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NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/23/19 3:39 p.m.
mazdeuce - Seth said:

I'm so glad you replaced those. laugh

I always stare at the pictures you post a little longer than I should........

Ditto! Typical Germanness as well. 7x screws per side to get to the clip holding them in. That said I'm wondering how long they'll last! 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/23/19 5:01 p.m.

It is good to appreciate small victories.  The European models don't have those yellow turn signals.  We have a piece the same shape but that matches the body paint.  I think the turn signals are just on the backs of the outside mirrors.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/24/19 6:52 p.m.
1955W196S said:

It is good to appreciate small victories.  The European models don't have those yellow turn signals.  We have a piece the same shape but that matches the body paint.  I think the turn signals are just on the backs of the outside mirrors.

Small victory indeed. Seems that in the course of changing the housing/reflector, I shook the bulb too much. Its dead now on the drivers side; the "easy" side to get at. 
 

I have to laugh at this one. Shoulda just changed the bulbs at the same time! 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/25/19 3:50 a.m.

When you have bigger problems hanging over you in the background, even the little problems can seem big.  We talk about the straw that broke the camel's back.  Here in France they express the same idea by talking about the drop of water that caused the vase to overflow.

Glad to hear that you are able to laugh.  Hopefully when you get through all of this, you will have a lengthy period of problem free driving.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/26/19 5:38 a.m.

Got word last night that the estimated delivery date for a Mercedes Valve Body with conductor plate is not less than 2 months out.

 

Must be made of unicorn tears, the bone of a lion and tooth of a whale. 
 

Hadn't expected a delay of that long and the Limp Home mode continues with increasing frequency. Trying to make sense of what other choices are available and will likely ring the helpful MBUSA customer service desk. 
 

 

 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/27/19 2:08 p.m.

Called and spoke with Mercedes yesterday who took the part number, vendor information and promised to look into the question of 60+ day parts delay.  This morning Mercedes called back and said that parts would be delivered on Monday.  60+ days shortened to 4.    Wonder if someone in Germany had difficulty with inventory management??  

Also, I placed an order with FCPEuro for the 722.9 Transmission Pan upgrade kit.  .5qt larger pan and a better filter; including gaskets, bolts and fluid.  With any luck, by the end of next week the transmission issue will be resolved!  

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
9/27/19 3:29 p.m.

My fingers will spend the next week crossed. 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/28/19 3:27 a.m.

Great news on the parts.  Here's hoping that this problem will soon be behind you.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/7/19 7:56 p.m.

 

In case you were curious what the R63 AMG Valve Body assembly with conductor plate and solenoids looked like...

Repairs, coding and so forth complete Wednesday.  

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/9/19 7:55 p.m.

The R63 is repaired, home and I will post photos tomorrow.  

Overall the magnets were clean, fluid looked good...purely a bad conductor plate and signal to the ECU/TCU causing the failures.  The shifts are greatly improved, but adaptation software will need a few weeks to adjust.  The 4-5 shift is "odd" right now.  

Best of all, the total for parts, labor and coding was $1700.  Or 50% lower than dealer rates for the same part, labor and coding.  

 

 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/10/19 7:17 p.m.

Original Valve Body before removal

 

Valve Body assembly removed and the transmission case exposed.  Like the intake manifold, it is made from magnesium with an aluminum bell housing.  

 

The Original Conductor plate and faulty sensors.  They are in the middle of the conductor plate, just Below the VDO logo.  

 

New hotness.  Still having some odd shifts at times.  Today at 1-2 and 4-5.  Adaptation learning is occurring.  

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
10/10/19 7:29 p.m.

I'm glad that worked out. When they did the transmission service after the motor work they said the fluid and filter and all the guts looked good. Here's to hoping for many many miles of good driving on this fix. 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/10/19 7:55 p.m.
mazdeuce - Seth said:

I'm glad that worked out. When they did the transmission service after the motor work they said the fluid and filter and all the guts looked good. Here's to hoping for many many miles of good driving on this fix. 

Agreed!  I was planning to road trip the R63 to Seguin this weekend for my Great-Grandmother in-laws 91st B-Day.  We were asked to bring the Acadia.  Such is life.  Really wanted to use those highway miles to work on the adaption!  

Critical family time here!  Must reset the TCU adaptations!!  cheeky

 

Overall assessment of Heidi is that she is in stable condition, performing as if she were in her mid-20s.  Bikini prime if you will.  

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
12/14/19 12:59 p.m.

Over the last 2 months Heidi has covered just over 3k miles and not missed a step.  The shifting adaptations have been completed as far as I can tell and I believe the transmission issue to be resolved.  

Yesterday Heidi decided it was time for her Christmas gift; cylinder #2 misfire paired with the indications that the Auxiliary Battery needs replacement.  FCPEuro order placed for 8x NGK Spark Plugs, 8x Ignition Coils and an OEM Aux Battery.  All told $400 in parts with an estimated delivery on Tuesday with plans to install next weekend with my oldest "assisting..." plus an oil change (Motul 5W40).  I suspect that my oldest will be assisting by riding his scooter in the driveway with an occasional wrench turn; completely OK with me!

Today while returning from the grocery store, the starting process was very slow/labored.  I checked for codes and found no new additions to the misfire.  From a troubleshooting perspective I'm wondering if this is a fuel injector issue; a known failure point of the M156 engines.  Approaching this from ensuring correct spark, then fuel.  Some initial reading suggests that this could be an indicator for the O2 sensors needing replacement, though no codes have populated and the voltage is switching normally.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
12/14/19 4:31 p.m.

