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2002 W220 S302CDi Airmatic

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering & Brakes' started by RobWheatley, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    2002 S320CDi Auto with Toys...
    Hi All
    My W220's airmatic started giving the Airmatic Car too Low warning every now and again on the way to and from work, it only seemed to do it going along the lanes, it was fine around town and on the motorways but then it was getting more and more often and every day, I suspected the compressor and planned to get and fit a new one, last thursday not one warning to or from work, went out thurday evening and was fine on the way there, came back to the car and the front was on the ground, started it up and it rose a bit but within 1/2 mile of driving off it was right down, took it VERY slow and got it home.
    Bought a new (used) compressor and fitted it last night, started it up and she leveled up, set to high and within about 15 seconds the Vehicle rising went off, cool I thought, sorted, set the level to normal and she lowered.
    I left it running while I put the tools away and BONG Airmatic too low appeared again, looked and the NSF is down, all the others are ok, set the level high again and up it came, back to normal and it was fine for about 30 seconds then BONG again.
    I can see the NSF dropping but cannot hear or see any leaks, no hissing from the strut top or leg, the level sensor must be working as it stops at the right level and warns that it is low.
    Could it be the valve block leaking internally, I am sure I read somewhere they have a non return valve somewhere, could that be faulty (if so where is it)
    Any help would be great.
    Rob
     
  2. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    2002 S320CDi Auto with Toys...
    Anyone???
    I have searched the forums but cannot find anything that helps, it has to be an air leak and I don't think STAR would help trace it but will get it plugged in if needed.
    Rob
     
  3. Oarsman

    Oarsman Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    W221 S350L CDI Bluetec, Range Rover Vogue SE 4.4 TDI, 1963 Triumph TR4
    You could try soapy water on the top of the strut and the valve body,or you can buy a spray can that is used to test gas pipe joints for leaks. Sorry I can't remember what it's called, but it will be available from most plumbers merchants.
    Good luck. I hope it doesn't prove to be too expensive.
     
  4. whitenemesis

    whitenemesis Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    CLS55 AMG '05
    STAR can test the various valves and operations of the Airmatic system. Unless anything obvious is shown with the soapy water test I would recommend getting the car pugged in..
     
  5. jibcl500

    jibcl500 Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    CL500,ML55,SLK280
    More probable the valve block next to the compressor has gone porous, with engine running spray it with wd40 and look for the bubbles.

    jib
     
  6. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    2002 S320CDi Auto with Toys...
    Thanks all
    I have tested with LDF at the strut tops and no leaks or cracks, did suspect the valve block so have bought a S/H one to try.
    I am thinking that as the car does raise to the right height and stop the level sensors are ok, its as soon as it get to the right height that corner starts to drop.

    Just out of interest I took the old compressor apart, all ok except the piston ring was worn and very slack in the cylinder, shame there is not a replacement available for it!
    Will report back when I find anything.
     
  7. AdamG

    AdamG Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    S320CDI (2003)
    I was experiencing the dreaded "airmatic visit workshop" error every now and then. I took the compressor apart like you and noticed the piston ring had worn.

    http://forums.mercedesclub.org.uk/showthread.php?t=91143

    In the absence of replacement rings (unlike with the range rover) I wrapped some ptfe tape around the slot in the cylinder. This spaced out the teflon ring a little. The compressor has been running fine for the last year.

    Adam
     
  8. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    2002 S320CDi Auto with Toys...
    Hi all
    Ok, replaced the valve block and the car came up and stayed up, thought great fixed it, took it for a drive and BONG airmatic low, got home again and re-tested the strut tops on the high setting (i did it at the normal last time) and LOADS of bubbles from both tops, (more from the dirivers side but its the passenger side that is dropping quicker) when it first started dropping and I checked the epoxy tops I could not see any cracks BUT now I can, Could be the cold causing them to open up i suppose.
    Is it worth trying to repair them or replace them both :shock:

    Does anyone have the tool to repair the strut seals?

    Rob
     
  9. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    Your Mercedes:
    2002 SL500, 216 CL500, all fully loaded
    I think that I saw a kit in WIS for this, they started doing one for the legs on the 230, but shelved it I will take a look this evening
     
  10. Myros

    Myros Senior Member

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    R107, S211, R170
    you can repair the epoxy tops

    I read somewhere in Benzworld that 'creeping crack cure' will fix it. Might be worth a go before lashing out on new struts.
     
  11. jibcl500

    jibcl500 Senior Member

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    Araldite, dig out the old stuff and then refill with araldite, take the weight off the struts before you do this though.

    jib
     
  12. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Hi All
    Right, today i decided to tackle the leaking strut tops, warmed the old seal up with a hairdryer and dug it out with a wood chisel only to find a layer of polystyrene under it!! cleaned it all up and filled it (minus the polystyrene) with a 2 part 30 min epoxy resin, then left it for about 4 hours, held my breath and started the car, the car then came up to normal level, once it had stopped moving I turned it off and locked it and waited, 5 mins, no movement, 10 mins and still no movement, 15 mins and still level, got cold and decided to go in and warm up, 5 hours later and it is still level, I have not driven it yet but will be doing so in the morning on the way to work, fingers crossed it will be ok, if not the RAC will be getting a call!

    I did take a load of pictures whilst doing to and will do a write up for others if they want to attempt it.

    Rob
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012
  13. whitenemesis

    whitenemesis Senior Member

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    Why did you decide to leave the polystyrene out? There must have been in there for a reason?
     
  14. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Mainly as it was destroyed getting the old epoxy out and I had nothing to replace it.
    I think it was in there to stop the epoxy sticking to the seal disc in the top of the leg.
    The new epoxy is clear so I should be able to see if it is starting to leak.
     
  15. Frontstep

    Frontstep Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    T210 320cdi
    Could you post a picture of the piston with sizes it may be sourceable for future repairs.
     
  16. 47p2

    47p2 Senior Member

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    Slk
    This guy re-maunfacturers new seals, worth dropping him a message to see if he can do one for the S-Class
     
  17. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Yes will do, will het the vernier out.

    Well the repair lasted all of 10 miles then BONG, looked and the new epoxy had cracked/come away from the surround, it WAS a high performance epoxy supposed to withstand 2500psi, guess not.

    Pair of new struts ordered and arriving tomorrow, old ones removed ready.

    What a pig of a job to get the grub screws out, rust AND locktight.......
     
  18. 47p2

    47p2 Senior Member

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    Those grub screws are a very poor design
     
  19. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    2002 S320CDi Auto with Toys...
    Yes it is, rust and locktite with a big fine thread and such a small hex socket really doesn't make sense. I bet there have been some real headaches getting them out, mine just took a bit of heat but I did break one hex bit.

    Have to say though, I ordered the new ones (well reconditioned) from Dronsfield Mercedes and they were very helpful, even offered to send them overnight for nothing!
     
  20. OP
    RobWheatley

    RobWheatley Senior Member

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    Right, new struts fitted, tested for a day and perfect, will start a thread for the compressor piston ring dimensions and options for maybe replacing them.
    Rob
     

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