Terrible Roof Water Problem (Photos Included) - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 10-28-2012
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Unhappy Terrible Roof Water Problem (Photos Included)

Hello,

This is my first post to slkworld.com. I just bought a 1997 SLK 230 Kompressor. I hope to drive this car as long as I can.

Everything in the car seems to work fine except the roof insulation.

After I took the car to car wash a few times and the rain falls, the upholstey in the roof started to get moistured and became as seen in the photos. The moistured area continues to get bigger everytime rain or water falls down on the car. I don't know what to do and the roof will become spoiled completely if I can't find a way to stop it. When I touch, moisture is a bit oily.

Thank you for helping all these SLK owners over the years. I hope I can find solutions too.







Last edited by ceycey; 10-28-2012 at 01:56 PM. Reason: Change the title
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#2 Old 10-28-2012
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#3 Old 10-28-2012
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It's not water. It's hydraulic oil from the top locking cylinder. The headliner material is already ruined but it can be recovered. The locking cylinder will need to be repaired or replaced.

Don't panic though. It's a common issue that several folks on here, including me, have successfully repaired.
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#4 Old 10-28-2012
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Oh. I was guessing water causing it for a long time

What can I do now? Should I take the car to an ordinary garage to have it fixed or should I go to authorized Mercedes service?
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#5 Old 10-28-2012
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Also when I go through a bump in the road, sometimes the roof switch startes to blink and alerts as if the roof is opened. Is it also related to the oil leak problem?
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#6 Old 10-28-2012
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My first guess would be since the cylinder is leaking the top may not be fully latching. I suppose this could cause the blinking in the roof switch. If you have the mechanical ability to change an alternator or fix brakes, repairing the leaky cylinder shouldn't be too hard of a job. I did mine in a couple of hours.
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#7 Old 10-28-2012
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I don't have such mechanical ability or knowledge I should probably go to a service and tell exactly what you told to me. You saved my day. Thank you very much.

Since I catch you I have another question too When I drive under the rain water drops fall from the connections of rubber seals of left and right windows. Do I need to replace them or can this be also fixed? I couldn't find anywhere on the internet selling rubber seals for my car.
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#8 Old 10-28-2012
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Sorry, no experience with roof seals, other than I have a small drip too.
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#9 Old 10-28-2012
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I think that a small drip at either side during rain is "normal" for this car and perhaps what you need to live with in an aged convertible. However, since your hydraulic system for the top is leaking, it is most likely not latching properly as indicated by MrG. This will only make matters worse.

Good luck in fixing this. Like MrG said, it is a well known problem and fixable.

All the best
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#10 Old 10-28-2012
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If you go to the MB dealer plan on taking about $2,000 to $2,500. Fine a repair shop that is good around you. Cost about $1,000 or start reading up on repairing roof cylinders here on the board. New head liner around $400.00 from dealer. You can have yours relined if oil is not to bad. I had to order a new one from Germany repair shop Cost $280.00.


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#11 Old 10-28-2012
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Suggest you remove the headliner and then you will be able to see if the cylinder is leaking and run water on the roof and see if water is coming it. Raise roof to half way point and there are three screws in the front and three screws on each side and the headliner slides out to the front. You have about six minutes before the roof will start to drop. tap the roof switch and you will get another six minutes. You should be able to remove the side screws with the top in the up position.
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#12 Old 10-28-2012
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Man, I hate to see anyone spend a grand or two on a $100 fix. That $100 includes recovering the headliner.
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#13 Old 10-29-2012
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Thanks for the valuable informations guys. I'll have to check first repairing the cylinder by reading the posts.
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#14 Old 10-30-2012
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Oh man... Couple days ago my wife noticed that my roof was looking weird. Now I have the same problem with top leaking cylinder... =( Here are the pics:




I need to fix it before it gets worse!!! I checked the roof hydraulic fluid and it went from the middle mark to the bottom, so it's indeed leaking.
My question to all you who had this problem - If I remove the headliner can I be driving without it till I fix the issue? I don't want to fully ruin the headliner.

