1994 facelift w124 e30d estate starting problem

DITTRICH

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After a long run and engine bay is hot, car refuses to restart.
Car starts every time from cold.
Battery and starter motor are okay.
All fuses are okay.
All lights come on where necessary go out (glow plugs and airbags).
All gauges work.
The alarm works (scorpion SA30) and turns on and off no problem.
On the last turn, the starter motor does nothing - no noise - no clicking.
If power is applied to the relevant output from the starter motor relay then it starts - hence starter motor and battery seem fine.

I need this car to go to Russia in 1 week.
Both the alarm company and my very local dealership have failed to solve this problem.

It is, in my humble opinion, either an insulation problem or a soldered joint somewhere. But where? An old school auto electrician would find this quickly. Does anyone know of a w124 experienced auto electrician in London, preferably east or north?
Les
 
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DITTRICH

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Took the car for a long drive this morning and delivered it back to the dealership - straight into the workshop by their driver without turning off the ignition. Stop car. Try to start it - nothing happening. A little later I get a call - gearbox lockout switch ordered and luckily its at Milton Keynes arriving tomorrow. They will fit and then test the car themselves a bit. Fingers crossed.
 
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DITTRICH

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Well the car has now been on a long drive and the hot starting problem is definitely cured.
Yes!
 
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DITTRICH

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I spoke too soon...

In spite of an "improvement" the darned thing failed again after a week.
Then holidays intervened and now it's back at the garage (MB Stratford) after another fail-to-start at Asda.

Realistically, it could be anything between the ignition and the starter motor.
The gearbox lockout switch was replaced last time.
I have asked to speak to the tech this (last) time.

I am waiting to see MB fail to repair their own vehicle...
Then, I shall try the Wood Green recommendation (a real pain to get to though).

Les
 

bolide

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This can be diagnosed using the very latest hi-tech diagnosis tool - a bulb, fuse & two lengths of wire

Start by connecting it to the switched live on the starter motor, via the fuse to a bulb and then earth. Find a suitable earth location inside the cabin

Next time the car fails to start, does the bulb light when you turn the key to the start position? If it doesn't, try the switched feed to the starter motor solenoid. Then work your way back up the chain via the immobiliser and lockout switch to the ignition switch

My money would be on anything aftermarket - Scorpon alarm, I am looking at you!

Obviously I realise this isn't a feasible test for an everyday car unless you also install a bypass starter switch

Nick Froome
the independent Mercedes Estate specialists
 

Dieselman

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It's probably the START contacts in the switch are worn. When they heat up they move apart a little.

As a test rig a temporary push to start button to bypass the switch while checking everything else.

If there is a starter relay check that as well.
 
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DITTRICH

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This can be diagnosed using the very latest hi-tech diagnosis tool - a bulb, fuse & two lengths of wire

Start by connecting it to the switched live on the starter motor, via the fuse to a bulb and then earth. Find a suitable earth location inside the cabin

Next time the car fails to start, does the bulb light when you turn the key to the start position? If it doesn't, try the switched feed to the starter motor solenoid. Then work your way back up the chain via the immobiliser and lockout switch to the ignition switch

My money would be on anything aftermarket - Scorpon alarm, I am looking at you!

Obviously I realise this isn't a feasible test for an everyday car unless you also install a bypass starter switch

Nick Froome
the independent Mercedes Estate specialists

The alarm is not an original but a replacement SA30 scorpion system. It is possible the installation of this alarm has upset something or something was moved and not put back properly. The problems occurred after the new alarm was fitted. The gearbox lockout switch and the starter switch behind the ignition barrel have been replaced by the dealership. I have lodged a complaint with the garage as in spite of them being given the vehicle when it was exhibiting the fault, they failed to find the cause. I drove the vehicle in to them after a blast up the M11 and turned it off in the workshop. I am now waiting for them to admit they don't know what they are doing. I expect I will put the car into Wood Green and send the dealership the bill either directly or via the small claims court. Once they realise I will not give up they will decide it's better to settle.

Edit: this is delaying bodywork on the c230k as we cannot survive without 2 cars.
 
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DITTRICH

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The service manager has given me a loan car - diesel B class with no collision excess.
He accepted all my comments verbally.
We shall see how successful they are on Tuesday when I see the tech and pick up an A3 copy of the wiring diagram.
 
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DITTRICH

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Well, the dealership finally returned the car to me - properly diagnosed and fixed.
It appeared that certain electrical connections were not operating properly and high temperatures made them fail, albeit temporarily until they cooled down again.
The financial settlement reached was acceptable to both parties.
So, whilst they did screw up initially, the dealership did what they needed to do in order to put things right to my satisfaction.
It is a fact of life that things go wrong. It is also true that it is crucial how the dealership handle these situations. In my case, a satisfactory resolution and a credit to the dealership concerned - MB Stratford.
Les
 

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