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Quick question: When I bought my 2001 SLK 230 a month ago the top operated just fine. Then a week later the weather turned colder and I got the following problem: When I try to lower the top the initial retracting stage labors as if its stuck. I determined a little nudge from my hand against the ceiling at the fold point above my head unsticks the retracting action and the top then folds away in normal function. I don't have any problem with raising the top, just lowering it.

Since the car is 15 years old, I'm happy to coax the top with my hand if that's what's needed. Just wondered if anyone has a similar problem and perhaps some advice. Thanks, LD.
 

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Administrator 2009 SLK 55 AMG/Founding Member 2006
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Cold weather affects everything, and accumulated moisture is (I believe) a primary reason to change fluids such as brake fluid, oil, etc. I would do as JB suggests and lube everything up. If the sluggishness persists, consider flushing the hydraulic fluid.
 

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Thank you all for your ideas. I'll research how to access the joints for cleaning. Am I correct in assuming that if I just stop the top retraction at any point, the joints will be exposed for cleaning and re-lube? I'm not familiar with the product "Gummi" in JB's suggestion and Google gave me nothing on it. Any suggestions what kind of solvent to use for cleaning? (carb spray? varsol? etc.) I'll attend to this asap.

Also, what I meant concerning the outside temperature, was a drop from the 80's F to the 50's F (26 C to 10 C)... not exactly cold, just cooler.

... and thanks for your vote of confidence re: Smart Top... something to aspire to :)

I really appreciate your knowledge and feedback... Thanks again.
 

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