s203 anti roll bar joint dust cover

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DavidL

MB Enthusiast
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Feb 3, 2014
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1,005
Car
s203 C55, x218 CLS63
I think I'm being dim. I had this as a "repair as soon as poss" on my MOT
Anti roll bar ball joint dust cover deteriorated. As per image below it's 70 but err where does it go. Clearly not on the bush, does it cover 50, is there top and bottom.
I'm aware these links have rubber bushes but is that what they are talking about?
Thanks
 

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My 203 2006 C class has been through 3 MOT in my ownership without them , cut them off and throw them away.

I asked about them once and was told they are more likely to hold crud in than keep it out. I have never owned a car with them on (as far as I know) and they do not feature on the other 2 (non MB) cars on my drive.
 
Interesting, never occured to me to do that. I'll investigate when I get chance. Thanks
 
There are 4 of these dust covers for the 4 joints.
Is the MOT advice just addressed to one of them ?
 
Yes, just the one but I'll check the rest.
 
dust cover MOT warning... OK. Some workshops are getting desperate. Perhaps have your MOT done somewhere else, this idiots will flood your MOT history with crap just to make a £200
 
I may be a but dim.... but are we talking for something similar to this?

stms009_-_1-min.jpg
 
I may be a but dim.... but are we talking for something similar to this?

That looks like a ball joint cover. The OP issue is with ARB bush covers. Apparently some versions of the 203/209 chassis (with separate ARB bushes) have dust covers, Where the ARB bushes are bonded to the bar itself, dust covers are not fitted. When I changed my bonded ARB bushes to separate ones, I noticed that the replacement non-bonded bushes have an obvious lip where the boot fits over them. I didn't bother fitting the boots and it still passed it's MOT.
In fact, of all 7 cars I've ever had, none had boots fitted to the ARB bushes.
Ian.
 
I had a MOT fail on the W203 on one of these (but ended up replacing both complete droplinks just in case) - I don't quite see why people say this boot is redundant?
 
So seems my car has dust covers either side of the anti roll bar bushes, which is not as per the various videos I have seen. The mot says upper ball joint dust cover so it must mean the drop link cover which I suppose strictly isn't actually attached to the anti roll bar.
 
I read the OP's post #1 to mean the dust cover on the drop-link to sway bar (ARB) joint - of which there are 4.
I've never come across dust covers on the actual sway bar bushes on any car I've worked on.
But then ... I'm not a profession mechanic or MOT tester.
I'd get underneath and have a look at mine, if it wasn't so b***** cold.
 
Well if it's a rubber boot covering a ball joint... then I would say it should be there... and it should not be cracked.

The ball joint will be packed with grease, and ingress of dust and grit could cause wear, and also the grease might 'escape' if the boot fails further.

In my case, Terry at WG did the job, and since the part is cheap (£20 for a complete Lemforder drop link from memory), it seemed sensible to just replace the whole thing rather than fiddle with separating the ball joint and replacing only the boot. I also did the other side at the same time on the premise that if one side failed, the other will probably follow close behind.
 
I'm inclined to agree, both drop links. I doubt you can even buy the boots alone anyway, no point really as the joint is likely to be damaged to some extent.
 
Yep .... I agree.
Sounds good to me.
 
Had a look and I can't see or feel any obvious issue with the top boot. I spoke to the chap who deals with our mercs and he agreed it does mean the top drop link bush so I'll just change the drop links.
 
Pretty much. These specifically
I'll get the wheel off and have a look once it stops raining.
You don't have to take the wheel off, the dust covers are each side of the sway bar 'clamp rubber' . Just cut off what's left and leave it.

But I now think we are talking at cross purposes. Your MOT guy is not talking about item #70 but the actual ball joint cover on the vertical strut that BOLTS onto the anti sway bar.

= MOT failure next time around as it will be full of crud and possibly worn out
 
But I now think we are talking at cross purposes. Your MOT guy is not talking about item #70 but the actual ball joint cover on the vertical strut that BOLTS onto the anti sway bar.

= MOT failure next time around as it will be full of crud and possibly worn out

That was my understanding as well:

"...Anti roll bar ball joint dust cover deteriorated..."

No 70 isn't a ball joint, No 50 is.

Hence why I suggested new drop links.
 
You don't have to take the wheel off, the dust covers are each side of the sway bar 'clamp rubber' . Just cut off what's left and leave it.

But I now think we are talking at cross purposes. Your MOT guy is not talking about item #70 but the actual ball joint cover on the vertical strut that BOLTS onto the anti sway bar.

= MOT failure next time around as it will be full of crud and possibly worn out
All the YT vids I watched didn't have boots on the anti roll bar bushes but mine have. However this isn't the issue, it's the drop link upper bush boot. Strictly that bolt isn't onto the anti-roll bar at all but onto the damper. Anyway new lemforder parts are on their way, £35 a side, so not a kings ransom, and both will go on to solve the problem. Not that it seems huge but maybe I don't have the best view. We shall see.
 
Ultimately, ball joints - like mosy suspension components - are wear items, and so replacing them once the car has covered some mileage isn't a complete waste, even if they haven't actually failed.
 

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