M271 timing gear preventative maintenance

King03sh

Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
40
Location
Wiltshire
Car
Ford focus cmax
Hi guys, so recently I became the proud owner of an 06 c180 kompressor sport edition. I am aware of the timing chain problems many members have had and would like to avoid the costs incurred by total failure.

I see there are two modes of failure for different age engines... early models failing on hydraulic camshaft adjusters and later ones failing on the chain tensioner.

I have had a quote at a local specialist for replacement of the chain, guides tensioner and adjusters at £2200 which seems pretty steep to me. I can source parts for the job at £560 and fit them myself. Where just replacing the tensioner will cost less than £50.

My engine seems to be in good condition (havent had the cover off to check yet but no funny noises or warnings present) but at 125k miles id like the peace of mind having it done.

Does anyone know the cut off point between the modes of failure and where my engine is likely to be?

Sorry if iv missed this info in a post elsewhere but nothing has came up in my searches.

Thanks in advance
 

W1ghty

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
2,624
Location
Sunny Essex
Car
E320cdi and CLK200
Hi guys, so recently I became the proud owner of an 06 c180 kompressor sport edition. I am aware of the timing chain problems many members have had and would like to avoid the costs incurred by total failure.

I see there are two modes of failure for different age engines... early models failing on hydraulic camshaft adjusters and later ones failing on the chain tensioner.

I have had a quote at a local specialist for replacement of the chain, guides tensioner and adjusters at £2200 which seems pretty steep to me. I can source parts for the job at £560 and fit them myself. Where just replacing the tensioner will cost less than £50.

My engine seems to be in good condition (havent had the cover off to check yet but no funny noises or warnings present) but at 125k miles id like the peace of mind having it done.

Does anyone know the cut off point between the modes of failure and where my engine is likely to be?

Sorry if iv missed this info in a post elsewhere but nothing has came up in my searches.

Thanks in advance
Hi from a fellow M271 engine owner in a CLK200 2009 with 80+k on the clock .
I would guess that 125k is well into the danger zone . Early problems on some cars can start at 80k .
The £2200 is very steep , I think I’m right in quoting that £1500 with MB parts is closer to the mark .
Have you checked prices at www.m271.com who sell chains and sprockets ?
I took the cover off my engine at 70+k and everything looked good , I just do oil changes at 5-6k as a preventative maintenance. I’m reluctant to pay for the job because of the cars worth , but as time passes who knows it is in very good condition as I’ve owned it for 10 years
 

markjay

MB Master
SUPPORTER
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
37,437
Location
London
Car
W204 C180 Executive SE 2013 Automatic / COMAND NTG4.7 and Morel speakers fitted by www.comand.co.uk
Hi guys, so recently I became the proud owner of an 06 c180 kompressor sport edition. I am aware of the timing chain problems many members have had and would like to avoid the costs incurred by total failure.

I see there are two modes of failure for different age engines... early models failing on hydraulic camshaft adjusters and later ones failing on the chain tensioner.

I have had a quote at a local specialist for replacement of the chain, guides tensioner and adjusters at £2200 which seems pretty steep to me. I can source parts for the job at £560 and fit them myself. Where just replacing the tensioner will cost less than £50.

My engine seems to be in good condition (havent had the cover off to check yet but no funny noises or warnings present) but at 125k miles id like the peace of mind having it done.

Does anyone know the cut off point between the modes of failure and where my engine is likely to be?

Sorry if iv missed this info in a post elsewhere but nothing has came up in my searches.

Thanks in advance

Your 2006 M271 is in danger of having worn teeth on the camshaft sprocket wheels.

If this happens, then one day when you start the engine (and the hydraulic tensioner isn't primed with oil pressure yet), the chain will jump a couple of teeth and you'll need a new engine. There will be no warning.

Maintenance involves removing the camshaft cover and inspecting the sprockets. If they are worn, new ones will be needed. If they are fine, they can stay - not all M271 engines suffer from worn sprockets.

And at this mileage, the timing chain, hydraulic tensioner, and guide will all need to be replaced 'while you are in there' - better safe than sorry with the M271.

As for the cost... I would have expected it to cost between £1,200 to £1,700 at a good specialist (parts and labiur), £2,200 does sound steep.

But it is very labour-intensive, so if you have the skills, tools, space, and time - then by all means, you can save yourself some money there.
 
OP
OP
K

King03sh

Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
40
Location
Wiltshire
Car
Ford focus cmax
Your 2006 M271 is in danger of having worn teeth on the camshaft sprocket wheels.

If this happens, then one day when you start the engine (and the hydraulic tensioner isn't primed with oil pressure yet), the chain will jump a couple of teeth and you'll need a new engine. There will be no warning.

