Categories
DIY Maintenance

How to Change Mercedes Key Battery

This is a really quick video on replacing your Mercedes-Benz Key Fob battery.

These tend to go in pairs, so if you are prompted to change one, it is a good time to change both.

These take CR 2032 Batteries and can be found on Amazon here: https://amzn.to/3tLu44I (affiliate link).

Categories
DIY Electronics Maintenance Performance

Laser Jammer Install on E class w212

Check out this install thread on MBworld.org for AL Priority Laser on a w212.

Very clean and detailed with some help from other members with CAD information on the mounts.

I am not advocating the use of this, but I do love clean installs and have to link to it for that reason.

Categories
DIY Maintenance

Don’t check your oil when cold

While driving in the middle of NC between DC and FL, I made the mistake of checking my oil. It read low, really low.  I panicked and added some oil.  Later I was racking my brain over why the oil level seemed to vary so much depending on the reading.

If it was cold, over night cold, the dipstick indicated too high.

Right after running oil seemed too low.

20 minutes after running the oil was in the middle.

And so I wanted to test it out.  I filled the oil to cold full.  Within 30 minutes of driving I got a "check oil at next refueling" message which roughly translate as I understand it to add 1 liter of oil.

I went further down this rabbit hole and found Mercedes recommends in the owners manual running the engine until hot, then waiting at least 5 minutes to measure the oil.  This seemed to indicate a bit high to me.  When filled to this level the engine would rattle a bit more and was noticeably louder.

I would guess the best way to do it is to drain everything and set to specifications 8 liters.  I will add some pictures of what I would guess the correct indicator is when cold, hot, and just right.

Categories
Cleaning Maintenance

Pet Hair Remover Gets Dog Hair out of Car Carpet, Leather, Seats, Carpets

I love my dog but I don't love my dog in my car, because he shed so much!  His nails are also really sharp and quite frankly he likely can't fit comfortably in my CLS, as he is huge.

But in my Range Rovers and Toyotas I couldn't get his hair of my car with top of the line vacuums and lint removers.  I ended up stumbling across this Pet Hair Remover and can fully endorse it.  For ~$8 The Chemical Guys pet hair remover works awesome and is worth it's price.

It clumps the hair so it is easier to remove and pick up.  You then pick up the clumped hair and remove the clumped hair off the pet hair remover.

Categories
DIY Maintenance

Change Cabin Air Filter in Mercedes

If you're running high flow cats, or no cats on a race application, it is recommended to change your cabin air filter more often than the every b service.

Changing the air filters, like the spark plugs, is a little harder than on a toyota.  Instead of just going behind the glove box, you have to go under and then back up like the plot line of a 1990's Arnold movie.

The Under

Under the glove box there are three T25 screws,  these are held in place by little metal things that attach to plastic (they can be slightly misaligned upon reinstall which is why I am foreboding with this information).

You then pull up the carpet toward you and bend the plastic piece away from two plastic pieces one on the footwell area and one next to the door where the black meets.

Then you pull the black piece under the glove box aft and down.

There are two wires which are fairly fragile and paradoxically some how also difficult to remove.  I have no idea what one of them is for, and the other is for a light. I have broken the mysterious side, and nothing has happened so I guess I'll reattach the wires back into the connector at some point.


The Back Up

Once you have ventured the under it is time to look back up and then remove the filter by sliding a white clip to an area that there are no more retaining tabs.  The filter pulls downward.  A new Mercedes cabin filter fits in one direction. The tab starts in the opposite direction for reinsertion. From where there is no retaining clip then slide over to where they overlap and the clip now holds the filter.

Before you put everything back in reverse order add some felt treatment on the plastic on plastic areas to reduce rattling.  I also opted to add a bit of dynamat on the pieces that exhibited undamped harmonics when tapped.

Another Take

Check out this write up on MBworld.  Seems somewhat deprecated and without pictures, but may be useful: https://mbworld.org/how-tos/a/mercedes-benz-e-class-how-to-replace-cabin-air-filter-388754

Categories
Cleaning Interior Lifestyle

Remove Smoke Smell or Fumes from a Catless Car or Smoker’s Car

My ex inherited a house that a smoker, smoked every day in.  This woman was awesome, completely unrelated to my ex but still gave her a house.  It needed a lot of work, beyond just painting I ended up learning how to remodel from this house.

