[SOLVED] W202 C200: Hesitating and misfiring engine

Discussion in 'Engine' started by smihir26, Jun 26, 2011.

  1. smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi everyone. I am new here. I have an Australian spec W202 C200 (1998). The car run was running smooth until yesterday when at a traffic signal the engine started to shudder suddenly and lost a tremendous amount of power. :wallbash:

    It was driveable but there is a considerable amount of what sounds like engine misfire :confused: when shifting from P or N to D. IT sounds fine in P or N, as soon as I shift to D the engine sounds like it is not in sync.

    I did check under the bonnet to see if there is anything that is obvious (something come loose or broken), but there is nothing of that sort.

    My car is 60 km overdue for its service though. From what I gather after reading the posts here is that it could be a cylender misfiring due to worn out spark plugs or HT cables. :dk:

    I was wondering if that is the case, I could replace these things myself instead of taking to the local stealership. Can anyone here advise me as to if this could be something like a worn out spark plug or am I looking at something much more serious.

    I have checked the MAF sensor, looks fine, engine misfires even the MAF unplugged. I also looked at as much of the wiring harness I could see and could not see any cracks or missing insulation, at least in the parts I could see in the engine. I did wash my engine a couple of weeks back, but not with a pressure washer, just with a gentle stream of water.

    I took a video of the engine running to try and get the sound. It sounds almost fine in P and N, but as soon as I shift in D, it starts shuddering.:wallbash:

    Thanks a lot everyone for your help! :)

    Here is the link to the video, I could not zip it because it is too big.
    Download link: Download VID-20110626-00005.3GP from Sendspace.com - send big files the easy way
    Youtube link: YouTube - ‪VID 20110626 00005‬‏
     
  2. artyman

    artyman Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Purely a guess, since it sounds it's running fine in P and N it would seem that it is the gearbox when in drive, have you checked the ATF fluid?
     
  3. NW_Merc

    NW_Merc Banned

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    I dont think it's the ATF or gearbox or you would experience it in all the gears. Have you got access to a garage with STAR or a diagnostic machine, you need to get the fault codes read. It may well be HT leads but without diagnosis it would be an expensive shot in the dark in trying to change parts which may or may not cure the problem.
     
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  4. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi NW_Merc. Thanks for the reply. I would have to take it to the local dealership for the STAR. Its around 15 km's away. Would it be okay to drive it that distance with the misfire? I am not sure if it is the ATF because the problem started suddenly. I though oil related problems would manifest slowly. But this was instantenous, it was fine and the next minute it was shuddering. :dk:

    I do want to put it on STAR, but was wondering if it is worth a shot shanging the spark plugs to see if it makes any difference. The plugs are due for replacement right now.

    Also, do any of the symptoms indicate towards a faulty wiring harness? I did check it whereever I could see it and it does look all good.

    From the video, does it sound like a misfire or am I looking at something much more serious?:confused:

    Sorry about the newb question! Thanks for your time! :)
     
  5. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi artyman. I have not checked the ATF as of now. Is this the dipstick which says "MB workshop only"? I am not sure how to check it. Is there any way to do it? :dk:

    Thanks a lot! :)

    P.S: I just discovered the multi-quote option. WIll use it from now on. :D
     
  6. NW_Merc

    NW_Merc Banned

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    15km isnt really that far, it doesnt sound like a serious misfire and you are taking it to a garage after all. It might be an idea to take out the spark plugs and take a look at the contact points. If the plugs are damaged for example, then the car would misfire. Has the car been serviced regularly? A gearbox fault would not give you a misfire, it is either the MAF or a HT lead or spark issue, but should be diagnosed properly on STAR.

    Try and keep it at a reasonable speed limit if you are going to take it to the garage and dont try to thrash it in any way.
     
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  7. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Thanks! I am going to take it to thw owrkshop sometime this week, it would be mostly Friday due to work! But sometime during the week I would take a look at the spark plug s and see if its all good or not.

    Would you be able to tell me what are the best spark plugs for this car? I know there is a Russian EPC, should I get the part number from it and buy them from the dealer? I have been reading about Bosch +4's.

    The car has been serviced regularly. The last service was done a yaer ago by the Mercedes dealer, and it is due for service right now (50 Kms overdue according to FSS)

    Thanks for you help! I will post back and let you guys know waht exactly it was!
     
  8. andy27168

    andy27168 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Hi,
    Watching your Utube vid, i would start by replacing the plugs as you say they are due to be changed and it may save you a trip to the garage.
    When you do the plugs carefully inspect the ignition leads (you only have two) and pay carefull attention to the plug caps under the coil packs as these can break down.
    My car had a similar issue changed the plugs it was still there, i found which cylinder was misfiring by a process of elimination and traced it to one of the caps which are fitted under the coil pack
     
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  9. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi Andy. Thanks for the reply. I think I will do jsut that, replace the spark plugs and see if that makes a difference.

    I am not sure about the ignition coils, I still havent opened it all up. But is it worthwhile to replace them while I am at it even if they are not damaged yet? The coils, plugs and the HT cables all would be quite old not. My car has done 230,000 kms. I bought it with the service counter at ~14,000 to go and have serviced it once at the workshop since. It is due again now.:D

    These plug caps are the cylenderical rubber like things? Also, should I get the saprk plugs from the dealership or just buy Bisch +4's from any store. I read that they come pre-gapped.