Maintenance involves removing the camshaft cover and inspecting the sprockets. If they are worn, new ones will be needed. If they are fine, they can stay - not all M271 engines suffer from worn sprockets.

And at this mileage, the timing chain, hydraulic tensioner, and guide will all need to be replaced 'while you are in there' - better safe than sorry with the M271.

As for the cost... I would have expected it to cost between £1,200 to £1,700 at a good specialist (parts and labiur), £2,200 does sound steep.

But it is very labour-intensive, so if you have the skills, tools, space, and time - then by all means, you can save yourself some money there.
Thanks markjay thats exactly the info I was after, ill check the condition of the sprockets asap, the car is laid up for a few months anyway so I want to get it sorted before I drive her.

This is the kit im planning to buy, looks good quality and they seem to know their stuff.
Mercedes Benz C180K C200 M271 Timing chain kit

I know enough to do the work I think, just a little nervous as its a fairly big job for a home mechanic to do on a driveway ha ha. May need some specialist tools to lock everything in place that I dont currently have.

The garage my brother works at have quoted £750 for the labour if I supply parts so I may go that route instead. Id quite like to save the labour costs if I can tho.
 

190

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2015
Messages
4,275
Location
Cheshire
Car
2009 W204 C180K
This is the kit im planning to buy, looks good quality and they seem to know their stuff.
Mercedes Benz C180K C200 M271 Timing chain kit

That kit seems a very reasonable price and looks to include the riveting tool and the balancer chain. I don't know if the balancer chain also fails but it will be a much bigger job than just the timing chain.

The 1.6 version of the C180K from 2008 doesn't have the balancers at all which is a small blessing.
 

SMS

Active Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2016
Messages
115
Location
Reading
Car
Mercedes
Not sure I’d fit a cheap chain, buy cheap-buy twice and poss more, aftermarket sprockets but genuine chain.
 
OP
OP
K

King03sh

Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
40
Location
Wiltshire
Car
Ford focus cmax
Not sure I’d fit a cheap chain, buy cheap-buy twice and poss more, aftermarket sprockets but genuine chain.
I dont think that is a cheap chain, cost of parts is pretty high, even compared to genuine mb parts. I think thats a pretty concise kit.
 
OP
OP
K

King03sh

Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
40
Location
Wiltshire
Car
Ford focus cmax
How did it compare to the company in my post buddy ?
They are a lot cheaper, but dont have the balance shaft chain etc included, although that looks to be an engine up subframe down job... is just doing the top chain sufficient or does the bottom one need doing at the same time?
 

W1ghty

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
2,624
Location
Sunny Essex
Car
E320cdi and CLK200
They are a lot cheaper, but dont have the balance shaft chain etc included, although that looks to be an engine up subframe down job... is just doing the top chain sufficient or does the bottom one need doing at the same time?
i Didn’t even know there was another chain , so i should stop typing ;)
 

markjay

MB Master
SUPPORTER
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
37,437
Location
London
Car
W204 C180 Executive SE 2013 Automatic / COMAND NTG4.7 and Morel speakers fitted by www.comand.co.uk
If the car is fine now, no rattle from the front of the engine on startup etc, no fault codes, then I would take the camshaft cover off and inspect the sprockets and chain. If they are fine, I wouldn't change anything, just put back the cover and drive the car.

The sprockets' teeth don't brake, they wear. The chains don't snap, they stretch. This is a gradual process, so if the sprockets and chain are fine now, they won't break tomorrow. You can schedule another inspection in (say) 20k miles.
 
Last edited:

SMS

Active Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2016
Messages
115
Location
Reading
Car
Mercedes
I dont think that is a cheap chain, cost of parts is pretty high, even compared to genuine mb parts. I think thats a pretty concise kit.
That kit is fraction of the cost of the same parts from Mercedes, having been caught by a cheap chain from a well known aftermarket supplier, it not worth the risk.
 

Trunkz

Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2017
Messages
40
Car
W203 C200 Kompressor
If you are taking off the valve cover to inspect, you might as well change the cover gasket whilst you have it off :) £12 from most motor factors; ensure you get a kit with the spark plug covers as well. Something like this:

 

W1ghty

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
2,624
Location
Sunny Essex
Car
E320cdi and CLK200
If you are taking off the valve cover to inspect, you might as well change the cover gasket whilst you have it off :) £12 from most motor factors; ensure you get a kit with the spark plug covers as well. Something like this:

That’s what I did when I inspected , I must admit I thought you had to
 
OP
OP
K

King03sh

Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
40
Location
Wiltshire
Car
Ford focus cmax
That’s what I did when I inspected , I must admit I thought you had to
It is best practice to replace any gasket when you take something apart. Its not always necessary but the likelihood of having to do the job twice increases if you try to re use one
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top Bottom