Remodeled Bathroom

Her dad was a general contractor/site supervisor or whatever and he taught how to do things right.  He didn't really help me with work, but the knowledge he bestowed was awesome.

Back to the Point

But the first thing that drove me nuts was the house smelled like smoke.  Ali (my ex) told me she painted every wall, removed all the carpet, and was at a loss as to what to do next.

I ended up going down this rabbit hole and came up with some carrots I thought I'd share.

There is a machine called an Ozone Generator.  Ozone, O3, generators are not "sharper image" style air filters that generate small amounts of O3.  These things pump out dangerous amounts of O3.  People, and pets should not be in the room when they run, or for at least double the time it has run for.


Well after hitting each room several times, 2 hours each room, then wait a few days, another run as needed.  The smoke smell from decades of smoking inside was eliminated.

I ended up using this a few times on smokers cars too.  (Ali smokes) and it works great but with a technique and caveat.

Most people think you want the room or car completely sealed, and to be honest you really want the machine to be fed fresh oxygen, not O3.  Therefore you want to have the trunk open run the Ozone generator with a window in the front slightly cracked (to push the O3 forward), with the air/heat on and on recirculation so it pulls the O3 through the system and kills any fumes in those areas too.

I have seen some people run the machine outside the car and feed it into the car through a flex pipe to accomplish the same goal.  If the car is really bad it might be another option to consider.

The links to the ozone generator are affiliate links, I may get like a fraction of a percent from any sale, but it is also the machine I use and can recommend.  Don't pump it for hours in a small confined area though it will burn out the catalyst.

It was pointed out to me by Daddy Duke on the youtubes that this may also help sanitize cars of corona virus:

  • https://phc.amedd.army.mil/PHC%20Resource%20Library/cv19-use-of-ozone-generators.pdf
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7595067/

As always please do not defeat any car emissions systems unless the car is for racing or upgraded parts are used.

Categories
DIY Stereo

Upgrade Mercedes Tweeters in CLS

Previously, I purchased a set of speakers to fit into the front.  I was only able to ft the woofers at the time but it made a huge difference.  The dynaudio tweeters and mid did not fit.  The screen I previously upgraded but haven't yet done a video on.

Later I upgraded the MB CLS rear woofers and then added inductors to them but honestly it didn't make as big of a difference. The rear woofers cut over at 80hz, the front at 60hz.

With the upgraded front woofers, I decided it was time to take on the tweeters as they became muddy and distorted at higher volumes now that I've tamed some of the front & rear rattles.

Upgrade front tweeters in a Mercedes with Harmon Kardon

Upgrading the front tweeter is not difficult at all. You do not need to remove the door card, but you will need to add a capacitor inline to protect it.  I choose to use the capacitor from the JL C2 crossover which reduced the crossover frequency allowing the front tweeter to play approximately 2000hz deeper than the oem MB HK front tweeter.  Approximately 6500hz with 6 MFD mylar aftermarket cap acting as a 1st order crossover, so some sound down to 3250hz would be audible at -6db, vs  ~8500hz with 4.7MFD stock 1st over crossover, which could be heard again at 4250 at -6db.

Tweeter Upgrade in Mercedes CLS c218 w218

This actually helped staging quite a bit more than I thought it would.

I have a set of mids ordered for the front doors and the install is written up: upgrade mercedes mid woofers

Categories
Cleaning Maintenance

Chemical Guys Grey Matter Waffle Weave Car Drying Towel First Impressions

Nearing the mid of November the DMV's temperature were in the mid-seventies.  It was the perfect time to wash my car, and I got to use for the first time the Chemical Brothers new-ish(?) microfiber drying cloth.  With that let's push the button on this review, and I won't hold back.

Initial thoughts are it is very easy to pull over the car.  Even one handed.  A yellow microfiber would have much more resistance.   It doesn't seem to put the same pressure down, so tricks of using a last coat, quick wax/wash type of product don't produce the same luster as you would find after using it with a yellow microfiber.

I am not sure it is bad though, it would take me two large microfibers to get through the same amount of drying as the same sized Grey Matter.  I found that I could apply a bit of pressure as needed to work with problem areas.