    Would any one have the part-numbers for the ignition coils and HT leads? I tried autohausaz but they have parts from C230 onwards, not C200.

    Thanks a lot! :)
     
  10. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi everyone.

    I have narrowed down the parts I may need. Getting all parts from Bosch to be sure.:rock:

    Ignition Coil: 0 221 506 002
    Coil, ignition Daewoo, Mercedes, Ssangyong from Bosch - 0 221 506 002

    Spark Plugs: 0 242 229 659
    Spark Plug from Bosch - 0 242 229 659

    HT Cable: Part No.: 0 986 356 311
    Ignition Cable Kit Mercedes from Bosch - 0 986 356 311

    Can anyone confirm if these parts are indeed right for my car (W202.020 C200)? Also, apart from some spanners, screwdrivers and a torque wrench, would I need any specialized tools at all? I read on some threads that it is a good idea to spray some dielectric on the electric connectors when changing spark plugs. Does that help and should it be done?:confused:

    Thanks!
     
  11. NW_Merc

    NW_Merc Banned

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    Who gave you those part numbers? Check with who you're getting the plugs from they should have a data table.

    Dielectric? Never heard of or used it to be honest. Copper grease round the threads before you put the new ones in.
     
  12. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    I got the part numbers from the Bosch website. THose parts are supposed to be compatible with the W202.20. But I think its a good idea to actualy ask the people in the shop before buying.:thumb:

    Copper grease sounds good! Thanks a lot!:)
     
  13. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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    Almost certainly one of the ignition coils or associated wiring has failed = very common fault in this model. Risky to drive the car much in this state as any HT coil fault may knock out the engine ECU output transistors. means a possible ECU REPAIR
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2011
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  14. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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    Dielectric= non conducting. This description would apply to fluid like WD 40 which acts as a water dispersant/ lubricant. Useful if trying to remove or prevent the ingress of water to electrical joints but not strictly necessary unless water is likely to be present.
     
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  15. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi grober. Thanks a lot. It did fail very suddenly. Is that possible for an engine spark plug/ HT coil issue?

    I am taking a spanner to the engine today to see if I can find out what exactly has gone wrong.:bannana:

    If it is an ignition coil issue, is there any way to tell which one of the two has gone? I don't have a OBD reader. I am assuming I move the coil to another set of sparks and see if the misfire moves with it, but I am not sure if I would be able to tell the difference in the sound.:wallbash: Might change the spark plugs and HT cables any way.

    Is it okay to change only one ignition coil at a time, or do both need to be changed?:confused:

    Thanks!
     
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  16. NW_Merc

    NW_Merc Banned

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    There are 2 coils to one pack, if you connect them wrongly your misfire will get worse or your engine will fail to fire completely. When you swap them over, the coils must sit in the same positions as the originals you swapped them around for, if that makes sense, i.e. if you have coils in the following order 1 - 2 - 3 - 4, you would just swap them round so they would still fire in the order they're supposed to, so you could only swap them in pairs, i.e. 3-4 would fire and 1 and 2 would fire from the same coil........

    In essence, by swapping them you would have 3-4 occupying the position 1-2where in and//or vice versa.
     
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  17. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Okay, got it! :rock:

    Hopefully will be able to post back what happens by the evening (if there isn't a giant fireball once I reconnect everything!):D

    Thanks everyone!
     
  18. OP
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    smihir26

    smihir26 New Member

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    Hi everyone. I changed the spark plugs today. The old one's did not show any obvious damage except blackening. Also, the spark plug from cylinder 1 had some oily residue on the threads.

    Changing spark plugs did not make any difference, neither did moving the ignition coils. In my desperation I treied to disconnect one cylinder at a time to see if it helps me find out the misfiring cylinder. All I could find out was that the car seems to run fine in the absence of cylinder 1. But in the absence of any other cylinders it is not able to start. Does that tell anything?

    Also, there is a really bad stench of petrol when Is tart it, something akin to a "rich" misture. Is that attributed to the misfire as well?

    I am taking it to the garage tomorrow and putting it on STAR before I spend it on anything more! I don't intend to drive either because I think the catalytic converter might get clogged due to all the unburnt fuel passing through the exhaust, might just get it transporterd there.:wallbash:

    Does anyone have any guesses as to whats the worst case senario here? :dk:Just thought I would prepare myself befire I get the verdict tomorrow!
     
  19. grober

    grober MB Club Veteran

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    The strong smell of petrol is an indication that one or more of the plugs isn't firing.

    The 2 coil system is what is known as a lost spark system where 1 coil fires 2 plugs simultaneously[ one piston say 1 is on the compression stroke followed by power and is useful the other 4 is on the exhaust stroke to be followed by induction and is wasted] Suffice to say if only one plug is misfiring then its the plug lead or coil extender that's faulty not the coil [ or the other plug wouldn't fire] These problems can seem daunting but need 2 things
    1 an understanding of exactly whats going on in the HT system

    2 a methodical approach eliminating each component bit by bit- if you try to do too many swaps you will just get confused.

    The first thing I would renew are the plug extenders under the coils, particularly the one under the coil on top of no 1 cylinder, followed by the plug leads from the coils and finally the coils themselves. but one step at at a time.
     
  20. NW_Merc

    NW_Merc Banned

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    Now a question from me, is this an easy thing to do?
     

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