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GUIDE: Replacing a steering damper (W208)

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering & Brakes' started by JSeaman, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    C220 CDI 2005
    The steering damper is basically just a shock absorber mounted to the steering system. If/when your damper fails, the car will feel a detached/vague and wander as you drive. As with most shock absorbers, they wear out and leak their fluid which prevents them from doing their job.

    The good news is that it is a cheap (~£25) and very easy job to change it, here is how:

    Step 1 - Jack the car up using the rubber mount as shown

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    Step 2 - With the car nice and high (give yourself plenty of room to work), support the car on axle stands - leave the jack in place too

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    Step 3 - Before you start the job, make sure you have a 16mm socket and a 16mm spanner (or 5/8 in old money). Socket sets often skip 16mm and 18mm sizes so check first. You will be pleased to know that the small spark plug sockets which you do normally get are 16mm and you could probably make do with adjustables if pushed

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  2. OP
    JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    C220 CDI 2005
    Step 4 - Locate the damper which is under the front of the car as shown

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    Step 5 - Place a 16mm socket over the nut on the nearside (passenger side) and a 16mm spanner on the back of it. It is not a 'captive' nut which means you have a nut and bolt on either side (meaning it will spin forever if you don't have a spanner on either side of it)

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  3. OP
    JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Step 6 - Remove the nut completely and then pop the bolt out (if awkward you can give the bolt a tap with a hammer but it should just pull out)

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    Step 7 - Now onto the second bolt on the offside, this one is even easier as you don't need to lock it with a spanner. Simply remove the bolt with your 16mm socket

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    JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
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    Step 8 - You can wriggle the offside of the strut (damper) until it the nearside drops out

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    Step 9 - Lay your old strut next to the new one (old is at the top in the first picture) and then simply pull the new strut open to roughly the same length as shown in the second picture

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    Step 10 - Slide the new strut in place from the offside and wriggle it into position in the clamp

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  5. OP
    JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Step 11 - When you have nearly aligned the hole with the strut, pop the bolt in from the underside and use this to help drop it into place (wriggle the strut whilst trying to put the bolt in and when it goes through you have lined it up).

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    Step 12 - Fit your new bolt in place from the top and then fit the nut loosely with your fingers

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  6. OP
    JSeaman

    JSeaman Senior Member

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    Your Mercedes:
    C220 CDI 2005
    Step 13 - Line up the offside of the steering damper and fit the bolt in place finger tight also

    [​IMG]

    Step 14 - Tighten up the bolt and then nut/bolt as shown

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    Step 15 - Remove the axle stand and drop the car back down then test drive the car

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