How much did this top locking cylinder cost to you folks? Is it depicted on this diagram? Also, how do I refill the the roof hydraulic fluid back into the reservoir and what is the part number for the fluid?
May be I'm having a panic attack right now... Please help me with your experience in this matter!!!


Or may be it's here:


Part number 2 says: hydraulic cylndr top lock. The price really scares me $295.50
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Roof - 1.jpg (16.3 KB, 199 views)
File Type: jpg Roof - 2.jpg (35.9 KB, 199 views)
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#15 Old 10-30-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ceycey View Post
I don't have such mechanical ability or knowledge I should probably go to a service and tell exactly what you told to me. You saved my day. Thank you very much.

Since I catch you I have another question too When I drive under the rain water drops fall from the connections of rubber seals of left and right windows. Do I need to replace them or can this be also fixed? I couldn't find anywhere on the internet selling rubber seals for my car.
It is possible that if your roof is not locking correctly then leaks could be caused by that. I would recommend, regardless, that you buy some Gummi Pflege.



You should rub this on all of the rubber seals for your windows and roof several times a year. It does a great job of rejuvenating the rubber and making it plyable and seal. Just one note - it works better with several small applications rather than one huge one. If I were you I would probably put it on three times one week apart and see whether your door and roof seals improve.

Regardless let us know what you find out and how you solve your problem.

Best Wishes

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#16 Old 10-30-2012
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Ok, folks, after panic attack I started searching the forum on how to fix the problem with leaking hydraulic roof actuators. Here are the kits on ebay which include a 43-page booklet with instructions:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/280773278277...84.m1497.l2649

And the refill kit:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/280753439707...84.m1497.l2649

Impatiently waiting on starting this project and see if I can save $$$$ of dollars! Since the total price of all 5 roof actuators comes up to $1500 even if I buy it online with discount.
If anyone used it, please reply!
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#17 Old 10-30-2012
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Jayson,
Several options that I have read about on the forum, and all have been used with supposedly good results. They seem to range from:

1. Total DIY with the kits that you referenced. I believe there are more than one seller with differing levels detail in the instructions.
2. You remove the cylinder, send it off to be rebuilt, and then reinstall yourself. I remember the thread even giving the name of the rebuild shop that he used.
3. Take it in and have all of the work done for you.

Your choice will depend upon your level of confidence and whether or not you can do without the car for a period of time. I have also read of some who only rebuilt some of the cylinders and not all. Spend some time searching the roof threads for the 170 and let us know how it works out.

Best Wishes
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#18 Old 10-30-2012
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That is the rebuild kit I used. And yes, you can drive the car with the headliner out but the cylinder will likely leak/spray oil all over your interior if you operate the top.
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#19 Old 10-30-2012
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Ok, here are the threads I found:

SLK 230 Roof hydraulic piston replacement:
https://www.slkworld.com/diy-section/...placement.html
Rebuilding cylinders on BenzWorld:
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r170...guide-cut.html
Another discussion thread:
https://www.slkworld.com/slk-r170-gen...or-repair.html
Refilling the fluid https://www.slkworld.com/slk-r170-gen...-hard-top.html
How to disassemble the headliner, etc:
http://www.buellwinkle.com/r170/default.htm
From Tophydraulicsinc.com
http://www.tophydraulicsinc.com/R170...%20Removal.pdf
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#20 Old 10-30-2012
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[quote=JaysonM;342506]Oh man... Couple days ago my wife noticed that my roof was looking weird. Now I have the same problem with top leaking cylinder... =( Here are the pics:

May be I'm having a panic attack right now... Please help me with your experience in this matter!!!







Yes you can take the head liner out until you get the roof fixed. That would be a good idea, it would save you from getting a new head liner. I had mine out for over a month waiting for the new head line to come from Germany.


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