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W202 MOT failure - track rod ends

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering & Brakes' started by ms500, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. ms500

    ms500 Member

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    Took my 97 C240 for it's MOT today, it failed on one fault:

    Offside front track rod end ball joint dust cover excessively damaged so that it no longer prevents the ingress of dirt [2.2.C.1c]

    The garage said it was best to replace both sides at the same time, and that they could replace them and do the tracking for £160 total. Does this sound right?

    Also, as an advisory, they mentioned some play in the steering tie rods. I was wondering whether this may explain some weirdness in the handling I have noticed. Sometimes, when braking from speed, it feels like the front of the car is 'floating' from side to side. Quite unnerving really, but other than that it drives well.
     
  2. WG M-B

    WG M-B Senior Member Authorised Forum Supporter

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    The issue you describe is usually caused by excessively worn wishbone bushes. Many mot stations fail to pick this up!
    It is best to replace both track rod ball joints together , and they can be purchased relatively cheaply with the tie rods (complete).
    I would possibly get a second opinion? The price you have been quoted is a liitle steep for just track rod ends and tracking!
     
  3. bigasotonuk

    bigasotonuk Senior Member

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    Hi,
    Personnally if you have had an MOT advise about play in the tie rods as well as track rods ends that are failling the MOT I would be looking to replace the entire drag link assembly as this will come with track rod ends anyway, and should only take just over an hour to replace the entire assembly.
    My C230K had an advise this year for the inner tie rods, so I bought an entire drag link assembly from GSF, they can supply two different types, check out the link below, that and about 1.5 Hours to fit, and get the tracking done and you will be good to go.
    http://www.gsfcarparts.com/parts/steering-suspension/steering-parts/steering-linkage
     
  4. WG M-B

    WG M-B Senior Member Authorised Forum Supporter

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    1.5 hours to fit :shock:
     
  5. bigasotonuk

    bigasotonuk Senior Member

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    Why?:confused: does that not sound right to replace the drag link?
    To be honest I actually thought that it was about an hour and a quarter book time.
     
  6. Aletank

    Aletank Senior Member

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    My W203 had a Advisory on the last MOT on a Track Rod End, I asked the garage if they should be replaced in pairs - they said no. They said they would charge £20 Labour including Tracking if I get the part - the part cost £12.
    They fitted it within about 10/15 mins but then only charged my £10 Labour as they said thier Tracking machine is broke and they recommend i get the tracking done.
    I took it to my local Hunter 4 Wheel Alignment garage who charged me £30 for proper Wheel Alignment with before & after print outs.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  7. OP
    ms500

    ms500 Member

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    Well, they said the other side was almost shot as well.

    They do seem a bit steep though. Only thing is I don't have long until the MOT expires and I need the car for my job so don't really have time to do much shopping around. Their quote does include an MOT re-test and a courtesy car 'if they have one available on the day'.
     
  8. Aletank

    Aletank Senior Member

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    Most Motor Factors will have the part on the shelf or can get it that day, I thought most MOT places do a free retest within 10 days ?
    If they are offering a courtesy car, they are probably quite a big garage which explains the big bill.
    Best advice i can give for the future is to find a MOT garage that you can trust with reasonable rates and stick to them.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  9. REMEmechanic

    REMEmechanic New Member

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    Seems some confusion over parts here, that GSF part is NOT a drag link, it is a tie/track rod assembly.
    By the book any play in solid ball joints is a MoT failure, usually disgretion used if slight play as they are never going to fall apart.
    Vehile wandering under breaking would imply (age related) general wear in steering.suspension components, probably best guess the lower wishbone ball joints because of the abuse they get (potholes/speed humps) also check wheel bearings.
    PS £160 for that work is daylight robbery.
    Always try to use a Mot centre, garages that offer cheap Mots to get you in make it up in other ways believe me, get in the reception early, if you constantly hear them making calls reporting failures and quoting repair costs to get it passed you know what to expect...many have no choice but to pay as they need their car.
     
  10. bigasotonuk

    bigasotonuk Senior Member

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