circuit.

In addition to the suggestions from Donnie, Larry, and Mike, check all the big ground cables to be sure good connections.

David
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  #10  
Old 09-02-2000, 12:42 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Falls Church, VA
Posts: 5,316
I had the same sort of problem in my 280E. The problem turned out to be the relay that controls the starter and the AC. I don't know if there is one on the SE. The other prime culprit is the neutral safety switch, as indicated.

These are inexpensive parts, and easy to replace. Recommend doing both on principle.

Chuck
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  #11  
Old 09-03-2000, 03:36 AM
Hisham
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Folks,

In reference to the possibility that: (1) the hot non-start affliction may be due to worn shift linkage bushings in the auto tranny (Mike Tangas), and (2) the potential danger of the car lunging forward if inadvertently started via momentary switch while on "D" (David@be459), this car actually has MANUAL tranny. Hence, I have to discount both possibilities.

Well friends, the preferred non-scenic route now is to remove the starter, check solenoid connections, rectify if faulty, and if otherwise, get a Bosch rebuilt replacement (right, Larry?). THAT was the easy part. Now, how do you go about extricating the starter from the M110? From a top visual, I can see the starter cosily embedded amidst the exhaust manifold or some other heavy-duty stuff.

Again, thanks for all input.

Hisham
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  #12  
Old 09-03-2000, 03:49 AM
Robert W. Roe's Avatar
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Location: Lehigh Valley PA
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I have personally had the problem with corrosion on the big terminal block that David mentioned. If you are in humid weather especially could make it worse. Cleaning the terminal block (follow the wires coming from the battery) can't hurt.
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  #13  
Old 09-03-2000, 03:50 AM
Larry Delor's Avatar
What, Me Worry?
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Sarasota, Fl.
Posts: 3,077
Within about a minute of reading your question about the removal of the starter, I grabbed a flashlight, and went outside to satisfy my curiosity. Looks like you'll have to get at it from underneath. We may have different chassis, but we both have M110's ...doesn't look like much excitement, rather dull, and an uneventful extraction. I'd give it a "one bloody knuckle" rating out of ten.
-Larry

------------------
03/83 300D 184k
07/73 280 160k
-88 other 159k
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  #14  
Old 09-04-2000, 05:34 AM
Hisham
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A couple of follow-ups:-

Robert Roe and others,
Apart from the terminal block, what other wires/connections could/should be cleaned to ensure optimum operations of the car's electricals?

Larry Delor and others,
Larry's "one bloody knuckle out of ten" rating for the removal of the M110 starter is quite encouraging. Yup, underneath access is the way to go for this job. For those folks who have undertaken this task, would appreciate a "play-by-play" of the starter removal, including tool specs, etc.

Related question, when you "check the solenoid connections," what do you look for? Does accessing the solenoid involves dismantling the starter? Whats the degree of difficulty based on Larry Delor's "bloody knuckle index"? :p

Thanks to all

Hisham





[This message has been edited by Hisham (edited 09-08-2000).]
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