Retractable Hardtop Problems - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 09-11-2009
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Retractable Hardtop Problems

I need some advise about my hardtop on my 1999 SLK230. Last night I went to put the top down; the trunk area lifted partially and that was it. I have now found hydralic fluid on the passinger side where the window meets the roof. Nothing is locked in so I obviously do not want to drive it.

Please help!!! Should I just get it to a repair shop or is there something that I can do? This is the first time that I have had any problems with the hardtop.

Thank You,
M. Eric Hovey
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#2 Old 09-11-2009
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It is possible to fix the problem, if you have a mechanic do it the cost will be around a thousand or more to replace the cylinders etc & labor.
how mechanically inclined are you?
There are people selling hydraulic cylinder rebuild kits on ebay
do a search for Mercedes SLK hydraulic rebuild kit you should find 1 or two kits
be sure to ask the sellers what's in the kit and does it fix 1 cylinder or all 3.
best of luck.
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#3 Old 09-11-2009
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Thank You Leapyfish! I am think that I could do it. I may need to find a little instruction to ensure that I am doing everything correctly. I'll check ebay.
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#4 Old 09-11-2009
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I believe that there is a way to manually lock the top. I found instructions on how to do so. I think it was on this forum or the Mercedes Benz forum. With the top locked, you can at least drive the car until you get it fixed.

Let us know how it goes. Top problems are one of my biggest fears.
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#5 Old 09-11-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mehovey View Post
Thank You Leapyfish! I am think that I could do it. I may need to find a little instruction to ensure that I am doing everything correctly. I'll check ebay.
The kit repairs one ram only and comes with very good instructions.
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#6 Old 09-11-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by livefreeordie View Post
The kit repairs one ram only and comes with very good instructions.
If you are thinking of the same seller as I am, he is now including the parts/O-rings to fix all three cylinders for the same price, about $23 shipped. Might need to ask when you buy though to make sure everything is included.

Len
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#7 Old 09-11-2009
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From what I read they fix all 3 cylinders http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r170...-cylinder.html & http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r170...-cylinder.html

P.S.
Does anyone know if the R171 hydraulic cylinders are the same?

Last edited by leapyfish; 09-11-2009 at 09:11 PM. Reason: Additional info
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#8 Old 09-12-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sokoloff View Post
If you are thinking of the same seller as I am, he is now including the parts/O-rings to fix all three cylinders for the same price, about $23 shipped. Might need to ask when you buy though to make sure everything is included.

Len
Yup, same guy; thats good to know i don't go to that site much anymore so i'm not up to speed on whats going on there.
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#9 Old 09-27-2009
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Hey Guys. I have a 1998 SLK and have a very similar problem with my hardtop. 90% of the time it works flawlessly, but every now and again when I initiate the retraction process the windows come down, the trunk opens, the motor runs, but the hardtop never retracts. If a try a little later it works just fine. I brought it to Mercedes and they said that if it works, they would not be able to diagnose the problem. Only if it would happen to malfunction at the dealership would they be able to tell me what may be wrong. Anyone come across this problem?
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#10 Old 09-27-2009
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#11 Old 09-27-2009
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#12 Old 11-30-2010
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I have a 2002 and my top goes down fine but when I try and put it up it goes up fine, and latches then the trunk closes BUT then the back windows do not raise and it beeps at me as if the top isn't closed.... What should I do??
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#13 Old 04-13-2011
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I have a 2001, slk 230. It, too, is having hardtop problems. I have replaced the pistons at the dealer. 1200.00 later, I have now found this forum. The new issue seems to be the motor, it dies out in the middle of the process, the trunk opens, windows down, top begins to go back, and motor dies. Could it possibly just need the hydraulic fluid? Please? Please!
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#14 Old 04-13-2011
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I doubt hydraulic fluid. I think there are something like 20 sensors that shut it down if they think something is going wrong. I suspect a sensor.
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#15 Old 04-13-2011
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#16 Old 04-14-2011
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Hardtop

Hello all,
I would have to know more about your problem. However as the originator of this thread, I have learned that these issues aren't always as detrimental as we think they are. If I would've went to a mechanic I would expected to spend at least $3000, much of which would be spent on unnecessary items. I bought a kit on ebay for 23 dollars, bought a few tools, did some research, and spent a couple hours of day for a few days. Now my so called detrimental problem is fixed and has been working perfectly. It has been probably a year and a half and no more issues.

If you tell me more about your problem, I will do the research for you and give you any advice I can.

Just remember it isn't always necessary to spend huge amounts of money just to get our fine cars working as they should be. Sure we can do that, but it isn't always necessary, especially on these hardtop issues.

This forum has been great to me and I would be happy to return the good deed and advice that was given to me.

MEH
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#17 Old 04-14-2011
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Swmgirl,
heres a link to a troubleshooting guide for the roof
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r170...ml#post3582000
also here's the top operating sequencehttp://www.buellwinkle.com/r170/autotopoper.htm
PS check you hydraulic fluid just incase.
its behind a small panel that pulls out in the trunk on the right side next to the cd changer.


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#18 Old 04-15-2011
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Red face Thank you

Thank you so much for any help, and I'll tell you why!
I was recently hit by an uninsured driver, passenger side, and I was not carrying comp & collision on my 2001 slk. I had paid it off years ago, and have never been involved in an accident. I just can't part with the car, and it's having 8k of repair work, out of pocket. I couldn't afford dealer prices, so I found a guy who says he can fix it, but he is not a Mercedes guy, but great at everything else.
I want to equip him with some possible scenarios. The top was having problems before the accident. Here's what would occur: the windows all go down, the top disengages from the windshield, the trunk begins to open, and then it sounds as though the motor just gives up. I don't try to put it down again after waiting, afraid it won't come back up. I wait and start the process to close, and it closes. I have already have one piston go, the oil leaked. Ruined the headliner/panneling and cost 1200.00 to replace. I would love to know bow to replace the piston, should another go. Also, my
Mechanic says the hydraulic fluid (bottle/tube?) seems to be empty, hoping that's the problem. Any info, advice, anything to help him, which will ultimately help me, I truly truly appreciate!
Lisa


UOTE=mehovey;232794]Hello all,
I would have to know more about your problem. However as the originator of this thread, I have learned that these issues aren't always as detrimental as we think they are. If I would've went to a mechanic I would expected to spend at least $3000, much of which would be spent on unnecessary items. I bought a kit on ebay for 23 dollars, bought a few tools, did some research, and spent a couple hours of day for a few days. Now my so called detrimental problem is fixed and has been working perfectly. It has been probably a year and a half and no more issues.

If you tell me more about your problem, I will do the research for you and give you any advice I can.

Just remember it isn't always necessary to spend huge amounts of money just to get our fine cars working as they should be. Sure we can do that, but it isn't always necessary, especially on these hardtop issues.

This forum has been great to me and I would be happy to return the good deed and advice that was given to me.

MEH[/QUOTE]
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#19 Old 04-15-2011
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I believe the owners manual has a section on manually raising the top and locking it in place
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#20 Old 04-15-2011
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For the leaking pistons, as mehovey pointed out, you don't have to shell out lots of $$$ to replace them. You can get a dirt cheap repair kit that consists of O-ring seals and detailed instructions to fix the leaking pistons. A search on the forum should provide the necessary info. As for the fluid tank, leapyfish pointed you in the right direction.
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