Overall a very nice experience drying the car.  I wouldn't throw away your other microfiber drying towels the way microfiber drying towels supplanted cotton but I would consider adding one or two of these towels as needed.

Categories
DIY Stereo

Reduce Bass Rattle from Rear of Mercedes CLS or E-Class

I really enjoy driving my CLS.  I do remember though the speakers would rattle, the doors would rattle; I drove over a rough patch of road and I thought to myself, "why did I trade in my avalon."  That is how bad the speakers and rattle were.

Slowly, piece by piece, door by door, I began to dynamat everything that rattled.  Dynamatting the front doors (and adding new woofers) paid out huge and completely stopped rattling that used to occur by the front arm rest.

I got to a point though when I didn't know what to do next.  I turned to the mbworld for suggestions.  I sound treated the rear grill, and later the area where the back up indicator lights are.  Both suggestions of mbworld.

This article deals with the area in the rear where the indicator lights are.  It is detached from the roof by pulling down by the glass, popping a clip on each side with straight downward force.  No pry tool is needed. Then this slides forward to release the part from the ceiling.

Inside you'll find a plastic part that is prone to resonate rattling, by this I mean if you tap it, it sounds hallow and perhaps a bit shaky.  There is a soft noise deadener applied,  carefully remove this part, apply the dynamat beneath it, and reattach the soft noise deadener with the dynamat backing to use as glue against the soft deadener.

I applied dynamat to this plastic part and to the areas that hold the clips in place.  Be careful not to plug the holes though. as their are fingers which slide through these holes.  I added a bit of dynamat above this plastic piece to the bare metal areas.  I tapped on each to see which "rang" or were hallow sounding and applied to those pieces.

Categories
DIY

3D Printing For Car Enthusiasts

3D printing is a skill right now.  And it may perhaps always remain that way as we push the boundaries of filaments and techniques.  Many of todays prints can be categorized into useful items and trinkets/aesthetic items.  In the field of printing for your car most of the items fit into the former category, perhaps especially for older Mercedes and Land Rovers.

Ender 5 Printing a Oil Filter Socket

Off of thingiverse you can find many useful items ready to print.  Including oil filter sockets, clock parts, push fitment pieces, and more.  Please find a few of the more useful items below (USE AT YOUR OWN RISK):

  1. COMMAND Wheel Axis
    1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2299813
  2. Panel Clips
    1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2557166
    2. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3171588
  3. Potentially Front tow hook license plate holder
      1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3804462
      2. Car Jack Adapter
        1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:804056
        2. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2894713
  4. Fuseholders
    1. https://www.thingiverse.com/search?q=fuseholder&type=things&sort=relevant
  5. Somethings that might be good for older or classic MB
    1. Sun Visor Clip
      1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:323128
    2. Digital Speedometer Gearing
      1. https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:949801

 

There are also various toys and games to keep you and/or your kids busy.   Of course you can design your own parts with a 3D design tool, or upgrade/modify old ones with a 3D scanner.

 

Categories
DIY Stereo

Eliminate Some Rattling from Rear Deck

Many Mercedes in the USA have a built in subwoofer in the rear deck. There is unfortunately a certain amount of rattle that occurs when the bass or volume is turned up.

I find this unpleasant, and go to great lengths to eliminate rattles. I've researched this a bit, and it seems some are caused by loose nuts in the trunk, some are from areas where the rear shade retracts. I found though a lot comes from the grill that goes over the subwoofer.

It's very easy to take out. Just a few tabs. It's a long piece of plastic with not much holding the tabs in place. I used dynamat on the back of all the tabs and along some of the longer areas without any musical output and along some of the sides.

It's a really nice DIY project that pays big dividends! I would also doubt they would even attempt to fix this at most MB dealerships.

Categories
Air Intake DIY Maintenance Performance

Add An Oil Collector

Adding an oil collector on a direct injection engine can help maintain horsepower and mitigate issues with carbon build up on valves.

I first heard of them reading a online forum "discussion" between two tuners and one brings up GAD tuning.  One thing I realized there are tuners that I need to study and post a section about, like GAD and Masonry.

As I studied the build pages GAD mentions an oil separator and now I'm down that rabbit hole.   Well one of my favorite channels EngineeringExplained went into it and tested them.  TLDR they do work and you may want a bigger one (or an AOS) so it doesn't overflow which might be worse than not having one at all.

