Gearbox mode switch - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Gearbox mode switch

I recently returned to the fold by buying a 2002, 320 auto. It runs and drives more or less just as it did when it left the factory, it is as sweet as a nut!

But in checking all the switches etc etc I discovered that the gearbox mode switch is stuck at S.

You will know that the switch can go from S(summer) to W (winter) as required but on my car it is stuck/jammed on S.

I'm not particularly bothered by this but thought I'd ask if anyone has come across the same thing? and if so, how was it sorted?

The switch is rock solid jammed on S and will not give 1mm of movement. I'm about to strip out the eucalyptus trim around the gear change and I'll get a better look then, who knows, a squirt of WD40 might do the trick but it feels more like some kind of interlock is at play here. Any comments?
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#2 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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WD 40 is not for electrical switches. There are stuff out there for that. CRC Electrical part cleaner for one. There are many others.
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Last edited by Mountainaire; 4 Weeks Ago at 08:08 PM. Reason: add info
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#4 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Originally Posted by billy610 View Post
I recently returned to the fold by buying a 2002, 320 auto. It runs and drives more or less just as it did when it left the factory, it is as sweet as a nut!

But in checking all the switches etc etc I discovered that the gearbox mode switch is stuck at S.

You will know that the switch can go from S(summer) to W (winter) as required but on my car it is stuck/jammed on S.

I'm not particularly bothered by this but thought I'd ask if anyone has come across the same thing? and if so, how was it sorted?

The switch is rock solid jammed on S and will not give 1mm of movement. I'm about to strip out the eucalyptus trim around the gear change and I'll get a better look then, who knows, a squirt of WD40 might do the trick but it feels more like some kind of interlock is at play here. Any comments?
It's not a switch in the traditional sense, it's a rocker with a finger underneath that cuts off a beam or sensor or something. You 'should' be able to pull it out to find out what's broken .. see THIS THREAD
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#5 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Hi @M4rCu5 ,

/\ /\ /\

You beat me too it by a couple of hours

Cheers Dave
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Originally Posted by Dave2302 View Post
Hi @M4rCu5 ,

/\ /\ /\

You beat me too it by a couple of hours

Cheers Dave
.. I do tend to keep 'odd' hours
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#7 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M4rCu5 View Post
It's not a switch in the traditional sense, it's a rocker with a finger underneath that cuts off a beam or sensor or something. You 'should' be able to pull it out to find out what's broken .. see THIS THREAD
Thank you so much M4rCu5, I looked and looked for some kind of guide to tell me how to disassemble the gear shifter and that video on the link you sent is perfect!

I'll get in about it in the next day or two as I'm waiting for turned aluminium panels to replace the existing eucalyptus trim panels in the car. I have the door handle surrounds and coin store and cubby, the rest ie gear surrounds, centre console, gear knob and steering wheel are due to arrive tomorrow hopefully! and while the gear surrounds are out and getting done the switch will be easy to see and hopefully sort. I'll post what the switch issue is when i find out.

re previous posts, I often use WD40 to penetrate/lubricate but also have contact cleaner, silicon spray lube, white grease and dielectric silicon grease that I use too, depending on the task.
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#8 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Originally Posted by billy610 View Post
Thank you so much M4rCu5, I looked and looked for some kind of guide to tell me how to disassemble the gear shifter and that video on the link you sent is perfect!
Ahh .. Now the key is to not always search for SLK or R170. Our cars (especially post facelifts) share many mechanical parts with other MB models of the era so include W202 W203 W208 W210 and hopefully you'll stumble across what you're looking for
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#9 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Right.
Got to the bottom of my stuck gearbox mode switch problem. I changed out the interior trim panels today, all of them. Eucalyptus wood out, turned aluminium in. Doors handle panels, centre console, inner gearshift, outer gearshift, coin box and cubby. Done the lot, also changed the steering wheel and gearknob for standard items too.

When I removed the gearshift trim I discovered a brown set material that had been liquid at one point. I managed to remove and separate the rocker switch without damaging it, freed it all off and my mode is now changeable.

What is the mystery brown stuff? It looks like it is wood glueor varnish! There is a bit of evidence that the eucalyptus trim at the gear gate had delaminated a bit and a previous owner liberally reglued it! The glue had run down the edge of the switch rocker seizing it solid. Fortunately no glue or whatever it was had reached the circuit board so the electrical side was 100% fine. A nice easy fix.

My issue now is the guy I bought the centre console panel from had removed the switches, not that I expected anything else. The problem is that he removed them as a complete assembly with the mounting bracket for the switches! The eucalyptus trim is different, in that the switches are mounted directly on the back of the wood. So I have contacted him again to try and get the switch retaining bracket. I just hope he has not sold the switches with the bracket still attached as I think it is part of the centre panel.
He seems a fair guy and is going to have a look tomorrow. Fingers crossed it is still available!

While I was about it I changed out the stock CD player and multi cd. Fitted a Pioneer mechless unit with bluetooth mike. Stuck a mini usb drive in with 50 albums on it and it's only 1/3 full! What did I pay for this amazing bit of electronic wizardry? A whole Ł53! Brand new, in the box out of Halfrauds! Mates discount of 15% as I was served by an ex student of mine Plug and play, no wires cut, no adaptors. I love old cars!
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#10 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Hi @billy610 ,

If you get no joy from the seller I may have the part you require for the switches, post up photo of your old trim with an arrow pointing to what you are referring to. I have a fair few sets of bits somewhere in a box from when I swapped my Eucalyptus Wood for C/F whilst doing the Android install

Cheers Dave
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#11 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Thanks for the kind offer but the supplier has found the bracket and is going to post it over to me. It's a bit of a pain as I'll have to remove the stereo and panel again to fit it and also to remove the strategically place bit of Mercedes cardboard that is currently holding the switches in position,.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2302 View Post
Hi @billy610 ,

If you get no joy from the seller I may have the part you require for the switches, post up photo of your old trim with an arrow pointing to what you are referring to. I have a fair few sets of bits somewhere in a box from when I swapped my Eucalyptus Wood for C/F whilst doing the Android install

Cheers Dave
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