Here's hoping that replacing the spark plugs, the ignition coils and the aux battery will do the trick.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
12/14/19 8:05 p.m.

Now I feel bad for not replacing the aux battery while I was in there. Best of luck getting to everything under the seat. If I recall, you have to move the seat forward to to get at the rear bolts and backwards to get at the front bolts. I imagine it will be much easier than replacing a main battery because you'll have power to the seats to get them to move. 

Knight
Knight
12/17/19 9:42 a.m.

Took a few days and a bit of procrastination, but what an excellent read from Page 1 onwards. I have an M156-equipped machine tucked away in the garage for winter and have been looking to address the headbolts preventively (along with a few other small maintenance & upgrade projects).

Deuce, big kudos for not only taking on the challenge but also documenting it in such a thorough and "human" manner. Felt like a fellow gear-head buddy unfolding a story.

NoahWeb, fuel injectors seem to be a maintenance item on the M156...more of a "when" than "if" replacement item. They fail stuck open and some of these failures can be spectacular.

Plenty of great info on the M156 in MBWorld (W204 C63 Sub Forum): https://mbworld.org/forums/c63-amg-w204-93/

And also from the M156 guru: https://www.youtube.com/user/tasosmos2

 

 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
12/17/19 7:52 p.m.

Quick update for this evening.  While starting the R63 to get lunch, she was a bit slow and labored again.  Opted to have the main battery tested out of curiosity.  It failed.  $199 later, an AGM Duralast Platinum was secured.  This evening my oldest and I commenced with the passenger seat removal, passenger carpet removal, various trim bits....and succeeded in replacing both batteries!  My son was very proud of assisting, while I was pleased as he was busily cleaning up the garage & tools to park the R63 into the garage.  Much to our delight, she started right up with the normal M156 klatter.    

The Ignition Coils and plugs arrived.  At present they are arranged dress-right-dress on the dining table awaiting the weekend for installation.  

@Knight welcome!!  This thread is a lengthy read and an epic story IMHO.  Agreed on the injectors and I am considering when to replace them.  Have a lengthy trip to Europe coming up for the Army, during which the R63 will be in temp storage.  The injectors will likely be a coming home project.  

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
12/17/19 8:03 p.m.

Well the battery I put in didn't last as long as I would have hoped. Good job on the swap. I spent a bunch of time scratching my head wondering why Mercedes thought any of that was a good idea. I guess there are worse battery placements, but not a lot worse. 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
12/17/19 8:28 p.m.
mazdeuce - Seth said:

Well the battery I put in didn't last as long as I would have hoped. Good job on the swap. I spent a bunch of time scratching my head wondering why Mercedes thought any of that was a good idea. I guess there are worse battery placements, but not a lot worse. 

Thanks mazdeuce!  I understand the MB desire to lower the center of gravity, but when the vehicle already weights just shy of Venus, what's the point!? I need to send you an e-mail here soon; looking at a trip to NASA post-Christmas...kiddos want to see a Saturn V/Space Ship.  

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
12/18/19 4:22 p.m.

Did you take any photos of the battery swaps?

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
12/18/19 8:57 p.m.
1955W196S said:

Did you take any photos of the battery swaps?


sadly, no. Check page ~529 of owners manual. Detailed photos and instructions for main battery. The aux battery, I followed this link https://mbworld.org/forums/r-class-w251/342579-auxiliary-battery.html

spacecadet
spacecadet GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
12/20/19 11:37 a.m.

In reply to NoahWeb :

You have a PM from me about H Town stuff. 

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
12/21/19 4:59 p.m.

Finished replacing the Spark Plugs and Ignition Coils today.  Overall the plugs looked clean and not one of the coils had burned pins or signs of ill-wear.  The install was as straight forward as it could be considering the M156 engine oddities as a whole.  

 

This is from the #2 Cylinder; same that had the misfires.  The other 7 looked broadly the same.  

Also completed a oil change, upping the weight from 0w40 to 5w40 in the hopes of keeping some residual oil on the lifters after the engine is shut off.  Still a klatterly engine on start...normal trait of the engine design I suppose.  I believe fuel injectors will be next on the list to complete, plus still giving some thought to a catch can.  And my eldest did a great job helping!!

While returning the "failed" battery to AutoZone, I asked them to re-test it out of mild curiosity.  It passed.  76% charge and stable. Not sure why it failed the first time, but hey....both the main battery and aux battery are new/replaced.  

@spacecadet saw your message; thank you!  We haven't booked a hotel yet and will get to that today/tomorrow.  

Knight
Knight New Reader
1/2/20 10:00 p.m.
NoahWeb said:Also completed a oil change, upping the weight from 0w40 to 5w40 in the hopes of keeping some residual oil on the lifters after the engine is shut off.  Still a klatterly engine on start...normal trait of the engine design I suppose.  I believe fuel injectors will be next on the list to complete, plus still giving some thought to a catch can.

A catch can is a necessity on the M156/M159. Went with Weistec (quality kit, albeit pricey) but other options have come to market recently:

VRP - https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/mercedes-m156-oil-catch-can-kit-vrp-speed-oilcc#fitment

Custom Fittings (can be used with any generic catch can) - https://mbworld.org/forums/c63-amg-w204/762118-catch-can-pcv-adapter-fittings.html

As for oil, Liqui Moly's Ceratec treatment is worth a try. Coupled with their 5W40 Leichtlauf, my engine quieted down a noticeable level over Mobil 1 0W40.

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