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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been getting a message about "Front Right Indicator Lamp" - which is/was working fine by the way - and after posting on here was told to "replace it immediately" because it may not yet be dead but will be soon.

So, I ordered some chrome bulbs and installed them - which was the single hardest and idiotic turn signal replacement I've ever done in my life - and the indicator is, like the old one, working just fine.

However my warning is still on.

What else should I be looking at to get this message off my dash?
 

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Founding Member 2006
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108,893 Posts
after you switched bulbs, you started car, maybe took it for a spin?
if it does not reset after doing that, then try switching the left for the right and see if you get the same error on the right or if it is now on the left
if on the left, then the holder is bad
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
after you switched bulbs, you started car, maybe took it for a spin?
I didn't before I posted, but after you responded I just took it out around the block, about a quarter mile or so, still has the error. Should I run it longer?

if it does not reset after doing that, then try switching the left for the right and see if you get the same error on the right or if it is now on the left
if on the left, then the holder is bad
I haven't replaced the other side yet, it was next if this was fixed. When you say the holder I assume you mean that socket assembly the bulb plugs into? Is it possible for that to be bad yet the turn signal still operates normally?
 

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Founding Member 2006
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108,893 Posts
are the bulbs 3457a like mine or the bayonet type?

yes holder but holder types are different

your short jaunt should have reset it

so swap holders and see what it does
that will determine your next step
holder might let bulb work but connection to let computer know bulb is bad/good screwy
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
are the bulbs 3457a like mine or the bayonet type?
Not sure what a bayonet type is, but they are the ones you found for me on eBay from the California seller that were $12.50 - they are Cycolite 3157.

so swap holders and see what it does
that will determine your next step
holder might let bulb work but connection to let computer know bulb is bad/good screwy
So, I just did that. The problem is the RIGHT turn signal, so I just upgraded the LEFT signal to the chrome and it worked fine, then I swapped holders (with bulbs still installed) and the problem is still on the RIGHT. So the RIGHT holder moved to the LEFT signal doesn't report an error, the error seems to be stuck on the right side, independent of the holder and bulb.

Also of note is that it's not 100% of the time. I noticed this today. 1/3 to 1/2 of the time after starting I'll get that message, so futzing with it dropped it down from about 2/3 to 100% to 1/2 to 1/3. Makes me wonder if the connections inside the assembly might be wonky. It's pretty tough to get into there and I'm not sure what I can clean, but I suppose I could try to get some rubbing alcohol on a rag and try to wipe the inside of that socket.
 

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Founding Member 2006
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Good. so yes then u have what i have 3457/3157
and now you know issue is just right side where the holder goes in
too bad it is in a tough spot to check out/clean any corrosion contacts

have you tried resetting the battery just for giggles?
the usual disconnect neg cable for a minimum of 30 mins
reconnect
reset clock and resynch windows
try indicator again
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
have you tried resetting the battery just for giggles?
the usual disconnect neg cable for a minimum of 30 mins
reconnect
reset clock and resynch windows
try indicator again
Well, as luck would have it, this issue cropped up after I had to replace my dead battery so, yes, the battery has been reset recently. Should I try it again?
 

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Founding Member 2006
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well it happened after the battery was replaced, so give it a shot :D
maybe a gremlin is hiding in your turn signal
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
well it happened after the battery was replaced, so give it a shot :D
maybe a gremlin is hiding in your turn signal
:grin:

Well, the battery is disconnected, giving a good 30 minutes and see what happens. Perhaps I'll call Ghostbusters - but now they are all girls so I don't know if it will be as nostalgic :)
 
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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I had similar problem with my W203, turned out to be the indicator in the door mirror.
I had considered that, strongly! But then I thought that the car would tell me something like "Right Mirror Indicator" or something. When you say similar, how similar was your issue?
 

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Founding Member 2006
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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
check the bulb for the side marker light at corner of the bumper...
DING DING DING!!! You are the winner of todays "My SLK just really pissed me off" contest :).

The front right indicator bulb is out. Now to find one locally :).

The battery reset was a good try, but didn't fix the problem. I'm betting dollars to donuts that replacing that light will fix the problem.
 
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Founding Member 2006
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but you said:
The front right indicator bulb is out

now you are saying front marker? I'm sooo confused
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
but you said:
The front right indicator bulb is out

now you are saying front marker? I'm sooo confused
It says indicator, but it's definitely the front marker, I replaced it and the message went away - for a little while. Turns out that Sylvania LED 2825 bulbs do NOT work well in an SLK, they blink like a christmas light and eventually the message returned.
 

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Founding Member 2006
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forgive me but you cannot pop in any old led without it having a resistor to fool the canbus otherwise you get.....'bulb out' messages
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK280
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249 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
forgive me but you cannot pop in any old led without it having a resistor to fool the canbus otherwise you get.....'bulb out' messages
Of this I was not aware.
 
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Founding Member 2006
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What are CAN-bus Error Free LED bulbs?
CAN-bus Error Free LED bulbs are LED bulbs that have resistors that are internally/externally attached. European vehicles are the typical candidates for these types of LED bulbs as the electrical system on these European cars have sensors that detect whether the light is working or not. Since LED bulbs draw far less power than the stock filament bulbs, the vehicle’s computer may think that the bulb is out so it'll throw an "error message" or "bulb out" warning the driver that the light is out; thus the name "error free". The resistor’s job is to mimic the power draw of the stock incandescent bulbs to trick the computer to think that the bulbs are drawing the same rate of power so the vehicle does not throw any error messages.


Do I need error free bulbs?
If you own a European vehicle, you will most likely need error free bulbs. Many European vehicles such as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Range Rover, Jaguar and many more use a CAN-bus (controller area network) systems that monitors the activity of lights on the vehicle to detect if they are operating or not.

Since LED bulbs draw far less power than the stock bulbs, the vehicle’s can-bus system detects the low power draw and determines that the LED bulb is faulty. To stop this from happening, error free LED bulbs have resistors that are built into the light which mimic the power draw of the stock bulb which stops the error message from occurring.

Error free LED bulbs are most commonly used for exterior lights such as the turn signals, head lights, parking lights, license plate lights and more. Interior lights typically do not need error free bulbs, but for certain vehicles, it is required.
 
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