ABC Visit Workshop, resolved without work?

BravoEchoUniform

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Hi All,

2003 SL55 80k miles.

2 mths ago had front struts and ball joint replaced on Tier 2 approved used warranty. 5 weeks later "ABC Visit Workshop" & "ABC Drive Carefully lights" came on. At first occasionally but then couldn't drive more than 30 secs without one of these warnings.

Took it to dealer who did the warranty work. They diagnosed front valve block needs replacing at cost of £960 + similar amount for labour. I said no thanks and collected the car meaning to get the part replaced elsewhere.

That was 4 days and several hundred miles ago. ABC Warning hasn't come on since. There are no probs with the suspension. Height adjustment works, level doesn't drop when parked. No visible leaks. Sport and normal modes work fine, have given it a good testing out.

I have a couple of questions:

1) Could there have been an air bubble or similar that the rodeo test at the dealership sorted out?
2) Could there be some fluid contamination that the rodeo test has temporarily alleviated, but will cause probs later on?
3) Could the dealer have ironed out a problem due to lack of attention when they changed the struts a few weeks back, and then tried it on with getting £1800 of free money out of me on the offchance I am a sucker?
4) Am I best off leaving what appears to be well alone? Or should I get a fluid flush and filter to try to save my expensive valve block?

I have absolutely no faith whatsoever in Merc main dealers in general, and my local one in particular, having had 5 Mercs over 14 years, and plenty of estimates to fix work that didn't need doing, and attempts at billing me on services for jobs I never requested, so have learned to take their diagnoses with a pinch of salt and try to get it verified elsewhere.

Thanks for any insights.
 

television

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Hello and welcome.

I would have said here that they have not got all of the air out yet,,they are not easy things to bleed. For a start you can only bleed the pipes to where they join the struts, and the struts cannot be bled.

I had 2 new struts fitted, and I had to return within an hour as the dash went red, "car too low" and they bled it again.

Since the the after effects have slowly gone away. A short time after all this work, if the car was parked on an odd place,say one wheel in a dip or on a bank, the red dash would come up, just by starting the car the correct would height be resumed. I have a very steep drive way and the same could happen on there.

I am lucky in being a good friend of SAM a MB techie with a STAR test set. My car has been put on the rodeo at meets to show how it works. The effect of this is that the red dash no longer comes up.

I have since had a washer fail in the valve block and the fluid all came out ,see

http://forums.mercedesclub.org.uk/showthread.php?t=46330&highlight=ABC+fault

Once again the car is fine for the best part, I do get the whit ABC visit workshop now and then, but I just turn off and on and it does not come back. you can still drive the car with the white dash display,, this is just a tiny air bubble in one of the struts, that triggers the sensor .

Now,,for the time being, never park the car without making sure that the front wheels are in the straight ahead position, if the car sinks it can take out the front wings,,, the daft thing is that it does not tell you this in the owners hand book,,only in the workshop manuals.

So to sum up,,it will go away and become less frequent after some miles as the air works its way out. Its OK to drive with the white dash, but if the Red dash lights up,turn off and back on, use the height button if necessary.

One can always find leaks on these cars, at the front nearside you have control units each side of the wheel, any leaks here will show up on the inside of the tyre.

I always carry a bottle of fluid,,and this has got me home
 
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BravoEchoUniform

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Hi Malcolm,

Thanks for the advice. I will invest in a bottle of fluid.
The park with wheels straight ahead is good advice too, I will make sure it becomes a habit.

Should there be air in the system a few weeks after having the struts replaced or does it depend on how careful they were in the workshop at time of fitting?
 

television

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I feel that when they build these car they must fill the system with the car upside down. The actual bleed valves, one on each corner level with the sills are not the highest point and these bleed valves are some 50cm lower that the top of the struts, so short of fitting them ready filled in the factory its impossible to get all the air out, you can see in the link that there is no return line

http://www.detali.ru/cat/oem_mb2.as...GA=722.633&CT=F&cat=65P&SID=32&SGR=290&SGN=06.

My car did take a few thousand mile to go away completely,,with your car there was nothing wrong with the valve block before it went in, so I think that they are telling porkies with that.

If the RED dash comes up often,,then get them to bleed it again.
 

turbopete

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so all in all, its a BLEEDING nuisance then eh, Malcolm?

or just a BLEEDING pain?
 

television

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Yes I have heard it before,,I am sure that the struts must be filled before they fit them, the mess when you bleed it is awful,,it goes every where, so I cant see them doing that during the build
 

turbopete

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souynd like anything with a BC in its name is a pain and best avoided if your like me and want a nice easy life! ABC, SBC, think i'll avoid them all!
 

television

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souynd like anything with a BC in its name is a pain and best avoided if your like me and want a nice easy life! ABC, SBC, think i'll avoid them all!

And I have it all ,,SBC,ABC, plus more and it all goes wrong,,gives you something to do though
 

turbopete

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And I have it all ,,SBC,ABC, plus more and it all goes wrong,,gives you something to do though

true i suppose, but every once in a while i like to be able to just drive instead of listen for warning buzzers etc!
 

television

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true i suppose, but every once in a while i like to be able to just drive instead of listen for warning buzzers etc!

No warning buzzers Pete on mine,,great cars though
 

turbopete

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im sure they are! if my numbers come up this weekend i shall treat myself to an amg one!
 

television

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im sure they are! if my numbers come up this weekend i shall treat myself to an amg one!

When my number comes up,,my kids will sell mine :(:shock:
 

turbopete

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u planning on getting an AMG before your numbers come up then? im sure we all hope that wont be for a long time though! if we think it may be imminent, we will all chip in and have you cryogenically frozen, and only thawed out for big problems we cant handle alone, so we can preserve and enjoy your expertise a good while longer!
 

television

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Its hard to stay within the law now,just with the basic 500,,I do quite a few longish runs in mine, I enjoy the comfort and what the car offers me,,its fine that the AMG is few miles less on the MPG,,but I can knock my rear tyres out in 10k without thinking about it. So in all I am very happy with a 0 to60 in 6 sec
 

ajlsl600

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too ****** right , starts to get like one dreads putting the key in ignition!
 

steveffc

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Sorry to jump in here, I have a merc sl 500 2003 32000m, my abc light comes on for a few hours, goes off again, then 2 days later yellow engine management light cones on, then that goes off, then abc again, then nothing, car drives well, abc fluid is at the right level, this problem gas been for 3 months and 2000m driven as well, what should I do, as I know nothing about cars
 

silver CL55

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Sounds like a couple of separate faults there.
If you post where you stay someone will no doubt recommend and good Indie in your area, who has knowledge of these complicated cars.

Edit, if you are not too far, Wayne Gates knows these cars inside out http://mercsales.co.uk/services/


Sorry to jump in here, I have a merc sl 500 2003 32000m, my abc light comes on for a few hours, goes off again, then 2 days later yellow engine management light cones on, then that goes off, then abc again, then nothing, car drives well, abc fluid is at the right level, this problem gas been for 3 months and 2000m driven as well, what should I do, as I know nothing about cars
 
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television

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STAR should say what is wrong. Unless you have have water in the passenger sill box, these will be separate faults, you should pull back the carpet passenger side and see if it is damp.
 


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