Adding an Oil Collector is a fairly inexpensive way to protect your Mercedes.  Just like the blow off valves, lower temp thermostat, this won't actually make your car go faster over a new engine, it will just protect your engine and maintain your performance better.  As it is assumed the carbon build up from DI can lower horse power.  Diverting oil into an oil collector can or an air oil separator oil from going back into the crankcase.

Air Oil Separators are Different than Oil Catch Cans

The oil catch can you have to monitor and empty but the air oil separator takes the same goal but a different operation. In the air oil separator there are baffles to separate the oil and air. The oil is put back into the oil system, the air back to the intake.  This system in the video also uses a coolant system which will help the oil apparently not cake (according to the video).

 

 

Categories
DIY Maintenance

Change Mercedes Wiper Blades

Changing wiper blades, has been best described as something to do often.  Once a year or so.  This cuts down on chatter and improves their efficacy.  Consumer Reports found changing your wiper blades more often is more important than buying the best wiper blades "once".

This soft rubber is often exposed to elements with force and tasked to clean them.  Sun, rain, washer fluid, bird shit, your wiper blades take a beating.  Mercedes built their wiper blade system ingeniously. Incredibly quick to change.

One circular pin and a catch.  You raise the wiper blade, rotate it on its axis (not against the motor) and the wiper blade pulls away.  Installation is the same but reversed.

 

Categories
DIY Maintenance

Change Mercedes Ignition Coil

Changing a coil is a DIY job.  You will need a 17mm open ended wrench or EWK boot removal tool.  Take the 17mm tool and unplug the coil to be replaced.

Remove the airboxes and tubes. Remove the plastic things by pulling up.

Undo the torx (1 is often female torx/ etorx) attaching the specific ignition coil.  Using the same tool apply pressure on the boot downward to index, then outward to remove the boot and coil. Smooth steady pressure outward.  The coil/boot will then pop-off.

Take the new coil and boot assembly and apply the dielectric grease on the boot.  There does seem to be a bit on there anyway, but it is never a bad idea and STAR says to do it to avoid damage to the boot upon removal.

Place the ignition coil back the same way.  Ensure the boot is fully on.  Tighten the star bolt to 6.67 #.  Put the electrical connector back on.  Here is a longer write up on how to change spark plugs which may be helpful as well.

 

 

Categories
Aesthetics Cleaning Exterior

Wash Your Mercedes Without Leaving Swirls

When I first got my Mercedes.  I washed it a lot.  I wondered is there such a thing as too much washing.  And I looked into it by asking on some forums where car nuts, and those who love washing cars reside.

It turns out there such a thing as washing your car too much or improperly.  Basically what happens on most modern cars is you leave swirls if not washed and dryed properly, you may also damage seals.

Here are some tips I've learned along the way:

Car Wash Don'ts

  • No automatic car washes
    • They damage electronics
    • They damage exterior
  • Don't use high intensity sprays at seals
  • Don't wash your engine with a hose and 100% not with a power washer
    • There are too many electronics
    • You can use a damp microfiber
    • Compressed air
    • Vacuum
  • Don't use dish soap, dollar store car wash etc
  • Don't use terry cloths to dry your car
  • Don't dry your car in circles

Car Wash Methods

Two Bucket Method

  • Use the two bucket method
    • One bucket with a dirt trap at the bottom warm filled with warm water
    • One bucket same as above but with appropriate mixture of quality car soap
  • Rinse car with water
  • Use a previously washed or unused hand mit
    • Step 1: Dip mitt into the soap rub on car
    • Step 2: Dip mitt into water bucket to rinse off mitt and repeat step one as needed
  • Spray down car with water
  • Optionally Apply detailer or quick wax type spray
  • Dry with clean microfiber cloths in straight motions

Foam Cannon Method

  • Use a very wide spray low intensity tip with a pressure washer to rinse car
    • Add soap as directed often about 1/10 into the bottom of foam cannon
  • Attach foam cannon and spray foam on car
  • Rinse with a wide low intensity tip
  • Optionally Apply detailer or quick wax type spray
  • Dry with clean microfiber cloths in straight motions