Tips to Handle Gear Selector Issues in MercedesPosted on October 25, 2018
Mercedes-Benz has that old-timey class that is so appealing to so many. With their sleek styling and low rides, they are the epitome of class, wealth and power. Their handling on the road is luxurious and impressive, and their styling speaks of classic German engineering and indomitable extravagance and comfort.
With their reliability and leisure, they are the perfect mix for any car owner, and are a great addition to any family or couple. With many models to choose from—from SUVs, to family cars, to sleek sporty cars—Mercedes’ are an excellent choice.
Despite their touted wonder, there are some areas where even a Mercedes can occasionally struggle. One of the issues that can be faced by Mercedes-Benz owners are gear selector issues.
Types of Issues:
Some gear selector issues occur due to poor upkeep or maintenance, though they can also be caused by malfunctions or factory faults. These problems can include incorrect levels of transmission oil, a faulty primary pump, water in the system, oil slippage, or other malfunctioning parts. When this happens, the transmission slips into “limp mode,” which prevents the transmission gears from shifting properly. Instead, they move automatically to the obvious gear, which is often second or third. Even though it’s a self-protection system to prevent further damage to the transmission, it can itself cause damage if used for too long.
How to Handle a Malfunctioning Gearbox
When the transmission is in “limp mode” and the gears cannot shift accurately, the whole gearbox is at fault. When that happens, it’s generally necessary to take the car to an authorized dealer or mechanic, because the cause is difficult to ascertain on your own. Advanced computer equipment can run a diagnostic and determine the main cause, and therefore the best way to fix it.
If there is an electrical issue, the main causes are likely faulty solenoids, a damaged speed sensor or selector sensor, or potentially even an issue with the transmission module itself. These modules can be damaged by a variety of things, including voltage overload, water in the system, some kind of thermal stress, or general vibrations. If the module is the problem, it can be an expensive and time-consuming operation. When the transmission is damaged, it requires either a full replacement (which can be extremely expensive) or an extensive repair. Depending on the type of issue, however, a smaller problem could be the case and a control unit replacement could be the fix.
When in doubt, checking the transmission on your own is a great first step. The fluid level should remain at the height/quantity recommended by the owner’s manual. The transmission will switch to “limp mode” when the fluid is too low, so it’s crucial to check the fluid quantity as a reasonable first step. If you’re not comfortable doing this, a professional service shop should be able to do so.
With the help of some electronic equipment (if you don’t have it available, seek a trusted mechanic or service shop) you can also check the codes stored by the transmission of the Mercedes-Benz which should indicate the type of problem occurring.
Lastly, “limp mode” could occur when the battery of the car is low. In that case, most auto shops can test the battery and recharge it, if necessary, or replace it if it’s no longer good. The low battery can affect the gear selector, including the valve body—which may need to be fully replaced.
How We Can Help You
No matter the problem that occurs, we here at Green Garage European Auto Centre are ready to help! With years of experience, friendly and helpful staff, and a unique knowledge of foreign cars, we can be sure to help you out of a pinch. Located in Winter Park, FL, we also service Orlando with our productive and specialized team. Our 3-year warranty on all of our work demonstrates our absolute surety that our work is the best. Handling European cars is a technical and precise endeavor, and we want to make sure that you leave us happy, with a healthy car—no matter the type of problem facing your Mercedes.
Whenever in doubt, call our expert technicians and send your quality car in for the service that it deserves. From transmission issues to tires and rotations, we’re ready to help.
* Mercedes SLS GTs image credit goes to: Andrius Kaziliunas.